Saturday, 30 November 2013

darn it!

Wow, a darning mushroom from the Hunter Gatherer op shop in the Royal Arcade in the city. It's beautifully made, so smooth and gorgeous tones. It was $40 which is a bit pricey. I'm not sure how much they cost new but I'm very happy to have that money go to the Brotherhood of St Laurence.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

430 Reels of Cotton

The fantastic thing about working in an op shop is the randomness of things people donate. There's always a surprise. Yesterday, we were given over 400 reels of beautiful vintage cotton thread. Behind every donation is a story, and this fellow used to own an interior design shop. Now his shed is full of boxes of thread and who can guess what other lovely stuff! 

It's not always obvious what to do with unusual donations, but we hate to say no. In this case, we need to find some crafty folk or we'll have cotton reels popping out of our seams for years! Now if you happen to be that crafty person, I know where you can find some great cotton and it's going cheap...

Monday, 25 November 2013

t-shirt emergency

I was shopping in Glenferrie Road, Malvern last week with my three-year old when there was a t-shirt emergency. Yes, the one he was wearing had so much food, snot and saliva on it that we needed a new t-shirt, pronto! So we popped into Vinnie's and had great success.

Usually I am fastidious about washing things from the op shop before wearing but really, anything was cleaner than what he had on. Shown above (after washing), $1.99.

Monday, 18 November 2013

embroidery and lace

 Over the past months I have picked up some beautiful hand embroidered pieces.

Whenever I look at these I wonder who worked these and why they look so new.

 I have included some close up pics of the detail so you can see how lovely they are.

 The three piece set with roses is lovely and I remember working roses like these ones (only not as well).

 The blue flowers are so finely worked.

 The piece of lace is especially lovely and I think it is hand made.


 This last photo shows a little of a piece of fabric I am creating from some old pieces of lace and a doiley which were stained and worn. 

tasmanian blackwood

I went shopping at Sacred Heart Mission in Bentleigh yesterday and thought that I had seen what there was to see. I did go back today because there was something that I had forgotten (and phew, it was still there). I grabbed that and about half a dozen other things that were suddenly indispensable. Like this Tasmanian blackwood bowl:

which I didn't feel like paying $10 for yesterday. But today I did and it's just lovely.

that $10 wasn't (necessarily) the op shop price, that was on a sticker on the side.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Welcome to a new oppy blogger!

Hi 'Plates' - that was a great post for a first timer here :-)   I know that area in Macleod but haven't been there for a few years.  Looks like I should re-visit one day!  If you live in the area, I'm not far away, so perhaps we could meet up for a coffee and opshop trawl?

Dian, you're right, I usually do bring a few bits and pieces home each Friday, but I also take things in most weeks.  For instance, the crocheted rug will be replacing the rug in my car, as I said.  Next Friday I'll be taking a box of clean jars, as our stock is rapidly going down.  We sell them for10c and they go like the proverbial hot cakes in the month leading up to Xmas, because so many people like making jams and preserves for gifts.   So I save all our jars up during the year, and take them in as we run out.
I always donate books and magazines back to the shop once I've read them, unless I'm keeping them for future reference. 

And a bit of advertising here for our shop:  I happened to see a sign in the back room and asked the manager about it.  EVERYTHING IN THE SHOP FOR HALF PRICE THE WEEK BEFORE CHRISTMAS.   And no we do not load the prices to make more money!  We just want to get rid of as much stock as possible because in the new year we get so much donated, as people throw things out to be replaced by new stuff they've been given, or bought.  And of course there are all those 'unwanted' Christmas presents....

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Op Shopping in Macleod

Hi, I have been reading this blog for a while but this is my first post.
Last weekend I had a chance to drop into Macleod after dropping my husband off at Cricket.
I arrived after 12pm so I was too late to look in St Andrew's Anglican Church op shop.

However, the Diamond Valley Community Support op shop was open.
I found a couple of handbags for $3. They are small but a handy size for work.
A top for my young niece for $1. A nice scarf for $3.
A bag hook ( useful for hanging up bags) $2.50 and a pair of earrings for $2.
I have found this op shop to be quite good for jewellery.

Next, I went to the Strathalan op shop in Erskine Rd. It's a bit tricky to find if you haven't been there before. You have to drive into the retirement village, through the portico to the car park. The op shop is just near the car park.
I usually find some clothes here. This time I found a tunic top/dress for $5, a Liz Jordan suedette blouse for $5 ( I'll be using this as a light jacket for summer) and a cute little silk vest for my niece for $4. I also found another larger bag for $5 and a very nice enamel brooch for $3( It has the maker's name M. Kidd Aust. on the back).
I enjoyed my little op shopping fix in Macleod. Unfortunately, I didn't have time to go to the nice café on the corner of Aberdeen St. Maybe next time.

BSL Eltham, Friday 15.11

Thanks for that link, Robyn - what a fascinating look into the past.
There have been a few people visit the opshop where I work, who ask if I write the opshop blog.  As there are a few such blogs, I like to clarify which blog they are referring to, and once we've established that I post on this one, I immediately explain that it is not MY blog.   One such lady came up to me today and said how much she enjoyed reading the blog.  She asked what I'd bought today, that I'd be writing about on the blog, and I said 'Nothing tday", to which one of my co-workers responded "Not yet". 
Well, Ms Blog Reader, I did buy something later on.  Three things actually.
A stunning crocheted rug for $12.   I have always had a crocheted rug in shades of blue on the back seat of my car (which is blue), and the current one has been there all of ten plus years.  So while it isn't faded or damaged, it just doesn't look fresh any more, whereas this one looks (and is) brand new.

The manager was sorting some donations and found this beautiful little wall hanging.  Did I want it for $5? Guess's here, isnt it.

A pair of crazy hand painted ear rings.  I'll take the pins off and use them to embellish some of my crafts.

Friday, 15 November 2013

An interesting webpage

After Amelia posted her interesting cupboard stamp that she found I went in search of an answer.  Here is an interesting webpage I encountered.  It's on a site for a hotel but talks about the sorts of vintage things we tend to come across from time to time in our op shopping.  So I thought I'd share it with you.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Books and other things

 Today I popped out to Vinnies, Tyabb Road, Mornington for a bit of shopping.

Two books for the man of the house were first on my list.
$1.00 each.

 A very pretty little bowl - Alfred Meakin - $2.00.
 And then for something really useful.  A tile cutter - ready for when I do the tiling in the laundry.  I am not sure if the price was good or not.  I always prefer to buy secondhand when I can.  $10.00

I am having trouble with the pics on this post but I will keep going any way.  This particular store has lots of fabric in short lengths or sample pieces for $2.00 a piece or bundle.
There is enough of the red and gold to make 6 place mats.  

This gorgeous fine doiley was $4.00 and so very pretty.

And finally this very smart heavy cotton will make striking  cushions.. (enough fabric for 4 I think)

This is such a friendly place to shop with lots of variety and excellent pricing, friendly staff and lovely music playing.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

urban archaeology

That's how I often think of op shopping, as urban archaeology. I often go not just to shop but to explore the past, the past as recent as yesterday and as long as decades ago. Today, peering inside this unassuming wardrobe:

I uncovered this fascinating piece of social history:

When was this built? What constituted European labour in West Brunswick at that time? And what other (immigrant) labour are they defining themselves against?


Sometimes op shopping is a matter of social responsibility. Really, how could I leave these behind??

$19.99 at Salvo's in Cheltenham and echtleder, that is, real leather. I'm not sure of the vintage - they could be brand new. That is, they are brand new with the price tag still attached (41,50 but no indication of currency) but I have no idea when they were manufactured. My son is almost 4 and I'm sure they will make a great dress-up for fairytale play.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

shining light on Christmas gift giving

This morning I had to pick up the chair I bought from Vinnies last week.

Of course this meant another chance to shop.
I did pick up a few things from Vinnies but I will show them another day.  My Salvos purchases were very exciting indeed.

I found this amazing lamp at the Salvos and although it was $19.95 I simply had to have it. 

I have been looking for a lamp for the corner of the lounge for some months and at last I found it:  $14.95
It looks perfectly at home already

Still on the theme of lighting - this little desk lamp is perfect for the sewing table.  $2.95.

This fabric is in several pieces but is great for textile art works.   Still at the Salvos this was just $2.99.

Two handy storage boxes, $5.95 and $6.95.

This is a nice little trinket box which will make a great Christmas gift.

And finally some very interesting coasters (another gift).

Sunday, 10 November 2013

I bought this lovely chair for my middle daughter who loves old chairs. 

It is really unusual with an interesting timber frame.

I was just wandering around Vinnies in Tyabb Rd in Mornington when this caught my eye.  On the spur of the moment I bought it so I do hope my daughter loves it.

It is pale yellow and is really comfortable.