Tuesday, July 22, 2008
My Imperfect (but mostly pleasant) Life
Getting the craft store ready for inventory had really been cutting into my fun time. I had to work a lot of extra hours, miss the bloggers' craft day at Karla's cottage and even work on my birthday. I did have one free day to drive out to Greenwood, Missouri with my daughter, however. This little town has a number of antique shops, and I especially love it in the fall when it's all decked out in pumpkins and corn stalks. There's a lot of focus on primitives here and those fall decorations really seem to complement them. Unfortunately, on this summer day, the tea room in the antique mall was closed for vacation. My daughter and I love eating there (great sweet potato fries) so that put a definite kink in our plans. It was also unusual to see a number of empty booths in the antique mall. I did find a couple of little things across the street at the Greenwood Mercantile. Here's a Rit dye rack I bought. This is just a piece of one (3 tiers, 6 colors to a tier) as I've seen a larger one in a local antique mall with the full range of colors. I always look at it longingly when I go to that mall, but it's too pricey and too big for the space I have, so I was happy to find this little piece. A few of the dividers were broken or missing, but I replaced them with bamboo skewers soaked in leftover wood stain and cut to length. I've had fun trying to match up items to the dye colors stamped on the rack and I think it will look good when I get it filled up with ribbons and such. I've also seen one filled with old millinery flowers in Kaari Meng's book The French-Inspired Home. I also picked up this vanilla box. I like old graphics and have been looking for some vintage blue and white packaging since I saw Debbie Dusenberry of Curious Sofa mix it in with her blue and white transferware in the January 2008 issue of Country Living. I also spent one evening at an auction that I've started to attend regularly since Beth introduced me to it. I got this Blue Willow condiment set for just $3 because the salt shaker is missing. There's a complete one on ebay for more than $230. That's one of the nice things about imperfection-- it's affordable. As Beth said, you never know when I might run across a match for the missing piece and I've actually had this kind of thing happen to me. Years after I purchased an empty Delft tool rack, I found matching tools minus their rack---in Greenwood! I also got this really tall jar (I seem to be into these lately) for $4 and there's not a thing wrong with it. The exact same thing sells for $24.99 where I work, so it was worth staying late at the auction to bid on it. Have you ever been to an auction? I was a bit wary of them because I thought I'd accidentally bid on something I didn't want or lose my common sense and pay way too much for something because I got into a bidding war, but those things haven't happened. The auctioneers and their spotters make eye contact with the bidders so it would be pretty tough to bid without meaning to. I find myself getting very relaxed by the auctioneer's patter (each one has his own style) until they hold up something I want to bid on and then I get a rush of adrenaline. The spotters at this auction are so friendly, bringing boxes and newspaper to you with your item if you didn't come prepared to wrap it and these guys are just plain comedic when they model the merchandise-- fur pieces and rhinestone necklaces never looked so good.