Sunday, February 23, 2014

February Finds, Part 1

This morning I woke with one thing on my mind - junking!
It was a beautiful, clear day; I had a little spending money; the house was clean...well clean enough; and my husband was happily working in his office.  Nothing was stopping me from spending the morning doing what I love to do, so I headed out just before 9:00 a.m.

I hadn't been to "the digs" in quite awhile, so I headed over to try my luck.  Glad I did, as I ended up with some, well...let's just say "interesting" items.

I saw this vintage metal lap tray on top of a pile of junk, but passed it up.  I thought it was kind of ugly, and I have several metal trays already.  

When I walked passed it a second time I thought it was at least worth a second look.  I noticed that the tray legs were a bit more elaborate than those on my other trays.

Then I discovered that the leg stand was hinged, allowing the tray to be tilted up to serve as a reading stand - hence the two clamp arms on the top!  Pretty cool, no?  I figured I could actually use this tray for reading my favorite junking and flea market magazines, so I decided to get it.

Like a giant magnet I was drawn to my next find - a metal milk crate.  It's not vintage, but I liked it.  I could imagine it being used for many an odd job, and it came in handy immediately for collecting and toting my subsequent finds. 

Interestingly enough, after lifting the milk crate out of the bin I spied some cards with intriguing illustrations and beautiful colors.  Upon closer scrutiny I realized that they were tarot cards.  Now I don't have any idea how to read tarot cards, and I doubt I'll ever learn how, but I thought they were worth rescuing.  Apparently they had fallen out of their case, as they were scattered throughout the bin.  I dug around until I collected all that I could find. I just counted them, and I only have 77 of the 78 cards. 

Normally as I walk the aisles of the digs, I just walk by the bins and scan their contents.  Only when I spy something interesting, or when I'm looking for additional pieces, do I dig around.  As I was searching through the assorted junk to find the tarot cards, I came upon this vintage, green metal file box, perfect to add to my office tools collection.

I also found this tiny silver plated tea box.  It's missing the cap, but I don't think that will hinder its usefulness.  I love the etched label!

This well-worn little leather box was intriguing;  I can't seem to resist a vintage box.

I wasn't surprised to see that when opened, the box revealed a Semca travel clock.

What did surprise me though, was despite the case's dilapidated state, the clock itself was still ticking and keeping accurate time!

Perhaps the oddest find was this 1959 "Laff a Day" personal calendar.
I purchased it because a.) it's from 1959! and b.) I couldn't resist the phrase on the bottom, "Relax with Tweed". 

The calendar has a bawdy joke on each page spread.  It doesn't appear to have ever been used, as there are no notes, comments, or appointments written in it. 
I was literally pulling this out of the bin as one of the workers was wheeling the bin away.  I'm so glad I nabbed it in time!

Across the warehouse I saw a small tack of these wooden patio folding chairs. I chose the two that were in the best, though still very well-worn, condition.  Since one pays by the pound for most everything at the digs, there was a good chance these would stay behind.  Sometimes larger, heavier items will be assigned an item price.  If the price was right, I'd keep the chairs.  As it turned out, the chairs were priced at $2.99 each, so home they came.

Another large item I purchased was this water crock.  It was priced at $1.99.  The spigot was missing, but I thought it would work well as a planter.  

As I glanced through several boxes of glassware I was delighted to find this pair of mid-century luncheon plates, or as I've discovered they are sometimes called "snack, sip, and smoke plates."  They actually have a small indent on one corner in which one could rest a cigarette.

I'm not certain just yet how I'll use them, but I simply couldn't resist picking up these game letter dice.  The toy cook pot was randomly put to use as a temporary container, but I think I'll keep them together 
- my own junk version of alphabet soup!

 I nearly always buy wood hangers whenever I come across them.  They are so useful and versatile. The little wooden brush I threw in for good measure.

This Kikkerland "Honest Boy" pencil sharpener simply had to come home with me.  As the pencil gets sharpened his nose gets smaller!  His comical appeal is well worth the mere change I spent for him.

Who doesn't need a  vintage wooden tennis racket?  I picked this one up at the check-out line.  It was someone else's junk find cast off.  I bought it because of the blue color.  That's reason enough, right? 

I was quite content with my day's junk finds, but thought that since I was already in the city I should probably just stop by my favorite thrift store, Thrift Land.

The first item I picked up was this crystal wine decanter with silver plated spout.

And, of course, I couldn't pass up this lovely silver plate coffee pot.


Now to justify the purchase of my final find I can only say, "When one comes upon a tiny pair of toddler tap shoes, one simply has to buy them!"  I mean, tell me now, honestly, wouldn't you have purchased them too?

Today's experience exemplifies what I love so much about junking.   We junkers come across such a varied array of items.  From high brow to bawdy, rustic to finely-crafted, elegant to ridiculous, 
the items we come across may not always have monetary value, but they most certainly are rich in their uniqueness and in the curiosity they inspire.
Happy junking, my friends!

All photographs by Paulette Rodriguez.

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