Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Let's Go Junkin'!

I have come to acquire a bit of a taste for antique items. Perhaps antique isn’t the correct word…maybe I should just say ‘old stuff’. I wouldn’t want to offend a true antique collector. It all began at my grandmother’s yard sale. She’s had these before and most of the time I just haul my slightly used items (washed, ironed, labeled and priced) to her house and collect my earnings when the weekend is over. This particular yard sale found me rummaging through everyone else’s junk. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, right? I made my way over to the clothing section to browse…okay, my mission was to organize the clothes, not actually walk away with anything. I digress…I was up to my elbows in sweaters that met the Bedazzler when I stumbled upon an apron.
Now, I’m no chef. I enjoy cooking and love to hear my kids say, “Mommy, you’re the best cooker!” So, I have an apron. But this one…oh this one! I knew the minute I laid eyes on it that it was special. After quizzing my grandmother on what senile moment took over and made her put it in the yard sale she handed it over without question. After much discussion between my grandmother and her sister it was determined that my great-great grandmother made the apron. I was dumbfounded even further that the dang thing could have slipped through my grasp. I, of course, never knew my great-great grandmother. I was holding a piece of history in my hands. (I’m not exactly a history buff either – so it was even cooler that I was so intrigued by this!) I couldn’t help but imagine how many meals had been prepared in this dainty garment. How many trinkets or pieces of candy made their way into the pockets that were stitched onto the front? The baby blue gingham fabric is light and airy. The stitching is very simple and obviously took great care to create. (For a person who can’t sew a button on, that’s amazing!)
After the apron, I found myself longing for another piece. Then another and another. I took a trip to Callaway Gardens in Georgia. It was a spa trip. Along the way, I paid a visit to Warm Springs, Georgia and came across this little beauty. I can't tell you anything about this piece other than the fact that it's old. I can remember one just like it at my great grandmothers...but that's about it! I love it!

My most recent addition to the ‘antique collection’ is another apron. I came across this one at my mom’s house. She found it folded up with a bunch of different material she received from my great grandmother. Low and behold, another of my great-great grandmother’s creations! Could I be so lucky? Turns out that way, huh?

As I said before, I’m not sure if antique is the right word because I’m not sure what qualifies an item to be an antique. But, these items are all in my possession and I put them all to use. I use my aprons often and I keep my sweet tea in that pitcher in my fridge. They may be antique, but I find something refreshing and very ‘linking the present to the past’ about using the items. Maybe I feel like I’m channeling this woman that I never knew! Either way, it’s become a new-found hobby of mine and I can’t wait to find my next piece! Let’s go junkin’!


martinstone said...

love the aprons! keep looking, theres nothing like finding memories!

Misty said...

Jennifer I LOVE going junking! I could spend HOURS in an antique shop. My favorite things are items that aren't really antiques; I love kitchen items from the late 60's and early 70's; I also love quilts but can usually not afford them! I also go "yard-saling" nearly every Saturday (usually by myself!!) I love the aprons! Good finds!

Jenn said...

Lori - I agree...the memories help remind us who we are. It's theraputic!

Misty - I'm glad I'm not alone! I would do the yard-saling thing, but I can barely manage to drag my sorry butt out of bed for work Mon - Fri. I'm not quite ready for the challenge that Sat. morning yard-saling would bring! Ha! If you venture out to yard sales when I rise on Saturdays you usually get there when they're packing it all in!

KristinRanae said...

Ohhhh, now I HAVE to show you my "old" apron collection. I can't pass them up when I find them at yard sales, thrift stores and/or antique stores. There is something about a delicately hand stitched apron that make me smile:) Seriously, why would someone want to throw out one of those? Seems to me that every apron has some type of story to tell? Also, I adore your tea pitcher. I have one similar with 4 matching glasses. We should have a tea party!

Anyway, I'm happy to see that you have acquired a taste for vintage/antique items. You'll have to start "junkin" with Shae ane me:)