Thursday, July 24, 2008

The thrifting lifestyle

What can one find for six dollars at the thrift store? Why, a folding baker's rack that fits perfectly into even the slenderest galley kitchen!

I love the ivy leaf design, especially since the kitchen wallpaper also has a leafy vine. I love the deep green color. I do not love the tag that says "made in China" lol, but I wanted to get the pic right away so I didn't take the time to peel it off. *wink* And I love the ivy also because it reminds of me of my favorite Corelle pattern, the ivy leaf dishes--which I am patiently waiting to find at the thrift store. *grin*

The bowls on the top shelf and the pan on the second shelf are thrift store finds as well. The bowls are part of a set, two round and three rectangular. The little grater between them is Tupperware, also from the thrift store.

The big pan on the second shelf is Revereware and I have a three quart saucepan to go with it, both with lids. I found them at a thrift store downtown last year, before I discovered this store across the street.

The huge stockpot on the bottom is from Gryph's soapmaking days and may someday see that use again. In the meantime, the zipper bag on top of it holds my bar of laundry soap and the grater I use when I turn bar soap into liquid soap.

The empty jugs are my fancy-schmancy Fertilizer-and-Watering-System Garden Accessories... yes indeed, I am WAY too cheap to pay $7.50 for an ugly green plastic watering can when the milk and Sunny D cartons were right there, ready for the recycling bin... a lil re-purposing never hurt anyone. *cheeky grin*

The cutting board behind the baker's rack is huge and beautiful, but it came from a yard sale where the bowls I bought developed persistent mold as soon as I used them; I didn't feel I could take that chance on food like veggies, bread, and cheese that we cut up and eat without cooking. Rather than throw the board away, I chose to not use it for food and instead I use it as a crafts surface. I would never have bought a big cutting board for that--but I'm glad to have it now!

I really do love finding things at yard sales and thrift stores. The only bigger charge I get is rescuing furniture from the trash, yanno? The whole idea of keeping things out of the waste-stream and putting them to good use again makes me feel a lovely satisfaction. Quite honestly, I think that even if I had scads of money and never had to worry about what I spent on ANYTHING, I would still choose to shop the way I do. The earth is in enough trouble without my demanding only brand new things while perfectly usable and charming things are thrown away.

I think that even aside from the ecology factor, there's the "maker" factor. I value what is made, what is designed, what people have put thought and effort into. The kind of furniture I'm finding is made by people, not robot machines. That matters to me. The design that goes into the objects I buy (or find) matters to me, also. I know the plastic bowls and the cooking pans (like my big $5 covered roaster with a rack that I found last week) might have been made by robot machines, but the quality is good and someone took a LOT of care with the designs.

Quality, I guess, is my third satisfaction in this thrifting lifestyle. I can afford to get really good quality items; I don't have to buy particle board furniture, since at the thrift store I can afford solid wood; I don't have to buy brand X plastic since at the thrift store I can afford real Tupperware; I don't have to buy cheap aluminum skillets since at the thrift store I can afford heavy-duty cast iron. I don't need the latest styles and colors of anything. Truth to tell, I find a certain amount of comfort in older designs. It makes me feel connected not only to the past in general, but to my own past, since what I find is quite often similar to items I used to own myself and loved when I had them. And amazingly enough, it's still satisfying to find items at the thrift store that I once wanted but couldn't afford at the time... getting them now, even second-hand, is still sweet.

There are a lot of things I would do with more money, yanno? But I have to admit, chief among them would be more trips to the thrift store. *grin*

1 comment:

  1. Lovely essay on thrifting--it's always nice to find someone else who understands!


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