Thrift store shopping, in and of itself, is a delight, a joy and sometimes even a celebration when coming across unexpected treasures. But when you find a ‘twin’ to something you’ve already purchased, or even a ‘cousin’, it just takes the whole experience one step further. The inspiration for this post came from finding thrift store items that are clearly either a twin or a cousin to other items I found previously, in a different store, and or even a different city.
I have 3 instances of this of phenomena, which in and of itself is kind of amazing.
Let’s start off with a pair of ‘tea for one’ teapots. They are in two parts; the top part is a little mini, single serving teapot, and the bottom part is the cup! They’re teapots! What’s not to love?
I found this one in my favorite thrift shop in San Diego, the American Cancer Society Discovery Store in Point Loma (it’s a great store for any of you in Southern CA). What I truly love about this little piece is the colors; they read ‘fall’ to me in rich shades of comfort and tranquility. The background maroon color, the sage green around the edges and the handle, the fruit in purples, and the pretty mustard colored ribbon all feel soothing and calming. Plus, the raspberry button on the lid is just all kinds of cute.
But even more interesting is the artwork in the bottom of the cup itself.
The watermark on the bottom is “Tracy”, “The Octavia Hill Collection”. I researched it to see if I could find more pieces in this beautiful color combination. There are lots of pieces available on eBay, but honestly, this ‘tea for one’ teapot is the prettiest piece in the collection.
I’ve had this teapot for 5 or 6 years, thinking it was an anomaly. But no.
I have luckily and happily been able to find and make friends in this new city we live in. And even more serendipitous is finding friends who share my obsession, I mean, passion for thrift store shopping. I was out one day with one of these said friends, exploring a huge antique mall. I was happily meandering through this antique mall, until I came to a hard stop in front of this.
It’s twin. I simply stood and stared for a few seconds. What were the odds ? They are twins, right down to the little raspberry button on the top of the lid! As much as I love the teal, the actual pattern doesn’t really move me. Nonetheless, it came home with me, to be displayed with its twin in the maroon color. The watermark is also ‘Tracy’, but it reads “The Blossom Collection”.
I have them displayed in a book case in my office.
They flank another teapot found in a different thrift shop, which also has its own set of ‘twins’.
When I found this teapot, I was enchanted by the leaf design that encircles it, the pretty green color and the classic shape. The watermark reads “Made in Portugal”. It was a little expensive (okay, maybe more than just a little…), and I wanted to think about it before purchasing it. In order to make sure no one else bought it in the meantime, I tucked it behind another pitcher on the shelf it was sitting on. It wasn’t necessarily hidden, but neither was it front and center! However, I did make good on it and bought it a few days later.
Not very long after that, in a different thrift shop, I spotted this creamer and sugar set. Due to the pattern on them, I realized that they were not twins to the pretty green leaf teapot. But I thought the colors might be a good match. Again, I left them there to think about it. (And no, I didn’t ‘hide them in plain sight’. I can’t believe you even asked!). I went back (on Senior Discount Day!) and bought them.
The greens are a little off, but not by too much, which is what qualifies them as ‘cousins’! And I love how they look together in a grouping. Unfortunately, I have not yet put them out as a little three-some; one day an idea will come to me and I will find a spot to display their happy charm!
And here is my 3rd set of twins and cousins. These two…these are most definitely twins.
My friend Brenda ‘dragged’ me (ha!) to a thrift shop in a part of town I am not familiar with (she has lived in Fort Wayne her entire life). We were wandering the shelves of ‘smalls’; bowls, plates, cups, figurines, napkin holders, trays, etc. She picked this plate up to inspect it and said: “This is so pretty and I really like it, but it wouldn’t look right in my house.” Then she turned to me and said: “But it would look good in your house!”. I studied it more carefully, finally realizing how beautiful it is. At $2.99, you’re darn right it came home with me!
And not a few weeks later, in a thrift shop that’s in my regular rotation, its twin showed up. I picked it up to make double sure. The lemon plate is very heavy, and when I picked up the berry version, it was just as heavy. Then I checked the back, and like the lemon plate, the ‘watermark’ information is literally indented into the back side of the plate. But I paused…at $3.99, the price was so much higher. By $1.00. Okay, I didn’t really pause. It came home with me, too.
This little corner shelf unit is the perfect way to display these plates. I have it in a corner next to the blue & white love seat in the living room. But try as I might, the pictures I took were dark and muddy. So, I pulled the shelf unit out to a spot where I could get more light, and loaded it up with the plates on the top and middle shelves.
On the bottom shelf you see this. I am giving this charming little yellow ceramic container Honorable Mention. It doesn’t qualify as either a twin or a cousin. But, it looks absolutely perfect as a supporting player to the two plates. And yes, I found it in yet another thrift shop. (I’m there so often, I have my own parking spot!)
This little container has a very odd shape. It’s not very wide and is kind of a narrow oval. The color is so pretty…a soft, light yellow. But it’s that pattern on the side that called out to me. Well, that and the scalloped edges. Still, she sat in my tchotchke closet for months; I couldn’t seem to find the exact right spot.
Then, when I brought home the lemon plate and put it on the middle shelf of the corner unit, I realized that the little yellow container would be a perfect fit on the bottom shelf. And honestly, she looks lovely with both the lemon plate and the berry plate. She definitely deserves Honorable Mention.
Circling back to the this picture. I can’t believe how many times I have talked about this little corner shelf unit, but here I go again! I saw it in a consignment store in San Diego, loved it, and told myself not to buy it because we were moving to Indiana. Nonetheless, I picked it up, paid less than the sale price listed on the tag, and scurried out the door with it. And of course, it looks perfect in this living room! But here is the rest of the story.
Every single thing in the picture of this little shelf unit is from a thrift store (except for the greenery). (Sorry for how dark the picture is; I just wanted to capture the shelf unit in its “natural habitat”.)
Now, how do I say this politely to my dearest friends who swear up and down that wild horses couldn’t drag them into a thrift shop? Look at what you can create by thrift shopping. A simple, welcoming corner display of pretty, understated elegance. Curated. (I love that word!)
I’ve said it before and I will say it here again; I have never understood how people can let go of such beautiful things. I’ve said this before too, and I will say it again: buy what speaks to your heart, even if you’re not really sure you will use it. If you stay true to your style and taste, eventually your thrift store treasures will come together to create warmth, beauty and comfort in your home. And if you’re only out a few dollars, it’s worth the risk.
Not sure how I could spend 1,500 words on a few tea pots and a couple of plates, but apparently I have. This is the first of several posts to come about thrift store shopping and the treasures to be found. For previous posts, please read this post: “7 Tips for Successful Thrift Shopping“, and this post “The Joy of Treasure Finds by Thrift Shopping” (the full story of the corner shelf unit is in this post).
From our home to yours~
I am linking up to these parties:
My Family Thyme – Tuesday Turn About // Karin’s Kottage Link Party // Eclectic Red Barn // Decorative Inspirations Home Imagined // Our Hopeful Home – Vintage Charm // Follow the Yellow Brick Home – Thursday Favorite Things // Country Road 407 – Farmhouse Friday // Vintage Home Designs – Fabulous Friday // Create with Joy – Inspire Me Monday // The House on Silverado – Sundays on Silverado // Life & Linda – Love Your Creativity // A Pinch of Joy – Busy Monday // My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia – Inspire Me Monday // Between Naps on the Front Porch – Monday Metamorphosis // Yellow Brick Home – All About Home //