Thursday, December 29, 2011

The 1930s Project

I've been kicking around an idea here for a couple of years, and perhaps by making an official announcement  on this blog I can jump start it. Please join me for the adventure!

I have always been fascinated by the 1930s. Ever since I discovered big band swing in 7th grade I have been enthralled by the Art Deco era. All of it- the history, politics, and economics as well as the lighter side of entertainment, fashion and culture. Seriously studying the 1930s has been my avocation since I was in college. Even as an undergrad music major, I spent far more time with Paul Hindemith and Weimar Germany than I did with many of my friends. As a graduate student, I focused on early 20th Century material culture- the artifacts of technology, transportation and manufacturing from the period. And while I may know a lot of facts, I have always felt that I was missing the experience portion of the equation.

I have always wanted to know what it would have been like to truly live during the 1930s. I would like to do an  experiment in which I put aside most of our modern conveniences and live as a Depression-era housewife. Of course, I do have a family and their needs will have to be accounted for, but I will try to do my best to accomplish all of this in as authentic a way as possible.

Perhaps some of you have had similar thoughts. For some reason I haven't talked about it a whole lot on this blog, partly because most of my readers are into the 1950s. And while I like that time period, I have never really felt the pull to live it like I have with the 1930s-early 40s era. I am also aware that there are other people who do this as a lifestyle (some of whom are my good friends) and have been doing so for years. I admire that and I am by no means considering myself an expert on this- I just want to see if I can do it for myself!

So I am announcing the start of this project in which I live as a 1930s housewife for two weeks in August of 2012. The adventure will start with background posts leading up to it at my other blog:

Or you can join me facebook:

See you later, gator!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Thrifted Thursday: Pyrex and FireKing

I hope all of you have had a very happy Holiday season and wish everyone a happy New Year!  I got some much needed items, and of course, the kids had quite a haul.

Presents are great, but as you know, nothing makes me happier than thrifting, and getting a deal on something I collect!

Since the kids are off of school this week, I can relax my schedule a bit and get to those places I don't normally frequent because of time or distance. Today I went to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, ostensibly to look for new bathroom sconces for our cabin. Of course, none of those there were right; it was two big shelves of hideous brass and glass fixtures, just like the ones I want to get rid of! But I did browse through the household goods and came back with a couple scores:

I found this Butterprint 442 (1.5 qt.) Cinderella bowl in great condition, for my set for $3. I now have 3 of the 4 - just need the 443 to finish it!

I also couldn't resist these FireKing beauties. I don't collect this pattern (yet!) and don't even know its name, but I adore it! The handpainted flowers are lovely, and the whole set was only $5. It's a big 2 qt. baker, one cereal bowl, two handled ramekins and three tiny custard cups. They don't appear to ever have been used; I wonder what happened to their mates? I can definitely see collecting this one becoming my next obsession!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Thrifty finds

I've been doing a bit of thrifting lately, buying a bunch of stuff for my Etsy store. Of course, one of the hidden costs of having a vintage store is that you inevitably come across stuff you can't bear to part with and end up keeping. I don't know the technical term for that, but it eats into the profit margin for sure! These are the things I'm keeping as a Christmas present to myself, and who doesn't need a little of that? :)

Perhaps it's a backlash from the recent trend, but I am finding a lot of Pyrex here lately. There have been some really great pieces out there at bargain prices. I snagged this 1.5 qt covered dish for $4.50, and the price tag said "as is"! I am still trying to figure out what was supposedly wrong with it- there are no chips anywhere and it is pristine. I am being pretty good and only allowing myself to collect Butterprint or Primary, or else I would have a houseful! I even left a couple Butterprint round casseroles behind, because they looked like they had been through the dishwasher. I may even use this dish tonight for a recipe I will be posting next Monday; bringing back "Make-it-from-scratch Monday". Stay tuned!

Longtime readers may remember that my 7 yr old son collects these souvenir wooden wall plaques from state parks. I haven't found any in ages, and he has been getting a little down about ever finding any (like kids can be, LOL) but did find this one last week. This is not as vintage as some of the ones we already have- it's metallic foil- but he will love it. (We saw some bald eagles this summer while fishing on the Susquehanna River.) I am going to let my daughter wrap it up for him for Christmas. I was a bit shocked at the price- $8.50, WTF?- but what the hey, 'tis the season to overspend!

Speaking of which, you can see some of the rest of his collection below:

I found a better vintage lampshade for his atomic starburst lamp. Still not 100% sure this is right, but it's a lot better than what we had before

That shade actually came off of this lamp, which I bought for my daughter's nightstand at our cabin. I'm trying to get a little shabby cottage-y thing going for her up there (the polar opposite of my MIL's style who also lives there, hehe) and this will be so much more appropriate than the fussy super-traditional brass stuff she has now. I want to find a frilly shade for this- I know exactly what I want, just got to find it!

The best find of the last couple of weeks, however, was this: 

It's a 1930s 2 piece skirt and top set. Made of taffeta with ruffled detail and cute little brass buttons. I was originally planning to put it in the shop, but after I measured it, it was close enough that I could conceivably wear it.                   

After I lose about 10 pounds.                         

It will happen. I just needed the motivation and this is it!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

'Tis the Season of Giving- and we have a Giveaway Winner!!!!

Let's not forget the spirit of the holidays and remember to give a little back to our community. My cousin lives out in LA and is involved in a church program to send Recovery Bibles to inmates in prison. If you are looking for a way to give this season, why not look into this program and donate (PayPal accepted) if you can:

And since we all love to get as well as give, we have a winner in the Pyrex giveaway! According to, which drew #3 (I'm sorry, I tried to do a screen grab and failed miserably...), our winner is Miss Dollie DeVille! Dollie, send your address to practiceintime (at) gmail (dot) com and I will carefully pack and ship your prize! Three cheers for our winner!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Monday, December 5, 2011

It's beginning to look...

...a little like Christmas around here. We've started putting up decorations, and have a few new items this year. I found some really great holiday items over this past year, and while many of them went into my Etsy shop, I saved a couple for us.

Here are some of the newer vintage items around Chez QT:

A pair of bottlebrush trees and a little flocked deer on top of my TV-quarium. I should now say that this is my "prize-winning" TV-quarium, LOL, thanks to the good folks over at No Pattern Required, one of my favorite blogs. Unfortunately, the TV-quarium will have to be moved somewhere else next week, as this is the place we put our Christmas tree.

One of a pair of vintage stockings I'm using as decorations around the entrance to our living room. I make the white pine garland myself every year- over 25 feet. It's very easy; I should do a tutorial one of these days.

I found four of these bakelite and cardboard window candles at an estate sale this summer. I have other red window candles and I needed a couple new ones- these are perfect. They are also nice and heavy so they don't have to be taped to the windowsill. (Don't you hate that? LOL)

I have some new blow molds also- the two angels were 99 cents each at Sine's 5&10. Really. This store still has stock from the 50s and 60s and has never changed the prices over all these years. Instead of putting them up in the living room like last year, I decided to put them all in the downstairs window. I don't know if I like this or not, but we'll see. I do know that I need at least one more, because groupings of odd numbers look better. See how I can rationalize another collection? :) This is why I have more stuff than space.... heehee!

Don't forget to enter my giveaway! Now that we're up to 100 followers, it's official- game on! Get your name in by Friday, and at this point you have a pretty good chance of winning!

Friday, December 2, 2011

A Pyrex Giveaway!

Whew! It's been hard to keep up a regular blogging schedule these days. I promise you I haven't forgotten all about blogging- it's just been a little hectic around here!

Not coincidentally, I'm sure, I've noticed that we are hovering right around 95 followers. I'd really love to get up and over 100, so to sweeten the pot a bit, I'm going to do a giveaway.  Spread the word, get out the vote and get yourself entered to win:

A 1959 promotional Pyrex Golden Casserole 2.5 Qt. Cinderella dish with stand! This casserole is in virtually mint condition and is fairly rare. It is ivory with a gold leaf grape motif.

You can enter to win in any one of the following ways:

1) Be a follower and leave a comment below.

2) Repost it on your blog.

3) Mention it on facebook or Twitter.

Make sure to leave a separate comment for each entry method. The winner will be randomly selected after the contest closes at midnight on Friday 12/9. I will ship anywhere in the US and Canada at my expense. Unfortunately, I cannot ship anywhere else- if you still want to enter and you live elsewhere, we can figure out a different (i.e. less heavy and fragile) prize.