Friday, February 23, 2007

Can-I-Get-A-One-Dollar-One-Dollar...

While preparing for Dad's arrival this evening, I realized I had failed to make the auction post I promised. The morning after Mom came to Edwardsville a couple of weeks ago, we were up early and ready to go - with no idea of what was ahead of us. We had heard from the Corns that Highland was abuzz with news of this upcoming event. The lady that lived in the beautiful old home across the street from the Corns is known for having many antiques. She is in her 90's, and we believe she must leave her home because of the care that is required. The first of two auctions was being held that Saturday, and we set out to meet Sister Lydia and Brother Dale there.

I had no intention of buying much. But, I LOVE GOING TO AUCTIONS. Yard sales, flea markets, Goodwill and Salvation Army shops... but auctions even more than any of those. Anyone who has visited my home knows that almost all of my decor consists of purchases from these places. (Hopefully, it doesn't seem like that at first glance. Hopefully, it takes my explanation to figure it out.) I often receive questions of "Where did you get that?" and I'm happy to provide the answer. I love finding a good find.

There was a decent crowd present at the auction, a crowd that got smaller and smaller as the day went on. Items were not going for the prices that they should have been going. That's my kind of sale. (Because the woman worked in antiques, many of the items had price tags on them. If she paid what the price tags stated, I got most for an absolute steal.) And, while some hate it, I enjoy seeing what I've purchased in a pile to which has been added and added (...and added...) by the auctioning staff when no one else will bid...and I finally bid a dollar to win it. Some of the items I keep for my home. Some I give away to friends. Some I sell on ebay or at the yearly yard sale that some of the church folks and I have at my house.

Here is a collage I made so you could see a glimpse of some of the interesting things that were purchased that day. Some, intentionally...and some in those lots that were acquired untintentionally. An old tea kettle, an odd assortment of specialty cloth bags from jewelers - most for silverware, a few intricately knitted runners, a Mamma's Y&M Pies pan, an old flour sifter, a yellow glass cannister, many beautiful glasses, a piece of north European pottery, a beautifully knitted collar and cuff set. Junk to some. Some of it is junk to me. But, some isn't.

One of the finds I've most enjoyed is this book on Lincoln. Unfortunately, the publishing date page is missing from the text. However, the coverage on Lincoln's family, days in office, and the individuals who conspired to kill him has been interesting to read. It has been great to add this information to what I read last fall in two books: Lincoln's Melancholy and Team of Rivals. The most fascinating part? The pages and pages of pictures taken of Lincoln - listed in chronological order. I have enjoyed seeing the subtle changes in his features and matching up the picture dates with what was going on in history. Here are the first page in the chronology and the last.


Near the end, it was clear that some of the beautiful furniture was going to go ridiculously cheap. The dilemma? I have no truck. But, Lydia thought Brother Dale would allow us to use his. So, we asked... and then we started bidding... and bidding. I'm too embarrassed to post exactly what we purchased. But, maybe you'll see some of the refurbished creations in future posts. The biggest purchase was a antique dining room set: 6 chairs, table that enlarges... along with a buffet. They do need some work, so many wouldn't bid. But, I am up for the challenge... and it was a complete travesty that I was able to buy the entire set for a mere $15. (It doesn't need THAT much work!) We were so busy with all of the creative loading (making two trips with Mom's car and Brother Dale's truck) that I failed to take pictures of the set so everyone could see it. Now, it is tightly tucked away with many other things in my garage. But, here is a picture of one of the chairs so you can see the style. And, here is Sister Lydia squeezing in the tiny space we saved for her in the truck before we stuffed more in the front. I am so thankful to Brother Dale, Lydia, and Mom for their help! And, I hope I can show them good results from the purchases later this spring.

9 comments:

Chris said...

Looks like some great buys - I'll be excited to see your dining set in place once you've completed the work it needs!

Other Mother said...

What fun! I love auctions -- especially the ones like you described (but it's been a long time since I've had time to go). Congrats on your goodies!

Dani said...

$15 that is all you paid for a buffet and table and six chairs, that is such a steal. I love antiques. That must have been loads and loads of fun.

ShowJumper said...

I've always wanted to go to an aution..........great finds!!

Sandy-san said...

I really thought that the lacey neck and arm frills were pretty! Miss Lydia looked very pretty in them at lunch! I can't wait to see your finds one day!

audreysnanny said...

Oh how I wish I could have been there. I love old furniture and things from the past. I have a few items in my house that I am going to pass on to the kids. Rachel has some of it now, and I think Rebekah does too. Leah has some here and there and Sarah inherited my Great Aunts bedroom suit. Beautiful stuff!!! I love it!!!!!

strem said...

Audreysnanny: Your children are very blessed that you've been able to keep some heirlooms for them. I know they are not for everyone, but I love looking at old items - especially when I know they've belonged to my family through the generations. We don't have an abundance in our family... but a few special items that mean a lot. So, I'm working to start some new heirlooms (that came to me old!)

strem said...

Chris, Sandy... all of you! I also can't wait for you to come eat at my "new" table.

I don't really have the qualifications to be handing down advice to new brides or engaged women... but here's the one thing I've shared with the young ladies in my family: go to auctions! Again, I know I am not like everyone and don't necessarily desire to have everything new. But, if someone is the least bit interested in antiques or bargain shopping, it is so simple (and so much cheaper) to obtain quality furniture at an auction. Whether it be full sets or odds and ends, old or new-ish, they seem to go especially cheap on rainy days!

Sandy-san said...

I can't wait to see everything! As you know by seeing my home (I'm quite the eclectic), I don't need new things either. Older items seem to just have more character...