Saturday, March 8, 2014

More on Antiques

Wandering around the antique shops the other day was a major nostalgia trip.  Nostalgia on so many levels.

One shop was filled with depression era items--the glassware that my mother amassed by going to the Saturday matinees.  The dishes and tinware that filled her kitchen were a snap of recognition and then memory around every corner.

My mother would have been amazed to see the prices on some of those pieces.  She did not consider her things anything but useful items to have in the home.
She had a banjo clock with a picture of Mount Vernon on the case hanging on the wall.  I once referred to it as an antique and she actually snapped, "That is not an antique!  That belonged to my mother!"  Which would have easily made it 150 years old, but to my mother's mind, antique and junk were synonyms.

Seeing the prices on some of that stuff made me think that maybe we should not have been so quick to give it away.  We all took what little we wanted to have, but we might have sold the rest and made a little  money.  Oh, well, it was a charitable donation.

Another place had a Victorian/shabby chic kind of atmosphere.  It was set up like the different rooms in a house.  The kitchen area took me straight back to my grandparents' house.  It was filled with all the practical tools of preparing three meals a day.  The dressing room with all its dressing table items, the hats, the fabrics, the shoes, the lace.  I was going to say "like sitting on my grandmother's lap" but I seriously doubt that ever happened.  So...like sitting on my grandfather's lap watching my grandmother primp.

Of course, I had to handle each and every little thing in the sewing room.  The nursery room was precious as well.  Both had some beautiful old quilts and other textiles.

On shop had very primitive, early Florida homesteader items.  Mike would have recognized things and told me stories about how those things were used or how they cropped up in some book he had read.  He was a history buff.  And an excellent antique picker.  He had the eye.

I find this kind of thing disconcerting:


There were quite a few of these Corning ware dishes on the shelves.  I am like my mother(!)  These are not antiques; they are useful kitchen items that I still have and use.

It did not happen on this trip, but it has happened and it is even worse than seeing something from one's own era in an antique store--seeing something that my children played with in an antique store.  That is almost as bad as catching sight of yourself in a store window and wondering who the old lady is who seems to be following you so closely.


19 comments:

  1. I tend to like old things that remind me of someone or something that I did. Antiques in general do not draw me into their magic web.

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  2. Olga, I too have Corningware still in use in my kitchen. Some of it is mine and some was my mom's. And our kids had those Fischer Price toys too... and worse yet, I too have an old lady following me around and looking back at me in mirrors and store windows! Maybe we're entering another dimension... one in which we deny that we're becoming antiques ourselves.

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  3. Olga, I'm reminiscing with you! I still use my Corning casseroles. I still have some of my old Golden Bools I read to grandchildren. I still have my old wooden sled as a front porch decoration. Sometimes when I awake in the night, I catch sight of myself in the mirror and wonder what my mother is doing here!

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  4. Oh good grief! Those were all my children's toys! And I have Corningware in that pattern still. I love Corning.

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  5. I love antiquing~ but, like you, I'm harrumphing about the Corningware. There are some pieces sitting in my cabinet!! Oh well, I do like to collect antiques ~ I just don't like being one!

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    1. I don't know the general rule, but I think cars are considered antique after 25 years--at least by the DMV. But 25 seems pretty young to me these days.

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  6. I really liked this post. I can certainly identify with your feelings about "old stuff", including the old lady in the window reflection.

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  7. If you get a minute take a look at my friends Rob and Monica at Our Adventures Amongst The Ducks on my sidebar. They are collectors of 50's items and it blows my mind at the things they find. Plus they live their young lives in the 50's. I remember everything they find and still own a lot of it. Monica is a huge collector of Pyrex as well.

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  8. LOL! The old lady in the window reflection follows me around too! I would love to go to the shop where things were displayed as in a room of a house. I look around my home and wonder what will my kids see in an antique store some day and say "my Mom had one of those!"

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    1. Really, something should be done about all these little old ladies! They are a menace.

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  9. Corning wear is definitely not an antique! And I think my children played with or had everyone of the toys in the photo. Since the oldest is only 32 I'm sure they aren't antique either...just out of date with today's technology.

    In my case it the overweight woman who keeps following me around.

    Have a great week!

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  10. Living up to your by-line "A grandma is just an antique little girl" are you?

    Every once in a while I spot an old ugly bastard in a store and think who is that old coot and realize with a shock that I am passing a mirror. Rather frightening!

    In reference to your mother's sentiments, I had a friend at work that spelled antique like this: junque.

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    1. Yes, I suppose I should be more careful about the things I say or quote. They come back to haunt me.

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  11. I don't mind the old lady following me around but am not wild about how fat she looks in store windows and doors. What is with that? Surely that is a distortion:))

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    1. Sure, they use those old fun house mirrors in store window displays!

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  12. My old lady has many chins in her reflection in my laptop!

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  13. I used to love going to estate sales and seeing all the things that reminded me of my own childhood. As for the lady is the mirror -- the one following me has all these wrinkles!!!

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  14. Wow that sure was a bit of me going to places like Value Village. I would but those items and deliver them to shelters when I could. Miss doing that. Guess my eyes are too messed up or else I'm busy with Buddy? Or just old??
    I like my looks:)) glad I can see I thimk.

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