Procrastination Strikes Again

Hey everyone!  We’re going to do a couple of summer reruns from really, really old posts.  This one was originally done May 2010.  We figure NO ONE read our blog back then (and we have the stats to prove it!) so it’s time to dust them off and put them out there.  This is a companion piece for the Spaghetti Poodle post which came a little earlier.

Hi there, this a procrastination blog post since we didn’t find anything horrible last Friday. It was my job to look through all of our reserved pictures to do a Friday Finds post  (formerly called W.W.T.T.?) [We wanted to call the blog “What Were They Thinking? which was already taken; hence The Second Hand Roses were born!]  Unfortunately I’m a coward and procrastinator, which can be a deadly combination. So, instead of doing the Friday post first, I’m rerunning a book review, with a bonus thrown in for good measure.

I promised in the Spaghetti Poodle post to review the only known book on the subject (at least according to Amazon): Spaghetti Art Ware Poodles and other Collectible Ceramics by Wanda Gessner.

Amazon has new and used copies; I ordered it and paid about $20, including shipping. First off, I would be suspicious of the pricing guide since the book was published in 1998. We all know that with the uncertain economy, prices ain’t what they used to be. The author reproduces the marks and paper tags and lists manufacturers and importers in the introduction. She also includes a brief description of common materials used–porcelain, red clay, or ceramic material, along with a brief description of production techniques. For those of you who have been wondering, the spaghetti is made by pushing ceramic, clay, or porcelain through a tea strainer or similar device and pressing it onto the body, or swirling it to make curly fur. The figure is fired after the painted decoration is added. Often, these figures are only fired once, which would explain why the paint is often chipped or flaky.

After the brief introduction, the book features 101 pages of pictures and descriptions, lots and lots of pictures (400+) which is just what collectors like. The first section details spaghetti poodles and dogs, then other animals, holiday figurines, and finally miscellaneous. Through the whole book, I looked for my poodles, and found one or two, but for the most part my collection wasn’t in her collection. Which makes me wonder how many more spaghetti artifacts are out there.

If spaghetti art ware is your thing, then I would recommend this book; especially since spaghetti ware books are few and far between. It isn’t a complete description of what is out there, but it’s better than nothing.

The next review is of an excellent guide to jewelry called appropriately enough fun jewelry by Nancy Schiffer.

This book was published in 1991, so again the price guide is no longer accurate. But as the editorial review states, “Fun Jewelry contains over 400 beautiful color photographs showing over 1000 pieces and an explanatory text which identifies all marked pieces”. Amazon has it for sale for about $9 (used) + shipping. This is a must-have book for people who enjoy jewelry, whether it’s vintage costume or the real deal. This book details “fun” jewelry made by most important designers including: Tiffany, Cartier, Van Cleef and Arpels. It also describes “costume” jewelry made by Eisenberg, Miriam Haskell, Trifari, or Sarah Coventry. It has something for everyone.

There are about 150 pages of pictures, lots of pictures along with descriptions. The jewelry is classified by subject, so there is a “Swimmers” section with fish, amphibians, etc., a “People” section with human associated subjects, “Beasts” with animals, “High Flyers” with bird jewelry and so on. This book is amazing in its collections and pictures. I’m sure it isn’t complete; there have been so many jewelry makers over the years, but it isn’t from a lack of trying. I would highly recommend this to anyone with an interest in jewelry.

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You Could Be a Winner!

We did the drawings and congratulations to: Queli, Ruth, Jean, and Sheila!  I’ve sent you all email asking for your addresses.  We’re so glad that someone wanted all the prizes!

I have a couple other pieces of business.  A couple of readers felt sorry for the poor, earless wooden kitten.  For all of you old softies out there, I want to say that we searched high and low, found the kitten, paid less than a dollar for her, and she is now living on top of my refrigerator:

Poor Little Thing   Kitty in beret

I think she looks ever so much cuter in a beret!

Finally, I’m not even sure how this happened, but we forgot to wish all the dads out there a very, very, very happy Father’s Day!


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Saling Takes Us Away to Where We Love to Be

We’re on a roll with garage sales and estate sales.  Kathy got something pretty cool last weekend (I’ll let her tell you about it) and people were practically throwing their silver jewelry at me on Saturday—for a dollar!  I get that the purpose of a garage sale is to get rid of stuff, but I think you can ask a little more for something stamped “Italy 925”.  How about $2?  ;-)  All that being said, I was happy to take home eight chains and a bracelet.

We’ve been finding lots of picture fodder; in fact, our photo files are getting like the weeds in my backyard—out of control!

Here’s an oldie from way back in May:

Three headed duck tureen

I’m not sure why any tureen needs two duck heads; adding the third is like putting lipstick on a pig—useless and it makes the pig mad!  The Delft-inspired cow creamer in the background is about ten times cuter.  And we need to talk to them about their pricing–that works out to $3.33 per head.

A local thrift has a senior day on Tuesday which I go to alone because  Kathy, the youngster, doesn’t have enough birthdays to be a senior.  I wish she had seen this:

Just to say stuffed figure    Dolly Gram by western union

I think it’s supposed to be an elf doll that you give as a gift.  I’m not sure what message you’re trying to send via Western Union Elf-gram, but it’s sure to confuse most recipients.  I know it says that it’s a “Dolly-Gram”, but it doesn’t look like something you would like to cuddle up with.

The other thing I saw that day was this big ol’ head:

Big ol' wooden head from the front   Big ol' wooden head from the side

It was more than two feet tall, and when I tried to move it with two hands it almost took out a shelf of coffee mugs.  So, if you like the feeling of creepy eyes watching you from across the room, he was still there at ARC last Tuesday.  I’m sure it would hold a door open against the most determined breeze, or maybe it could hold your vast collection of hats, like Bartholomew Cubbins, but in a much creepier way.

We like how these people think:

Travel sign

We just hope that they don’t come home with a suitcase full of crappy souvenirs!

Speaking of souvenirs:

Banana Boats

I think this is one, but what it is and where it comes from eludes me.  The only thing I can say for sure is that it belongs in a thrift store!

I’m not sure what I think when I hear the phrase, “Inflate & Take”:

Inflate and take  Inflate and take your cupcakes

but cupcakes never enter the picture.  I won’t even talk about the risk of mushing all the frosting, or having your cupcake stuck to the “taker”.  It’s see-through; I think that if you were carrying this in a school, you would run the risk of being knocked down and trampled.  Let’s not even talk about those Junior League ladies!  We don’t think it’s ever been taken out of the package, and with a little thought, that doesn’t seem too surprising.

We really liked this groovy little bird:

Love Dove

Of course we did–it’s covered in beads and sequins in the funnest of ways.  I’m not sure if that’s a stylish hat, or if the bird is supposed to have a crest–like a peacock, a quail, or a crane.  It doesn’t matter because the Love Dove is just so fun and happenin’ that it would brighten up any dull corner.  Of course, neither of us brought it home to brighten up our dull corners, so we could be wrong.

We saw this Magic School Bus on the way to lunch:

Magic School bus!

Neither of us, nor the intern, had ever seen it around town before.  I’m not sure if it’s an amphibious vehicle that drives around Horsetooth Reservoir, or if it was along the lines of the Ghostbuster ambulance that drove around our town blaring, “I ain’t afraid o’ no ghost!”.  I loved it when the passengers got out of the Ghostbusters’ ambulance, in costume, and started dancing like maniacs.  For a while we also had a Mystery Machine with Fred and Daphne cutouts in the windows.  Yeah, Fort Collins can be a strange but fun town.  It might be part of the reason we find such curious things at the thrift stores.

I’m not sure what this is.  We theorized that it was one of those carved cats that has fallen on hard times:Poor Little Thing

It never was much to begin with, and it’s less now without its ears.  Maybe some kind-hearted woman can take it home, put a small straw hat on its head, and tuck it into a dull corner.  I have a pack of dogs on my front porch; I hope someone has a glaring of cats on theirs that this poor thing can join.

When we picked this up, we thought it was a package of champagne flutes for a wedding:

Quince celebratory flute

We were partially right.  These are flutes for a Quinceañera.  For those of you that don’t know about these, this is a party for Latina girls when they turn 15.  Traditionally, it marks the passage from childhood to being a young lady, but I didn’t know it involved champagne.  Hopefully, these are filled with sparking cider for toasting the young woman.

Today is the last day for the giveaway.  I hope someone wants the and girl’s apron and leaves a comment to say so:

Girl and her dolly apron

Girl and her dolly apron

We have entries for everything else (yes, the poo buttons now have two people who want them) but no one has asked for the adorable little aprons.  I hope someone out there is just being nice and letting others get a chance to win.  If you want it, speak up–it’s probably yours.

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Yee Haw Y’All

I have always been a bit of a country girl at heart.  After all, I grew up in Colorado.  I know what a rodeo is really like, and I will admit to owning a cowgirl hat.  It’s bright red and pretty awesome, even if I don’t wear it often.  I know which end is which on a horse, and once upon a time could ride OK.  I am not going to claim more than just not falling off on a regular basis, but I know where to put the saddle.  I am explaining this, just so you can see where I am coming from with the good and the bad in this post, and knowing us, you know there is some of both.

Our first garage sale this past week was a lot of fun.  Not only did we find some nifty jewelry, at a bargain price, and a handy construction item that I had been looking for, we also saw this:

Western FurnitureI mean how cool and ’50s kitschy can you get?  It was in superb condition, and hey, you know your living room needs a cow couch:

Cow Couch

Wagon Wheel Arm

This is where I make a true confession, so you can see why this turned me on.  (Not enough to buy it, but I did adore it)

A couple of years ago I was at a sale with my hubby when I came across this:

The Wild WestIt didn’t have a shade, and we are still arguing about the proper one.  I like this correct era paper and cork shade.  Hubby wants a leather one.  I have won so far, as he hasn’t found a better one, so yea me.  Now can’t you just see this lamp living with the couch?  Here is a better closeup of the lamp so you can get the full Western Vibe from it:

Ride em CowboyWe think it is actually more like ’30s or ’40s western tramp art, but it looks more ’50s when seen in context with the couch.

We like that style of Wild West better than this:

Resin antler Candle HolderNow, come on.  Antler lamps, furniture, etc. aren’t my favorite things at the best of times, but this nasty thing was made of the ever-invasive Chinese resin.  About all I can say in its defense is, as a weapon against an unsuspecting burglar, it will do some dandy damage.  You could probably take him down in one swing, and if you’re lucky, the candle stick will take collateral damage, and not make it out in one piece.

After successfully protecting your home sweet home against intruders, you will probably need a celebratory cocktail.  Let’s not use these handy shot shell shot glasses.  (Say that 3 times fast!):

Yee haw drinking

I am sorry, these are just a little too redneck for your average Westerner.  We have been known to use a canning jar in a pinch, but we never put it on a pedestal, and we fill the casings up with shot, as God intended.  Probably not a good idea to mix buckshot and alcohol anyway.

While I am confessing, here is one that I didn’t buy, but it was a near miss:

Not a cow pitcherFor loyal readers, you know of my devotion to cow creamers (I mean I have a few, but I don’t collect.  I need to just keep saying that, so pardon me while I try to convince myself.)  A moose creamer?  Oh, if only the antlers had not been broken, I would have had myself a whole new kind of cow.  Oh wait, that’s a bull.  Well, whatever, he was cute.  Now I will probably have to comb the world looking for an intact one.

One last true confession, and we will move on.  Last weekend I pulled this shirt out of a pile at a church sale:

Painted DesertThat fabric was about a crazy and cute as it comes.  Someone stitched this up at home, but it just makes me giggle every time I look at it.  Hmmm.  Maybe it will match my cowgirl hat?  They would probably run me out of Cheyenne Frontier Days for this, but I would be smiling as I headed out of town.  Probably a good thing I only paid fifty cents for it, and many would say I paid too much, but all it needs is a Jackalope to be absolutely perfect to me.

OK, enough with the cowboy culture; we have a couple more items that just didn’t fit the theme, but we had to share.  Italy has a reputation for stunning design.  Well, we were stunned, but not in a good way:

Oh DeerWhat marriage made in hell is this glass and glaringly silver base?  I think the glass might have been alright on its own, but that base has got to go, or be inserted into a lighthouse to use as a reflector warning ships to not come within a hundred miles of it.  Just in case you doubt our veracity on the country of origin, here is the proof:

Oh Deer labelI am pretty sure it says “really ugly” in Italian.

Since we are bashing the Europeans, here is another item not improved by its ties to France:

The French doesn't help this blanched broccoliNo matter how you look at it, that is not green.  I used to like broccoli, but I might be rethinking that.  We were also pretty sure someone died for this, as that red stain seemed rather suspicious.  Just what is a person supposed to do with this?  If you hung it in the kitchen, there would be no way to convince your children to eat broccoli, so what’s the point?  “Are you kidding me Mom, I’m not trying that, look it’s bleeding! ”  To be fair the red part probably infected it after production, but still …

We decided to extend the deadline for the drawing until 6/19th, so there is still time to get your name in.  We have a sucker, I mean reader, lined up for the buttons, so the cute stuff is still out there!  Leave a comment, here or on Facebook, and let us know which one you like best to be entered in the drawing.


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Friday Finds Mash-Up

For all of you Glee and Pitch Perfect fans, you know what a mash-up is.  For the rest of the world it’s something created by combining elements from two or more sources [Merriam-Webster].  We have several different things going on in this post: regular finds, crazy vintage pamphlet fun, and a giveaway (details at the end of the post).  We like to shake things up a little from time to time.  Last week, a reader asked us how we keep finding all this crazy stuff.  Truth to tell, it’s a combination of things: we’re pretty observant, we’re easily amused, and we’re lucky.  I think the harder thing to explain is why we keep laughing at all the crazy stuff.  Maybe it’s because we’re glass-half-full kind of gals and it’s always better to laugh than to bang your head on a thrift store shelf!

Boy, it was a near thing with this vintage lacquered photo album!

lacquered phoio album   Photo album

It had wooden feet on the back, so it couldn’t slide into a shelf, and it was pretty darn big–that’s what prevented me from bringing it home.  I have at least two of those black lacquered jewelry boxes that were made in Japan after the war, and I have forced myself to leave countless ones on the shelf.  My house is plenty big, but I do collect more than boxes. The photo album was there the next week, but gone after that.  Hope someone is loving it!

Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus:

Bad statuaryI’m putting these strange Asian statues with the Japanese lacquered album just to show how export goods run the gamut from good, or at least fun, to huh???  Although you can’t see it, I’m sure the Martian in the back is lining up his weapon for a good swing at another Martian who isn’t pictured.  He surely couldn’t be in that heroic post just to hoe a field!  Meanwhile, the geisha in the foreground peacefully plays her shamisen, totally oblivious to the testosterone fest behind her.

We really don’t like this kind of decoration:

This is decorative? Sure, it might be cool if the faux-finish footed bowl were full of Chihuly glass, vintage marbles or buttons, paper weights, or some other tom-foolery.  What we don’t like is that the overly ornate bowl contains overly ornate and matchy-matchy orbs.  To us that shows a lack of imagination.   A bowl of flowers or a plant would be ever so much prettier.

We try to ignore these things, we really do!

Indian maiden consoling BambiThis is a particularly mawkish example which I titled: Indian Maiden Consoles Bambi.  It’s a really, really good thing that the Southwest craze has gone the way of enormous bison herds–hopefully never to return.  Resurrecting awful decorating periods of the past and putting them in a theme park may be a scarier prospect than Jurassic Park!

Here’s another thing that we would like to put a moratorium on:

There ought to be a law

These cheap fake wood and plastic souvenirs are shuddersome!  The thermometer at the top was at least ten degrees off no matter what scale it was using.  I wish that people on trips would just buy postcards if this is the alternative!

You KNOW that you think this from time to time:

Mamma said there'd be days like this

Especially when you’ve been digging in the mud, painting, doing heavy cleaning, or had a hard day at the office.  The kitchen is closed because this chick has had it!

We saw quite a bit of unusual china at a local thrift a couple of weeks ago:

Russian China   Russian China mark

This Russian plate has been through some hard use, but is pretty cool.  We didn’t buy it, but hopefully some dramatic soul will and use it lovingly.

This California ’50s pottery was super fun:

Weil Ware California Pottery     Weil Ware Mark

I really liked the shape of the cups and serving dish.  It’s marked Weil Ware and I think the quality was pretty high.  It’s got mid-century modern written all over it.  If there had been a few more pieces, I might have gotten it for the Etsy shop.

We went to an estate sale last week and saw a couple of interesting things.  You might recognize this couch:

Remember me?

We didn’t like it the first time we were blinded by it!  Why the heck would the estate sale company move it to another sale?  I’m pretty sure it was still sitting there at the end of the half-price day.  Wonder how many times they will move it before they put $10 on it and act grateful to get it.  The shape of the couch is good, but it’s not comfortable to sit on, and that fabric has to go!

Now, this vase left us gobsmacked us for a minute or two:

Tiffany Vase

Yes, it’s a real Tiffany vase!  This isn’t my photo–it’s the one from the estate sale company’s Facebook page.  I was so stunned by a real, honest-to-estate-sale-gods Tiffany vase in the flesh, so to speak, that I forgot to take a picture.  Kathy actually picked it up; you know I would have dropped it had I touched it.  The price was fair–somewhere around $950.  Kathy found an auction where a similar vase was expected to fetch over $1100.  It’s something that both of us would be thrilled to own; however we passed on this one.  Kathy wasn’t in love with the color, and I would HAVE to buy a sturdy display case to put it in, since my family is prone to breaking valuable things.

Okay, now onto the pamphlet portion of the post:

Pause for refreshmentKathy picked this up somewhere–or maybe it was her dad.  Gosh, allergies make me even more absentminded than usual!  ( Kathy here, she almost had it, I ordered some stuff FOR my Dad and got this too. )  It was published by Coke, probably in the ’70s, and in between pictures of hamburgers, potato chips, and baked beans topped with a hard-boiled eggs (I kid you not!) there are some short articles.

We thought you might enjoy this one since we torture you with owls:

Owls for collectors1

I’m going to quote just in case you can’t read the fine print, “A curiosity about the mystery of today’s rage for collecting owls of all kinds can have but one end result  You don’t solve the mystery.  You become an owl collector!”

Okay, you’ve been warned–do not investigate or have any curiosity about owl collecting unless you want to join their cult!

This next picture shows you how practical your collection can be:

Owls for collectors

You COULD use it for table decoration for your fall feasts–harvest or Halloween.  I was thinking that the brass owl at the top of the picture would be perfect for a theme party while you watch Clash of the Titans (1981 version of course!).  The pictured owl looks like it’s ready to start moving and talking in a clockwork fashion, just like the movie owl!

I had to laugh at this page:

Money maker gift mart

Oh yes, the Money-maker Gift Mart–all you have to do is “Gather some inexpensive paper pails, bowls and drinking cups.  Decorate with bright tissue papers and felt marker pens.  Add flourishes of flowers, fruits, baubles.  Result? Attractive money-maker gift items …”.  It’s pretty hard to choose between the gold-painted pine cone bucket or my favorite, the hair curler storage basket where you slide your curlers over fake roses! (Right side of the picture)  Good luck selling any of these crafts, no matter how worthy your cause.

There are other articles about orchids and dried plant materials, but the owls are the biggest hoot!

If you’ve made it through all the other nonsense, you probably deserve to win the giveaway!  We have three prizes, well, two prizes and a booby prize.  Which is which—you decide:

Girl and her dolly apron   Linen table runner with crochet cutwork

The first prize is a child’s apron that has a sweetheart pocket and a matching doll apron.  The second prize is a linen table runner with crocheted flower basket cutwork.  The last prize is something from the Facebook page:

Pile o' pooh buttons

It’s the pile o’ poo plastic buttons!  To win, leave a comment here or on the Facebook page saying which prize you would like to win.  Honestly, if you want the buttons, it will probably be a slam dunk! ;-)  The contest will close June 12th at 9pm mt.  We’ll draw names and notify you via email, if we can, or on Facebook and the blog.  Good Luck!


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Purse-nally Yours

Be careful what you wish for!  The rain has stopped, but every last growing thing in the area is doing just that–growing.  I have decided to invest in a hay baler for the lawn, or maybe a herd of goats, and don’t even ask about the weeds.  BUT …  the sun is shining and garage sales are on.  Look out world, here we come.

We are both mad purse fanatics.  You don’t even want to know how many of them live at our respective homes.  We have some pretty crazy ones, but they are at least pretty, or funny, not this:

Yellow leather Rose purseWTF?  The Yellow Rose of Texas, this is not.  Sorry about the weird angle on the picture, but they had it in the showcase.  For the life of us, we couldn’t figure out why, as no one in their right mind would steal this. I don’t believe we could see any maker’s mark on it, and it is falling apart.  Seriously, there is a time for the trash can, and this is it.

We were just positive this was a homemade job:

Weird pieced purseCrocheted faux alligator circles just scream from the pages of the latest craft magazine, but noooooo, this one had a label.  Nothing special, and they forgot to run it by the taste department, but there you have it.  Do people really carry these things?  And if they do, don’t other people point, stare and giggle?  (We do, but quietly, off in the distance.)

Now this purse, we found amusing, but strangely, not amusing enough for either one of us to take home:

Paper Bead PurseWe love paper beads, especially vintage ones (these are not old, but cool) and how fun are they on a purse?  See:

Paper Bead Purse close upLove all those bright colors.  Why have a floppy dingy yellow rose or pseudo reptile, when you could have this?

As an aside here, I have to mention that these are the opinions of us, the writers, and we will be the first to claim that we don’t know diddly-squat.  I am just saying this for the peace of mind of those who find some of our dislikes oddly appealing.  Doesn’t mean we won’t make fun of them; we just won’t judge you!

While we are on the subject of fashion.  We have to mention that sometimes fashion is NOT a pretty thing.  Take these:

Baseball caps by D & GI don’t care if they do say Dolce & Gabbana, they are flat-out ugly.  Kinda looks like a gilded robot came and sat on your head.  If ever there were victims of the fashion police, the buyers of these hats are they!  Of course, there are two of them, and they look pretty unworn, so maybe enough divas figured out the ruse, and left them till there was overstock.

This basket had us chortling from the get-go:

Plastic canvas basketWe both grabbed for it at the same time, as the overwhelming curiosity as to whether there were faces on the other side gripped us both.  Of course there were:

Plastic Canvas Basket innardsLet’s all sing together:  It’s a small world after all, It’s a small world after all …  I apologize for the ear worm, but we sang it the rest of the day, why shouldn’t you?

If you haven’t figured it out by now, we love old boxes.  We love folks who keep things in old boxes.  We drag old boxes home, sometimes.  So here is another old box and its contents:

Vintage Beeswax candlesThe box was way more fun than the candles, but we did get a kick out of the quote on the box: “Will not bend over in hot weather” I feel that way about cooking in hot weather, but it never got me anywhere.  As an aside, we saw a bag of beeswax candles later in the morning that most assuredly DID bend over and then some, so the whole thing was a lie, but the box was still cute.

Of course the above candles were better than these candle holders:

Votives and more pastaSurely this was a grand Pinterest Fail?  Lace and rocks and pearls glued to their death on the sacrificial altar of candle holders.  They can’t even look good with a candle in them, and there is no chance of a mercy fire taking out the decorations.  They liked doing them so much, they made another one; we found it later:

One of everything votiveAt least they were patriotic, but they could have done their country a favor and dropped it on the way to the picnic.

Didn’t want to forget to mention the supporting actor in the first candle holder picture.  Notice it cowering behind the candle holders?  We found several of the big glass jars filled with just plain old pasta this past week.  Here is another one:

Better than pickled veggiesWe decided that if you MUST fill a glass jar with something to spruce up your kitchen,  DRY pasta seems like a much better choice than gelatinous vegetables that are the usual fare.  In an emergency, you could eat the pasta.  I wouldn’t trust that other stuff to not give you the biggest case of Montezuma’s Revenge ever recorded.

We think that if the oily veggies were consumed, you would probably look like this:

Holy MolyEither that, or the movie Sybil is much older than we think.  This thing was probably a foot across, so it was no little feat to bring it home from the vacation.  Again, we offer our services on what to buy when on vacation.  Think small, tasteful jewelry.  I hope it was a personal souvenir and not a gift, unless they were looking to get rid of that particular friendship.  Pretty sure this would have been mission accomplished.

OK, enough already–I always like to end on a high note, so here is just an overload of cuteness:

Adorable covered casseroleAt least we think so.  We sometime feel the need to be ’40s housewives, just so we could have darling cookware.  Then we think of life without a microwave, cooking in heels and a house dress, and get over ourselves.  If this hadn’t had a cracked lid, we probably would have caved.  Seems like they could just make some better-looking stuff these days, and satisfy the craving.

Well, that’s it for this week.  Here’s to garage sale season wherever you are, and if you find something awful, send us the photo, we adore hearing from our readers, and we won’t even point and laugh … much.

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Mama Said There’d be Days Like This

Well, it hasn’t just been a couple of days–it’s been weeks!  Seriously, we’ve had 6.30 inches of rain in the last 30 days and probably most of it has come in two to three weeks.  I lived in Oregon for three years, and mowing the lawn in the rain ranks REALLY low on my list of favorite chores.  Of course, we are mostly unhappy because it’s slowing down the garage sales, and we haven’t gotten our gardens in yet.  My neighbor said to me this morning, as we passed each other in the mist, “Give us a couple of 90°F weeks and we’ll be crying for cool and rain!”   True dat!

We saw this ’50s blond bedroom suite recently at a local thrift:

Mengel Dresser2   Mengel Dresser and Headboard

The label in the drawer said Permanized Mengel Furniture which seems like a fair claim, what with the good overall condition of the headboard and chest of drawers.

Mengel Dresser

A brief internet search revealed that the Mengel furniture company was started shortly after the Civil War in Kentucky.  They made quite a bit of the blond furniture between the ’40s and the ’60s.  My favorite part of the whole shebang are the drawer pulls.  They have that mid-century modern flair.

Speaking of flair, or lack thereof:

Sun Room sofa   Sun Room only

This couch was so bright and busy that the only place you might want to put it would be the basement or your informal sun room.  This picture was taken on a gray day and look how bright it is!  If the sun were shining, you would probably need your sunglasses in the house.  I can’t remember the exact amount they were asking for it, but it provoked the “Yeah, right!” response from us.

OMG, I just found this picture in the April photo files–gasp, you might have missed it:

$129.99    $129.00

What a big tub of crap jewelry that Goodwill had on sale for $129!  We couldn’t believe that anyone would bother going through this pile of plastic in search of something to justify the price tag.  We know from experience that our local Goodwill never puts anything good in the giant grab bags that they price at $8.  Just imagine how disappointed you would be after buying the equivalent of 16-plus grab bags.  Also, you would have to somehow humanely dispose of the remains; I suppose you could rent a Bobcat to excavate a suitable grave in your backyard.  And yet, it was gone the next week, and we doubt that anyone shoplifted it!

I’m not sure what inspired this tile:

Forbidden love

I call it Forbidden Love; once you get your wine goggles on, you forget that you’re a cat and he’s a dog.  They do seem blissfully happy, so who am I to judge?

There were quite a few kitty things at the thrift last week:

Low self esteem kitties

This was the homeliest bunch.  The big white and black sleeping cat in the center isn’t bad, just sort of boring.  It’s the two smaller ones to the right who  probably suffer from low self-esteem.  The one in the front seems to be in a production of Oliver! playing the role of Oliver Twist when he asks for more porridge–he’s that pitiful.  Meanwhile, the gray-green tabby in the back seems to have hyperthyroidism, or he might have had a little too much Red Bull.  He’s wide-eyed and bushy-tailed for sure.

We saw this poodle princess and wondered what her story was:

Princess Poodle   Princess Piggy Bank Poodle

She suffers from the opposite of low self-esteem; confidence seems to ooze out of her.  She makes a nice change from all the piggy banks we run into.

We just had to laugh at this fellow:

Furry Monkeyshines

I hope you can see the fur on his tail, although it kind of looks like squirrel, not monkey fur.  The more I look at him, the less funny and more creepy he gets.  The expression on his face is kind of disturbing.  Of course, being sealed up in a plastic bag would give anyone a funny expression.

Since I seem to be on an animal roll right now, might as well throw this picture into the breach:


We aren’t fans of these poorly executed pieces of resin–it wasn’t even a china swan.  I just don’t understand how such a graceful and lovely bird can be represented in such a clunky and unlovely way.  I much prefer the blown glass swans of my childhood that were filled with water tinged by food coloring.  They were at least fun.

We need something fun right now:


How about a Shrimpmaster?  You can see that it was never used, at least not for its intended purpose.  I wish I were participating in a white elephant gift exchange; the Shrimpmaster would be a perfect offering.  Being a vegetarian, I’m not quite sure why mastering a shrimp would require a tool three times its size, but they must be feisty little buggers.

Here’s another thing that is larger than what you might expect:

Ginormous punch bowl

This punch bowl dwarfs the gallon watering can in the foreground.  We have never seen such a huge bowl.  It would be murder to move when full, and when empty it would take up a whole shelf by itself.  Of course our least favorite estate sale organizers were asking way too much for it.  Sometimes it’s not even worth going to their half-off day, since 50% off is still 20% too much.

Last but not least:

that's what you can do with old cabinets

Have you ever wondered what to do with that banged-up old cabinet you foolishly bought at the auction?  Wonder no more–it can be your brand-new fireplace!  We were looking at this while it was unplugged in a garage thinking, “What in tarnation?” when the seller walked over and plugged the cord in.  We did not see that coming!  This cabinet surprise symbolizes what we love most about being Secondhand Roses–we see something amazing every week!

To all of our US readers: please have a safe and fun Memorial Day weekend!

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