Monday, August 29, 2011

Thrift Score Monday: What a Hoot!

This weekend, it was all about owls. I love a good owl, but it was a bit strange to find three in one day!

First up, this guy:

He's a cute little mid-century vase made from heavy clay. I love his modern lines and slim profile, and he's in perfect condition! He has an interesting mark on the back:

I haven't been able to identify the maker yet; if anyone recognizes this mark, please let me know!

Next up, another vase, completely different but equally retro-modern:

He's the perfect size to hold pens and pencils on a desktop or makeup brushes on a vanity. I love his see-thru cut out eyes and nose!

These first two vases came from [completely unrelated] yard sales. Coincidence, huh?

On my last stop on Saturday afternoon, I spotted this pretty brass owl trivet at a favorite thrift store:

It was so completely covered in tarnish when I spotted it, I almost passed it by, thinking it was covered in some kind of faux paint. Luckily, I took a second look. He polished up really well when I got him home! This guy also has some pretty fantastic, retro styling. Such a stylish way to protect a countertop, or just to add a little vintage sparkle to the kitchen.

My grandmother collected owls when I was growing up--in fact, she still does. I used to make fun of her. Today, I completely understand the appeal! 

I'm linking up with the following blogs today to share my treasures and check out everyone else's finds!

Meet Virginia Design SouthernHospThriftyTreasures copy_thumb

{MANY THANKS to Southern Hospitality for once again featuring one of my finds--last week's mid-century flatware--in her weekly post!}

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Secondhand Swoon

I'm loving all the great vintage furniture treasures on the Indy Craigslist today!

This gorgeous steel desk is fabulous and I've never seen one in this peacock blue color.

$250 is a great price for this piece, assuming you have a heavy duty truck to haul it home. . .

I'm also loving this super retro pair of mid-century end tables for only $25 each!

This cheery yellow coffee table is super cute, and could be used indoors or out. It would be easy to transform with some spray paint, but I actually love the current yellow.

Everyone knows that I love McCobb, and this desk certainly looks to be McCobb-inspired. A gorgeous find, and a great price at $150.

image 1

I just spotted this fantastic Herman Miller desk chair in a gorgeous turquoise! It's a bit pricey at $250, but these chairs last forever and are incredibly comfortable and high quality.

Finally, how about a cool vintage lab stool?  This seller is offering a set of SIX matching stools for only $150.

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These stools would lend some retro-industrial charm to a loft space or around an island in a modern kitchen.

This is just a smattering of the secondhand treasures on Craigslist this week. Remember to turn to secondhand sources when you're looking for unique furniture at great prices. You can't buy this stuff in a store, folks!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Global Perspective

I love the use of globes in interior decorating...especially vintage ones. I got my first globe in 5th grade, when my family was moving to Canada. My father told me the name of the province where we would be living, and I raced to my bedroom to look it up on my globe. 

I don't know what became of that globe, but I do know that I found another one in a thrift store about ten years ago--a dented aqua beauty that graced my guest room/study in Bloomington, Indiana for several years. Eventually, when the guest room/study morphed into the guest room/study/workout room, I had to sacrifice the globe for reasons of space. While I had it, though, I always thought it added a bright, cheery pop of color and a pleasing international vibe to the room. I still kind of miss it.

I started thinking a lot about globes a few months ago, when my aunt posted some photos online of a project she had done at her church. For an event with an international theme, she had absconded with dozens of globes from my uncle's collection (he's kind of famous for it) and hung them from the ceiling of the event space and clustered them in groupings around the room.

{Photos courtesy of Jill Walbeck Kattau}

Cool, right? This project made me think about the possibilities of decorating with globes in the home. How fun would a similar treatment be in a child's bedroom?  Or, as PB Kids featured in their fall 2010 catalog, a child's playroom?

{PB Kids catalog photo via Our Humble Abode}
 I can also see a business--a cafe, a small bookstore--using this treatment to great effect. I think it would be amazing to cover an entire ceiling, so all you could see were the globes. Might be an awesome way to cover one of those ugly styrofoam drop ceilings found in so many commercial spaces!

I've seen some very (VERY) high-end examples of globes suspended from the ceiling in clusters and lit from within. I wonder if there's a way to easily DIY such a thing? Could be amazing! 

Slightly off-theme but awesome nonetheless is this chalkboard globe from The Well Appointed House.

Anyone in the mood to splurge???

Secondhand globes are relatively easy to come by. I see them in thrift stores periodically, and I've spotted them at yard sales as well. New globes range tremendously in price (check out for a wide selection), though examples can be had for less than $40.  Vintage examples are also rising in price as they become more and more sought after for their imperfect, historical charm.  Etsy is a great source; in fact, we have one available right now in the Tatter and Fray shop!

{Availabe at Tatter and Fray on Etsy}
This globe, with its muted colors and interesting, retro base would be best suited to display at eye level to fully showcase it's pretty vintage charm.  I think it would look great in a study, an office, or a living room! It would also look fabulous displayed in a cluster with more traditional aqua or blue globes, to add some visual interest.

Anyone else have any interesting examples of "global" projects or ideas?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Thrift Score Monday

I just LOVE warm, sunny summer weekends. There's no better time for scouring flea markets, estate sales, and tag sales for castoff treasures. I was lucky once again this weekend!  From a few tables away, I spied this fabulous mid century modern flatware set at a tag sale. 

I haven't counted all the pieces yet, but there was simply a TON of this vintage modern goodness.  Four complete place settings, plus a gajillion extra teaspoons, soup spoons, dessert spoons, butter spreaders....even a ladle!  WOW.  The set was unmarked [it was one of THOSE sales], but I quickly flagged down the somewhat-surly looking lady running the sale to ask her how much she wanted. She shrugged. "Two bucks?"  

That's right.  TWO DOLLARS.  I'm not kidding. I feigned coolness. I pretended to consider. Out of the corner of my eye, I spotted a tiny box holding a matching set of condiment spoons.

"Throw those in?" I asked with audacity.  "Yeah, sure..." grumbled the proprietor. I drive a hard bargain, folks.  Inside, I did a little screamy-dance thing, then I quickly paid and raced back to the car. I'm pretty sure I may have screamed, "Wooooo hooooooo!" in the uncoolest possible manner on my way home.

Not sure yet if I'll keep these beauties or sell them in the shop. I'm pretty attached already!


Thanks to Rhoda at Southern Hospitality for featuring my lamps from last week as one of her faves from her link party last week!  The ivory lamp will be posted in the shop this week. The brass lamp desperately needs to be rewired, but will be up for sale soon!

I'm linking up again with Southern Hospitality, Apron Thrift Girl, Her Library Adventures, Coastal Charm, and The Pennyworth Project to check out everyone else's great finds. One of the favorite parts of my week!


Meet Virginia Design

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fresh Picked

I was excited to see a feature in the May 2011 Elle Decor (ummm, yes, I'm a little backlogged in my magazine reading!) about vintage-inspired fruit prints as a trend.  Fruit prints have been a fave of mine for years--I still cherish my berry print kitchen towels by the late and lamented Martha Stewart for K-Mart line!  Though decidedly retro, fruit prints can add a charming touch to any decor, and even warm up a more modern kitchen.

I like the Crate & Barrel fruit glasses, but I think much more interesting vintage glassware can be found on Etsy or eBay, probably at a lower cost!  For example, this set of glasses and carafe, currently featured in the shop:

I do love the Garnet Hill bedding from the article, though it seems to be sold out. Here's a closer look:

Green Apple Percale Bedding

Speaking of fruit prints, how cool are these pear bookends from Etsy seller pillowhappy? They are shipped unfilled, and the buyer can fill them with uncooked rice, sand, popcorn kernals, etc.  What a great idea for a kid's room!

For a more vintage feel, consider these dish towels from Napa Style. The cherry print is so retro, they feel authentically vintage:

And for a truly authentic vintage cherry piece, check out the gorgeous cookie jar in our shop, with the prettiest retro cherry blossom design.

It makes me want to run out and eat a slice of pie!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Thrift Score Monday

It was SUCH a busy weekend, and I spent a lot of it dodging thunderstorms and catching up on errands and housekeeping.  I did find time, though, for a quick thrift store run and a stop at an amazing estate sale. My favorite finds of the weekend were a couple of gorgeous lamps.

I love lamps--always have, always will. I would switch out my lamps every month if i could. I wish I had room to store a revolving "lamp wardrobe" so I could change them with the seasons, my outfit, my mood...

These two are absolute gems. The first one, a thrift store find, is a pristine condition mid-century modern treasure. It had a twin, but the second lamp had a large, poorly repaired crack in the base, so I left it behind. [Note: Is it odd that I avert my eyes whenever I pass the lamp, wracked by guilt for tearing it away from its sibling of 50+ years? That's normal, right?] It sports a white ribbed ceramic base and an elegant teak neck. I can't wait to see it with a modern barrel shade.

The second find is a glam Hollywood Regency style brass lamp. I love the bulbous shape, the retro-fabulous base, and the heaviness of the solid old brass. Although I love the patina, I will probably shine it up to bring it back to its full glam potential. Paired with a black shade, I think it'll be stunning. 

Although both lamps need a little work, I got them for a song. Let's just say that lunch cost me more. So exciting!

 I need to get them in shape and posted in the shop SOON! Otherwise, this whole "lamp wardrobe" idea might take hold, and that can only lead to bad things. . .

I'm linking up with Her Library Adventures, The Pennyworthy Project, and Southern Hospitality again this week to check out everyone else's thrifting scores!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Secondhand Swoon

I'm still chained to my office with work, but had a few minutes at lunch to peruse Craigslist and What a week for vintage furniture! Lots of colorful finds today....I am literally restraining myself from calling about each and every one of these pieces.

This vintage Drexel desk is so absolute showpiece.

How fabulous is this pink Steelcase desk chair? The perfect piece to brighten up
a drab office. And I'm totally in the market for a new office chair....HMMM!

Pretty honey-colored Danish Modern desk with hutch. $125 OBO?!

...and to go with it, some golden mid-century rattan lighting!

An already-refurbished classic dresser in the loveliest slate blue.
I would put this blush pink chair inside a walk-in closet,
along with a pretty chandelier, to create a glam dressing room!

This vibrant chair would be the perfect pop of color in a
living room.

{All images via Indianapolis Craigslist and!}

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


I am a huge fan of summer. I wait for it all year. I savor it. I get depressed when it starts to wane. It's thus a bit ironic that summer is the absolutely busiest time of my work year. Some weeks, I rarely emerge from my office to see the sun. I always feel as if my favorite season passes without my being able to truly enjoy it. 

As I put the finishing touches on a huge work project and anticipate working through the weekend to get everything done, the best I can do is savor a few favorite images of summer. When things get too stressful, I'll just close my eyes and dream that I'm lounging in one of these locations.

Photo credits: (1) House Beautiful, (2) Habitually Chic, (3) Domino Magazine, August 2008,
 (4) Raleigh Hotel South Beach, (5) Two Ellie, (6) Hotel Villa Brunelli, (7) my parents' house.
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