Decorating with Antique Glass Jars

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I wanted to show some of the antique glass jars that we have.  We use them to hold our collections of white rocks, sea shells, and sea glass that we’ve found at nearby beaches.

I took these first three photos outside, since it’s so cloudy here today, and my inside photos were coming out too dark.

White rocks…

…sea glass…and even a ring that we found (can you see it?)

It will take us a while to fill these up, but I think they are pretty to put on a shelf or windowsill.

Since our house is new-ish, we don’t have wide windowsills.  This pass-through from the kitchen to the family room is the widest “window sill” that we have, so that’s where they live.  I think they would look even prettier on a window sill that gets lots of sunshine.  Our jars are light blue, but they come in other colors as well.  You can usually find these jars in antique stores for around $8 – $20 apiece.  Some styles and colors cost more than others.

Two of our jars are labeled “Atlas” and one is labeled “Ball.”  Jars like this are commonly referred to as Ball Jars, even if they aren’t that specific brand.  If you are interested in looking for more information about Ball Jars, check out The Ball Jar Collector’s Web Site. He has a huge collection!  He also shows Ball Jars in different colors, and explains how the different colors of glass were made.

Linking to: A Silly Little Sparrow/All Thingz Related/House of Grace/Coastal Charm/It’s so Very Cheri/My Backyard Eden/Someday Crafts/Tales from Bloggeritaville/Somewhat Simple/Beyond the Picket Fence/Finding Fabulous/The Shabby Nest/My Romantic Home/It’s a Blog Party/Just a Girl/a Little Lovely/Under the Table and Dreaming/Cottage Instincts/The DIY Showoff/Beneath My Heart/A Little Knick Knack/Making the World Cuter

Do you collect anything?  Tell us about it.

Antique Hand Mirrors

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After we renovated our downstairs bathroom…I was looking for something to place on this wall.  We decided to hang up these antique hand mirrors that we had purchased over the years.  We originally saw the idea years ago in Country Living Magazine.

We found some plastic mirrors in green and ivory, and also some wood mirrors.  I also have some silver plated hand mirrors that I am going to use in another room.

Once I figured out where I wanted each mirror to hang on the wall, Handy Man hung up screws.  He then put plate hangers on the backs of the mirrors to hang them on the screws.

I liked the idea of having them hung at all different heights.  I used seven of them here, to take up a good amount of space, but so that they wouldn’t overwhelm the room.  We get lots of comments from guests about the mirrors.  I think they are a bit unexpected, but fun.

These antique hand mirrors aren’t usually very expensive; most sell from $15 to $40, depending on condition and material.  We collected these over a long period of time, without even knowing what we would do with them!  I was just drawn to them, and after we saw the Country Living article, we put them up in a grouping in our last house.  We did the same here.

I still watch for antique hand mirrors when we go to antique stores (along with vintage Fiesta dishes, of course).  Is there anything that you watch for, or collect, when looking in antique or consignment stories?

Linking up to: I Heart NapTime/ Under the Table and Dreaming/It’s So Very Cheri/The Pumpkin Patch/ Somewhat Simple/Fireflies and Jelly Beans/House of Hepworth/My Romantic Home/Finding Fabulous/It’s a Blog Party/Tidy Mom/Funky Junk Interiors/a Little Lovely/Thrifty Decor Chick/House of Grace/Cottage Instincts

Why Do We Collect Vintage Fiesta Ware?

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I am going to be adding more to our page on Fiesta Ware soon.  I thought that I would talk about how we got started with our collection.

Back in about 1997, we had a yard sale.  We had relatives donate things they no longer wanted to our yard sale.  A few of the items that we received were pieces of old Fiesta Ware from my grandmother.  Rob wasn’t sure about selling them, and he set the pieces aside.

There weren’t many pieces; there were some plates and a few bowls.  I didn’t know much about them.  We set them aside because we liked the colors and the look of the dishes.  Eventually, we looked into a few books about Fiesta Ware.  We had also seen some dishes in antique stores, and purchased a few more items.  Over time, we bought more and more, and had to decide how to store and display what we had collected.

Since then, we have gathered a pretty large collection.  A lot of it is displayed, and we even use some of the regular dinner plates.  We also have plans for Handy Man to make more shelving and cabinets to display more of our collection (yet another project for the Honey-Do list!)

More on this as I work on the Fiesta page…do you have a collection?  What is it?  Where do you buy pieces?  How do you display your collection?

I Feel Old, Part 2

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We went antique shopping again over the weekend.  Handy Man has been in the mood to look around in some shops that we haven’t been to in a long time.  We went to Antiques Alley in Northwood.

This goes with my original “I Feel Old” post from the other day.

I took more pictures of things that Handy Man and I used as children that are in antique stores now:

A rotary phone.  What color rotary phone did you have in your house growing up?  We had a light blue one.  I saw an olive green one, and a bright red one today.

A view master.  I put one of the little cartridges in it and made Handy Boy look into it.  He wasn’t all that impressed.

I also had a doll case like this one.  Mine was light green.

Do you recognize any of these items?

I Feel Old

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Handy Man and I went antique shopping in Maine today.  We had read about Antiques USA in Arundel, Maine, and wanted to check it out.  This place is HUGE!  It took us an hour and a half to go through the store, and we still feel like we didn’t even see everything.

One thing that we noticed: some of the items that Handy Man and I used as children or teens are in antique stores now.  How depressing!  Many of the items were invented before we were born, but were still widely used when we were in school.

I learned how to type on a typewriter just like this one.  It was heavy and the keys were hard to push:

An old globe, with countries that don’t exist anymore.

Handy Man’s family had a chrome bread box just like this one.

Remember these “Little Golden Books” with the hard covers?

Old Hardy Boy books.  These were mostly published before we were born, but I remember the blue bindings from our library.  We had some that looked like this:

I know that this one is ancient, but we both used a punch clock at jobs.  You know, with actual time cards and everything.

One thing we’ve also seen at antique stores are rotary phones.  We had those in our homes growing up.   Handy Boy saw a rotary phone in an antique store once, and said “WHAT is THAT?”  We had to show him how to use it.  He loved dialing and we had to practically drag him away from it.  We also had to show Handy Boy how a record works.  And yes, we still have some records left, and Handy Man still has a record player.

I feel old.

Another New/Old Bookcase

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I recently discovered that we are outgrowing our space for books, and decided that I wanted to buy a smallish book case for our upstairs guest room.  Right now, we have Handy Boy’s old changing table up there.  Yes, an old changing table!  It’s really a dresser with a top that you can use for a changing table.  We bought a soft pad to put on top, and changed Handy Baby on it.  We stored some diapers, pajamas, and other baby things in the drawers.   It was a handy item for us back then, but it’s not really serving a purpose now, since I have another dresser in that room.  I thought a book case would go nicely in that spot.

We went to an antique store last weekend.  Handy Man took measurements with us.  Usually when we go on a hunting mission, it can take weeks, or even months of on-and-off hunting to find the right item.  However, I found this book case right away in a local antique shop that we had never been to before.  There were several small objects and books on it.  I told Handy Man that it looked like the right size, but there was no price on it.

I asked the workers at the shop what the price was, and they weren’t sure.  They called the dealer to find out what he would sell it for.  Now, this is not a “priceless” antique…and it doesn’t even have a real back on it; it only has a piece of plywood on the back…and it’s painted a shade of green that we are not in love with.  However, we knew that painted white, to go with our other guest room furniture, it would look much better!  We would just be placing books on the shelves, so the back piece wouldn’t even show (although Rob would paint it white also.) 

I was trying to think of how much I would be willing to pay for it, when the shop worker told me the dealer would sell it for $35.  :-O  That was well under what I was willing to pay, so we bought it!  Here it is, in all of it’s dirty, green, glory.  (Seriously, there’s a lot of dust and dirt on it, but it will be cleaned up and painted.)

I think that people can be afraid of the prices in antique stores, but they shouldn’t be!  Sure, there are some stores with items in them selling for a minimum of $500.  And yes, some antiques are worth a lot and should be priced accordingly.  But usually, antique stores have a good variety of both expensive and inexpensive pieces.  This book case might not even be that old, or worth a whole lot, but it’s perfect for us.

Stay tuned for pictures of the cleaned up and painted book case…and don’t be shy about wandering into local antique stores to look for bargains.  You never know what you may find.

Christmas in October

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This summer, Rob and I found some cute, old, ceramic Christmas trees that we just had to have.  Both of  us had  grandmothers who had Christmas trees similar to these, with little colored lights.

2008 Nov 018

Rob had to put a new electrical cord into one, but that was an inexpensive fix.  The trees didn’t cost very much either; the little one cost $10 and the larger one was $15!  Sweet!  Rob cleaned them up, and we wrapped them into bubble wrap until Christmas.  I’m looking forward to putting these out in December.

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