Just because I'm a stepmom doesn't mean that's my complete identity, now. So, once in a while, I've got to take a little break from stepmomland and be plain old Junkgirl. That means spending hours rummaging around my favorite thrift stores. Over the past couple of years, I've acquired some amazing junk, and I'd like to share it with you now. Please turn off your cell phones or set them to vibrate. No talking. No flash photography. Now, sit back and enjoy...JUNK!
My first (and almost best) thriftstore Christmas ornament. I'm not one for holiday decorations, so I have to see something that really catches my eye. This sure did--a National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation ornament. If you look closely, it says "Happy Holidays From the Griswold's". Courtesy of Tabernacle Thrift Store, twenty-five cents.
You're not dreaming. Yes, this absolutely is a Christmas basket made entirely of late 1960s/early 1970s Christmas cards. Some very talented artist hand-picked the perfect Yuletide cards and lovingly stitched them together with gold thread (probably real gold) in the shape of an octagon. All this for what, you might ask? Why, to hold more cards, of course! Courtesy of the Salvation Army Thrift Store, $1.99.
HERE IT IS! The wait is over. The crown jewel of my thrift store ornament collection. You may have noticed, I'm afraid to take it out of the wrapper--it's just THAT amazing. It's got everything a Christmas ornament should have--shine, glitter, an oversized white fluffly dog named 'Sugar' holding a framed photo of himself with his loving owner, Elizabeth Taylor. Oh, yeah! I almost forgot--it also has the ever-festive red AIDS ribbon. Happy Holidays from Sugar, La Liz, AIDS, and Christopher Radko. Recently acquired at the Hawthorne, California, Salvation Army Thrift Store for (still has price tag) fifty cents.
This beaut is a wonderfully James Bond-ish cocktail bar. As it opens, it lights up to reveal the original barware. Below, ample space to stash your liquor. Above, a reasonable amount of space to display "Christmas at Graceland" and elves. Found at a random thrift store in Waterloo, Iowa, for the price of $100, including vintage barware. (Graceland and Elves --and Elvis, for that matter--not included).
A sassy "Have a Tall One" paper giraffe drink coaster. Have you ever seen a giraffe drink? Well, they probably drink a lot, and so do people in Palm Springs, because I literally saw hundreds of these in ziplock bags at the Angelview Thrift Store, Palm Springs, California. I bought about 25 for a quarter. Wish I'd have bought more.
These puppies make me proud. A set (!) of frosted iced tea (or iced vodka) glasses. Check out "Frontier Society." This picture makes me thirsty. Please excuse me while I go pour myself some cream sherry. Salvation Army, fifty cents a piece=$2.00 plus tax.
I shrieked with joy when I saw this little teak man bottle opener with his adorable mop top. My husband shrieked with fear that I would actually consider buying it and displaying it in our home. Who could resist at $1.99? He once lived in Denmark, but now lives in my heart--I'm talking about the teak man--not my husband, mind you. (And per request of my husband, is only allowed out thrice per year). Angelview Thrift Store, Palm Springs.
The table and chairs were in a state of disrepair before I rescued them from the House of Yahweh Thrift Store in Hawthorne, California. After restoring the wood and recovering the chairs, it's now worth much more than the $153 dollars I paid for it. And, I thank Yahweh for that.
When I'm not pouring booze at my bar, I've been known to drink a cup of coffee or six. I love drinking out of my Fozzie Bear Muppets mug. $1.00, Salvation Army.
And now...the best find I've ever snagged at a thrift store. This was buried behind piles of crappy crap at the Angelview Thrift Store in Palm Springs. I often thrift with a friend, but this day I was alone, so there are no witnesses, but I swear this is true. I turned my trained eyes toward the shelves, and after a few minutes, the color of wood I always look for popped out. I grabbed this hunk of teak and flipped it over. Made in Denmark? Check! Good brand name? Check--Jens H. Quistgaard for Dansk! Still working? Check! Price is right? $1.99--check! I quickly scooped it up and went home to check eBay. Another like it sold recently for $384. Apparently, it's a peppermill in a set designed in the 1960s. There were 24 different shapes to choose from, mimicking a chess board. This is one of the rarest pieces. Did I stow it away in a cabinet? No, but I probably should have. Instead, I use it every day and it sits on my table. I don't care--I'm not selling it and I enjoy it everyday.
I am happy to have shared my menial treasures with you today. I realize at this point that you may be full of bitterness for me because you've been looking for that Fozzie mug for years to no avail. But, please. Stick with your search. Keep your hope alive. After all, if I can find Fozzie, so can you.