Home and Garden · Knits etc

The Background Behind the Backdrop

The calendar says it’s spring.  And it must be, because its been raining non-stop for days now.  Nearly 2 inches of rain on Thursday and nearly an inch again today.  And there is rain forecast in the next 5 out of 7 days to come.  The arrival of spring also means that Yard Sale season is just around the corner!  One of K’s and my favorite things to do on a Saturday morning is grab a cup of coffee, maybe stop off at our favorite restaurant for a bite of breakfast and then start the hunt for treasures.

My shawl is coming along, but its the same thing over and over.  It’s getting bigger, but one picture looks much like the ones before as far as showing progress.   So I thought I’d tell you a little story about the background I use for most of my pictures.  2 summers ago I was heading home from work on a Friday afternoon and happened past a yard sale so I swung around and decided to stop.    I don’t always have something in mind that I’m looking for but this particular time I had been on the lookout for a coffee table.  But not a coffee table that started out life as a coffee table.  I wasn’t sure exactly what I would end up with but as soon as I pulled up  I spotted an old wooden chest off to the side.  Nothing much to look at.  Weathered and worn green paint around the sides and bare wood slats across the top.  Some of the hardware was missing and it looked as if it had been neglected for years.  But it was the perfect size and color and I could immediately picture it in front of the couch in the living room.  So I was happily surprised when the gentleman only wanted $5 dollars for it!  He opened it up to show me what was inside- some old clothes and a couple of dolls and a few miscellaneous items.  I told him I didn’t know anything about dolls or the rest and only wanted the chest and asked that he please take the items out while I looked around at the rest of the things.  Once I was done I paid for the chest and he loaded it into the back of my car for me.

Imagine my surprise when I took it out of my car and it was much heavier than expected.  He had left everything inside!  I can’t believe he didn’t know if was still there, but that he had chosen not to unload it. He had seemed quite overwhelmed trying to get rid of everything they had and I got the sense he’d rather I took it so it was one less thing he had to try to sell or cart off to a thrift store later.

So, of course, I took stock of the contents.  While it wasn’t lined with cedar it was obvious that it had been someones hope or keepsake chest. Among the textiles were a couple of baby outfits, some handkerchiefs, and what looked to me like a wedding dress from the early 1900’s, along with a few dolls and some Masonic items as well (my dad and grandpa had been Masons and I had been a Job’s Daughter so it was easily recognizable)

Other than cleaning the clothes, very very carefully, which were in very bad shape with some mildew and rust stains I really haven’t done anything with it.  I love the way the chest looks as it is so have only wiped it down. And since the slatted lid is gaped and a bit warped I did place a separate piece of solid wood on top, stained green and ‘aged’ a bit to compliment the rest so that it has a flat smooth top and to protect the contents of the chest.  It now has a permanent place as a coffee table in our living room and I love knowing what treasures it holds.   And when I need a backdrop for my knitting I take the top off and prop it along the edge so that it becomes the wall and the slats are the base.

I never got around to taking pictures of the dolls and other items.  I’m sure I will at some point.  Do you ever go to Yard Sales or Estate Sales?  What is your favorite find?

 

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2 thoughts on “The Background Behind the Backdrop

  1. I love to yard sale or shop thrift stores. Your chest is fantastic! It’s what I was looking for a few years ago:) My best find was either some dishes I found that I love or a skein of yarn that I really liked:)

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