One morning a few months ago I set out on my treasure hunting route feeling extraordinarily optimistic. You know when you know there is a good treasure waiting for you and you just have to uncover it. Yes, that feeling!
The morning was off to a slow start though. I hit several garage sales not turning up much more than then 1970’s ceramics. But I knew the show stopping piece was out there. The next stop was sort of barn sale at the end of a grassy lane. I felt this one had promise until I got inside the dusty building and found nothing more than tools. No cute wooden toolboxes but nails, wrenches and the like. Not my thing.
I did another lap around the building feeling dissatisfied but not quite ready to leave. It is like a game of hot/cold and I was getting warm. I knew it had to be there. That’s when I spotted a wine-press off to the side. An antique, oak wine-press! It was dusty, dirty and smelled acidic but I knew this was the treasure waiting for me and it certainly had potential. It was screaming table to me.
Then that thing happened when someone expresses interest in a one-of-a-kind piece. Suddenly everyone is interested and a near bidding war ensues. As a buyer, this is extremely irritating but as a seller it is wonderful. Being the buyer in this scenario, I found the other shopper to be in poor form as he elbowed in on my negotiation insinuating that he was going to use the press as intended to make wine. Of course, it was evident that I wasn’t and merely loved the rustic patina. I’ve always been a form over function girl. I quickly handed the seller my cash and rolled it down the lane before anyone could change their mind.
After a thorough cleaning and the perfect 48 inch glass topper, we have ourselves a beautiful table. A swanky, rustic table fit for sipping cocktails and noshing at while admiring the craftsmanship of the press. I have to admit that this one was almost a keeper. We really love how it fit in our little dining nook. But I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again, “We can’t keep them all.”
This one of a kind beauty is up for sale at The West End Garage.
Last week I shared some updates regarding vintage in the kitchen. We didn’t stop at the furniture and accessories but took it to the lighting too.
The funnel-like object over the dining table started the recycled lighting movement in the kitchen. This piece has been lighting our meals for over a year now. I still love its quirk and charm. And we still have no idea as to what it could have possibly been in a former life. We assume it belonged on a farm but have no idea. The mystery continues. I love to hear guesses.
Ryan installed a new light where one didn’t exist. This is essentially a foyer area where the door opens into the room. We needed lighting to define the space. We found this galvanized piece at an antique store and both instantly thought “light”. I know, it’s as if a light went off! Anyway, it appears to be the top of a cupola and that’s exactly how it was found. Ryan wired it to serve as a pendant in this space.
Across the room, we replaced the light above the sink. I love this beautiful rusty structure. This is a wind turbine/air vent that more than likely came from a barn or commercial building. It is large and in charge. Light peeks out of all of the openings casting pretty shadows on the ceiling at night.
Just for fun, the before pictures…
There are still a number of updates and DIY projects to go in this room like making use of the pesky space above the cabinets and replacing the hood. In the meantime, we’re enjoying the vintage aspects so much more than the dated builder grade choices. It is fun to push the envelope. Why not?
More out of the ordinary kitchen projects:
The kitchen is the heart of the home. That is certainly the case in our home. We’ve never done a gut renovation to the space. Instead we’ve tackled one DIY project at a time to make it feel more like “us”. Regardless of all of the other projects we’re working on, we always seem to come back to the kitchen. This winter Ryan redid the floors and closet doors.
When putting the room back together between every project, I find that more and more vintage accessories creep into the room which makes me very happy. Occasionally we find something so unique or that it is deemed a keeper. I’ve been hoarding some of these keepers for years just waiting for the right space. Before I give you a tour of the vintage treasures in action, let’s check out a kitchen before and after from the same angle…for fun.
I’ve had this milk crate for as long as I can remember. It has been totally utilitarian. It has served as a centerpiece filled with vases. Now, turned on its side and mounted to the wall, it is a spice rack. The openings are the perfect size for pint ball jars and smaller.
Vintage quart ball jars work well as canisters on a rack in the pantry.
This scale is just divine in its vintage green paint glory. I didn’t even have to think out of the box for its use. Once again, it is a produce scale housing potatoes. I love that the face says Philadelphia.
The old potting bench is made from reclaimed wood and topped in zinc. It is the perfect microwave cart with a drawer for linens and a shelf to corral cookbooks and cutting boards. It frees up storage space elsewhere. Plus, it’s so charming!
The metal copy easel was a gift a few years back. I find it to be totally practical as a cookbook stand. It even has an arm that serves as a placeholder.
We’ve also added some fantastic recycled lighting. I’ll be sharing that soon.
How do you incorporate vintage into your kitchen?