Thursday, June 14, 2012

Everything Old is New Again

      In addition to making jewelry and crafts I'm also a big fan of thrifting and antiquing.  The obsession probably really got started in college where Salvation Army stores (we call it Sal's) were the best place to find great furniture and fun clothes on a skin tight budget. I still have a beautiful wingback chair that I got for my college apartment at a Sal's for 25$.
     These days I turned the obsession into yet another business venture. My aunt and I now run an antique booth in a great, huge antique mall out in Howell, MI. It's called The Livingston Antique Mall. If you're interested in visiting you can check out the place and find directions here:  Our booth is #141. I love just spending time walking around the mall there. There are so many interesting and inspiring things to look at.
      Running an antique booth is a pretty awesome job as far as jobs go. When I'm not pricing and doing inventory I am running to garage sales and estate a hunter I'm always looking for a good bargain. Every week I go clean up and restock the booth, rearranging our wares hoping to draw you in and help you find your new favorite piece. Here is a table we recently put together for the patriotic fourth of July sale that's coming up at the store.
     It's the kind of job that pushes my creative limits sometimes. Occasionally we will find an old piece of furniture that's a little too beat up, but it's a great deal and has potential. So I take it in and clean it up. If it needs I will sand it down, paint it, stain it, and give it a whole new life. I think that's probably my favorite and most rewarding part of the job.  
     I got this desk at a garage sale for $15.00. It was beat up and scratched and a little wobbly.  I sanded it down stained it with a rich walnut  and added a musical flair to it with some paint and vintage paper.  It went from being an unwanted desk tossed to the curb to a beautiful piece that has a new purpose and function.
      Each old piece I find has a second life inside of it. Whether I keep it for myself and give it a new home, or I refinish it and send it back out into the world it is definitely my preferred way to recycle. I've always preferred things that have a history, that have been through it all and are still standing strong.  And I hate to say this and sound like my mother, but they just don't make things the way they used to :)

      Here is my most recent obsession. I have fallen in love with milkglass mugs. They have bright beautiful graphics printed on them. Everything from pyrex flower designs to advertisements for every company you can think of.  I bid on one on ebay once that touted the virtues of streaking...alas I didn't win the mug. The picture above is what I have collected so far. I think my favorites are the orange 70's slang mug with words like "Dude! Right on, and Far Out" and the Smokey The Bear mug that reminds us all that "Only you can help prevent forest fires".

     Do you guys have any collections or obsessions your crazy about?

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