Friday, March 29, 2013

Treasure Hunting Success!! Victorian Garden Tools

I've had two recent successful treasure hunting expeditions - one in my own back yard. I feel a bit like Dorothy Gale.

Craiglist Treasure Hunt uncovers Victorian Gardening tools

Victorian in Park Ridge, IL
As my readers know - I love going to antique stores, junk shops, flea markets, and searching Craigslist for deals.  One treasure hunt was from the latter. I saw a posting on Chicago Craigslist for "miscellaneous garden items found in my Victorian home's attic."  That called to me both for being garden related - and because anything stashed into an attic had to be valueable enough to store at one point, and there long enough to be forgotted (vintage or antique!) Whoo hoo - I was on the trail. 

I arranged to pick up the items and drove over to Park Ridge, IL. This town was incorporated in 1873. There are so many beautiful homes there. Sure enough as I drove to the address given, I was not disappointed. Yes, I even had to take a picture. Look at how lovely this place it. From the painted lady look, to the nice yard. I love the deck too. It wrapped all the way around to the back. Here they had really done it up nicely making an outside sitting room. The home owner confirmed that the home had been build in 1917 and that he was the third owner - the first two being multiple generations of the original builder! My excitement was so high - I thought there is gold here! Because I loved the house so much - here is a picture of it.

Crocks and vintage cardboard tomato carrier
The gentleman took me into the garage where he had stashed the items - getting ready to put them into the trash if nobody responded to hi CL ad. His trash is my treasure! I paid $60 for all the items. Next to each I've put the value of potential resale There were two crock pots (unbranded - $12 - $30), a cardboard tomato carrying case ($9-$19) those I did see online did not have a top , and several tools including triangle spade ($9), loper ($15?), coal or potato shovel ($25-30), Iron coal or garden shovel ($80), Antique version of today's Hula Hoe ($30? couldn't find comparable), another hoe, and a weeder with broken tip. So if I were to try and flip all these items - I would make maybe $120.

Victorian Garden Tools
I have already used these tools in spring clean up. One day I was at my neighbors and it started to rain. I got agitated because some of these tools were outside. She laughed an said "so you think that hasn't happened to them in the past 80 years?" Yeah, I sat down and finished my tea.  The handles on the weeders is particularly nice patina. Lots of oils from years of handling.
If I can find a space for it - I think these would look very interesting on the wall. Maybe by my indoor potting stand.

Hidden Treasure in my Basement Ceiling

Like everyone I have a long list of projects I want to accomplish around my house. I've lived in this

house over 11 years! A few weekends ago I decided that it was time to paint the basement. Here is my before picture - shades of orange, white (brown), and yellow. With a very dirty drop ceiling.  One of the first decisions we needed to make was whether or not we were going to keep the drop ceiling. So we lifted one tile to see what was above it - you can see the one we moved.  Little did we know that we would find lots of boxes of vintage items up there! I think it was someone Christmas hiding place long forgotten.  My partner in crime just kept handing me down box after box after box! It was exciting and hilarious at the same time.

There was a 2mm long gold tone Rickshaw charm. That my daughter grabbed to keep.

Most of the items are Japanese (I think), with the original boxes. Most of these are band boxes, so I think the timing is around late 1950's early 1960's.  All of these items will find their way onto ebay shortly (except maybe the vase).

 The picture (left) is of a set of Saki glasses. These are delicate white with rice kernel marks of flowers on the side. There is one missing. The box they are packaged in is really awesome and in perfect condition. There is also a flatter box similar to this one with characters on the front. This flatter box was empty.

There was a mexican leather zippered pouch - like wallet. Not sure about this. Nice, but not what I would think of a high quality. I can see someone buying it at a bazaar or around the ruins from a vendor!

Anyone in the market for some vintage perfume? This is a gift set of Flambeau Perfume and powder by Faberge. It was made between 1955 - early 1970's. I remember this fragrance and the commercials. Smelling it sent me back in time. It is rose-jasmine-hyacinth high note over strong classic lily of the valley, vetiver, sandalwood, orris, light amber and a chypre base. Very distinctive. I heard that these discontinued perfumes do well in resale - I might be lucky.

The next two items are real pretty wood objects of art. Pictured to the right - two bowls with lids. Not sure what type of wood. Real nice lines in the bowl. the tops are perfect condition with some flowers painted on. There is a red lacquer tray that goes with. Interesting that two corners of the red tray are turned up (kitty corner.) You can see this is the lower right side. Not sure what this is for. If you have any ideas please let me know! I was tempted to keep these, but...

 This taller piece I believe is a vase for flower arranging. The copper piece that is next to it inserts into a hole in the top. That would hold water easily and keep the wood safe. The items on the front, the bird and the leaves are a combination of paint and metal inset. There is detail work here.   Then lastly there were three sets of two crystal and nickel silver swan salt cellars with spoons. Each with original box and wrapping. Cute - but not my style!


Well folks that was my excitement for a while.  So please go around and peek in the corners of your house - the attic, above the ceiling, in the crawl space. You never know there might be treasure there!

Singing Mikado.

Teresa Marie

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