Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Panoply Purge Recap

My basement storage may not appear all that different to most but, believe me, these past 2-3 months of my inventory purge activity have resulted in a much better organization of what I am currently holding.
There's much less gray matter as to how I'm storing things, and there's much more beauty in where my things are being reloved. Be sure to read to the end of this post to see what I mean by that statement!

If you aren't familiar with what my inventory purge is/was about, you can go to my post of January 22 and learn all about it.

By the numbers, here's how my purge shook out:
  • I sent an individual, follow up email on February 4, 2018 to each person who commented on my proposal. I labeled the emails for easy identification in my inbox. Not everyone replied back to me, but it may be because my email landed in spam folders. Others replied and declined participation, mostly due to their own attempts in purging. I continued communicating with those who were interested in pursuing the benefits of my purge. I kept notes in my little pocket notepad (thanks, Patti!) and carried it with me.
  • 59 day timeline - I started purging in earnest on February 12, and had plenty of bad weather days of snow, rain, wind and cold to spend indoors. Before finishing on April 11, 2018, a total of over 40 hours were noted on my calendar pertaining to the purge specifically.
  • 31 packages were mailed, many with multiple boxes packed within, to a total of 23 recipients. The first packages went out February 12; the last one on April 11, 2018. I tried to include personal notes in each, telling of the items, but actually forgot a few early ones in my hurry to package and ship.
  • Of the items purged, more than 150 pieces of glass, porcelain, ceramics and stoneware were packed and shipped.
  • Gladly, but still sadly, only one piece was broken in transit. 
It is worth noting this was the ONLY piece I mailed in a USPS flat rate box. Although it was well-wrapped in bubble wrap and paper, it was not double boxed, but other pieces within the box did not break. USPS reimbursed me the shipping cost after I filed an online claim.
  • Only one other piece was broken - by my own clumsiness while packing. I had not taped the (inner) packing box bottom before lifting it, and it crashed to the cement floor. 😞
  • Other items purged included vintage linens & clothing, metals, and many other categories:
  • I used all the boxes and packing paper I'd been accumulating for more than a year, but did purchase one roll of bubble wrap and a package of 3 rolls of commercial packing tape (used 2 of 3). At times, my work area looked like an assembly line of partially filled orders.
  • The USPS had just increased its rates on January 21st, but it was still my preferred shipper, hands down. I have my own online account, and was able to easily make my own labels, track packages, and save a bit on rates by using the "click and ship" option. Thank you to everyone who suggested I accept shipping reimbursement. I spent $625 in postage and was reimbursed almost 100%. 
  • I keep spreadsheets for most anything involving numbers (leftovers of my career life), and the purge tallied over $1,200 of goods.
Far beyond all the petty detail above that my brain seems to be hardwired to keep track of and reconcile (I was counting boxes instead of sheep at night), it is the way you each have taken these things and reloved them in your own homes which has made this project worthwhile. I paid attention to your emails, as well as comments on my blog and yours, and chose things on an individual basis. Several of you relayed personal stories of remembering some of these items from childhood, your parents, grandparents, etc., and those are what made it more than moving for me. You sent me photos with your items in your home, and some of you (bloggers) even wrote posts (not required by any means!).

With permission from the recipients who are also active bloggers and wrote posts of their reloved items, I'm sharing their individual links below. A few others have told me they intend to do posts, and I will update this as they publish, so be sure to check back. Feel free to pin from each blogger's posts. They shared their items received, and have some beautiful photography. Enjoy!

Thank you to all who participated in my purge. And thank you all for your readership. 

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Loving New Old Finds at Home

Just a quick post to share how I'm using some of my latest finds, mentioned here and here, and then some. My motivation for making some household changes started with the fact that I needed to get recent purchases organized, and I was doing a little spring cleaning, too.

I switched up my sunroom hutch with the Zell (German) majolica with bird motifs. I was previously using the Bordello Pinheiro cabbage plates.
The spring green Blenko decanter was traded for my aqua one. I like to keep my Pfaltzgraff Filigree here as my neutral base, and the chargers are a nice backdrop. The candleholders are MacKenzie-Childs inspired - Parchment Check - made by blog buddy, Patti.
I flipped my German serving bowl to use as a riser for my newest piece of Zell, a compote.
The teapot came from Pier 1 this season, on sale. It's called Bird Sanctuary. It's perched on some lacy plates, also purchased at Pier 1, and used on a table, here.
Bird Sanctuary matching sugar and creamer are just in front of the decanter, which I filled with a string of tiny lights on a timer.
The winter rug has been traded for my warm weather rug. Now, if we could just get warm weather to stay for more than a day or two... Below is the view from the kitchen hallway.
On the opposite wall of the sunroom hutch is my wet bar in the kitchen. It still has the cabbage plates and large transferware platter, but the previous bunny tureen has been replaced with the newest, Majolica bunny compote. The MacKenzie-Childs parchment check kettle and teapot are my "beat the winter doldrums" purchases.
For a look-see of the of the same areas just prior to this updated spring look, you can read this post.

I'm not one to do a lot of changing up from month-to-month, or week-to-week in my house. My style is more typical of going with seasons, and it's mostly with dish displays, and maybe a few textiles (pillows, throws, rugs). I think right now I'm just biding my time until it's gardening weather, not just a day of it here or there.

Speaking of biding my time and getting new purchases organized, I am finished with my inventory purge as it was proposed in January (if you missed what that was about, you can read about it here). I will do some sort of recap, but suffice it to say my current inventory is much better organized, and many things once loved by me have found their way into others' homes for re-loving.

What's your style of changing things in your house? What motivates your desire to change, if anything? How do you purge things? Leave your comments, it's always interesting to hear.

Thanks for dropping by, and for your readership.

Rita C. at Panoply

Sharing: One More TimePieced Pastimes, Best of the Weekend, Amaze Me, DIDIBNOTP, Show & ShareInspire MeMake it PrettyThe ScoopDagmar's HomeCelebrate Your Story,SYS, SYCDelightsome Life H&GGrace at Home, Vintage Charm

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Early Spring 2018 Vintage Finds

Just like Mother Nature outside, the end of March, early April brought about a flurry of estate sales, a private pick, shopping from our own antique mall, and a remarkable auction indoors. Let's take a look at my early spring 2018 vintage finds.
A trip to Ohio to connect with sister J was mainly for a private estate pick, which turned out to be less than stellar. However, we sisters know how to turn a bad day of picking into a good one two.

Look what my sister M spotted for me, pictured below! This matches my favorite majolica plates found and used in this post. If I found nothing else, this was my favorite find! It's Zell (German) majolica, and dates from the early 20th century, in beautiful condition.
Next, I found more dishes (surprise, surprise). The green platter in back (Bordello Pinheiro) is not all that old, but I liked the bunnies and will use it with my cabbage plates and other Easter things I already have (most of which is already packed away for next year). The two fruit plates in front are French, St. Clement (plums on left, apples on right), and were found in two separate locations. After researching, I've found there are several other fruit plates in the series, but I'm not sure if I want to start another new collection. These will be nice for late summer, early fall display (or resale).
The rabbit compote below was found in my own antique mall - spotted by fellow blogger, Fonda, and her wife, Katie. Fonda was a participant in my inventory purge, and I met the two of them in our mall on the 29th as they were passing through town. As they shopped the booths, they found the compote and alerted me with a text message!
While this compote is not as old as the Minton original, circa 1870, it is a terrific vintage/reproduction example, and is in equally terrific condition. I might have mentioned here that bunnies are multiplying in my house. This guy remains on display at home a little longer than most of my other spring bunnies.
Gardening season is promised here this week. I picked all the vessels you see pictured below, as well as the cheery tablecloth they're sitting upon. The birds and the wheelbarrow (isn't that adorable? I think I'll use it for dips!) are vintage McCoy, and I'm not sure about the little girl or yellow, Art Deco vase to her left (both unmarked). The daffodil pot is sitting on an upside down hobnail while milk glass planter (mostly out of view).
One more bulb jug couldn't be passed up for its condition and price! That now makes four in my stash, and all four are different shades of green/aqua. I'll line them up sometime for a photo shoot and share it. The napkin rings are Fiestaware (sea mist), from the 1980s, and came with maker napkins. The personal teapot is unmarked, bought for its color and price.
The pillow below was purchased for its happy colors, already in my sunroom, and the lamb is the newest member of my flock.
Textiles....condition, colors, themes, price, hand work....all are reasons to pick these up when we vintage shop. Hand worked items include a quilt, pillowcases, potholder, and a tapestry square. The Fiestaware napkins and dish towel are incidental purchases.
Mantiques are picked simply by what my eye is drawn to. The handsome man in swivel frame just might be my long lost flapper soulmate. The tiny money box on which he's perched matches two other, larger, banker boxes I have. Faucets and handles are great garden items for repurposing as knobs and a few other things. The horse shoes are very old and flattened, plow work horse type. The baled jar is full of obsidian rock, Native American fragments from Tulare County, CA. The pitcher at right is a Hazel Atlas match to the glasses I found and mentioned here, and will make a nice fall display. The casters, similar to those I bought and mentioned here (which sold as a lot), are popular for those who restore antique furniture. The clamps are simply utilitarian and have makers' marks.
A few other random items (clockwise, starting L): a French bulldog doorstop, an Aigner basket purse from the early 1970s, a wooden cheese box with advertising graphics, a set of five Russian matryoshka dolls, and a pair of asparagus tongs.
That's it for all the individual picks from the various estate sales, private pick and antique malls of late March, early April.
Sister M and I attended a local auction right before Easter of an historic inn, the General Lewis Inn of Lewisburg, WV. Originally constructed in the early 1800s, the inn changed hands in 2014, and the new owners decommissioned many of the antique primitives first curated for the inn.

Pictured below is a collage of a few of the antique items we Panoply sisters purchased. Clockwise, from L: Sister M is a master dollmaker, and purchased the china head doll in original clothing. Sister J scored the wood and metal square with handle, a carriage footwarmer. The metal insert was for heated coals, and the perforated metal box would emit the heat beneath the passengers' feet.
Pictured below the footwarmer is a unique Victorian, individual silverplate table place setting (my purchase). It includes a salt cellar, pepper shaker, napkin ring and butter pat (in back), all on a wheeled base with bird motif in front. Bottom L is a tiny coal miner's oil lamp, designed to hook onto the front of a helmet, and a rare, miner's oil lamp filler flask (J's). The photos just above the miner's lamp and flask include a closeup of the porcelain doll's undergarments and legs. She is stuffed with sawdust (and was leaking a bit, which M can repair). The bisque baby with basket on its back is a vessel, most likely for either flowers or matches (also my purchase). Most of these type babies - also called piano babies - were placed on the piano to hold a shawl in the well-appointed Victorian home.

Two quilts also purchased from the General Lewis Inn auction are pictured below. The birds are cross-stitched on the quilt (mine), while the blue and white quilt is entirely pieced (M's)
As a matter of education, I want to share this stoneware jug pictured below. Although the frames are not clear (taken with my cell phone from my seat), I wanted to get as many angles as I could. This is called a harvest jug with a strap handle, circa 1860. It was made by G.M. Fulton, and was most likely a presentation or lead piece, meaning the potter created it to demonstrate his abilities in pottery making. It was in pristine condition, with flow blue designs. Guess how much it sold for.....
Let me first say, stoneware jugs command very good prices in our region, and have held their value over the past decade, for sure. My sister J collects these, and is always interested in the gavel prices. The more typical ones go anywhere from $200 - $800. But this one? Well, it went for $27,500.00. And this guy (below) was the buyer.
Regardless of the shades, he was anything but inconspicuous!

Have you been vintage treasure hunting lately? See anything you'd also buy in these lots? What's hot in your region? Leave me a comment, I'd love to hear! As always, thanks for your visit!

Postscript - Monday, April 9, 2018: I had forgotten about buying the sign pictured below until I was loading my car (where I had left it) for my weekly trip to work our booths. It's a piece of wormy, repurposed wood and an old garden hose. Cute, isn't it?

Rita C. at Panoply

Sharing: One More TimePieced Pastimes, Best of the Weekend, Amaze Me, DIDIBNOTP, Show & ShareInspire MeMake it PrettyThe ScoopDagmar's HomeCelebrate Your Story,SYS, SYCDelightsome Life H&GGrace at Home, Vintage Charm

Friday, April 6, 2018

Regional Taste Swap

One of the things I like to do whenever I travel to other places is find out where and what the locals eat. It's almost always something tasty. Well, several of the Traveling Tote Tribe thought it would be fun to swap regional tastes among us, so today I'm sharing a taste of Austin, TX.
My fellow tribe member, Sarah, from Hyacinths for the Soul, sent me the package you see pictured above. Consistent with "Keeping Austin Weird" (the city's motto), Sarah sent me a grapefruit jelly, but balanced it out with another, more mainstream flavor, cranberry pecan sauce. Both are made by a small producer, Confituras, and marketed through Whole Foods, also an Austin-based company (did you know??).

Sarah may or may not have known how much I love bread when she also sent me a package of home-baked, multi-grain delectables, made by her husband (who happens to also be her personal chef). Much like muffins, when sliced horizontally and toasted, they are absolutely delicious, with or without the jellies. The bad news is the bread is gone; the good news is I still have more of both of the jellies to enjoy for a while longer.

On the flip side of our swap, I sent Sarah a package of the taste of West Virginia. Pictured below is a preview of what I sent, but be sure to visit Sarah to see what she received.

Many thanks to Patti at Pandora's Box for organizing the swap partners within our Traveling Tote tribe. In case you want to stop by and see what the other pairs who participated each swapped, they are as follows:
Patti at Pandora's Box and Emily at The French Hutch
Ricki Jill at The Sketchy Reader and Jackie at Purple Chocolat Home
Linda G at More Fun Less Laundry and Deb at Mountain Breaths
Linda P at Life and Linda and Jenna at The Painted Apron
They'll be posting no later than Tuesday, April 10, 2018.

This was just another fun way to get to know each other a little better, the way the locals do.

Thanks for stopping by. If you were sharing a taste of your region to mail, what would you choose? Leave a comment, and let me know the region, too. If I'm ever traveling your way, I may have to pick whatever it is up to take home!

Rita C. at Panoply

Sharing: One More TimePieced Pastimes, Best of the Weekend, Amaze Me, DIDIBNOTP, Show & ShareInspire MeMake it PrettyThe ScoopDagmar's HomeCelebrate Your Story,SYS, SYCDelightsome Life H&GGrace at Home, Vintage Charm

Friday, March 30, 2018

Bunny Love, Spring and Easter Joy Link Party

It's a good thing bunnies were created to be so endearing in appearance because Mr. McGregor was right - they wreak havoc in a garden. So, in trying not to be the villain that Mr. McGregor was to the bunny folk in the Beatrix Potter series, it appears I'm embracing some bunny love in my home. I'm also inviting you to join in a link party to share your spring and Easter joy at the end of this post, so I hope you'll stay with me!

Allow me to share my bunny love at home with you...
A sweet Easter greeting on a vintage postcard sits alongside a little ceramic basket with bunny, and a couple of marble eggs, basking in the early evening sun.
A flower arrangement in the sunroom has one bunny very curious, while the other tries to not look guilty of partaking of the greens!
"Bunnies on a Picnic" vintage children's tote is part of my antique purse collection, and takes up company among a stack of plates with napkins in the bunny fold.
Even though the MacKenzie-Childs bunnies (above) were bought last year, they didn't come out to play until this year. They're hanging out in my dining room.
The little guy pictured above is my role model of bunnies welcome in the garden. For many years I've embraced his presence, but it could be he's the culprit for attracting the real deal in recent years. Hmmm.....
And then there was this guy. Some bunny had to love him. I simply had to take him in, off the curbside, where even the trash collectors wouldn't bother taking him, he was so heavy. He's my Bunny Van Gogh, and resides year round, among my lavender in the courtyard.
In my tablescape post a couple days ago, all the guys above used my dining room table as their playground.

One might conclude I have a collection of bunnies, but I swear, this one was totally accidental. I only realized my number as I've been working through my inventory, continuously organizing, and changing winter decor to spring. Admittedly, there may be one or two still stowed away. The fact that I'm not ready to take any of these to the booth spaces yet, though, is a pretty good indicator they're a collection. I think I'm pretty safe in keeping a lid on the size of the colony. Now, keeping the real thing out of the garden, that's another story!

How about you? Have you fallen into the rabbit hole of bunny collections? How big is your colony? Are there other springtime decor themes that you cannot resist, that seem to multiply the way bunnies do? Well, you can share those collections, along with any other springtime decor themes now!
Welcome to the Spring and Easter Joys link party hosted by:
This is the place for celebrating the beauty of spring and Easter with old and new friends!
From March 30- April 2nd, 2018 we invite you to link up your inspiring spring or Easter themed home decor, crafts or spring garden style posts (No more than five please).

Party Etiquette:

-You may share old or new posts.

-Have fun and be social! Visit other bloggers and leave comments. This is a great place to make new friends!

-Please include a courtesy link back to the host's blog where you have linked up.

-Several of the hosts will be sharing features from the party next week on their respective blogs, so be sure to be watching for updates.

We can't wait to see what you have to Away!

Best wishes for a beautiful Easter holiday to all!
Rita C. at Panoply