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Vintage Display: May 8

We’d like to highlight this morning how some of our community members at Dusty Old Thing have displayed their vintage heirlooms and “finds” in ways that are just pleasing. We hope it gives you all some ideas on how to show off things that you may have “put away”.


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Sandra uses her old Hoosier Cabinet to display her many heirlooms. This is an idea for those of you who may come across a Hoosier with some of the doors off or interior components removed. It shows how they still can be beautiful and useful. It’s nice to see the combination of vintage linens, a print, the pressed flowers in the frame on the top shelf, the cow bells, and all kinds of odds-and-ends that you know have family meaning.

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Monica just calls this her “Great Wall”. It’s no nice beause it obviously gets natural light from the side and because the neutral background almost looks lacey…like the crochet pieces right below it. It’s nice to see just a variety in the paintings and prints that seem to be in their original frames or no frames at all for some of the oils. There are so many traditional scenes here and so many different types of vintage frames. The hanging plates give some relief to the straight lines but even they don’t have to be “lined up” with anything. It’s just enjoyable.

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Cheryl displays her antique Edison phonograph and cylinder records on a vintage rattan table covered with a classic vintage fringed table scarf. Her rug is in a pattern that looks vintage, too, and just pulls everything together.

Thomas Edison invented the phonograph in 1877. During the 1880’s, Alexander Graham Bell’s laboratory’s made improvements including the use of wax-coated cardboard cylinders holding the recorded sounds/music. Edison’s models, with the outside horns, were in peak production from around 1898 to 1913. Edison was, of course, very popular in American culture at the time and his inventions had a loyal following. His phonographs were rugged and reliable and millions were sold, especially in the small towns of the Midwest. However, other companies were innovating, including Victor and Columbia, and soon flat disks with a better sound quality became more popular than Edison’s cylinders.

We’re not sure, but we think we see a “crane” supporting the horn in Cheryl’s. The larger horns on Edison’s machines needed to be supported so various types of “cranes” could be ordered with them. Also, Cheryl’s horn looks to be one of the more popular petalled ones. It is just all very nice. We’d love to know the titles of the music on the cylinders!

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Joann displays her cobalt glass in a window. It looks dramatic! Antique and vintage glass is always amazing when it catches the light.

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Stacey just wrote that these are some “new finds”. But we like how the metal lunch pails look good even when hung from a shelf that is probably new. The enamelware pots are classics and the old canning jars help evoke a time gone by. You can almost imagine a family in the old days, with coffee hot off the stove and the father picking up his lunch bucket for a day at the factory or in the mines. Hard times, hard work. We appreciate those in our memories.

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Since Dusty Old Thing is crazy for vintage watering cans, we’d like to thank Heather for uploading this super photo of a row of galvantized steel cans on a quiet street corner at a garden festival in Belgium this weekend. It’s so nice to know that our fascination with them is shared on the other side of the “pond”, too!

Thank you all for sharing photos of your antique and vintage “dusty old things” with our antiques community!

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