The Boy and I both have an affinity for rummaging around in other peoples’ trash. Many of our summer weekends are kicked off by trawling neighbourhood garage sales (with the puppy in tow — we feel he makes folks more inclined to bargain with us) before winding up at the farmer’s market. (This inevitably results in us heading home and then gorging ourselves on fresh bread and cheese. Not the healthiest habit, but surely a delicious one!)
Despite the frequency of our thrifting, however, we’re not indiscriminate shoppers: The Boy has oft lamented that he “always” comes home empty-handed while I usually seem to find something. (Given that “more wide-mouth jars” is always on my list of things to find, this isn’t surprising. Even so, I’m definitely the less picky of the two of us in this respect.)
With our recent trek Stateside, we were delighted to find a whole mess of garage sales, antique and second-hand stores to while away some of our time in. The Boy actually fared better than I did there — among other things, he bought an old manual for the Apple II! — but when we were going through one of the garages of the antique store, we came across this old Borax tin from the 50s or 60s:
At the time, I’d thought it was cute (I especially love that the tin had a special offer for a Borax-themed cross-stitch pattern for a mere $3 (plus box top) — hilarious!), and commented that it would probably keep my Borax drier than the current container (which is cardboard) when The Boy surprised me by suggesting I buy it.
At $2, it wasn’t exactly a huge spend, and his suggestion that I use it for my laundry detergent (whose current home is an old peanut butter jar) appealed to my love of ridiculous home-ec kitsch. So it came home with us!
That store had treasures for The Boy too.
In that same garage, he found a couple of fleur de lis hooks — this one in particular, he seemed happy to find. He’s not exactly sure where to put it yet (although I did point out that our house has dark exterior walls if he wanted an outdoor hook) but since he so rarely finds something decorative that “speaks” to him, I was happy to see The Boy find this. (His usual goal when thrifting is to look for tools or construction supplies. No wonder he’s so often disappointed!)
We’ve finally gotten to the point (4.5 years after moving in!) where we’re actually starting to decorate our home. Possibly this is why The Boy has more of an eye out for “arty” things; either way, it’s nice to see the results of the change!
In the realm of (slightly) more practical finds (aside from wide-mouthed jars of course), ages ago, Amanda wrote this piece about napkin rings. When I read it, I was completely smitten with the idea of having a set of “personal” napkin rings for The Boy and I, and despite the fact that he almost never uses a napkin at the table, I kept it in mind while thrifting. Naturally, I found “his” ring almost immediately.
It is rather light, with all that airy metal lace, so I’m still on the look-out to find something more “him” with a bit more heft. In the meantime, though, I think it’s a very good stand-in. For myself, however, despite our frequent thrifting over the years, I still hadn’t managed to see anything that even came close to being “my” napkin ring.
And then, in Lewiston, I found it!
A much heavier ring, with flowers and clover. Simple, botanical, basically indestructable. It’s perfect.
I’m not sure what we’ll get up to this weekend: I might make progress on my hunt for a medium-sized crockpot… or we might stay in all day (well, after a quick stop at the Farmer’s Market for more of that bread!). Either way, I’m looking forward to a weekend home with the critters and my poor, thirsty veggies.
What are you all up to?