Gettin’ Lucky at the Sally.

The Salvation Army nearest my house is so weird (it’s the one on Devon almost to Western, for those of you from Chicago). It’s SUPER hit-or-miss, no in between. This quality is what contributed to my total obsession this summer, when I was out of school, and would hit that store once a day and, readers, I am almost (but not quite) too ashamed to admit this, SOMETIMES TWICE A DAY. Because you just NEVER KNOW when they’re going to put the good stuff out and this is the store where I found the early-twentieth century mantel clock that I sold on eBay for nearly $400.

I haven’t been in a while, but stopped by yesterday right after work and was rewarded.

sally army finds xmas collage 1

On the left, awesome vintage white wire basket, $2. Vintage Red Man Picnic Basket, $3. On the right, odd-but-cool three-tier, enamel, Danish-like…THING. Can’t quite figure what this is for. It’s small — like six or seven inches high — so I don’t think it’s for snacks or any food-related purpose. I think it would be so cool to use it as a desk organizer, with paper clips on one tier, binder clips on another, and so on. And in the middle: I found two twin-sized Cabin Craft Needletuft Chenille bedspreads. I grabbed them so fast off their hangers I nearly pulled the whole rack over. Afterwards, I realize that I do this weird thing when I find something that I’m totally, incredibly excited about: I won’t look it over very well. I was standing in line, waiting to pay, thinking, I need to unfold these and take a really good look at them before I buy them, but I couldn’t make myself! I was afraid that they would be flawed! I realized I would rather pay my money and have this hope for the twenty-or-so-odd minutes it takes me to get home and spread them out in the living room than to be disappointed standing in the Salvation Army. It’s like I’m buying a mystery grab bag or something. These WERE flawed, as it turned out, but not too terribly badly — each has a hole in one place, one that has been repaired (not very well) and another that hasn’t. The background fabric is kind of dingy and I’m nervous about washing it because the chenille is so awesome, but otherwise, they’re fine, and I figure they would be great to make pillows out of if nothing else. $6 for both! So, not so high a price for a Mystery Grab Bag. I got lucky this time.

sally army finds xmas collage 21960s beaded purse in perfect condition, $6. What’s the story on why all the fancy purses from the 50s and 60s are from Hong Kong? That’s a weird market for them to have cornered. Little Pledge of Allegiance print, $.60. I LOVE this. I am such a sucker for vintage patriotic stuff and, you can’t see this in the photo, but this print has this really cool gold, glittery outline on the flag. And last but not least, a lidded glass jar, my latest obsession. I cannot pass up an apothecary-style jar, even though my apartment is currently over-run with them. I had this great idea to do a display in the booth for January that would be all organization things — but vintage-style organization — with things you could store craft supplies, office supplies, etc., in, but I didn’t get it together enough to do this trip down, so I’ll have to wait for the next one. I always feel this need to try and get the clutter under control after the beginning of the year (New Year’s Resolutions, you know) so I thought January would be a good time to do it but…it will have to wait. In the meantime, this lovely jar will go in my ever-growing pile of delicious lidded glass jars.

So I walked out happy. And as I’m writing this, I can’t help but wonder: what the hell am I going to miss while I’m out of town for Christmas? I wonder if I could hire someone to troll the Salvation Army the way you can hire someone to watch your cats?

December 19, 2009 - 6:58 pm

Leilani You could definitely hire me (though you thrift more often, which is rather amazing) but I’ll probably be in Arkansas the same time you are (21st-30th of December). I’m on a 6-week break from grad school starting now so you bet your boots I’ll be hitting thrift stores 4 times a week. 🙂

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