Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The George Nelson Lamp that wasn't

Over the weekend I went to a Garage/ Estate sale. They advertised it as having a lot of mid-century goodies. When I arrived I didn't see many Mid-Century items. They had a lot of bullet fiberglass planters but they were really bent out of shape. The had a huge advertisement poster which was neat, but much bigger than anything I'd want to bring home. This is the sale where I found the Stoneware Designs West planter.

Well, when I went inside they had a lot of empty boxes and paper strewn around. A mid-century blonde step side table and not much else. The dining area had patio doors that led to the back yard. If it weren't for the reflection on the patio doors I would have missed the George Nelson bubble lamp hanging over my head.

Well, I gasped in shock and jumped at the chance to ask how much they wanted for it. If it was as old as some of the items they had then it could be one of the originals! Unfortunately they decided to keep it.  Bummer. From what I could gather, the guys hosting the sale were grandchildren of the homeowner and they were trying to downsize.

The lamp is beautiful and while it would look spectacular in a mid-century home I think it looks great in the victorian styled home above as well.

Lesson Learned: Look up!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Hunted:: Gathered: 03/28/11 Part I

Hey everyone. This week was one of those weeks where I literally had to pinch myself to see if I was dreaming. I couldn't have dreamt up these finds and I am happily sharing them with you. I am only sharing some of my finds in this post in order to not bore you. I will share the rest either later in the week or for next week's thrift-share. 

I started my thrifting early in the week because I had the hunting itch. At the first place I went to I bought a leather laptop carrier(not pictured). That way when I decide to do some computer work outside of my home I don't have to clumsily lug my laptop, the power cord and any current books. They can all be housed in my handy carrier. I also found a wonderfully vibrant Vera Neumann scarf  as well as the vintage patterned fabric. The fabric is just over 2 yards long and I haven't figured out what I am going to do with it. It could make for some fun throw pillows? Now if only i sewed...

The same day I went to another thrift. The same place where I found my vikings. I happened to find this beautiful Dorothy Thorpe Bowl. I saw the silver band and thought it could be one of her pieces but to date I had never picked up silver banded items because I hadn't been sure of their authenticity. Well, this one still had the sticker on it so I am now the proud owner of a Dorothy Thorpe item. I also tried out a home-made method to polish the silver. Some of you may know what it is, but if you don't you'll have to stay tuned for another post.

I also found this cute copper enamel plate. The size is just darling and it looks like it could be a scandinavian item but I am probably just biased. I think it looks like a happy snowflake. If anyone has any clues as to a possible designer I'd appreciate it. After some research I am still in the dark and its making me a little kooky.

Continuing on my merry way I went to another thrift and I found this funky Swedish pitcher. It has a sticker that reads Hovmantorp and so far I can only tell you that that is the name of a region known for their glass making. It is similar to Bo Borgstrom's design for Aseda and Pukeberg.

I also caved in and bought some earrings. They were so sparkly, I couldn't get them out of my mind. They were marked as being Austrian Crystal and I still don't really know what that means. All I know is that they are fun and girly.

I have to thank Alamodern for this next find. If it wasn't for their recent post this little guy would not have been so fresh in my memory. I went to an estate sale where he was just waiting for me to snag him up. Most of the things for this sale were out on the yard and there was a small sign that said there were more things inside. I went inside, and that's where he was. The bottom reads designs west and if you have read Alamodern's post you'll know that it's for Stoneware Designs West (SDW).


I can't really explain why I picked up this vintage counter bell other than thinking it would be fun and just loving the color. Well, I believe this happens to be the boy's favorite item because he rings it any chance he gets!

My last item for this post is this landscape etching. If you thought I had too much art, well, I say you can never have too much art! I am still trying to make out the name of the artist and apparently so are others. I've seen listings for L Mariae and L Marial. This scene reminds me of the film The Notebook. If you've seen it then you know what I am referring to. ;)

I can't help but wonder if the finds this week are a result of spring cleaning but whatever the reason I hope it continues!

This week I'm linking up with:


I hope you guys do too!!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Happy Friday!! Happy Weekend!!

Hey everyone, I cannot wait for this week's thrift-share. I have so many goodies that I can hardly contain my excitement. I may even have to divide my finds into separate posts to keep you in suspense (maybe you guys won't find them to be all that exciting, maybe you will) !! Mainly I am considering dividing my finds because I don't think I'll be thrifting next week due to the stuff I found this week. My poor little apartment can't take it anymore.

I also wanted to share an update from one of the paintings I found two weeks ago, blogged about here. It is the Cristina Marcu painting. I wrote to the artist to get a little more information and to confirm that she in fact painted it. This is what she had to say:

     The painting you bought is titled "Purity" and I painted it in 1998. This painting was one of the series of paintings of my project "Sounds of Color".  Sounds of Color was intended to be published as a children's book about primary colors, poetry and music. "Purity" was one of the paintings which described one of the primary colors, yellow.
... I did live in Los Angeles in 1998 and that is where I painted this piece. Tchaikovsky's  cover for Album for the Young, Op. 69 which is an album  with piano pieces was my inspiration for "Purity."

I also wanted to share what I am going to be doing tonight. As part of my birthday present (mind you, it was a few months back) The boy and I decided that it would be fun to go to a Wanda Sykes comedy show. Last year we had access to some premium cable channels for a promotion and we saw her I'ma Be Me on HBO. We could not stop laughing.  Then at some point last year she was performing near San Diego and the drive would have been pretty long. Well, today she is performing locally at our newly renovated Fox Theatre. I am so excited!

I don't know if you guys will find her to be as funny like we do, but in case you do here is a clip (if you are offended by cursing, please don't watch):

I hope you have some exciting things planned for the weekend!!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Hunted:: Gathered: 03/21/11

After my binge thrifting from last week I took this week a little easy. I still managed to find a couple of items which you will see in this post. What you will also see are some items from earlier in the year that I never photographed nor posted. I hope you don't mind. They are still items from thrifts, estate sales and swap meets.
Firstly, I have been trying to stay away from the clothing sections at thrifts. That being said, I saw this cute sweater as one of their rack-end displays and loved the color! It was also in great shape. Maybe I had a little St. Patrick's day in me after all.

LL Bean Sweater

Left: Manchini Vase                               Center: Rosendahl Votives                       Right: Ben Seibel for Iroquois

I found a neat vase with a cool texture in white, the bottom read "Designed by Manchini" . Who is Manchini? No one really knows. If it is by Sablo Manchini, then I have myself a piece by a Mid-Century potter. The center votives are a newer item, but they are Scandinavian, and I LOVE just about anything Scandinavian. They are by the company Rosendahl and were designed by Lin Utzon. The last white item is a creamer designed by Ben Seibel for the impromptu line. For some reason, I am always intrigued by creamers and tea/ coffee pots.

Now I really did not have a need for any more trivets, but who can resist a cute owl. He is only a few inches big, but really cute. I also found a cute cocktail mixer with a design by Georges Briard that reads "The higher you go, the harder you fall. "

There is something about native-american pottery that usually catches my attention. It could have something to do with my fascination of tradition and history or maybe it was just the color and etch-work in this case. This one is marked as a Navajo piece on the bottom. I don't really know much about the different native-american traditions but it was nice enough to bring home. 

              Muncie Pottery?                                                               Oasis Pottery

The item on the left has me stumped. It looks like a piece of older Ohio pottery but I really don't know. It came paired with 3 other items including the one next to it and the ones below. The taller fuschia/ blue vase is a newer item by Oasis Pottery. Aren't those colors amazing?

These two earth-toned pieces are the ones that initially attracted me to the set. The one to the left is attributed to Jens Quistgaard for Nissen. The pattern is called relief. The one to the right has a Toyo sticker and is signed underneath it. I love its proportions. I love how plump the body is in relation to the opening.

The last items I am sharing this week are both Arabia pieces. The one on the left is from the Ara line for Arabia. The one on the right is a salad plate in the Valencia pattern. The beautiful pattern was designed by Ulla Procope. The color is absolutely striking and incredibly hard to capture!

I was a little late in posting this week but I hope you enjoyed some of my latest finds all the same. What did you find?

I'm pairing up this week with :

Monday, March 14, 2011


Out of all of the places I have visited, Japan is one of my favorites. They are an incredibly thoughtful and friendly society. The country is filled with vibrant communities and I can only hope that their spirit is not broken.

My heart goes out to those who have suffered a loss and to those who are still trying to find their loved ones. I get chills every time I hear that Sendai was one of the places deeply affected by the earthquake, I was there a few years back. I had an incredible experience when I visited and I wanted to share some of the beauty that I was able to enjoy.

Seeing as it was an architecture trip, here we were admiring the beauty and innovation of the Sendai Mediatheque.

Another beautiful place that we visited in Sendai was the Kanno Museum.

With such an innovative and conscious culture, it comes as no surprise to read about their preparedness for events like these through educating their citizens and performing drills. It undoubtedly saved many lives. Despite the devastation that did take place, we cannot overlook the fact that if could have been much worse. They have some of the highest standards for buildings and have invested in retrofitting some of the older ones.  The New York Times had a small article on the subject. If you are interested in reading more about it you can do so here.

Japan, I love you. Feel better soon. 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Hunted:: Gathered: 03/14/11

I don't really know if the thrifts this week were filled with a lot of authentic art or if it was my subconscious looking for it but I saw so many pieces that I wanted to take home with me. I did not buy all of the pieces that called my attention but I bought a couple starting with the one below.

Cristina Marcu

This painting called my attention because of the vibrant colors and its impressionistic style. After doing some research about the artist I have learned that she is a practicing artist in Northern California and has had several exhibitions. She is a native of Romania which has influenced here painting palette. She attended USC and Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Since I don't live in Northern California, I am assuming that the painting I have must be an early one from when she was in Southern California. However, since we live in a global society that may not be the case. If you are interested in the artist you can get more information about her here

Left: Heinrich Op Art Vase                                       Right: Bjorn Wiinblad for Rosenthal

This week I consider my thrifting to have been really lucky because I usually have a hard time finding bisque items. I found the two above at the same thrift sitting next to each other! They were priced a little higher than usual but since I know they are tough finds I snagged them up. I just love them!

At the same thrift I also saw this blue and green vase. It's a homemade vase but the glaze and the colors made it love at first sight (blues and greens are one of my weaknesses).

Bjorn Wiinblad Nymolle- August

Hey look at that, another Bjorn Wiinblad. Several months ago I passed on two of his decorative plates similar to this one. I visited the thrift repeatedly only to see them there for a few weeks. They were priced high, and I hadn't really started collecting so I let them go. This one must have been hidden in a really obscure place to  resurface this week and the price was reasonable so it came home with me.
I love these plates because the design is so whimsical. They are a series of 12 plates, one for every month of the year. They also feature a young couple in phases of their courtship. How sweet is that?

Richard Saar Bowl
The Richard Saar bowl is from an estate sale held right by my house. I didn't know much about the potter/ artist at the time but it looked atomic/ mid-century and the price was definitely right.

When I arrived with this purchase the boy asked if that was all I found today. When I said yes, he let out a sigh of relief. I think he may be on to something...

When walking around thrifts I usually make my way through the wood section. I bought the vintage tool caddy shown above that  now houses all of my unhung frames and drafting supplies.I also snagged up the cute (needlepoint?) throw pillow. I loved the pattern and the colors so it came home with me.

I also found a teak roll-top organizer for my very unorganized and cluttered home. Makes sense right, buy more things to declutter?

I must have the spring bug because I am finding myself attracted to colorful little things. I bought the sweet stitched tablecloth to use at my {wedding} along with some stitched napkins and you guessed it, another pin.

Sai Hoi Ho

Last but not least I bought a painting by artist Sai Hoi Ho. I absolutely loved the colors and the style of the painting. I have dabbled in painting a couple of times and I just can't manage to let myself be one with the paint. I was amazed by the resulting image achieved through his brush strokes. The painting also reminded me of my trip to Italy where I visited the Gardens at Ninfa. See the similarities?

Those were great times.

I'll be hopping around to check out what you've found. Linking up this week with:

Apron Thrift Girl

Her Library Adventures

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Thrifty Kicks

Along with many other bloggers and thrifters out there I have vowed not to buy new clothing at retail stores (except for undergarments). I just think that there is so much clothes that still has plenty of life left in it. Just look at how full the clothing racks are at thrifts. There is also no shortage of clothing at garage sales and swap meets. Since fashion repeats itself you can be trendy and thrifty at the same time. How great is that?

Well, along with great clothes I have found some great shoes at thrifts. I am sharing most of my found kicks in this post.
Cobbies Brown Leather Boots

Cathy Jean Black Patent Leather Flats

I just can't get enough flats. I have plenty of heels, but if I am in a rush, I go for the flats. They're just too comfortable!

Tory Burch Flats

I have to say I was pretty surprised to find Tory Burch shoes at the thrift no matter what season they are from. These were in great condition and look like they were hardly worn.

Sutton Plaza Blue Leather Pumps

I absolutely love colorful pumps. I buy them thinking I'll pair them with jeans and look hip, but I usually opt out. :(

Etienne Aigner Brown Leather Pumps

I just can't get enough...

 Cole Haan Leather Pumps

I just can't get enough... 

Vintage Kraus California Leather Shoes

  I know these aren't everyone's style, but I dig 'em.

Vintage Axiom Snakeskin Pumps

These are the latest puppies to my stash. I just love the color and the fact that they are snakeskin. They're in pretty good shape too!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Family Vacation Slides

This past weekend I went to an estate sale. I missed out on all of the great furniture they had because I went up to Big Bear on friday. The items available for saturday were disappointing and the items that were desirable did not have a desirable price. As I was on my way out I ran across an old box. A little voice  inside told me to open it. It was a box full of slides. Away went all of my disappointment and everything else I had planned for the day. I just stood there and looked through every slide. The thing is, I love pictures. Even if they are not my own. Friends and family always joke that they somewhat dreaded visiting my house. The first thing I would do was look for a photo album to show them and then make them look through it with me. Weird.
Well, several years later here I am looking through others' photographs. Photographs of strangers who enjoyed life before I was even born. Strangers who have visited places that I have yet to visit. One of them being San Francisco.

After going through the whole box I wound up only getting six of the slides. I chose them because they were great shots of the Golden Gate Bridge. The best part (in my opinion) is being able to date the pictures by the cars on the bridge.

It was a great day to drive in the Bay Area and enjoy some time off don't you think?

Monday, March 7, 2011

Hunted:: Gathered: 03/07/11

This week I actually had an early start to my thrifting. Last monday I had an itch for some new clothes and mondays are THE DAY to buy clothes at my local Salv. A lot of clothing items were $2. Jeans were $4 and slacks were 2 for $1!! Needless to say I walked out with 4 pairs of slacks from The Limited, Polo, and Talbots. Despite my great finds I still can't convince the boy to let me buy him thrifted goods.

Later in the week I decided to take a look at a new thrift store that opened. They are a non-profit for one of our local animal shelters. I wound up finding this fabulous typewriter from the 1950's. Behold the Hermes 3000:

For the life of me I couldn't figure out how to make it work at the thrift. The keys would not reach the paper no matter what I did. I took it to the counter and the ladies and I fidgeted with it some more and still couldn't figure it out. As a result they sold it to me for $10 + tax (original price $15). They referred me to a local guy with a typewriter shop, I swung by and he figured it out. There was absolutely nothing wrong with it, it was just set within the margins so it wouldn't type. Boy did I feel silly. Since I am an animal lover ( I wanted to be a Vet for at least half of my life) I returned to the thrift store and paid the difference since there was absolutely nothing wrong with it.

I also found the print pictured behind the typewriter this week. It is a P J Selby print of European BeeEaters. He was a contemporary of Audubon and made the illustrations for a large book titled Illustrations of British Ornithology. It has plate marks but I don't know if it is a reproduction. It was framed by Rudolf Zesch Fine Arts which was also known for their high-end reproductions. It's not my specialty and I don't really want to take it out of the frame. Here is another view. 

Over the weekend I went to a couple of garage sales. I arrived late to a highly advertised vintage sale and found nothing left that was of interest to me. Just down the road however there was a smaller garage sale. It was small and I was ready to head back into my car when I found two framed maps. They caught my attention because they were raised relief maps. Originally being from the flat state of Florida, I find relief maps to be really cool. One was of the entire state of California while the other one was of the LA area. Regrettably and against my own judgement I left the LA one behind only to come home to the boy who also made me feel bad about leaving it behind.

I actually bought this one with the intention of keeping it because the boy and I love maps. He is a meteorologist so he is always surrounded by them. However, he just wants me to sell everything!

On my way home I passed my a local garage sale and found some small bric-a-brac.

These were just .25 each. I was charmed by the duck with its handmade goodness because it was marked on the bottom by an Uncle Charlie. I wish I had an Uncle Charlie who made little things like that for me. 

At that same sale I found the amethyst glass vase. It screamed Mid-Century/ Scandinavian to me so I bought it. On the bottom it was etched with 1436. After some research I have found that it is a Riihimaen Lasi vase by Aimo Okkolin. After some intense searching of the bottom of the vase I also found the marking.

Part of the joy of thrifting/ junking for me is the research that I get to do afterwards. I enjoy learning about these items and their history. Maybe it was all of those art history classes in college, or maybe it's just me. In any case, I thrifted another book to help me decipher future items.

Pairing up with Selena's ATG Thrift Share again.

PS. If you enjoy collecting slides from others' family vacations check out my blog later on this week. I have some images I'd like to share that I think you'll enjoy.