Tuesday, May 31, 2011

DIY Tutorial: Cleaning The Grime Off Pyrex

A few months ago I bought this Golden Acorn Casserole with the intent to resell it.

However, this grime proved to be a little too baked on.  This is after the initial scrubbing and a couple more tries after that. I considered the Magic Eraser but it was too difficult to get it into that groove.  I was also afraid the amount of scrubbing involved would ruin the finish.

Enter Bar Keepers Friend.  First I put a rag on the bottom of the sink to keep the dish from slipping around. Then, as per the BKF instructions, I got the surface wet.

Now we sprinkle on the BKF:

So how do I deal with that pesky grove? The answer is this: My Pampered Chef Nylon Pan Scraper. This little piece of plastic is one of my favorite kitchen tools. (Tupperware also makes them.)  Should you see one while thrifting, buy it!

Knowing the scraper alone will not do the trick and knowing the wonders of microfiber, I wrap the scraper in an old microfiber rag.

Now I bear down, and SCRUB!

Finally, progress!!! I worked my way around the dish adding more BKF as I went.

I also had to keep shifting the rag on the scraper. As you can see the sharp edge of the scraper can make holes in the rag. No big loss, it is a rag after all.

Voila! The grime is gone with no discernible difference in the finish.

Close up.

Now I will never leave a piece of Pyrex behind because it is too dirty. I hope you won't either. I'm hoping to do more cleaning and restoration tutorials as a feature on the blog. Please let me know in the comments if this is something you would like to see. Thanks!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Thrift Share Monday: Items of Use

On Saturday I took a drive up the Connecticut Shoreline to Mystic to see Luna's Sea. A puppet show created by my friend Polly Sonic. It was amazing, especially since most of the puppets were made of recycled and reclaimed materials. Truly, this show was one of the most creative things I've seen on stage in a long time.

The show was at 10 am, which left plenty of time to thrift my way back down the shore. It's interesting how themes will pop up during a day of thrifting. Saturdays Theme? Vintage things that are still useful in daily life.
My first stop was the Goodwill in Groton, CT where the first order of business was to drop off 3 large bags of books. Then while wandering the housewares I found one of my all time favorite things: Vintage Humidifier!

It was $8, a bit much and more than the original price, but so cool. I love the stripes.

I headed to New London to see if I could find any furniture for the Living Room. I had no luck there but did find a new Thrift Store. Homeward Bound Treasures was smart and set up a sandwich board on the sidewalk so I spotted it while driving. And what did I find? Another humidifier. Same brand, different model year.

This one didn't have a price other than the original price on the box and the 6.99 "James Price" sticker. When I brought it up to the counter, the lady working looked at the prices and said "Well, those are wrong! How about $3?" Sold.

The extras are what really sold this for me. Vintage bottles of inhalant! Instructions! And most important Vapo Clean Tablets!

Along with helpful instructions from the previous owner.

"Always put 1 tablet in water when starting.
It makes it operate better."

But the best part is this sticker on the top. Genius! I love a Vintage Humidifier, but I really love a snarky one. (And I say "Honestly." all the time, too.)

Other useful finds: A Kiwi horsehair shoe shine brush for $1 at the Groton Goodwill.

And this shoe stretcher for $2 at the Teen Challenge shop in Branford. It does not have the bunion pusher anymore, but it will still stretch shoes. We have a few of these at work of course, but I'm happy to have one in my size at home.

But the first thing I grabbed off the shelf at teen Challenge was this:

Oh yeah, that's a Holt Howard kitty string holder. In pretty decent condition, but not marked with Holt Howard. (There is only the faintest scrap of illegible sticker on the base.) I paid $5. Expensive for a thrift shop tchotchke? Sure, but this is worth waaaaay more than that online.

I'm linking up with Apron Thrift Girl for Thrift Share Monday as usual.  For those of you visiting from ATG be sure to check out how to stay connected on the sidebar with Google, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Thrifts of Terror: Unicorn Love

Seen at the Orange, CT Savers:

Unicorns? Check.
Airbrushed velvet painting? Check.
Carved frame? Check.

These Unicorns love each other and are not afraid to show it. 

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thursday Tray Update

I have a quickie Tray Update this week. Carol from The English Market let me know that she had a tray in stock and that I should come check it out. I stopped in after a trip to Helping Hands  and the Goodwill Outlet. (Which I shared on Monday) I also picked up a Vera sheer scarf at HH and immediately traded it to Carol for the tray. Another Connecticut, but in GREEN!

And a totally different representation of the Mountain Laurel. It looks a lot less like a Hydrangea.

Which makes me wonder was the artist who painted the black the same as who painted the white?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Crown Flaie

This past Sunday was my first Flea Market selling experience at New Haven's newest Flea Market: The Crown Flaie.

It was a great experience! It was myself and three other vendors including Carol's Table from The English Building Markets and Rob the proprietor.  The weather was against us, (cloudy and cold!) but we persevered.

My only goal was to cover the cost of the table space. Which I'm happy to say I did!

The Flaie is still in it's infancy, so there were people, but not crowds. However, Rob has a great deal of conviction that this will work, and I believe that. New Haven requires a lot of patience and we just have to stick it out. Fortunately, the overhead cost is low,  so I'm willing to give it the summer.  

It's also a relief to get the initial set up out of the way. I spent all day Saturday cleaning and packing items. Now it can just move from storage to car easily. I can add inventory as I go. My only glitch was with the table I borrowed from a friend. A full length 6' table doesn't really fit in my car. I had to do some finagling and drive with the table a little too close to me for comfort. I need to buy one of the kind that fold in half. So my next goal is to sell enough to cover that!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Thrift Share Monday

I spent the week preparing for selling at the flea market on Sunday. So I only made a couple brief stops at the thrifts this week. (But went to Target like, 9 times. Because I kept running out of necessities like toilet paper and cleaning products.) So between stops one day I made the time to pop into Helping Hands and the Goodwill Outlet.

At Helping Hands there were Spring Blossom Casseroles just waiting for me. They were $4 each in perfect condition, but sans lid. Fortunately, I keep spares around for such occasions.

The look so nice with the casserole I already have. Only 1 more to complete the set!

I also got these coasters for $3. I think they may be teak but I'm terrible at identifying anything other than  80's oak by sight. Does anyone know a good guide for identifying woods?

Anyway for $3 these fit my criteria perfectly, mid-century, interesting, and not limited to the size of your glass. I love my vintage travel coasters, but the rims on the edge don't work with modern glass ware. Look at this metal inlay in the front. Swanky!

I stopped in to the Goodwill Outlet to have a look at their furniture. No dice there. But I did get some display things for selling at the flea market and I spied this buried under a pile. Could it be? It is!

A Pyrex cradle!

Look how good it looks with my largest casserole. One of the handle covers is missing, but for the pennies I paid for this, I don't mind.

I'm linking up with Apron Thrift Girl for the always entertaining, Thrift Share Monday. Go over, spend a few hours seeing what everyone else brought home. Check in with me tomorrow for more details on my flea market experience! (Hint: It was a good one.)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

I'm selling at Crown Flaie today! 9-3 on Crown St. between Cafe 9 and ACME in downtown New Haven.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Thrifts of Terror: Here we go a Wassailing

Please welcome a new feature to the blog, Thrifts of Terror! Of course, I see constantly see whackado stuff at the Thrifts.  All. The. Time. Now every week or so, you get to see them too.

Seen at the Milford Goodwill: Scary Carolers.

Apparently, the flying monkeys from Wizard of Oz enjoy a good carol too.

What's scarier? The sheer amount of these guys on the shelves? Or the fact that they were gone a couple weeks later?

I say both are equally terrifying.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Thursday Tray Update

On our trip to Cape Cod this weekend I found Virginia! (What an odd sentence that is.) It was $1 at Yarmouth Boatworks and Antiques Market  between Hyannis and Yarmouth. It was only $1 because it was in need of some serious cleaning. It looks like it spent some time in the elements. Here is the before:

And after a little work with the Bar Keepers Friend:

Much better, well worth my dollar. 

On Monday I discovered via the Savers website that they now have a Club Card. (This also applies to Value Village too.) The process is kind of complicated. You fill out the online form, they send an email, you click a link in the email, you print a form, you take the form to Savers, they give you the physical card, you go back online you enter the number on the card into your online account.  Whew, so much work and like I said-complicated. But the bonus is you get a 25% off coupon for your entire purchase and another coupon for buy 4 items get 1 free. 

I used my 25% off coupon to buy many cute summer clothes. (Which Mother Nature is making impossible to wear!) I also found, lurking amongst the serving ware, an actual factual Connecticut Nashco tray. 

It was priced at $.99 which means with the coupon it was, wait for it....75 cents. Totally makes up for the lack of trays at Brimfield.  I love how the flowers on the two CT Nashco's I have are totally different.  Since they are hand painted, each is unique. It totally justifies keeping them both!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Vintage Fabric from Polly Sonic

My friend Polly Sonic, puppeteer, illustrator, fire spinner, mermaid, and all around cool girl posted on Facebook that she was looking to get rid of a box of vintage fabric, a sewing machine, and some vintage patterns. I emailed her with a "Um, hello?  Of course I want that fabric!" She said "Come n' get it!" and I immediately hopped in the car to go pick it up.  It was more than I had hoped for.

Here are the highlights of what I'm keeping...

Blue floral cotton:

Atomic black and white knit:

Cross stitch floral print:

More black and white:

Cotton hearts:

Large scale floral:

And my favorite is this amazing country village scene:

It looks like it once was a skirt. It may have to go back to being one!

Thanks Polly! Check out her blog antinomia, and this one for her latest puppet show Luna's Sea. I am seeing this in two weeks and I can't wait. All the puppets are made out of recycled materials. If you are going to be anywhere near Mystic, CT in the next couple months be sure to go see it!