Friday, May 4, 2012

happy weekending

i'm just about to jet out the door and hit the road. heading over to Yakima for a few days with the bestie- we're having a work/crafty weekend where we'll be making the backdrop for the booth at The Farm Chicks Show! 

don't worry- i'll keep an eye out for rattlers! 

of course, we'll also be checking out some estate sales, so in lieu of a regular finds to fancy post, see what we're finding by following along on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram

happy weekending to all of you! 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

new arrivals

a few new goodies arrived in the vintage mall space this week...

i just realized i set the date on that perpetual calendar wrong!

if you're ever interested in an item i post, but aren't local to Seattle, please message me and we can probably make arrangements!

a curated life

today's collection is one that was mine, but is now looking for a new curator.

i found most of this set of Brusche 'Contempo' dishes at one of the most memorable estate sales i've ever been to. my pal Abbi and i arrived at a sale that looked less than promising: it was in 'no sidewalk land' (which if you ever read Yard Sale Bloodbath, you know is never a good sign); it was a newer home in a new sub-development; and there was hardly anyone there. we decided to check it out anyway and at first weren't finding much. then we noticed a big pile of trash bags and boxes and asked if any of the stuff in those was for sale. the woman replied- 'oh, that's Goodwill pile. if find anything you want you can just have it'. seriously? well, we accepted her challenge and started digging through this mountain of stuff. sure enough, this is where all the good stuff was! vintage clothes, dishes, an entire set of china, linen, and more. we tried to get her to take money from us, but she wouldn't accept much. we even told her that the stuff she was giving away is what she should be selling (i don't think she believed us). it was by far the biggest haul we had ever scored, for the smallest price tag.

these dishes were in one of those boxes and they caught my eye. i didn't recognize the marking on them, but they were fun colors (there used to be a few more grey pieces, and there were also some burgundy colored ones that i foolishly left behind because i didn't like the color), and i liked the clean and simple style. i took them home, researched the mark and discovered that Brusche was a sister line/offshoot of Bauer, made by one of the potters there, that had a limited production run so they're actually a bit rare. what a find! i decided to replace the new Fiesta Ware we had with this fun set. over the last 4 years i've added a few plates, the cups, and the soup bowls, as well as some plates that aren't Brusche, but complement the set.

while i still enjoy these dishes, lately i've been wishing i wasn't so limited by their palette, which is why i decided to move on to white milk glass- more flexibility. since we'll be moving soon, and will be living in rentals for a while to come, it doesn't work to have more than one set of dishes, so these get to find a new home! they're currently in the Gather and Hunt space at the Fremont Vintage Mall, so if you're in Seattle and like them, feel free to go check them out! i kept the price low, since i received such a nice deal on them!

don't forget- i really prefer to share your collections here, so email me your photos and a bit about your collection and you can have your very own curated life post!


Wednesday, May 2, 2012


it seems a bit fitting that i'm posting this later in the day than i normally like to, because today i am grateful for...


just a few short weeks ago, wednesday would find me scrambling to get a blog post up, get ready for work, prep some goods for the shop, and race downtown to put in a few hours at my bookkeeping job. rushing to the shop space afterwards to get it stocked before closing time, then back home to get a meal ready for the mister and i. now, i know this sounds a lot like everyday life to most of you, and i'm certainly not complaining about having work in this day and age when so many don't. but, days like that were wearing me down. (getting a little personal now) having fibromyalgia- a chronic pain and fatigue condition- makes normal tasks seem overwhelming at times, and juggling 3 jobs and a business could just push me over the edge into painful exhaustion.

fast forward to today. so much has changed in those few weeks. now, with one less job to juggle, i spend wednesday's working on blog posts, thrifting new goods, prepping inventory for the shop and Farm Chicks, re-stocking the shop, attending to issues in the apartment building (job #2), and taking care of normal life stuff. it is an unbelievable gift to have an extra day each week to get things done and i am so thankful for it.

i'm grateful for my mister, working a job he isn't enthused about, in order to provide some financial stability for us and allow me to take the last few months we have in Seattle to pursue my business more fully. i'm grateful for all my customers, whose purchases support this passion of mine and who motivate me to keep finding vintage treasures. i'm grateful for you, dear reader, and for your comments that remind me that i started this blog to inspire and build community around something we all enjoy. i'm grateful for all the blessings in my life, and for the provision of additional time to enjoy them all.

i know time can feel like an enemy some days, and even with that extra day, i still know that despairing feeling well- a never ending to-do list vs. days with never enough hours in them. i'm trying to let my gratitude strong arm that despair into motivation, but i'm curious- how do you find time for what you love to do and what you must do? what's your relationship with time like?

i'd also love to know- what are you grateful for today? i enjoy getting glimpses into your lives through your comments!

p.s. all the clocks in these photos will be available for purchase at The Farm Chicks Show- just a short month away!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

tried and true

for today's tried and true, i felt inspired to bring you more than just a product. another passion of mine is cooking and entertaining (i worked in restaurants and coffee shops for years and even owned my own catering business for awhile), and i've been longing to incorporate more of that passion into the gather and hunt blog, while remaining true to the vintage theme. so today, i bring you a tried and true cocktail: the old fashioned.

Mad Men's Don Draper drinking an old fashioned
{image via}
the old fashioned, which many people have become familiar with thanks to Mad Men (it's Don Draper's cocktail of choice), is one of the oldest American cocktails. officially introduced by James E Pepper, a bourbon distiller, in the 1880's at the Pendennis Club in Kentucky, it's a cocktail in its truest form: spirits, bitters, water and sugar. though there is a bit of debate among purists about the recipe for an old fashioned, it's generally considered to consist of bourbon or rye whiskey, sugar, bitters, and a twist of lemon or orange. some recipes also call for soda water and a cherry. one of the earliest accounts, written in 1885, has this recipe: "Dissolve a small lump of sugar with a little water in a whiskey-glass; add two dashes Angostura bitters, a small piece ice, a piece lemon-peel, one jigger [1.5 fl oz or 44 ml] whiskey. Mix with small bar-spoon and serve, leaving spoon in glass." (Modern American Drinks: How to Mix and Serve All Kinds of Cups and Drinks). 

the old fashioned has long been my own drink of choice. not too sweet, the flavors mingle well with the spicy bite of bourbon (my favorite spirit). though i make it at home frequently, i do enjoy one when prepared by a good bartender as well. the claim of the best old fashioned i've ever had belongs to Kings Hardware, in Seattle. there, they understand that the drink should not contain giant chunks of fruit which can obscure the flavor of the bourbon. even better- the cherries they use are made in house, not like the bleached-then-dyed-red maraschinos most bars use.

now for my personal recipe...

you'll need:

whiskey of choice (today i'm using Bulleit Rye)
soda water (not tonic water)
Angostura bitters (or your bitter of choice, i like to experiment)
slice of a smaller, ripe orange (tangerines and blood oranges work well too)
sugar (i prefer evaporated cane juice)
cocktail cherries (mine are homemade, but most specialty stores sell nicer cocktail cherries)
ice cubes
old fashioned glass (or any glass with slightly rounded sides and a fairly broad base)
cocktail spoon

make it:

add 1 t. sugar (more if you like it sweet) to the bottom of an old fashioned glass.

add 4-8 dashes bitters to sugar (if you've never had bitters, start with 4, then add to taste).

squeeze the juice from one orange slice into glass. swirl mixture around to partially dissolve the sugar.

add ice. true purists would say to use 1 large cube, but i like to use tiny little ones- about 1/3 a cups worth.

add soda water. the amount depends upon your preferences. i usually use about 3-4 oz (a little less than 1/2 cup), but i like mine to taste mostly like whiskey, so if you may want to add more.

add whiskey to taste. again, i like mine fairly strong so i generally use 2-3 oz (a little more than a large jigger full), but you may like it with less or more.

to finish you have two options...

add the orange slice you previously squeezed and a cocktail cherry (i love cherries, so i usually use closer to 5), plus a little of the syrup from the cherries.

serve with a cocktail spoon (the true old fashioned way to do it).


if you want to be extra fancy, skewer an orange slice and a cherry and place in glass. let your guests squeeze their own orange slice into the drink.


if you try making this at home i'd love to know what you think! if you're already an old fashioned drinker, i'm always interested in variations on the recipe as well- leave me a comment!

happy may day!

i've got my eye on...

now that i've found new dishes, i'm jones'n to put our boring (non-vintage) glassware set in the garage sale box and start adding some more fun vintage glasses to the few i have now! i don't think i want a matching set, more a collection of unusual ones that strike my fancy (or the mister's, though he rarely has an opinion about such things).

in my search for some additions to the collection, i've found lots of fun sets on Etsy and i thought i'd share them with you!

fun flower set with a carrier from Olive and Frances

gold foil and green leaves from Of All The Fish Vintage

love these retro stars from The People Place

pitcher & glasses set in great colors from Flying Buddha Monkey

yellow swirls from The Fancy Lamb

this white floral motif from Tinted Vintage would complement many different dishes

i actually may have to order these great you and me glasses from Etna Street Modern!

do you collect vintage glassware? i'd love to know what kind you collect! even better, send me a photo and i'll feature your collection in a curated life post!

stay tuned later today for a special tried and true post, complete with a recipe you might be able to put to use this evening!

Monday, April 30, 2012

this and that

hello everyone! how was your weekend? i apologize for my extended absence last week- things are getting busy around here and i had to choose something to neglect. no promises that it won't happen again, especially with all the prep for Farm Chicks ahead of me in May, but i'll try my best to keep up here! 

here's a little instagram'd peek at what's been keeping me so busy...


thursday was filled with about 8 hours of estate sales, thrift stores, earthwise (a salvaged home materials store), a quick stop at an antique mall, and one of my favorite annual rummage sales! i arrived home with a very full vehicle but very tired muscles. 


friday i hit the sales (with a quick pit stop for top pot doughnuts), this time with my mama! i found a ton of great goods (some of which is still in the car), including some of my first major furniture inventory- those great mid-century side tables and the huge ottoman! after all the sales we prepped stuff for the Fremont Vintage Mall space and headed over there to re-stock. happily, i timed my visit just right so i could give a goodbye hug to one of the awesome gals on the mall staff who is moving away today. by the end of day, i was exhausted and ready for sleep! 


saturday was a day off from vintage for me- so we could volunteer at a Habitat for Humanity job site! we had a great time doing some demo work in order to get the home back up to code, as well as ripping out some really terrible flooring in order to expose the beautiful hardwoods underneath. it was a lot of hard work, but we really had a great time with our friends who volunteered with us, and we enjoyed meeting the rest of the work crew, including the future home owner. we arrived home completely wiped out (and in a crazy amount of pain in my case), but luckily i had enough energy to check the mail, since there were not one, but two packages in there for me! my black and natural bakers twine from Knot & Bow (one of my favorite Etsy stores) arrived and so did an adorable vintage dress from Bamboo Bettie (another Etsy store) that i'm planning to wear at Farm Chicks! a long and tiring day, but filled with wonderful moments. 


sunday i awoke barely able to move. i'm not kidding- my mister had to help me roll over in bed because my muscles were so weak and sore i couldn't do it on my own. we were scheduled to sing (me) and drum (the mister) in the band at church, so we had to get up and get ready, but believe me- if i could have stayed in bed, i would have. i couldn't even put my own shoes on i was so tired and sore- it was almost comical! after church and grabbing some quick lunch, we headed home and i spent nearly the entire day in the setting pictured- on the couch, under a soft blanket, trying not to move. some much needed recovery after three days packed full of activity and heavy lifting! 

what did you do this weekend? whatever it was, i hope it was great! 
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