Saturday, July 25, 2009

Lost Art of Profanity

Back from the usual Saturday a.m. yard sales with a few finds but this is most certainly the Catch o' the Day. A first edition, not worth a huge amount of money, but a great title, and strong graphics.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Go Fish

Today's yard sale find o' the day or perhaps Catch o' the Day: fish. These little buggers probably from a Carnival Fish Pond Game. We bought other stuff but this was the most fun.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Curbside Shopping is the best

Love this ladder and the detailing on the hinge. And the price was right. We have about three or four of these kicking around and use them at shows with barn board between the rungs to create shelves. All found curbside or bought for pennies at yard sales.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Yet another

Or maybe this one.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


It's all very simple really. I want this car:

or this one. Maybe it's the color.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Campaign Bed

I've always had a weakness for campaign furniture: chairs, table, beds and so on that were portable; easily folded, enabling them to be moved from place to place during a military campaign. Or safari.

This cast iron, full double bed was shown today at the Flamboro Antique Show at its Milton location. It still hadn't sold when we left and was very reasonably priced at under $300.00. A few years ago it would have quickly sold for $1200.00

As much as I loved it, I don't have the room or the customers any more.

On the drive home we stopped at a yard sale and bought a straw covered jug. When I started to clean it out it seemed as though something was stuck in there. Shining a light in, I saw some rope and got the the little grabber tool to get it out.

Not a rope.

Other people find gold, diamonds, good stuff. I bought a bottle of snake wine. Sorry, I didn't take any pics, I just tossed it. I'm not particularly squeamish, we've dealt in taxidermy and medical oddities, but I still tossed it.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Hump back trunk

This trunk was one of the first things we ever bought. July fourth weekend 1969, we went to a neighbour's yard sale. Our neighbour was the Lovin' Spoonful's Zal Yanovsky. We also bought a bookcase and a Beatles poster. Zal and his wife Jackie Burroughs had split up and he was selling the house and leaving town. He ended up in Kingston Ontario, produced a television show and eventually opened a restaurant, Chez Piggy which became and remains a local legend. We kept the trunk and bookcase but foolishly sold the poster.

Hot town, summer in the city
Back of my neck getting burnt and gritty
Been down, isn't it a pity
Doesn't seem to be a shadow in the city

All around, people looking half dead
Walking on the sidewalk, hotter than a match head

But at night it's a different world
Go out and find a girl
Come-on come-on and dance all night
Despite the heat it'll be alright

Happy Fourth of July.

Thursday, July 2, 2009


You can have your Louis V or Goyard or Globetrotter or T. Anthony, but frankly it's a set of hornback croc that makes me want to leave the mancave for a little R&R.

But only if you're motoring or have a private railway car.

You don't want to be hauling these from one end of LAX to the other. And then having to explain to Customs why this case predates the CITES convention on endangered species and is perfectly acceptable and should be not seized.

Believe me it's a lot of paperwork to get it back.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Happy Canada Day

Just the best Canada pennant ever.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Consul the Educated Monkey

The graphics on this toy are just wonderful. And it's educational. Move the feet to the two numbers you wish to multiply and the answer shows up between the fingers. From about 1910 and with its original sleeve.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Lay Figure

Okay, here's the story. A few years ago we were at an antique show when we saw this this guy sitting in the booth of a doll dealer. The best lay figure (artists' model mannequin, whatever) that we'd ever seen. About two feet tall with a real face and glass eyes. And a bald head. Had to have him.

The dealer gave us this info for background: he came from a Montreal Doll Museum that had gone out of business. But wait, there's more. This private museum was the home of a collector who was a midget and who shared her house and life with a giant. Retired carny folk, the home was constructed to fit both their needs; scaled for her, scaled for him. There's even a NFB documentary about them.

Except that I can't find said film listed with the NFB. Google search shows nothing similar, I'm still trying.

A friend of ours, an ex curator at the Art Gallery of Ontario, swears he's modeled after one of the Tsars Peter. Personally, I don't see it.

Never mind, it's still a good story.

spotted at...

Spotted yesterday at the Sunday Antique Market:

After much debate the consensus seemed to be that these were dental students' aids. Wax jaws inset with teeth to allow the students to practice doing whatever it is that dental students practice doing. As pieces of sculpture I just loved the look of them but just couldn't talk myself into buying them. Since I was set up just across the aisle from them I did get to stare at them all day, and then just at the end of the day, they were sold. To a dealer. Who's also an accomplished artist. And he is going to display them as sculpture.

About twenty years ago at the Annex Market in Manhattan I bought something similar: Nineteenth century wax jaw inset with teeth and with a cutaway showing the nerves and veins rendered with fine wires. It was a French model set on a stand and all under a glass dome. I cradled this in my lap on the flight home. Sold it about eight years ago.

Friday, June 26, 2009

shelf shots

Just a few shelf shots. The purple polka dotted book on the left is James Harvey's In Bohemia in a wonderful suede binding.

Other than that the books speak for themselves.

The portrait below is just a guy who keeps me company in the mancave. It's dated 1924, I think, but I can't quite make out the artist's signature. All things in good time.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Pith Helmet

Probably the finest pith helmet we've ever had with an unusual quilted cover but sadly no labels or anything else to indicate where it was made. We found this in an antique mall in Lake Worth, Florida.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Here's lookin' at you kid

Just making up for not posting yesterday. We've had a number of prosthetic eyes in the past including a salesman's box of four dozen. All gone now. I do like things that come in their own little boxes.

Theatrical Make-up

No story, just one of a number of theatrical make-up and cold cream tins I seem to have amassed.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Mini Stetson Cowboy Hat

A very small Stetson felt hat and box. Many people are under the impression that these were salesmen's samples. Don't think so; more likely they were used as gift certificates. I've heard a couple of different versions, one being that a particular mini hat represented all the hats in that price range which the lucky recipient would then redeem for a hat of their choice in that range. More likely there was a paper certificate involved and that's what was redeemed allowing for the mini to be kept as a souvenir or plaything for the kids.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Top o' the bookcase

Living on top of this case are from left to right: a 19th century wire fencing mask from the Royal Military College at Kingston; a papier maché monkey mask found at a yard sale in Northumberland County; a wicker covered seltz-o-gene, so I can make my own seltzer if I ever have to; and a pair of diamond lozenge pattern polychrome Indian clubs.

If you look carefully you can also see a pair of embroidered plush velvet slippers on the the books. Too bad, they don't fit me.

Things found under the floor

While removing the old bathroom floor to put in a new one I found this. I'm guessing that it's a mouse skull. These was no body, no skeleton no other remains.

That was over thirty years ago. Since then it lives on my desk.
Next to the beaver skull. But that's another post.