Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Successful Day!

Yesterday I got to go back to the town I went to college in and go to some thrift shops / flea markets.  My favorite find of the day was this cookie jar.  It's my favorite for two reasons.  First, I don't have a cookie jar, so I'm excited about having one, secondly and the reason I chose this jar, is because this is identical to my grandma's cookie jar!  My grandfather bought her the complete set of canisters, measuring cups with rack, spice rack, cream and sugar, teapot, and who knows what else back in the 1950s when they lived in a little town about 30 minutes or so outside of Kansas City.  Grandma is still using all of those pieces to this day.  The jar that I found is in excellent shape, no cracks or chips, and only a few places where the glaze has crazed just a small amount.  It has a sticker on the bottom that reads "Heritage by" and then the sticker is unreadable to tell who made it, and then it says "Japan."  Another bonus was that it was 50% off, so I got it for $4.25!

I found this really cool, large vase at the same flea market.  It sits on three feet, and has a gray matte finish with a textured white and gold finish over the gray.  I must have gone back and looked at this thing three times before I finally decided to buy it.  It looks much better in person than it does in this picture.  It was on sale also, so I got it for $4.50.

This flea market was a real gold mine.  I had a hard time restraining myself from cleaning them out of mid-century things.  I will definitely have to go back.  This mid century planter is marked "Stanford Sebring, O" on the bottom.  There is not a single flaw that I can find on this piece.  I think that the white glaze with the gold speckling would really go well with those pink and gold lamps that I found and shared recently.  This had been marked down as well, and I got it for $3.

I found a few Christmas items as well.  This West Germany glass tree topper is in very nice shape and was marked $1.

I also got three sets of vintage Christmas lights, one set, the top one, has the classic plastic flowers that surround the lights, the two bottom sets have plastic surrounds that look more like stars.  After Christmas clearance: 99 cents per set!

I also made it to the Salvation Army Thrift Store.  It has really changed since I was in college - there was no furniture in that store, only a total of maybe three shelves of household items, and the rest was clothes.  I don't know what happened, but it was a huge let down.  I was always stopping in there when I was in college because it was on the route between my house and school, so I was always stopping in after class.  This planter was hard to get a picture of, but it is yellow on the outside with a rope design, and has a gray inset on the front.  It was the only thing that was vintage in the store, and it was 99 cents as well.

Have a great New Year's Eve, have a fun evening, be safe, and I'll be back again tomorrow with another post!  Happy New Year!  Here's hoping that 2010 is better than 2009.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Roads to Romance: The Santa Cruz Trail

Here is a 1950 Chevrolet clip that was shown before the feature presentation at your local movie theater.  This Technicolor clip features the Santa Cruz Trail and the Land of the Giant Cactus. 

I would love one of those great torpedo-back Chevrolet sedans like you see in this ad!  I think it would look perfect sitting in the driveway of the shack!  I may have to find a vintage 1950s car to park in the garage when I get the house finished.

I'm loving the snow that is still on the ground here, but several people I know would prefer weather like you see in the video!

I'm headed out of town today to do some thrifting in the town I lived in while I was in college.  Strangely, I was only in one of the thrift shops there during the four years that I lived there.  How did that happen?

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Unusual Piece of Living Room Furniture

As you walk in the front door of the shack, here is the first thing that you see:

Do you see something that doesn't belong?  Something that you don't expect to see in a living room?  If you guessed the chest of drawers, you're right!  The chest of drawers in the living room seems to be something that my mother started, and now my sister and I both have one in our living rooms.  Mine is a little larger than my mother or sister have.

It's from a vintage 1930s or 1940s waterfall style bedroom set.  I picked it up at an estate auction when I was in college for $5, and it's been in my living room ever since.  I am particularly drawn to the three inlaid wood pieces on each drawer and the gold-tone metal handles.

So, by now you are probably wondering what in the world our family does with a chest of drawers in our living rooms?  Well, have a look for yourself:

It makes a great place to store videos and DVDs!

Just wanted to share an idea with you all!  Have a great Tuesday!


Pam has made it into the top 10!  Thanks for voting everyone!  Retro Renovation needs to be in the top 6 to make it to the finals.  Please take a moment to vote if you have not already done so!  We can make this happen!  Voting ends at 5:00 EST Tuesday, December 29.  (updated 12/28/09)

Pam's excellent mid-century blog, Retro Renovation, has been nominated for an Apartment Therapy "Homies" Award!  Voting goes through December 29.  Vote for Retro Renovation here!  You will have to register on the site, but it is well worth it!  Good luck Pam!

Monday, December 28, 2009

What Ever Happened to French Provincial?

I inherited this great 1950s French Provincial sofa from my great-aunt when she moved into an assisted living facility a couple of years ago.  It had been destined for the auction when I decided to swap out my late 1970s or early 1980s couch for it.  Around here, sofas don't sell well at auction.  This sofa originally had beige brocade upholstery, which my aunt had replaced in the late 1960s or very early 1970s.  I'm still not sure what to think of this fabric.  It's not on the top of my list of things I like, that's for sure.  On the other hand, it is in very good shape.  This sofa was always in the formal living room, so it never got any use.  What I would really like to do is reupholster it again in a dark red fabric to match my living room drapes.

I like the style of this sofa, as the French Provincial details are tasteful, not overbearing, just as you would expect from a piece of mid-century furniture.

Have a great Monday!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

A White Christmas

What a wonderful thing to wake up to on Christmas morning!  The first snowfall of the year, and it happened on Christmas Day!  I was so excited about us having snow that I woke up in the middle of the night, opened the bedroom curtains and shades, and just watched the snow fall; it was wonderful.  It's the first white Christmas that I can remember, although my parents tell me that we had one when I was very young.  I was as excited as a child for the snow!

It was a great day of good times with family.

Of course, we couldn't end the day without my little sister and I standing in front of the Christmas Tree for the annual picture.  We have pictures of the two of us together in front of the tree going back to the days when we were both tiny, and I'm sure that there will be many, many more to come in the future.

I hope that your Christmas was filled with laughter and joy!  Have a great weekend!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Glory to God in the Highest!

On this, the day of our Savior's birth, I wish you a very Merry Christmas.  May you and your family know true peace and happiness today.  If you are traveling in bad weather, I pray for travel mercies for you.

Where ever you may be, Rejoice!  For today is the day our Savior came into this world to save us all!

Luke 2: 1-14 NIV

The Birth of Jesus

    1In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3And everyone went to his own town to register.
    4So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

The Shepherds and the Angels

    8And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ[a] the Lord. 12This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
    13Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
    14"Glory to God in the highest,
      and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Silent Night, Holy Night

It's Christmas Eve, and the weather man is calling for snow today and tomorrow.  I can't remember the last time that we had a white Christmas.  I must have been very young, and I'm excited that we might actually get to have one this year!

Tonight we continue family tradition, heading to church for Christmas Eve Candlelight Communion at 6:00 which always ends with the congregation holding candles and singing Silent Night.  Then we're heading over to Grandma's house for dinner afterward.  We have done this all of my life.  Grandma's now 89 years old, and we provide the food instead of her, but we still meet at her house.

Hopefully all of you have finished your shopping so that you don't have to do any unnecessary rushing around today and you can enjoy the day and family.  Have a great one!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Cul-de-sac Shack Christmas

So, what does the shack look like when it's decorated for Christmas, you may ask?  Well, you probably weren't asking - but I'm going to share anyway!  And the strange thing is, in these pictures that I'm sharing today you will get to see more of the shack than I have shared in all of my other posts combined.  However, since all I got decorated this year was the living room, that's all you'll get to see.  Keep your eye open, almost everything that I have shared in individual posts is somewhere in the room!

In the above photo, you get a good look at most of the living room.  You can see my antique ornaments on the little tree on the Majestic radio, the glitter flocked wreath candle holder on the coffee table, the blow mold Santa, and on the table in the back corner of the room, something I haven't shared.  My little vintage aluminum Christmas tree.  More on it in a bit.


A trip to the little "junk" shop this past Saturday netted a few treasures.  They had all Christmas items 1/2 off, so of course I had to check it out!  I snatched this angel and bells as well as the white and red satin ornaments that I put in the milk glass compote that I had marked to go in the garage sale next spring.  I may need to keep it around now and just store it with the Christmas stuff.

Here is an etched glass container (which I was also going to put in the garage sale) with more of the satin ornaments.  What ever happened to satin ornaments?  They were always so annoying with the way that they would snag and unravel, but they looked so cool with the way that the light would shine on them.

I found my poor little aluminum tree at a garage sale when I was in the either the fifth or sixth grade.  I remember that I paid $5 for it.  It has seen better years, and there are places where the aluminum wrapping on the branches is broken.  I still enjoy putting it out though.  This year I stuck a vintage Santa puppet on it for a topper.

Here's yet another view of the majority of the decorations.  I went through my collection this year and used mostly my vintage decorations and left the newer ones in storage.

The big day is fast approaching, and I still have gifts to wrap.  Hopefully I'll get that done today!

Rejuvenation Introduces New Lights, and a Giveaway!

I got an email from Rejuvenation yesterday that they were introducing a new series of lights to their Mid-Century Modern line!

This attractive new line of hourglass shaped aluminum ceiling and sconce fixtures will debut in February, 2010.

According to Rejuvenation's website:

"Prepare to Go Back to the Future
In the vast "cosmos" of mid-century modern lighting designs, the elegant hourglass profile remains one of the most iconic.

Our Galaxy, Asterix, Vektr, and Spektr are based on the Stockholm series manufactured by EJS lighting in 1959, a reference to the Scandinavian origins of so many fine MCM designs. Small perforations in their aluminum cones produce a delightful starlight effect when lit.

Fresh and futuristic when first introduced, our handcrafted aluminum fixtures are an elegant update for pre-war, postwar, mid-century modern, and contemporary houses. More than just "retro," the Hourglass family truly stands apart. With authentic space-age materials and sleek, streamlined profiles, they feel a bit like the past tense in fast forward."

The lights will be available in brushed or bronzetone aluminum, white, or black enamel.

Want a chance to win one of these beauties?  Just follow this link and sign up!  They allow one entry per person, and all entries must be submitted by January 26, 2010.  Be sure to read their full contest rules!  I've got my entry in already!  Good luck!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Cheery Napkin Holder

Do you ever come across something that just makes you smile?  Something that really isn't worth anything at all, but makes you feel good, so you know that it needs to be a part of your home?  That's the way that I felt when I found this nice bright yellow napkin holder in a box of other kitchen stuff from an auction here a while back.  The color is great, and the green design is attractive as well.

I searched on Etsy for these, and found several that were the same plastic style, but they all had printed flowers on them instead of the circular design.  I found them in yellow, orange, green, and brown.  Finding them in those colors, I believe that they probably date to the 1970s.

I think this little guy is going to have a new home on my dining table!

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Lincoln Beautyware Canister Set

I got this great canister set by Lincoln Beautyware this fall at the same estate auction that I got the Sunbeam Mixmaster.  Like many of my purchases at this sale, I picked this set up for $2.  I really like the brown color, even though it doesn't match my kitchen at all (I'm going for a gray/turquoise theme when I redo it).

The shape of the canisters is cool, and I love the wood handles on the chrome lids.  There is a little pitting on the chrome, but I think that would clean up mostly with some chrome polish, I just need to get motivated to get it out and tackle the project.

Lincoln Beautyware

It looks like Lincoln Beautyware came in a lot of different color and design options!

Please note that I have no affiliation with any of the eBay sellers who have items in my widget above.  Please be sure to thoroughly check their feedback history before making any purchases, as I did not research the sellers.  I was purely interested in showcasing the different options available in Lincoln Beautyware.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

10 Years...

It has been ten years since I last saw your shuffled walk supported by your cane, that shiny bald head, that glint in your eyes.
Ten years since we last teamed up to work together, restoring your father-in-laws radio which I proudly display to this day.
It's been ten years since you left us that day, how time has gotten away.
Ten years since your bride said goodbye, with a tear in her eye, after 56 years by your side.
A Christmas that I will never forget, as you went home to be with your Father.
A Christmas that saw more tears of sorrow than tears of joy.

Yet we knew that your suffering was through.
Your weary journey through this life had come to an end, and you could be at peace.
No more would you save me from Grandma when I got in trouble.
No more would I work with you in the garage.
A chapter had ended; time to turn the page.
How many pages have turned in these 10 years?  I've lost count.

I'll never forget that cold December day, when you were laid in that grave.
And we would see you no more.
Although we wept tears of sorrow for ourselves, we should have been weeping tears of joy, as you were at home that day with our Lord.

In loving memory of my Granddad, John Everett Robertson Jr., who passed away on this day 10 years ago, December 20, 1999.

He taught me more than he would ever know; the value of working hard for what you want, appreciating what you have, showing me that family was more important than money.  He could fix anything in his house, because when you raised a family on a tight income, you learned to do it yourself; a life lesson that I have carried over into my own home.

May God bless you all this Sunday.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

This Christmas, I Want an Atom Pop!

I have really taken a liking to the Atom Pop Popcorn Popper.  This retro popper is still in production, in it's original form, after 47 years.  Originally created in 1952, the aluminum stove-top popper sounds like a great alternative to microwave popcorn.  "The Original No Shake, No Stir Corn Popper."  It's conical shape keeps the unpopped kernels at the bottom while the popped corn is pushed up and away from the heat source.  For many years it was produced in a small Kansas town about an hour from where I live.  Recently, production has moved to a location south west of Salina, KS.

According to the company website, the poppers are still being produced using some of the original manufacturing equipment.

The company markets them as a healthy alternative to microwave popcorn.

They are a small family-run company, with an interesting history.  I encourage you to find out more about them on their website: Atom Pop.

If you would like to purchase one, you can order directly from the factory as well, just visit the above website.

Have a wonderful Saturday!

A Little Change

Today I just wanted to let you know that I am going to switch from my 7 day a week posting schedule to a 6 day a week posting schedule.  I will have a new post every weekday, and one post on the weekend.  I am leaving the weekend open so that I can choose either Saturday or Sunday, depending on my schedule.  This will likely be in effect until the school year ends, as work activities have been hindering my ability to create posts daily.  Thank you for following Cul-de-sac Shack, and thanks for your understanding in this small change.  Of course, I will still feature great mid-century finds!

Friday, December 18, 2009

My Favorite Christmas Movie!

White Christmas!  A Technicolor classic in VistaVision!  This great uplifting movie from 1954 will always bring a tear to my eye.  It is the story of two ex-WWII GI's who return after the war to become singing and dancing entertainers.  The ex-GI's, played by Bing Crosby (who else?) and Danny Kaye, meet up with two sisters who happen to be the sisters of an old army pal.  The sisters, played by Rosemary Clooney and Vera Ellen, are on their way to Vermont to an inn where they are to perform for the holidays.  Crosby and Kaye follow the ladies to Vermont, where they find that the inn is run by their former General, who is played by Dean Jagger.  The story that unfolds is truly heartwarming and inspirational.

There is a lot of great music in this Irving Berlin classic, with the title song, "White Christmas," of course.  No one can sing "White Christmas" like Bing!

When Crosby and Kaye first meet the girls, the girls sing the song "Sisters" which I enjoy even more knowing that my grandma made my mom and her two sisters learn that song so that they could all sing together when they were growing up.

If the set looks familiar, it is.  It is the same set that was used in Holiday Inn, which I featured a couple of weeks ago.

Have a great Friday!  It's our last day of school until after the New Year, and yes, even teachers look forward to Christmas vacation!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Christmas Can Can

Sorry for the abundance of video posts lately.  Between late nights at work, taking family members Christmas shopping, and meetings at church, I have been unable to devote enough time in the evening to sit down and make what I feel is a really quality post.  This should change in the next week or so, as I will be on Christmas break.

So, for today, enjoy this animated video of Straight No Chaser performing the Christmas Can Can.

Stay tuned tomorrow, as it is finally time to reveal my favorite Christmas movie of all time!  I can't wait to share it with you!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Back to the Junk Shop

I noticed as I was coming back into town this afternoon that the little shop on the square where I keep getting such fun and cheap finds had some new stuff in the window.  The owner had gone to auction again yesterday, so she was still in the process of unpacking and pricing things.  There was a large box marked "Christmas Items 25 cents each."  This was just begging to be dug through.  Inside the only real treasure that I found was this happy little snowman with a "Made in Japan" sticker on the bottom.  He just seemed to be begging for a happy new life, so home he came and now sits next to the Christmas tree on the opposite side from the Nativity.

I also found this great round ceramic trivet.  It is marked "Wheeling" on the back.  I loved the red, yellow, and black color scheme.  It will be great to have in the kitchen and it was only 59 cents.  By the time that I paid for everything, including tax, I had spent 90 cents - exactly the amount of change in my pocket at the time.  It was meant to be! 

Someday my photography skills will improve to the point that the things will look as good on the blog as they do in real life.  I think this will most likely require a new camera though...

Yay!  It's Wednesday!  It's almost Christmas Break!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

1950 Chevrolet Technicolor Ad: Coral Gables

I spent last evening searching fruitlessly for information for a post idea that I had.  After a few hours of research, I gave up, and added the idea to my topic list to hopefully get more information on.

Now, after I had some time searching without success, I thought that it might be time to find a video of paradise.  That's when I found this great Roads to Romance: Coral Gables video produced by Chevrolet in 1950.  There is some amazing architecture from the campus of the University of Miami.  After the stress at work lately, I'm thinking a nice get away like this might be a good thing!

Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Zenith B723R

As I have said before, my collection of antique radios is growing faster than I can share them with you.  One of my latest additions to the collection is this Zenith B723R.  It features a bakelite plastic case with both AM and FM channels.  It has great style and the it is in really good shape.  There is a scrape on the top of it as you can see in the middle picture.  I am unsure as to the date this set was manufactured, but I'd put my bets on some time in the late 1950s.  I love the color of the plastic, it is almost a red mahogany color, which looks great with the gold dial and grill cloth.  Plus, being a Zenith, it's a good quality set.  Now to find a place to display it...

Have a great Monday!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Flash Mob!

To watch the video without listening to the Christmas music player at the same time, click on the red "Flash Mob!" heading above to go to the individual page for the post.
I love to watch videos of Flash Mobs on YouTube.  My favorite all time Flash Mob video is the T-Mobile Dance at Liverpool Street Station.  This video is so much fun, with such great music, it always helps to cheer me up if I'm feeling down.  I'm not feeling down tonight, but I wanted to share it with you all anyway!  Plus, I completely agree with T-Mobile "Life's For Sharing!"

This Year's Christmas Tree

Well, I finally got around to putting up a tree on Saturday.  I always put up a nice 6 foot tree and decorate it with my antique ornament collection.  I couldn't do that last year due to the addition of an incredibly lovable, young, careless yellow lab named Rosco (no, I did not forget the "e" at the end of Rosco) that came to live with me.  So, last year I purchased red and gold plastic shatterproof ornaments and decorated the tree with those.  Rosco ate at least 6 of those shatterproof ornaments.  This year I've gone to a small 3 foot tree that I got on clearance one time (sometimes I buy stuff on clearance just because it's a good deal, with no idea what I will ever do with it.  Does anyone else do that?).  I put it on top of the Majestic in front of the living room window, and got the antique ornaments out again.  It was difficult just using some of the ornaments, as I have enough to completely fill a 6 foot tree.  I guess only time will tell if this was a good idea.


It's always interesting each year when I get out the Christmas decorations.  I always find something new!  I completely forgot that I had found this vintage plastic nativity set, in it's original box, until I came across it while digging out my antique ornaments.  It's like an early Christmas present!  It's going to get to sit next to the Christmas tree, on top of my Majestic console radio.

It's another milestone day for the blog!  I now have 20 followers!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Copper Chambers Stove

Today seems to be the day for good Craigslist finds!  I love this 1953 copper Chambers Stove!

According to the ad:

"Dimensions: 37"w x 26"d x 36"h. The stove is the copper clad Model 61AC built circa 1953 with the deluxe high back splash. It is missing a handle on the left and from pictures online of refurbished stoves, there was a cover that came down over the left hand griddle that is also missing. The stove was in use and working when it was removed from operaton in 2005. Has been in storage since 2005 and needs to be restored for full beauty."

I would like to note that while the seller states that this stove has the "deluxe high back splash" I do not believe that to be so.  You can view the different models of Chambers stoves at this web site.

You can view the pricing and contact information by accessing the original CL ad here.

1950s Table and Chairs with Matching Buffet

I just found this great 1950s dining set on Craigslist.  Couldn't wait to share it with everyone.  I love the yellow laminate with the black chairs and accents.  I don't know that I've ever come across a set with a matching laminate buffet before.  Hope your Saturday is going well.

You can see the original listing here.