Monday, November 23, 2009

Old Stuff


No, this isn't old. But I "found" it at the thrift store a couple weeks ago for 49 cents. It's silver-plated and needed some polishing up. Any idea what it was supposed to be used for? It has a hole in the top, so a ribbon could be added and it could be an ornament, although it's fairly heavy. The bottom is wide open--it's not a salt or pepper shaker, but it's about that size. I might just "park" it on a shelf or windowsill for the holiday season.

As I was polishing up my little snowman, I started thinking about the difference between me and Hubby when we thrift store "hunt." I most often like to look for vintage "treasures" while he looks for stuff he can use that's cheap. Cheap is important to him--if something costs more than he thinks it should, back it goes even if he thinks it's just what he wants--he's sure he'll find it cheaper somewhere else. (Never mind that he'll spend twice as much on gas during the hunt and never find it.) But he never specifically looks for anything "old."

I think--and this is a generalization here, of course--that most men don't appreciate "old" and "vintage." Gran and I were talking about that at the American Country shop we went to last weekend--how our husbands wouldn't understand the whole grungy primitive look and the idea of paying so much money to have it. And I'll admit it--some of it doesn't appeal to me much either. Still, I like old and vintage things.

Here's a small example of the difference between my thinking and Hubby's when it comes to "old." A year or two ago, we needed to replace some of our backyard fencing. I asked Hubby to save a few boards for me. "But they're no good; they're rotten! You don't want any of THIS wood." "Yeah, I do," I replied. He didn't get it. He didn't understand that I planned to just cut off the "bad" parts and I'd be left with some nicely aged and weathered wood for all sorts of projects. Maybe it didn't make good fencing material anymore, but it was perfect for other things. And no matter how I tried to explain, he just shook his head and muttered.

About a year ago, a friend gave us a 6 foot length of old black-painted wrought iron fencing that she'd been using as a headboard but no longer wanted. It was a little rusty, but that was to be expected since it was supposed to be quite old and brought to the US from England, I believe. Well, I kind of have my doubts about the origin of the piece, because there's really nothing particularly special or ornate about it that would justify the cost of shipping it this far, but who knows? That's not really the point. The piece has a little age on it, and that's fine with me. Rusty? That's okay too. It adds to the character. We've had it in our back yard since we got it but my plan is to use it in our front yard landscape re-do, which Soccer Son has been working on the past couple months.

Of course, Hubby thinks we need to strip the paint off it and paint it white. "Oh, no," I said, "It's fine as it is, and it needs to be black."

Yesterday Soccer Son was here, doing a little more work in the front yard, and wanted to talk to me about what I had in mind and what he planned to work on next. The fence was mentioned. He confirmed that his dad wanted to sand it and paint it white but he thought white wasn't a good idea; he DID, though, think it needed to be sanded and repainted black. While I don't think so, I'll take another look at it. But really? I think it's just that neither one of them understands the appeal of old, rusty, vintage "stuff."

Me, on the other hand? Well, I spent a little time today mixing some chemicals together with silver bells and setting them out to rust. I imagine Hubby's probably shaking his head and muttering again.

7 comments:

sewpam63 said...

Too funny! It MUST be an estrogen thing?! Several years ago I was painting a porch rocker (to be used INdoors, mind you!) and after applying the second coat of aqua paint, I began to rub it off in spots. I wanted to 'distress' it. The next door neighbor man says, "Didn't you just paint that? What are you doing?!" He was pretty upset with me... ; )

Julie in the Barn said...

My Hubby kinda likes the old grungy look so usually doesn't object when I decorate with odd bits of flotsum. But he's forever re-decorating by moving objects to line them up all perfectly after I have grouped them all in that asymetrical way.

Missy Ann said...

I think Mr. Snowman used to be one of those photo holders. Wires with loops at the top to hold pictures...

call me crazy said...

You described my family perfectly today! :) LOL Glad to hear my hubby isn't the only one who doesn't get it. ;)

Micki said...

I think that can be a man thing....You had me laughing!
Micki

Dortha said...

Kim, I have a snowman just like him who has to be polished and he is a bell. I think yours might be missing his clanger.

Gran said...

If you still want some old fence boards, we have a pile in the back yard.
Too funny about to paint or not to paint...