Vintage Picking: The Modern Archaeology

_IGP3548There are all kinds of special days, ranging from birthdays to holidays, anniversaries, or maybe you’re just having a good hair day or your spouse woke you up with a special cup of coffee and freshly made scones with jam and cream. The last would be an especially special kind of day.

For our household though, these winter blues are making it harder and harder to feel any day as special. I have not flown since 2013. Scary to say that, but truth be told it was around Christmas when I last was able to pull the plane from the hangar and start that old beautiful engine. So, I’ve been flying only in my dreams for the past weeks. And therefore, I haven’t had that “special” day of late that involved aviating.

However, we have found other ways to make our days more interesting despite the weather. My wife’s collection of vintage expands to all corners of our house. Chairs, lamps, clothing, hats, jewelry, trinkets, boxes, suitcases, fabrics, pillows, lace, doilies, hankies, more clothing, lamps, canisters, jars, and the list can go on for three more pages. Point is, there are days where walking into our house is a luxury. It’s more like caving or tunneling rather than walking. Now having said that I may get smacked by my lovely wife when she reads this, but she should know just as you should know, that I adore the passion she has for vintage, collecting and now reselling. Giving new purpose to things that were made to last, sometimes beautiful in their simplicity and sometimes amazing in their intricate design.

Today was a special kind of day. We had no plans and the snow pelted down this morning making an already dreary landscaping forbidding to say the least. It looked like another day stuck in our house watching pointless TV or wasting time on the intra-web thingy. So we talked about going out to a museum. And then we got realistic. After fueling out bodies with butter and grits, bacon and pancakes, we ventured to find some new inspirations for our collections and new ways to dream for the future.

Dreaming of our next house, next home really, is a great way to fuel our inspiration. More space is always in the cards, and the property should have enough room for a private grass runway, but for this daily writing, the furnishings are the real focus. We both have strong desire to have many different rooms to express the various visions. Mine is very simple – Industrial Avaiation. A room full of signage, posters and ads from the 30’s through the 60’s showing the Golden Age of Aviation. I have two wooden propellers already, many old tin toys, models, and airplane memorabilia. Now, I just need an airplane wing desk from Restoration Hardware. But I am of sound mine and body – mostly. I am not about to shell out $2,000 for a desk that looks like an airplane wing, no matter how very cool it is. Try as my wife did today, she couldn’t convince me to make that kind of purchase.

It is also so very hard to buy anything retail any more. After months of searching flea markets, vintage shops, Goodwill Outlets, and the like, neither one of us has the patience for the retail nor want the mass produced and often cheaply made reproductions. I suppose we are not helping the great industrial complex as much as we used to, but I shall not apologize for wasting my money on such low quality wears any longer.

Honestly though, all these new expensive stores are founded in the idea of recycling and repurposing our past. And I do like the idea of that, even if I don’t want to spend the upscale money. At the end of the day, I can be quite clever and have been known to own a tool or two. Now, I just need some things to start getting creative.

First and most important, warmer weather! Two, would be some parts and bits to start the creativity. And Three, a really good set of hammers. Oh, and if anyone would like to donate their aircraft wings to me, I’d be happy to fashion them a nice vintage, only slightly dinged, desk for their new post-moderinism-vintage-eclectic office.

Point is, this winter has been dull, nasty, gray, cold and miserable when it comes to flying. But here at the home fire, we are dreaming big. We see a future with nice things that we have discovered and rebranded and fixed. We have two beautiful dogs that don’t seem to mind when we bring home smelly things from someone’s attic. Bernie the wonder mutt has claimed one of the chairs as his own. Abby uses another small chair as an escape perch from a bouncing and barking Bernie.

I love this vintage house, and I love the dreams of the future. Sun and fun and aviating will come, and with it, perhaps some trips where we can combine the passion of picking, modern archaeology, and flying. I’ve got the hammer, and I’ve got the willingness!


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