I love old things. Parents who lived through the Great Depression, coupled with tagging along on junk yard trips with my father were early influences. Just the beginning, really. I was surrounded by old things growing up in a 19th century farmhouse. Unlike some girls, I enjoyed having a box of hand-me-down clothes arrive from Chicago, through Agnes, our neighbor down the road. Agnes was from Denmark and made the most delightful Danish pastries in the world! I could write several pages about Agnes and Elmer (Agnes called him Yelmer), but I digress.
My sister Sharon and I shared a couple of apartments in Chicago and LA after we were out of school. In those days, furnished apartments were quite common. But occasionally we'd need a piece of furniture. One of the best sources in LA was Allied Van Lines where unclaimed shipments were sold. Sharon was going for a new table, but I convinced her to buy an adorable old painted one. It was an aqua oval drop-leaf and came with four chairs. I think she paid about $17.00 for the set. She kept it for over 40 years before handing it down to our niece, Kari.
Old stuff lasts and increases in value. Nothing in our house is new except for appliances (which DON'T last) and the upholstered stuff. A lot of it came from thrift stores, estate sales, the flea market or family with an occasional SOR (side of road) find.
When I was a lot younger, part of my passion was the thrill of the hunt. That was when I was buying and selling professionally. But now it's more a matter of thinking green, of keeping useful things out of the landfill, of living responsibly.
Below are a few gems spotted last week when I was looking for wool.
I spied this charmer at the thrift store across the street. My Mother had the same model.
My DH once had a typewriter just like this! The price is way out of line, imho.
There are many blogs devoted entirely to thrifting. One of my favorites is: http://apronthriftgirl.typepad.com/apron_thrift_girl/ Check it out. You'll be amazed at what this woman finds. She's one dedicated thrifter - and I love her blog name.