Sunday, November 24, 2013

Vintage…with two bullets!

Oh, how the sales do dwindle with the coming of winter! It was cold but sunny this weekend. Only a few ads on Craigslist. But something is better than nothing, yes? So Friday morning, Judy and I took off as usual on our treasure hunt.

We headed to the north part of town again (are they hardier up there than in South Salem??). Grace, my GPS, announced we had arrived at our first destination and we both said, “What?” What was advertised as an estate sale looked more like a junk yard behind a chain link fence. If I’d been alone I’m sure I’d never have stopped, but we figured we could protect each other. After all, Judy is almost 5’1” tall!

Turns out the “estate sale” was the leftovers from a junk shop the guy is closing down. I think there should be some appropriate punishment for people who claim they’re having an estate sale when they’re not. Ideas, anyone? Nothing that will land us in jail but will provide a sense of irate satisfaction.

We wandered around for a bit, and another shopper came by, a middle aged guy. He pointed to a rusty tool near me and asked me what it was. “It’s not my sale, I’m just shopping like you,” I told him. Didn’t faze him at all. “Yeah, but what is it?” I looked at the item in question – a short rusted blade thingie on a wooden handle. “It’s some kind of logging tool,” I said as though I actually knew. Hey, this is Oregon, and logging is the local industry.

The guy running the sale came in and the other shopper asked him about the tool. “It’s some kind of logging tool,” he said.

Never doubt a librarian when she makes something up. It could very well be true.

We went to the next sale on the list. Nothing to buy, but a nice couple to chat with. Somehow we got onto senior discounts. The husband had gray hair but evidently was in his early fifties, but he agreed that if someone wants to give a discount, take it.

One last address was in the GPS, but when we got there it was a little strip mall. “What the heck?” I said, but then Judy noticed the name on one of the stores. “That’s the name of the store that first guy said he was closing!” Now we really were peeved at him. If I were the person leaving notes about sales on Craigslist, this guy’s ears would be burning!

There was a thrift store across the street, so we bopped around there for a bit. Nada, and everything overpriced. We decided to check out the humane society thrift store, which has better prices and very friendly workers. I spotted a couple of record albums that I figured would give my husband pause if I were to bring them home and was holding my camera aloft to get them both in a picture. “You could put them somewhere lower,” suggested one of the volunteer ladies, “or maybe I could bring you a stepladder!” We both cracked up.

Oh, Barbra!Not in my house

Judy found a couple of things, including a $5 ceiling light fixture for the kitchen of the rental house they’re fixing up. I was empty handed until I took a look on the checkout counter, where I spied an old piece of embroidery. I think it may have been a pocket on a departed garment.

antique embroidery

Once I picked it up and looked at the wonderful stitchery I found I couldn’t put it down again.

fine stichery on the back

At first I thought it was the letter N, but finally decided it’s the initials A.H. It’s definitely old, I’m guessing at least from the Twenties and maybe older. When I got home I gave it a careful pressing


and framed it with a sheet of handmade mulberry paper behind it. (Having a stash of frames comes in handy!)

 antique monogram               

I love it.

Saturday morning the sun was still shining. The only sale on my list was an estate sale (a real one this time!) two blocks from home, so I walked over. Got there a few minutes early and chatted with other attendees as we shivered and waited for the door to open. In the carport I spotted a planter I liked, but no price tag was visible. Figured it might be spendy since it was a mid century bullet shaped planter in a stand (clay, rather than the fiberglass you usually see – which go for about $150). As soon as I got in the door I asked about it. “Five bucks,” they said. “Mine,” I said. (Hey, Cathy G., do you remember your challenge a while back about finding a bullet planter? Score!)

bullet plantervintage planter

It was bullet morning, because the next thing I found was a bullet lamp!

bullet light

Gold aluminum or brass, push button switch. Shoots light straight up and works great. Tag inside says it’s a Prescolite, which I think are still made – though not in this style.

old prescolite label

In the kitchen I picked up a stack of heavy cotton napkins, seven of them for a dollar.

cotton napkins

(Yes, Zoe is still the scourge of cloth napkins, though we are getting better at keeping them out of her reach!). Underneath I found a darling embroidered tea towel.

vintage tea towelFriday puppies

Definitely needs an oxy soak, but should clean up well. And underneath that, there it was…THE CUTEST embroidered object ever. Ever, I tell you!

Sunday setter

A potholder, with wonderful vintage flannel on the back.

vintage flannel

Isn’t that fabulous? The “Home Sweet Home” on the wall, “Sunday” on a scroll, the blue apron and the paws up on a hassock…I swoon.

Rocker pup

It was waiting for me to find it. And I did.


  1. I have those albums on 8 track! :)

  2. Wonderful potholder. If you're ever feeling blue, just give it a gander.

    1. I have it hanging on the wall right above my computer so I can do just that!

  3. I'd have been all over that planter. And five bucks? Now that's a score!

    1. I can just see us having a fist fight over who would get to buy it! Seriously, I was thrilled both at the piece and the price!

  4. I love what you've done with the monogrammed piece! And, the potholder with the dog resting after her work is done cute.

    1. Guess I'm on a mission to make sure someone appreciates this wonderful needlework that took such time and skill to create!

  5. You're right, that is the cutest embroidery ever. He looks like my mom's dog. That was funny about the librarian. I'm inviting you to share this at my link party, We Call It Olde, love to have you, it runs Tue-Sat. Take care - Dawn @ We Call It

    1. Your mom's dog must be awfully cute. Does she sit with her feet on a hassock?

  6. I sometimes wish I could leave craigslisters feedback like on eBay. I've been to more non-estate sales than ever since I started trusting craigslist to direct me. I really like your embroidery though!

    1. Someone around here is doing just that, and I have to admit it's pretty tempting sometimes!

  7. I HATE the Estate sales on craigslist that are just crud sales! Thanks for coming by Thifter/Maker/Fixer/Farm, we're happy to have you link up.

    1. I know, it's just SO annoying! But it's gone on forever. I remember going to a supposed-estate sale when we first lived in California and how peeved I was to find it was just someone moving. And that was nearly 25 years ago! (Hmmm, sounds like I'm way too good at holding a grudge...)


I really love your comments. Thanks for coming along on my thrifty adventures!

Pin It button on image hover