Thrift Store Finds

thrift store finds toronto loulou downtown winter twenty seventeen

I've gotten behind in showing you my thrift store finds, but be assured, the Value Village near Bloor and Lansdowne remains a favourite shopping destination! Here are some of the goodies I've found this winter.

As usual, my most loved sections of the store are the housewares and linens.

vintage pressed glass from thrift store

↑ The oblong pressed glass "basket" might look familiar, because I found one just like it in an amber colour (included in this post) written back in May. I've since discovered that the maker of these is the American company, founded in 1896, called the Indiana Glass Company. This pattern is called "Pretzel" and it is actually a celery dish. So, it seems, people used to serve stalks of celery on their table in a dish designed especially for that purpose! I, on the other hand, have been using it to corral cutlery on a buffet table.

vintage pressed glass from thift store green indiana glass oblong basket

While the plant pot appears to be made by the same company, I can't say for sure that it was. Regardless, it's a cheerful looking little scalloped number that is right at home at our place.

vintage pressed glass set of small dishes ashtrays card suits

↑ This next item, a set of cut glass is a foursome of small ashtrays, was made in what was then Czechoslovakia, in the 50s/60s.

I found them in that area of the store where they have plastic bags filled with miscellaneous items, like grab-bags. You can't open to examine the goods in detail, and you must take the whole bag or nothing. Anyway, I immediately recognized what these were, as I have a similar set in fish shapes, that I got from ebay a few years ago. We don't smoke cigarettes, so use these small dishes as jewellery catchers or spoon rests.

vintage mid century pressed glass set of small dishes ashtrays card suits

Sets of tiny ashtrays like these were common in the mid-century, the idea being that each guest would have their own private ashtray, that they could hold nearby at a party, or have at their side around a game table. These card suit ones were especially useful at a ladies' bridge game.

There is a set like this one on ebay right now, that's going for $77, including postage. Of course, the monetary value of vintage items is based on what someone is willing to pay for them, so I'm not saying these are worth that much, however, I'd say the $3.99 I paid made these a good find!

thrifted vintage serving pieces

↑ Also found in the "grab-bag" section of the store were these serving utensils.

vintage serving pieces found at thrift store

↑ I especially love these stainless steel and wood pieces, decorated with the atomic star motif that is characteristic to the 50s design. They are "Marcrest Ebony Elegance Starburst" pieces and are nice and heavy and feel so good in the hand.

vintage mid century serving pieces found at thrift store

silver plated salad server tongs from thrift store

↑ These silver-plated tongs are not so much my style, but they came in the same bag as the items above. I'll keep them because they'll make a very handy serving tool for salad at a buffet table.

thrift store finds stainless steel small spoons oneidacraft infant chateau

↑ These small spoons were found in a second grab bag, along with some other spoons that were nothing special. The "target" in that lot was the spoon in the front, made in the 50s/60s by Oneidacraft. It's a spoon specifically designed for a child - called an "infant spoon" - and originally would have come with a matching fork. The pattern is called "Chateau".

We use these types of small spoons often, serving sauces and such.

west bend penguin ice bucket hot cold server found at thrift store

↑ I spotted this next item on a bottom shelf amoungst some ratty looking cooking pots and pans, but knew what it was immediately, and may have run a step or two to get to it. It's the "West Bend Hot Cold Penguin Server", introduced by the American company in 1950s. While this chrome with a stainless-steel interior item makes an excellent ice-bucket (what we'll be using it for) it can also be used to serve hot foods, keeping them warm for hours, within its insulated walls. I've been looking at these on ebay but have resisted due mostly to the hefty shipping costs of a relatively large item, so was quite thrilled to find it, in perfect condition, just sitting there at the thrift shop. It was $5.99.

thrift store find west bend penguin hot and cold server ice bucket

west bend penguin ice bucket hot cold serve

west bend penguin ice bucket hot cold serve inside

I mentioned in this post, almost a year ago, that I'd found a nice teapot to replace our chipped one, but that the new one seemed to good to use everyday. I said then that I'd be putting that one aside to use for company and keep looking for our less-precious everyday pot. Well, it's been a year, and damn if the only desirable teapots I've found at the thrift store haven't been high quality, valuable ones, that seem too precious for my purpose! The truth with teapots seems to be that people either use them everyday, and so they get chipped and broken and thrown away, or they're the "good china" and therefore see little use, ultimately ending up at the thrift store in perfect condition.

thrifted bone china tea pot noritake heritage pattern

So, this time, I'm going to ignore the fact that this Bone China pot sells online for over $125 plus tax and shipping cost and just go ahead and use it .... carefully ... every day!

The make is "Noritake" and the pattern is "Heritage".

spout protector

↑ It had seen so little use that it still had its spout protector thing on. ↑

Not shown here are a few more pieces I found for my collection of vintage Corelle -- I got two dinner plates in the "Old Time Blue" pattern (completing my goal for 10) and one in the Spring Blosson, aka Crazy Daisy pattern. I also got a small berry bowl in Spring Blossom. (I've shown these collections coming together in many previous thrifting posts, so didn't want to repeat myself again ... if you'd like to see the patterns, some of the "Old Time Blue" ones are in this post, and the Spring blossom ones are here. Or, if you'd like to see our table set with the Spring Blossom dishes, there's an example in this post

Now, moving away from kitchen wares, I picked up a couple of pieces from the linens section - The first, not shown here, but you can see it on the dining table in this post of our Christmas/Birthday dinner with friends, was a brand new, never washed, huge cotton tablecloth, in a lovely turquoise colour, made by Cynthia Rowley. If you do look at those pictures, you might also spot the Penguin ice-bucket in use.

thrifted handmade pillow case bought for the cotton fabric

↑ The other is this handmade pillow case, made from high quality, adorably printed, quilting cotton. I actually got it for the fabric, which appears to have been washed no more than a couple of times at most, and will probably be taking it apart to make something else. Or not -- I'm not sure yet. I know a certain feline who might like it to cover his mattress, which is actually just a regular bed pillow, popped into a clean litter-tray, somewhat like the set up seen in this post.

thrifted pillowcase handmade bought for cotton fabric

thrifted cotton fabric kittens

Finally, there is this silk scarf, that's in great condition and large enough to wrap around my neck and tie in the front.

thrifted black and white silk scarf

thrifted black and white silk scarf ida brand thrift store find

And that's it. Here's to making good use of other people's cast-offs!

thrift store finds toronto

Thanks for reading,
xo loulou

You May Also Like

Recent Stories

Creative ReUse : Handmade Springtime Easter Baskets At the Gallery : The AGO's Exciting New Artwork by Yayoi Kusama Crochet for Cuties : Handmade Headwear for Babies Live Music : Emilie Kahn at The Drake Underground An X-cellent Evening at Hotel-X A Handmade Gift for a Dear Young Person At the Gallery : AGO's "Impressionism in the Age of Industry" Live Music : LP and Lauren Ruth Ward at The Danforth Music Hall Handmade Valentine Decorations : Needlepoint Hearts Snow Day in Toronto: the Day After a Big Storm Lunch at the Home of Friends Niall and Leslie Crocheting : Figuring Out a Very Particular BUT Quite Magical Yarn

8 Responses to Thrift Store Finds

  1. Vix says:

    I always love to see your thrift shop finds, you photograph them so beautifully.
    The penguin hot/cold pot is gorgeous, I love it. The cat pillow case is lovely, too.
    Funnily enough I once owned that set of cocktail ashtrays! xxx

  2. Gaia says:

    Lovely finds ! specially the set of ashtrays

  3. wow you have such an eye- you have impecable taste love all of your finds!

  4. Julie says:

    oh wow, you had quite the amazing haul! Good for you for seeing the treasures tucked in those grab bags. I’m in awe of that clever little penguin hot/cold server, it’s so charming!

    • Kelley Small says:

      Hi Julie, you can find them on eBay certainly but if you find one at Goodwill or Value Village then there is no shipping cost and it’s infinitely cheaper!

Leave a Comment