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.