A Belated Valentine’s Day

Nothing wrong with the day after Valentine’s Day – – you can score half-price chocolate today!

But first – a photo of a few of my Valentine decor finds – – Figurine is Royal Doulton “The Promise”, a Capodimonte heart shaped dish, and a beautiful milk glass plate.  I think I’m going to leave up all this mushy love stuff until the end of the month!

And now – I did upload some Valentine’s Day treat how-tos.  Each of them are super easy, quick clean up, and sure to impress.  I made fudge, chocolate bark, and special rice krispie treats. All of them were inspired by projects I have pinned on my Pinterest boards. Have a look here:

I didn’t stop there!  I also made some treats for my feathered friends!

I think I’ve saved the best to last – I made bath bombs!  This was a very simple project, but certainly impress.  I took a bunch to the office where I work on Wednesday, as well as the yummy treats that I made to share.  The bath bombs were gone before the fudge was!  (I hope no one tried to eat them).  I also sent a gift bag full to work with hubby for the staff.

 

A Little Excitement!

You may remember seeing this dresser that I posted a few weeks ago.  Over the weekend I was contacted by THE Annie Sloan(!!!) who asked if she could feature my project on the Annie Sloan Canada page! I was super excited to have been asked, and of course, consented!

I love Annie Sloan chalk paint.  Your project can be featured too – just tag Annie Sloan in your social media posts of completed projects.  I suggest you stage the project, photograph in full light, and centre the piece in your picture.

Junkin’ Journalling

I keep a Junkin’ Journal that keeps me organized – – ideas, shopping lists, measurements, dates of auctions, dates of town-wide yard sales, addresses of thrift stores located in new cities I’m going to visit. My preferred journal (I have several going at all times) is a Leuchtturm 1917 in an A5 size with dotted pages.   I’m a bit of a stationery snob.

So, for example – I printed out a picture of a desk that I am working on – I used a tape runner to fix it into my journal, and now I can write in measurements, make decisions about design, sketch out ideas.  It’s a perfect tool to help me save time – to devote to more projects!

I can also keep track of my collections.  I want to collect a full set of “Fairlane” by Steubenville Potteries – so I’m tracking my finds in my Junkin’ Journal:


 

Thrift Haul Episode 12

Ahhh…this week was a giant week of thrifting – so big, that I had to break this week’s video into four parts.  The first part covers general thrifting stuff – take a look!

I mentioned in the video that I had plans to ‘age’ the new clothes pegs to make vintage looking clothes pegs.

I also mentioned that I picked up mugs with monograms on them to make gifts for my students when they start their practicum placements.

Vintage Ironstone

I started collecting Vintage Ironstone in the last few months, slowly growing a beautiful ensemble in my hutch. I was inspired by all of the beautiful collections seen pictured in decorating magazines, blogs, and videos of farmhouse decor. It’s not easy to find – I come across a piece or two every week, but early in February, the thrifting gods must have been smiling on me, and I brought home a ton of beautiful examples for a song.

I don’t know much about it, to be frank.  But a little research revealed that  Martha Stewart is credited for the recent rise in popularity of white ironstone when she featured it on her show and in her magazine. Here is a link to a Martha Stewart video that is well worth the watch – it will help you to identify features to look for, and give you some ideas about potential values.

Another website identified that some of the most collectible pieces were “sugar jars” – something I had never heard of before.  Older examples are generally “chunkier” in style and have a bluish cast to the glaze and are also much larger than their modern counterparts.   That was good news for me, because a large bluish sugar jar was among my purchases.

Nanna’s Things

Nanna’s 100th birthday portrait – trying to look sweet and demure – a thin and false veneer for the sassy force of nature that she is!

 

My grandmother — known as  “Nanna” to EVERYBODY — until recently has lived alone in her apartment and filled her days with trips to the senior’s centre to play bridge, cheering on the Toronto Blue Jays, baking cookies, tarts, and the occasional lemon meringue pie, marathon-styled shopping trips (which would make Hannibal’s slog across the Alps seem like a cake walk) and keeping her hands busy knitting tiny hats for preemie babies and crocheting warm vests and toques for children in Afghanistan.  Stubbornly independent, she was fussing with her Christmas decorations a few weeks before the holidays, and tripped on a chair leg, fracturing her hip.  This is where I should probably mention: she’s 101 years old!

Surgery went surprisingly well – – I’m sure it was an unprecedented success for the young surgeon. But it was clear that she would not be able to return to solo flight in her apartment, and an extremely difficult and emotionally challenging move to a retirement home happened just this week.

 

Nanna on her 100th birthday flashing gang signs with me and Tim – one of the many great-grandsons

All of this has meant that a lifetime of belongings had to be broken up in a shockingly rapid pace in order to empty her apartment and comply with her demands wishes.  In the ‘first round’ of picks, I chose the Pyrex mixing bowl set (which I discussed in this blog post) and in the ‘second round’ I brought home the items pictured above.

I sorted out another box of things that I would like to bring home – though I left it in the apartment with a note that “Nancy would like to have these if no one else wants them”. It includes pieces of glass and china.  I’m also hoping to be the one to get the hutch from her dining room. But with eight grandchildren, and uncountable numbers of great-grandchildren, and yes, a burgeoning tribe of great-great-grandchildren, I know that I need to be gracious and share.

There was a very brief and minor squabble over the washing board – not even worth mentioning, except to highlight the extent to which these humble items are precious to us.

Next was the Yorkshire Pudding tins – so called, because nothing else was ever made in them.  I have never had a better Yorkshire Pudding than those that popped out from Nanna’s oven. I’m thinking I should probably get the secret recipe while I still can!

The teeny-tiny star cookie cutter in the centre of the photo cut the top crust of itsy-bitsy mincemeat tarts baked every year in  the dozens and dozens she would  share with her family – a favourite gift being a Christmassy tin full of “Nanna Cookies”.  Nanna believes that miniature cookies are more genteel and therefore the optimal size in all cases – which is sufficient explanation for the set of six nearly microscopic cookie cutters shown pictured in their box.  She also maintains that there is far too much sweetness in everything – I can’t bear to reveal to my deluded family that the secret recipe for her famous chocolate chip cookies came from the back of a Chip-its package with the measurements for sugar slashed to 50%. And of course, the chocolate chips must be semi-sweet, not full on sweet!

I suspect that these beliefs about cookies have been one of the contributing factors to her longevity – and I’m not referring to dietary restraint here, specifically – no, I think the lesson her is: we should take delight in even very small pleasures, make diligent efforts to share with everyone around us, and to create lasting memories with our loved ones.

 

 

 

Vintage Glass: Identified

I’m pretty good a recognizing a quality piece of vintage glass, but I’m not very good at identifying it.  I just can’t even begin to figure out what search terms to use.  I mean…it’s glass, right?  And it’s …umm….. yeah, I don’t know.

I enjoy watching Michelle Levinson of Thrifting 101 on YouTube and I’m amazed by how she can identify the manufacturer and date of origin, and even an approximate value. I’m sure it’s the result of hours of study and research, but she makes it look effortless. Luckily for me, I found a Facebook group dedicated to vintage glass identification, and I am watching–and more importantly learning–in the back ground.

 

 

 

 

Last Friday I picked up a beautiful piece of glass at the Thrift on Kent for $1, and I just knew it was a great pick! But I have knowledge of the details – maker, date, value.  So I posted a few photos of my find (and a few other recent picks) and this is what I’ve learned.  It’s 6.25″ across. Imperial Lace Edge no. 7455B Belled Nappy, Blue Opalescent, early 1930s.  Hazel Marie Weatherman , author of Colored Glassware of the Depression Era, called this pattern Sugar Cane. It came in several colours: Amber, Crystal, Ritz Blue, Green Opalescent, and Green

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

 

This ruffled bowl is 5.75″ tall, and about 6.75″ across. It has an iridescent sheen to it. There are no discernible markings. The good folks on Facebook identified it as  Hearts and Flowers pattern by Northwood in pearl iridescent glass, circa 1912.

 

 

This is marked Fenton. 7.5″ tall, and 6.25″ across. I had it filled with glittering Christmas balls as part of my holiday decor.  I paid $2 for it at a thrift store. It is a no. 9222 CG Comport. Since it has a logo, it likely would have been made in 1972 or 1973. 1973 is the last year these were produced. This pattern was a copy of the Tiffin/US Glass “Rose” line. Frank Fenton had new molds made when he discovered the pattern and fell in love with it. It was originally called “Roses” but later catalogues called it Rose. The colour is “Colonial Green” – sooooo 1970s!

 

No markings that I can detect. 6.5″ wide, 3″ tall. This diamond shaped compote is by Indiana Glass in “Pineapple and Floral”.  I saw a photo of the same piece in milk glass…I waaaaant one!

 

This is black with no markings I can detect. 3.5″ across, 3″ tall.  Hazel Atlas produced this depression glass pattern in the mid-1930s under the name of Cloverleaf. The major pattern has a band of three-leaf clovers encircling each piece. Here’s a link to the official Hazel Atlas website.  This sherbet bowl came in several colours: green, yellow, and pink.

 

 Overall, 5.5″ across and about 2.5″ high. A member of the identification group commented: “This looks to be Anchor Hocking Vitrock, aka Flower Rim. From the 1930s.” This helpful opinion gave me enough information to do some more research.  This creamer is Vitrock by Hocking Glass, and was made between 1934-1937, making it authentic Depression Glass.

Thrift Haul for the week ending 01-28

I had REALLY tried to be a little less spendy this past week – and focus more on selling some stuff!  I’m going on vacation in less than three weeks, so it would be nice to have a little extra “mad money”, but I’m incorrigible!

However, despite the LENGTH of the video, I did make fewer purchases – I swear!

Now, for my find of the week! I am restyling a spare bedroom in a “nautical” theme to match the octopus dresser I painted. Initially, I was horrified by the $19.99 price tag, but then I saw the original tag!