Oh, the Glorious Finds!

Oh my goodness, people, it’s been a great weekend. I’m getting a little bonus at work this month, and so I felt justified in spending a little on frivolities for myself (like I need the excuse). And I hit the jackpot.

Let’s start with the flea market:

The two brooches were from a lady I’d never bought from before — she kindly went from $2 each to $2 for the pair. The one with the blue stone is just a little go-with-anything sort of piece — but I’m madly in love with that butterfly. The wings are some sort of mother-of-pearl or shell. (In case you can’t tell, I’m no jewelry expert — I just buy pieces that appeal to me.) The leaf was actually a clearance piece from Gaslamp Antiques. And the hatpin — now, the hatpin has a little story.

I love buying things from this one seller — we’ll call him George. He’s a delightful vendor at the flea market — I bought my monogrammed hatpin and my bird hatpin from him. I got there Thursday night right after work and asked if he had any more, since I’m now in love with hatpins. He didn’t think he did, his assistant (we’ll call him Bob), said, “Wait, there’s one left!” And found it for me in the box.  “How much do I owe you?” I asked George.
“Not a thing,” he said.
“But I can’t just take your hatpin!” I protested.
“All right then, just give me a hug and we’ll call it even.” (He’s such a charming older man!)

So of course I had to buy some other things from him — I couldn’t just go with a free hatpin. And here’s what I found:

A mother-of-pearl belt buckle — easily $4-6 from other vendors. And it’s a pretty large one. George? He charged me a dollar.

What’s this, you ask? I think it’s hand made. Here’s what it is:

A lion cookie cutter! He had quite an assortment, but I just sorted my cookie cutters this week. I have too many. So I chose just one, and he gave me half off the sticker price.

Then I found an early 1900’s card of buttons — also a dollar. The corner was intact when I bought it, but I put it in the bag with everything else and I think the lion cookie cutter attacked it. (Mentally kicking myself for feeding the buttons to the lion!)

And this, my friends — this is the crowning glory of the flea market finds.  It was $20. It blew the budget. And luckily, George took a check.  It’s a silver napkin ring with an angry bird.

Not only this, but it has my husband’s initials. What’s the probability? Excluding weird letters (X, Y, Z, and company), and not accounting for certain letters being more popular than others, chances of finding those initials are about 1 in 400.

Not to mention that the bird is just ridiculously, bizarrely adorable.

I also bought aprons, 3 for $10, from a vendor who specializes in antique linens.  She concluded that I was a dealer (I think because I said I worked in an antique store) and gave me VIP pricing (the price tags on the aprons would have totaled $40).

I love the way this pocket is designed — next time I make an apron, I just might utilize that (if you want a high-res closeup, comment and I can email you one).

And this one is made from handkerchiefs. I’ve seen them done with handkerchiefs before, but I particularly like the border treatment here.

Closeup of the center front.

And this one was just fun. It’s a very crisp cotton, trimmed in bias tape.

Finally, we have a vintage icing tube, with seven tips. For $1. I don’t know how old it is, but at $1, I don’t ask many questions.

Having concluded our review of the Nashville Flea Market, September Issue, we’ll move on to the estate sales.

Jonathan had to get up early this morning for work — I got up, too, and after doing most of the dishes, concluded that I deserved to hit a couple estate sales (how I made that connection, I’m not sure, but I always come up with ways).

I found four on Craigslist. The first was by an elderly man who clearly thought the old stuff was mostly junk, and the new stuff was treasure (as reflected in the pricing). I spent a grand total of 75 cents, and was quite pleased.

Here’s what I got, for a quarter each. I’m madly in love with the wire whisk. If anyone puts it in the dishwasher, I’ll kill them. And yes, I am getting rid of at least one newer whisk since I bought this one.

The next estate sale was a fake — all baby stuff. I considered telling them that this could only be considered an estate sale if their baby had moved to the nursing home, but thought better of it and left quickly instead.

The next was, as my boss Julia put it, someone “with more money than sense.” It was in a mansion off Hillsboro, and the only old thing there was a reupholstered Victorian sofa.  Everything else was fancy new junk.

So it was on to the last one — I thought about going straight to work, but I decided I’d be too early, so I hit this one. And it was the jackpot.  Everything an estate sale should be. And all for $12.50 (assuming, of course, that they gave me that 50 cents change. I was in such a hurry that I don’t remember).

This was the last thing I grabbed as I ran to the checkout table (with ten minutes until I was supposed to be at work).

I adore hand-embroidered gingham.

These were marked “$4 for all” and $3 for the crazed bowl in the top left corner (which, by the way, is from the 1930s). Obviously from the $12.50 total, I paid less. The others are a little newer, I think, but I like having extra dishes on hand in case of extra company or accidents. Like with jewelry, I’m no Blue Willow expert, but I know what I like.

I’m also madly in love with the matching angora sweater and wool skirt. It fits (as I breathe a sigh of relief, since I had no time to try it on or even look at the skirt).

It has a 1960’s dry cleaning tag. I guess I need to take it to be cleaned, seeing as it’s apparently not been cleaned in almost half a century.

I love the grosgrain ribbon detail on the inside of the cardigan.

And the little pointed tab waistband — it’s the little design details like this that add flair to a nice garment. Even if you’re the only one who sees it.

And then I grabbed some 1950’s sewing patterns — I think they worked out to about 50 cents each, which was okay with me. I didn’t want to pay more, since I didn’t know if they were complete and the third one didn’t even have the entire front picture. But hey! Hopefully still usable, right?

And then, as I was sorting everything to take pictures, I came across this little cutie. He must have been in the box that they gave me to put everything in, because I don’t remember buying him. Anyone have any guesses on how old he is?

About Charity

I have an inexcusable number of cookbooks (and like to experiment with them), have worked in architectural antiques, and have been sewing most of my life. I recently graduated with a Ph.D. in Apparel, Merchandising, & Design from Iowa State University. Doing household things (except for cleaning!) and hunting for antiques are my favorite pastimes.
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13 Responses to Oh, the Glorious Finds!

  1. Jenny says:

    Very nice! But I think Miss Money needs some upper coverage when she’s only wearing her apron. 😉

  2. Ruth Calvin says:

    I agree. Cover the boobies. ANd the two spoons look like bakelite handles. Bought you a couple of utensils from Mary’s. She asked me why since I had so many you would eventually want.

  3. Ruth Calvin says:

    You would have had a great time at her house. Some people came back three and four times. People left withboxes full of goodies. My heart still thumps thinking about all the stuff I would have loved to buy but thought better of adding when I need to subtract from my stuff.

    • Charity says:

      I don’t even want to know!! 🙂 I haven’t gone to a really nice estate sale in almost a year now (this one I would count as fairly nice, not really nice) — the only other one I’ve been to all year was all junk (vintage suitcases, but I still haven’t gotten the musty smell out). Oh, and there was the one with the falling-in ceiling, but it was also only a few decent things.

  4. Suzanne says:

    Is that the pitiful dress form I bought many years ago at a yard sale? If so, it is serving its time well, but probably do need to cover her pathetic upper torso.

    • Charity says:

      Yes. She had a few run-ins with the Evil Pet at my parents’ house (Pet liked to take flying leaps and hang from the dressform by her evil little claws).

      Okay, okay, people, I’ll make a new knit cover for her once I free up some money in the budget to get fabric at Textile. I love my dressmaker’s form, so y’all be nice to her! 😛

  5. Tiffany says:

    I am incredibly jealous of all of the following:

    Your lion cookie cutter (I’m a Leo and proud of my lioness-qualities, making me a little obsessed with lions)
    Your blue willow (I want a complete set of blue willow dishes one day. I dream.)
    Your owl pin. How cute!

    Basically, I can’t be trusted with your address after seeing this post… haha

    • Charity says:

      Haha, thanks, Tiffany! You know, Kroger does a special on Blue Willow about once every ten years (no joke, it really is about every ten years) — that’s when my mom got mine for my high school graduation present. Not all the stores do it (we had to go to the Cason Lane Kroger in M’boro to get mine), but if you happen across it, it’s the best pricing you’ll ever find (unless, of course, you find a super good deal at an auction or something).

    • Charity says:

      Yep, 2006. I think they also showed up sometime fairly soon after we moved to Tullahoma — which was 1996. My mom seriously thought about buying them for herself then, but didn’t.

  6. Wow… no kidding about the jackpot!! At first I was going to comment on the blue stoned brooch but then I saw the handkerchief apron… then the blue willow dishes (I can’t believe what a deal you got! That is exactly what I’ve been looking for!!), and finally the angora sweater. Basically, I love it all!! You found some wonderful things for sure.

    • Charity says:

      Thanks, Hilary! I thought it was an unusually good weekend. 🙂 The trouble is, I always find all the best stuff at one time — I’d prefer to spread out the spending a little! But hey, I’m not complaining.

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