My favourite vintage things: a peek inside the home
I LOVE vintage things. My parents used to drag my sister and I antiquing through the days of folk style reigning king, and all I remember is a dusty smell, dark barns and TONS of taxidermy. Not exactly my scene as an eight year-old.
Man, have things changed since then. Give me antiquing and picking any day! I think that even though it wasn’t my favourite thing to do as a kid, being so familiar with it created a nostalgia that makes me look back on it really fondly!
Now, before I go out to buy things, the first thing I do is go to the antique mall down the road from my place to see if something well-made from years ago will fit the bill.
Want to see some of my favourite finds? Some of these are handed down from grandparents, but most are picked up at the antique mall instead of opting for something new.
Reduce, reuse, recycle 🙂
I was short a table for this vintage radio that was my Nonno’s – and I found these beautiful slim nesting tables! Literally THE most useful. I use the medium one as a side table in the living room, and the smallest as a table for TV dinners.
Ok, this one was an impulse-buy. The finish on this stool was beautiful and it’s so tall it’s almost comedic. It’s a good thing I had this empty corner just begging for it!
Yes, I hopped on the typewriter trend. But at $40 and perfectly operational with a ribbon like new, I didn’t have to think too much about it. I used to type on my parents’ typewriter in high school, so there’s something sentimental about it. And, great for writing without internet distractions.
From my Nonna, the best statement item in the house. There’s just something about old radios that make you feel more appreciative of the handiwork that goes into making a piece like this. Even if it doesn’t have the wiring and guts, it’s so much fun to pop a bluetooth speaker in behind them and play old music. Instant throwback.
My parents bought this mirror that had been made from antique wood. It hung in our powder room for as long as I can remember, and when they re-did the bathroom I (of course) claimed it for my own powder room. And the cycle goes on!
This copper tea set is to this day one of my favourite vintage purchases. When I realized I had nothing for entertaining, I got excited to bring this home. Didn’t even need to be polished!
Cast iron frying pans can be so expensive, especially if you’ve just moved out and need to stock up. The antique mall had tons, for really decent prices. I’ll caution you though, make sure you really inspect any kitchen items before bringing them home. Rust and guck can easily get into these kinds of things, so don’t be afraid to be a stickler for quality and good care.
My second cast iron pan – this one bigger, for a full week’s worth of dinners. And only $30 like new!
A dish and cutlery set from my Nonna – at first I wasn’t too sure these dishes would work with my vibe, but BOY to do I LOVE them now. Super ’70s! And the hot plate? Handed down from the 85 year-old lady who lived in the house before me. Even the dish towel is a hand-me-down!
I have 3 of these lovely hand-painted, made in Italy plates. They’re chipped and have some cracks. They’re super old, and I can’t find any like them. Which makes me want to keep them forever. A Nonna hand-me-down.
This trio of items is SO used at home. A handheld cheese grater (no rust or guck!), shoe brush, and citrus squeezer. I didn’t know where to store the citrus dish, but when I had to take my rings off to wash dishes, I spontaneously popped them into it and it’s now become my countertop ring dish!
I had no glasses when I moved in. A bargain on vintage mason jars meant a new collection of glasses that added a touch of industrial feel. Although I will say, the rim makes it difficult to drink from if you aren’t familiar with it. Call it a new guest booby trap?
Now THESE are useful. My Nonna had a whole set of 1970s kitchen canisters, and even though I store them in my pantry and not out in the open, I couldn’t imagine life without them. No one wants to trek to the basement for more flour. And these are perfect items to thrift for! I see so many in great condition at vintage markets.
I live by the philosophy that you never need to buy a NEW casserole dish. Corningware and Pyrex are all over vintage marketplaces! And in such great condition. This one is my FAVOURITE. Of course, this one is a Nonna hand-me-down. Because you’re not Italian unless you can ‘shop’ for kitchen items at your Nonna’s house.
I can’t remember if this bag is my grandma’s old knitting bag, or if I bought it from her church’s secondhand sale. Either way, its woven body and wooden handles are oh-so-perfectly 1970s.
These $40 wovens are marvellous. Found them at the antique mall right before I was about to cave and buy a $200 pair. It was a good reminder that shopping ethically doesn’t always have to be spending a fortune.
I hope you enjoyed the look into the kinds of vintage items I keep (and regularly use) in my home!