Sunday, September 30, 2012

Oh, the weird and the wonderful .....

My father-in-law, Mr. Really Bad, and I went junking this morning and
it was a day of interesting finds. We came upon some of the most unusual things! I'm going to show you my favorites.

Can you believe this? A corset! Original box and everything! A short Google search leads me to think it's from about 1917. Never worn.

I added to my collection of old bottles. I look for ones with lids and reluctantly took two with damage.

Turns out what I thought was a common bottle with a damaged lid is a vintage ant catcher. Well who'd a thunk that?

As I was inspecting some tools Mr. Really Bad bought a sword-shaped letter opener.
Well, it's the prettiest letter opener I've ever seen. 

Cute handle.

One man's trash is indeed another man's treasure. Mr. Really Bad was just thrilled with his little sword. 

Because it isn't a letter opener.

No. It's a Midshipman's Dirk from the late 1700's to early 1800's. 
Horatio Hornblower would have carried one of these.
National Maritime Museum
Yard Sale

Mr. Really Bad paid $1 for his "letter opener." It's worth from $350 to $700 dollars.
The handle is ivory and the brass is gold-plated, although worn.

Amazing, right? An ancient British naval weapon on a rural farm in Oregon. How much history is in the landfills because we simply don't know what we have? Just sayin.'

Linking up with:

Friday, September 28, 2012

Color me textured.

All of a sudden I've been thinking about texture. Maybe it's from being up close and personal with so many pieces of old weathered furniture. The crazing, the flaking, the chipping, the alligatoring (is that even a term?), along with the chips and cracks and blemishes that come from hard use and often some neglect are so interesting to look at! 
I love color. And design. But .... but ... TEXTURE! I might love texture more than color. I adore monochromatic rooms or outfits where it's the textures that make the impact.

Since I have already explored historic color, I was inspired to explore some textures.


I love that chair! And I love that door! So photogenic, don't you think?

Linking to:

Friday, September 21, 2012

Well, okay then.

I haven't put a new post up lately.

It's been a crazy time here at The Ranch at Wit's End. Mr. Bad ended up in the hospital a couple times - a completely unscheduled interruption to an already busy life. He's completely okay but had to cancel a mountain-climbing trip he had been looking forward to for months.

I went back to my corporate design job but only part-time. But let me tell you! Part-time is a lot when your blood doesn't have any oxygen in it, making you feel kinda puny. I can't just take a nap at my desk.

So, what to do? Toughen up, dammit! And pace myself better. Because I have some fun new things to paint and I want to be out there doing it, not flopped sideways on the sofa, drooling on a pillow! 


I have 5 vintage dressers waiting in the wings.
Just one of the little lovelies waiting for me....
Am I painting them?
Yup.     maybe.       sorta ....... trying to .....
I have a Really Great Idea for one of them! It's a start! 

Here's what I have waiting for me:

Aren't these petite dressers the cutest? My cat (also known as Inspector 19) offered to pose to show scale. I'm rubbing my hands together with glee, people! With GLEE, just thinking about the colors I'll use!
They have the greatest pulls and thankfully all the pulls are there. That so rarely happens! In my world there's usually one missing.
The sweetest little pulls!

And then we have my $1 dresser. I love $1 dressers. There is always such a dramatic 'before and after' to show when they're done.
Too bad the pulls are a disaster! But on the other hand, all the key escutcheons are there, which never happens. Ever.

And another dresser. This one is making me crazy. I KNOW all the pulls were there when I first saw it. I know they were! But somehow in the loading process a bottom pull came off never to be found again.

Lastly, I was given this awesome mission dresser on trade and I LOVE it. It might end up living here for a while before I give it up. It's gorgeous!
Check out the ring pull. Singular. Ring. Pull.
 All the ring pulls, save one, are missing their rings. I hate the thought of having to replace all these pulls but thus far I haven't found brass rings anywhere. I'll keep hunting. If you know where I might find six brass rings, please drop me a line.

So that's what's waiting in the wings. I can hardly wait to get to them. Maybe by next week!

Linking up to:
miss mustard seed
liz marie blog

Friday, September 7, 2012

Is THAT the same cabinet?

Why, yes. Yes it is.
The new and improved cabinet.

When I first saw this roughed-up little china cabinet I instantly thought 'pie safe.' Mr. Bad thought it looked like too much work and I'd agree if I were replacing the glass and fixing the faux inset. However, I wasn't and I wouldn't and I didn't.

Here we are before. I want you to know that a lot of thought went into styling this 'before' shot. Har. Especially balancing the little stool on top.

And here is Little Miss Sunshine.
For a little fun and whimsy I painted pie names across the top and then added appliques on the bottom doors for more color. I used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Arles, Primer Red and Old White. To get the lighter apricot colors I mixed Old White with Arles. Then, clear wax.

It still has its keys!

I really tried to keep the distressing to a minimum because the wood was so smooth. I concentrated on the corners and edges with just a little sanding here and there.
And again, the entire pie safe.

It felt good to get back to my whimsical roots. I've missed it. I've missed it so much that today I bought this 5 1/2 foot tall Dr. Seuss-looking clock off Craigslist.
I'm going to have fun with this one. :-)

Linking up with:

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Gotta be going junking, gotta be going junking

(I should offer a prize to the person who identifies 
the songs that inspire my post titles.)

So, I've been out junking/picking.

Mr. Bad and I went to a wedding up in rural Washington State two weeks ago and we had a spare day to go junkin'. We were waaayyyy off the I-5 corridor, where tourists fail to go. We explored the little towns and simply spent our day following all the yard sale signs to wherever they led. (Yes, Mr. Bad Rabbit is a saint.)

We found an Empire dresser!

We met the most wonderful people. An elderly gentleman showed us his classic cars hidden in a ramshackle garage. He had an old coupe truck that is one of only 7 left. There was another rare car that he has 12 years invested into and it's still not done, mostly because parts of this particular car have been scattered to the 4 corners of the world.

These hubs are from a 1927 Dodge Fast Four.

I love this sort of stuff.

Giant springs!

Nice old toolbox.

Say "Ship Biscuit" 5 times real fast.

There's something about porcelain insulators.

Wheels to something or other ...

 One of our stops.

I have a plan for this rusty old trunk. Really. I do.

And some finds from elsewhere.

This birdcage is protecting my hosta from deer. I think I'll look for more cages for the other types of deer food I grow.

My new (old) work table - a future project.   And ... a rabbit.

One of the best parts of last weekend - I got to see my old buddy Cherokee. He's been at my S-I-L's place for a couple years.
An added surprise, look who moved into my kettle!

There's more junkin' ahead, too. The historic little town of Jacksonville is having its annual city-wide garage sale this weekend. There are treasures and antiques galore, drawing people from far and wide. It's quite the event!

Sharing at:
the vintage farmhouse
miss mustard seed
chic on a shoestring decorating
the 36th avenue
embracing change
savvy southern style
my 1929 charmer