Wall unit update

I've acquired a pretty long list of furniture for this house from Craig's List. It would be hard to pick a favorite (well, maybe my orange chairs) but the wall unit on the back wall of our living room has to be near the top of the list.


A few interesting things have happened since my original post about this piece, so I thought I would post an update.

I had tagged my post with the manufacturer's name (Kopenhavn), and as a result attracted some attention from other's searching the internet for these wall units, most of them looking for additional parts or sections for their own wall units. 

One reader contacted me looking for extra sky hooks, the metal hooks that attach the units to the wood brackets that are mounted to the wall. I didn't have extras (she was able to have new ones made at machine shop), but during our correspondence she offered to send me scans of an original brochure for the units she had in her possession. Here are a few of the pages:

It's fun to see the configurations offered. And those prices!

Then, more recently, I received this comment on my original post:

Sarah 4 months ago 
The designer of your Kopenhavn wall unit and the miniature furniture maker are indeed one and the same person. Noral Olson is my grandfather. :)

And she responded this to our comments in return:

Sarah 3 months ago 
Hi Joellyn and Debra,
Thanks so much for your comments. It does make me proud that he has designed something that will be used and loved well beyond his lifetime. I can't believe that it's only recently that I have come to know and appreciate his talent (he had already retired from the furniture design business before I was born). You should also check out some of his miniature pieces - they are true works of art, featured in collections around the world - not your everyday "dollhouse" furniture :)
I will pass on your kind words. I know he will especially enjoy your story Debra and be so happy to know that what he helped create was used and enjoyed as I'm sure he meant for it to be.

So even though I already loved this piece, I must say it is even more rewarding to know it has a real and tangible history. 


Eva's room

Thank you ever so much for your nice comments about our bath renovation last week! Just for that, I have another before and after post for you!

We completed this project in just over a week. We didn't do any major design back flips or murals in this room though. Like I said before, our goals became a little more practical, and a clean canvas is a great place to start. 

We already had everything just as it is—we just scraped and textured the ceiling, patched and repainted the walls, put in new flooring, and replaced all the trimwork—then moved it all back in. Oh- we did add a new light fixture and rug. 

My before photo was taken back when this room functioned more as a nursery and Eva was still in a crib, but you can see that everything was VERY blue. The carpet was original, and we were pretty anxious to get it out of her room because Eva was suffering from what we thought might be dust allergies.

Here is an even earlier before photo—back before we moved into the house. Pink and blue!

The built-ins used to have doors in the lower portion, but they were difficult to slide open. We removed them to make the shelves more functional for toy storage.


And after—whew! Relief from all that blue. And this is a north facing room!

The room still needs window treatments. I have white linen and all the supplies to sew roman shades.

Her bed is a Craig's list find from quite awhile back, though I never blogged about it. I was saving it for this post! I love LOVE both girls' antique beds!

The shelves took for-ever to paint. I lost track of how many coats it took to cover the blue with white. 

But they sure are great for storage!

The mirror was a prop I purchased for a photo I styled at my former job. I always loved it so I was able to buy it back from the photo department a couple of years after I left!

Simple, clean, and fit for a princess. One more room completed!


  • flooring: Ikea Tundra in white
  • bed: vintage
  • quilt: Land of Nod, no longer available
  • bench: Land of Nod, no longer available
  • mirror: vintage
  • school chairs: vintage
  • Chandelier: Ikea Kristaller
  • Rug: Home Decorators Collection, Cozy Shag Rug in Hot Pink
  • Closet curtain: custum sewed by moi
  • Mirror in shelves: Ikea
  • Artwork: Etsy, prints from Tiny Fawn
  • suitcases: vintage
  • Paint colors: Walls–Benjamin Moore Silver Sage, Trim—Behr Powdered Snow



I would buy this

Hello blog readers! That is, if there are any of you left. I am hoping so because I am planning a bit of a blog blitz to catch up. As I write this, I am downloading "after" photos from my camera of our bathroom renovation to share with you. Soon! 

Until then, I felt compelled to share a few Craig's list treasures with you—since I can't justify buying them myself. Even in our small little town of Great Falls we have a few things great things pop up. And far less purchasing competition. If you don't live around here, well, maybe you'll be inspired to find a few treasures of your own somewhere else.


First up, this vintage green sofa.


I like the low arms and tufted cushions. It's difficult to tell, but if it has a skirt, I would remove it to reveal more of the legs. Not bad for $75, if the upholstery is in decent condition.

Green Vintage sofa, $75. Here, while it lasts.


Next up, I am completely tempted by this sectional:

Yes, obviously it would have to be reupholstered in some crazy amazing fabric. The ad says you could get it done for $30 yard plus fabric, but I'm not sure about that. I was recently quoted more than double that for a chair I looked into having done. Should I be shopping around? What do you pay in your area? There would be a ton of yardage here and it would cost a fortune even at $30, but not nearly what it would cost to buy a piece this size new. 

I think this scale of this could be amazing in my living room, but I'm not 100% sure the look is right. It might be a little too much retro with my orange chairs, even in a different fabric. What do you think? I am ALL for retro pieces, but I do think they look best mixed with a little modern also.

70's sectional, $200.

I have a thing for antique beds (both Eva and Sarah have them), and if I had a boy I would buy one like this and paint it a fun, bright color. 

Vintage steel full-sized bed frame, $120.

oops, I did it again

And this time there might have been a little blood involved.

Not really. But it's a good story. Read on.

So, I have a bit of a Craig's List habit. Looking through my previous thrifting posts I'm realizing that there are quite a few things I haven't even told you about. Hiding the evidence? Uh oh—classic addiction symptom. Actually, too many of my Craig's List finds sit around in storage until I give them enough TLC to be proud of them. Maybe I'll do another post to show you the ones collecting dust. But for now, the newest acquisitions are sitting proudly in my living room exactly as-is:

Bam: a pair of 50's mid-century upholstered chairs.

I knew I eventually wanted a set of statement chairs—my leather sofas are functional but boring—to round out the seating in our large living room. I figured it would be a down-the-road investment since I had more pressing matters in mind (a rug). But when these beauties popped up, I couldn't resist. 

I spotted the ad on Wednesday last week and immediately responded, "I want to buy these! If I pay full asking price, will you save them until I can come get them?" I did a little research, and the brand (Tomlinson) appeared to be an American company. I figured they were probably worth quite a bit more than the $200 asking price. 

But I didn't hear back.... and didn't hear back.... and figured I'd lost out on them. However, that Saturday morning I noticed the ad was still up and decided to e-mail again. This time I received a phone call right back. She said she had received an offer but it was for less than she wanted, so if I came and got them that day, I could have them. So we packed up immediately and headed in to get them.

This is where the story gets interesting. Later I received this text on my phone:

"Joellyn, this is Kristi [my cousin]. I was going to buy the chairs you are buying today. She said she sold them to a lady from Ft. Benton and I knew it had to be you! Aren't they amazing? I can't wait to see what u do with them. And if u decide u don't like them, call me! :)"

O.K., small world. I had a good chuckle over the coincidence, but then I just felt terrible. Even more so after I found out that the seller had actually accepted Kristi's offer and she was on her way to pick them up when she called to say she had a better offer! I assure you, I did not know this when I picked up the chairs. And she did make me pay full price. But that was pretty sneaky business on her part.

Luckily Kristi is a cool person and very gracious about the whole deal. ;)  Later she texted me asking me if I was planning to have them reupholstered. She said,

"I thought they'd be so cool with black and white pillows. Like those ones from Ikea."

Which I happen to own. 

"Wow! Well even if u don't like those pillows on it u better post a pic so I can see how they look :)"

Least I can do. Turns out, I do like them with the pillows. The original backs on the chairs are made of a hard (almost crunchy) foam. Replacing them with the pillows makes them much more comfortable.


My initial intent was that these would make a great reupholstery project. I could picture them in a burnt orange tweed of sorts. Something with attitude and a vintage vibe. However, the upholstery is in great condition considering its age, and for now I am quite happy to live with them as is and enjoy the happy orange pop of color. 


If you are curious, the info I have indicates these chairs are from Tomlinson Furniture Company, the Sophisticate Line, and this is the Casual Chair No. 4648. Tomlinson started in 1901 in North Carolina.

finally lounging

I am super excited to share today's post with you. I wrote about this chair only about... 6 months ago. In September I had a surge of productivity when I took the chair apart and completed the wood re-finishing. Then the pieces banged around in my storage room while I waited for my mom to have time to help me with the upholstery. On a cold and snowy Saturday a couple of weeks ago I was antsy to tackle a project. I left the kids with Tom for the day and plowed through the snow to my mom's house where I could tackle this project once and for all—without distraction, under the watchful eye of my mom and using her more advanced sewing machine. I'd like to say that was the end of the story, but it took a few more days before I could finally call it finished. I'm nothing if not persistent, though, so I can finally show you the finished product!

The back:

There she is! And I'm pretty proud of it despite its imperfections.

I must say this was no small challenge for me. It took time to disassemble, remove hundreds of staples, and carefully label and bag each piece of hardware. I took photos along the way to help me with reassembly—something I was glad for when I finally got around to it 6 months later. It was another time investment to refinish (sanding very carefully so as not to damage the thin veneer, then applying the stain and 3 coats of Poly acrylic finish, sanding between every coat). I spent another long day sewing hoping so much to finish it in one day. That night I gave up in frustration, feeling like I would never get it right. (I am, after all, a complete novice in re-upholstery). I spent a little time researching other redos online and discovered I might have been the only person crazy enough to attempt sewing the welting directly to the cushions before attaching them to the wood. Most people stapled their cushion fabric, then glued or stapled the welting separately. Easier, for sure, but my way was the way it was constructed originally. The problem was that the old leather was stretched out and made an imperfect pattern. Easing and gathering the stiff vinyl around the edges was really challenging. The result is very imperfect and there are plenty of puckers, but I think in the long run the construction will be stronger. 

A few days later with fresh and rested eyes I spent one more long afternoon stapling hundreds more staples into the flimsy wood frames (rather exhausting) and then screwing each piece back together. Even that part of the job took longer than expected, but it was so very exciting to watch it come back together!


Had this been an original Eames lounge and not a knock-off, I would have been inclined to use real leather. As it was, the only $$ I had into this project were for a few small supplies: buttons, welting, needles, and upholstery thread. The chair was free (my Grandpa's chair, cast off to the back recesses of the storage room in our house), and the vinyl was something my mom and dad had on hand and donated for the cause. 


I intended to make my own buttons, but it didn't take long to figure out the stiff vinyl and cheap button frames from the fabric store would have made a lousy combination. At the last minute we took the vinyl to an upholstery shop and had buttons made for us. It cost all of $5. Obviously well worth it! 

After seeing how inexpensive and easy the buttons were, Tom thought I was crazy for not exploring the option of professional upholstery to begin with. Maybe it would have been affordable—inside 2 or 3 hundred bucks perhaps. And the result certainly would have been better. However, despite the number of hours it took me (a lot), I still am glad I attempted it myself. It might not be logical, but it gives me a feeling of accomplishment and leaves me with something to be proud of.


You might enjoy seeing a few photos of the process, although, I didn't take any of the sewing and reassembly. My hands were too busy to pick up the camera!

Taking it apart (Each piece was built with an inner and outer bent plywood shell):

The back of the ottoman with the outer shell removed, showing how the cushions were stapled onto the fabric:

The leather removed:

And the cushion foam and inner plywood shell. (I reused all the old foam):

All the pieces lined up:

Checking to see if I had enough vinyl. This was before I removed all the welting. I then laid each piece flat, taped it to the vinyl, and cut around them. Each piece of welting had to be cut to the exact same length, so after they were removed I stretched them out and re-cut new strips.

The pieces laid out in the garage for re-finishing:

Now that it is done, I've heard a few say "This was always my favorite chair" or "I forgot how comfortable this chair was!" (Rumor has it the knock-offs are actually more comfortable than the real ones. This one reclines—the originals only swivel.) As such, I sort of want to move it upstairs to a place we can enjoy it often. For now, it resides downstairs.

The bright white vinyl isn't totally ideal with my living room furniture, however. And it looks pretty hot downstairs with my hounds tooth sofa:


So for now we are trekking downstairs for a change of scenery during our evening lounging.

staircase art

I recently tackled a project that cost me nothing other than a bit of time.

In my college Photography 101 class I did a project that involved shooting (and developing) a series of photos. I did my project on "Old Montana" and had fun shooting relics and landmark buildings as we drove across the state on a road trip.


The photos aren't anything to brag about, but they are meaningful to us and worthy at least of the cheap frames I bought for them a long time ago.

To make the collage a little more interesting, I added a couple of quotes that related to the "old Montana" theme. The letters came from an interesting novelty item I thrifted awhile ago. It is a box of letters used for old-time movie titling, complete with adhesive and a black felt background. The box sits on my craft room shelf, and even though I thought it had artistic merit on its own, I thought it would be fun to actually do something with the letters.

I tacked the letters up with glue dots, so they can be easily changed if I tire of the phases.


I'm happy with how my little vignette turned out!

Sarah's Chandelier

I've been shopping on Craig's List again. It's a bad habit of mine.

Actually, I take that back. When I look around my house at all the things I have thrifted, I am quite pleased with them all. So let's just call it a habit. Nothing bad about it. In fact, just recently I have sold our old kitchen cabinets, an armoire in our guest room to make way for a chair, and our old stove and microwave. We are delivering the latter to town tomorrow and I am hoping to bring home a $20 set of bookcases for our storage room (from another seller). Win win!

Although Sarah's room hasn't been on our target list of projects yet, I have had in mind to buy her a chandelier. She is my princess, after all. Through all the light shopping I've done for the kitchen I have kept my eye out for a good deal. This listing recently popped up on Craig's List:

Genuine Crystal 8-Arm Chandelier, $250


I took note but moved on. It was more than I wanted to spend and a bit traditional.

And then, a week later:

Genuine Crystal 8-Arm Chandelier, Price Reduced! $100

This time I bit. I pulled out the measuring tape to make sure it wouldn't clock us in the head when we walked through her room, then offered $75. It was ours!

I was a little unsure at first. It was covered with that dusty/greasy grime that all things accumulate when they are over 50 years old. I laid it out on the kitchen table and spent several hours cleaning the entire chandelier and every individual crystal.


It sparkled! It was worth the effort.

And after putting it up in Sarah's room I was even more sure of the purchase.


Fit for a princess.

As with any thrift purchase, it is fun to try to find out if you scored a good deal or not. The chandelier bore the mark of Palme&Walter KG, which we identified as a German chandelier maker. However, the only lead we could find on its value was a listing on eBay for another Palme&Walter chandelier (which looked very much like ours) that had rare Strass crystals on it. Apparently those crystals had signatures in them which could be seen with a magnifying glass. This chandelier sold for $6,000. Ahem. Needless to say I got out a magnifying glass. But I couldn't find any such signature. And the likelihood of a chandelier of that value ending up in an unknowing Great Falls citizen's home? Yeah, right.

In any case, although it would be nice to have a better idea what the value of this fixture is, I'm confident either way we scored a good deal. And Sarah is ecstatic.

new wall unit

Hello. My name is Joellyn and I'm addicted to Craig's List.

I wasn't actually looking for a wall unit. This wall unit was looking for me. I saw the ad as I was browsing one day and noted that it looked cool—I even showed it to my mom—then moved on. 

photo from Craig's List adAbout a week later I found myself thinking about that wall unit again. For some reason it occurred to me that my dream of having built-in bookshelves along the back wall of my living room wasn't likely to happen for a very long time. So why not buy something that would stand in (and look ever so cool) in the meantime?

This is what the back wall of my living room looked like before:

The bookcase that is sitting there was removed from the other wall and was just sitting there for lack of a better place to put it (it is heavy, man!) but it is obviously wrong for the space. 

It had been at least a week since I had first seen the ad, so I was thrilled to find it still listed. It took several more days to finally get into town to check it out. She had listed it for $100, but she took my offer for $80. This is why I love Craig's List in Great Falls. In any big metropolitan area this unit would have been snatched up within hours, and would have pulled MUCH more than $80, I'm sure.

This might not be everyone's thing, but it is so very mid-century (1960s) and perfect for this house. And if we do build those bookcases someday, I can resell this unit for a profit. Just look up "Danish wall unit" online and you will see several very similar looking wall units for more than two or three thousand dollars. It's all about finding the right market, baby.

This is what it looks like in my house:

Since it is partially covered by my couch, here is another view:

The book stand unit on the right will be mounted on the rails as well, but I was missing a bracket that I have to pick up from the seller today. And after a good polish, I will of course style this baby and post more photos for you.

It is in excellent condition for its age and is all solid wood. I love how the color warms things up and lightens up the dark leather furniture I have. 

Oh, and did you notice one more thing?

I stripped the wallpaper off that wall and painted. (More on that later). I just couldn't bear to put this up over that old wallpaper so buckled down and got the job done. One wall down, 240 to go. Ha.

The unit is marked with the manufacturer's logo, "Kopenhavn". A little research revealed that this is not actually Danish, but is Danish inspired. Kopenhavn was a line trademarked by the Northern Chair Co. (based in Tacoma during the early 1900s), and this particular "wall planner group" was designed by Noral Olson. I looked for his name in other places and just found someone who designed miniature furniture. Same guy? I'm not sure. The Kopenhavn line seems to be somewhat rare. If you know more, do tell! Here is the coolest thing I found during my research—an ad from a furniture store in an old newspaper clipping:

I love peices that have a history, and it was fun to see the other units offered as part of the line. And the prices: $319 for that first living room set!

Tell me what you think of my find! I'll be back with more after I do some decoratin'. Bye for now!

eBay extravaganza

For a good long while now I have been wanted to upgrade my old Canon Rebel. It's been a great camera, but as I have learned more how to use it I have also learned its limitations.

I decided I was going to work for it the hard way, so I started an envelope of cash and slowly started saving. I got about halfway with a few odd design jobs. To earn the rest, I decided to start selling a few odds and ends that were taking up space in our storage room.

Here are a few things I sold and how much I got for them:

Two Pottery Barn quilts: Let's face it. These aren't cheap. But I got lots of good use out of them, and then was still able to sell them for a decent amount! I'm pretty sure I bought Abby's on sale. It went to someone in Sweden. The other one graced our guest bed while we were in Utah and was in great shape.

Our old Sony Handycam: Well, this wasn't a cheap camera when we bought it. So it kind of hurts to think about how much we wasted. We didn't use it much. But it certainly wouldn't be worth anything sitting in a cupboard gathering dust! My new camera will have video built in and I know it will get used so much more that way. Who wants to carry two cameras?

Smith Corona Typewriter: Nobody wants these. And some things are hardly worth the effort to sell. I should have donated it to our retirement community instead.

IBM (First model!) and manuals: Now this was a surprise. We could have thought same as above, "nobody wants these". But its been around long enough to be collectable. Both the computer and manuals are going to someone in Belgium that seems like he will appreciate them very much. Score for me, score for him.

Eames shell chairs: You might remember when I bought these chairs off of Craig's List. I wrote about it here. Well, I decided I only wanted to keep 2 of the 4 chairs I purchased. The money I made from these 2 chairs easily covered the total amount of money we spent in that storage unit that day!


I have had my sights set on the Canon 60D for some time, along with the Canon 580 flash. I easily have enough money to buy it now. But I'm wavering. I did better than I expected on the eBay stuff, so now I am wondering if I should reach a little higher (okay, a LOT higher) and go for the full sensor Canon 5D. (Choke.) I would have to save a little bit longer. I'm almost there, but not quite. (I still have my old Rebel to sell (after I buy my new camera) and an old Kirby vacuum cleaner.) And I wanted to buy that flash, too, which would improve my photos immensely. If I stick with the 60D I can get the camera, extra battery, the flash, and still have money left over to buy a new vacuum cleaner. (I love my Dyson but it has seen better days. And with my pets and all this carpet, well, let's just leave it at that.)  What would you do?

Enough rambling. Have you had any great selling experiences lately? You all know I love a good Craig's List find. Now I am equally as hooked on selling what I don't need. I'm all for making donations too, but if it is worth something, I love to put the money to better use on something I really want.

Craig's List find—claw foot tub

I have been thinking for awhile that I would like a claw foot tub in this bathroom:

The brown fixtures are cool-retro and all, but they have years of hard water deposits on them and don't fit the aesthetic I hope for in this room. So I started to search Craig's List. We have no immediate plans to start on this room, but I figured it might take awhile to find the perfect tub. Surprisingly, tubs popped up for sale more often than I expected, but most of them weren't in the best condition and would need to be reglazed.

A phone call to a professional revealed a whopping $795 price tag for reglazing a claw foot tub. Considering they go for at least $2000 brand new, that might not be so bad. But considering the finish is only guaranteed to last 10-15 years, I was sadly beginning to feel this option might not be for me.

And then I found a listing for a tub that looked like it might work with its original finish. I called to set up a visit. And here is where it turned into one of those situations that felt like it was "meant to be". I talked to the guy to ask a few questions and told him I would call back when I had an opportunity to bring my husband in to look at it. (I don't like to look at Craig List finds alone. Never mind the fact that I would never be able to load a claw foot tub by myself.) The next day it rained (yes!) freeing up Tom to go with me, so I called him back and got his voice mail. When I heard his first and last name on his voice message, it clicked. I knew these people! It happened to be my brother-in-law's sister and husband. 

Long story short, we brought home the tub, and even got a good "friends" discount out of the deal. This is what it looks like:


It definitely needs a little TLC. The outside needs sanded and painted—I'm thinking a charcoal gray. I will paint the feet oil-rubbed bronze (or white?). The tub was built in, so their is caulking and paint along the top edges that needs to be scraped off. And the inside just needs a good scrubbing. There is a bit of yellowing around the drain, but overall the inside looks great. There are a few chips in the enamel, but only around the edge of the rim. We will either live with the imperfections or try a little enamel patch kit since it isn't on the interior of the tub.  

The second part of this equation is now I want to find an old dresser to retrofit for the vanity. I have shown you this inspiration photo before:

Source unknown.

I love the mid century vibe of this desk/credenza and I think something like this would be very appropriate for this house.

However, yesterday this popped on on Craig's List:


This seems like a pretty legit antique to me. I love that it is meant for bathroom duties, complete with spot for a wash basin, towel bar, and "potty cupboard".


Of course I haven't seen this in person so I have no idea if it would work for what I need. They are asking $300 for it. So, help me out. What do you think? Do you like the antique or should I hold out for a vintage mid century cabinet?


Feng Shui Friday—Challenge #5: Get rid of unwanted gifts (and contest results!)

Click here to find out how you can join the Feng Shui My Way Challenge!

I am aware that it is now Saturday. We had a busy couple of days with special cousin company (more on that later), and I spent too much time in the kitchen to get a post up. Better late than never, I suppose.

First off, I owe you some contest results! If you participated in the last challenge and cleaned out your basement or made a pile of things to donate, you will appreciate how much effort it takes. And if you are still working on it, good on you. Congratulations to our winner, Jolene! Here is her pile:

The best part of her entry was the e-mail she followed up with afterwards:

I took my stuff to the second hand store and thought it was only fair to report that I brought home a bunch of stuff too!!  haha!!
Check out these vintage nursing clogs - I love them!


I laughed out loud because don't we all have that problem? But thanks for the full disclosure, Jolene, and your nursing clogs are super fun and unique. Your book will be in the mail soon!


And now for a new challenge:

Challenge #5: Get rid of unwanted gifts.

Depending on how heavy a conscience you have, this challenge should be pretty easy. Do you have any unwanted gifts or that you have

a) stuffed in a closet?

b) displayed with distaste or regret?

c) displayed only when the gift giver comes for a visit?

Now is the time to toss them out, along with the guilt that comes with them. The goal is to love everything in your home and to have nothing around that drains your positive energy. Go for it! (I won't tell if you don't tell.)

Have a great weekend!


guest book

Have I ever shown you this sweet typewriter that I bought from my Grandpa's family auction?

It was my sister-in-law Amy's brilliant idea to use it as a guest book. I've never been very faithful at remembering to have guests sign when they leave, but this is kind of fun so I'm going to try it again. It isn't perfect. You have to press awfully hard to type clearly. Electronic keyboards are so easy to type on, we take it for granted! Anyway, I think the imperfections make it extra cool. I like that there is no structure and people can type whatever they want.

See, it types in script. Isn't that awesome?

Craig's List find: Midcentury Motherload Part II

When we visited the storage unit found on Craig's list, we came home with more than we planned on. Actually, I picked out the chairs and desk I wanted and got back in the car to feed Eva, and Tom continued browsing. He's the one who lured me back in. Trouble.

So here is the rest of our loot:


These white lamps were $5 each. I need to find some drum shades for them, but I think they are a great find. The drafting table lamp was Tom's pick. We hope we can find florescent bulbs that fit it.

Cattails, thrown in for free. (One set on e-bay currently listed for $17.99. I have 3 different sets, not all pictured).

This magazine rack really raised my mom's eyebrows. That's because they had (have?) one just like it for years that held my piano music. (I just realized it is missing one of the wood pieces in this photo, but I have it.) I think it features my Atomic ranch mags and Eames book nicely, don't you?

This Zenith radio actually works! Quite well, in fact! I think it cost me $5.

These candy dishes currently hold pretzels and nuts that are a bit too convenient for our holiday snacking. I lost track of how much he charged me for all these little items. I ended up just making a pile of everything I wanted and he named a price for the whole lot.

I bought these canisters—wait—I believe he said "oh, you can just have those"—inspired by Modern Thrifter. I'm not quite sure if I will paint mine or not. I kind of like the original patina. And this wooden vase, well, I'm sure I'll find a use for it somewhere.

Finally, this oil and vinegar cruet. He said they were a rare find unbroken because they are rather fragile. A quick search of my own didn't reveal anything quite like it. But they are useful if nothing else!

That's about it. I did leave most things there. Really. He had artwork, a million lamps, lots of dishes, furniture, etc. The list goes on and on. Tom has been looking through my Atomic Ranch magazines and on eBay to see if there are any treasures we left behind that should have been snagged. LOL :) The more he looks into it the more he is amazed at what a craze midcentury design is. There was a middle-aged man looking through the storage unit while we were there and Tom asked, "Are you looking for someone else or are you into this for yourself?" His answer, "I have a '61 Atomic Ranch." So apparently these savvy people do exist in Montana, behind the faces of very ordinary people. Not everyone in MT has to own rustic log cabins. Yeah! I'm glad we beat him to the storage unit. Ha!

Actually, there is one more item I forgot to photograph, so I'll have to save it for a later post. So, what do you say? Cuckoo or brilliant?

Craig's List find: Midcentury Motherload

I have a habit of scanning Craig's List every few days (obviously). Around here it is small enough to scan every entry and not have to filter your results by type. I think this is the equivalent of "impulse shopping", or scanning the goodies lining the checkout stands. Because you often find appealing things that you weren't actually looking for.

This time it was an ad for Eames chairs. What???? That doesn't come up on Craig's List every day around here! Unfortunately it had a been 2 days since the ad had been listed, and I was sure they would have been snatched up. And the stuff was in Great Falls so I wasn't sure when I would be able to get away to go see them anyway. Nevertheless, I called on them and they were still available. Even better, the guy had a storage unit full of midcentury goodies.

(I've ceased to complain about the fact that Craig's list is so under utilized up here. Because you know what I've learned? That means there is less competition when something great is listed! That and nobody up here would give a hoot about midcentury modern furniture anyway. What's that?)

The storage unit was in Cascade, another 25 miles past Great Falls. So I made a special trip to go see this jackpot of midcentury furniture. My family rolled their eyes but my husband kindly accompanied me. (After all, meeting some strange guy at a storage unit by myself generally wouldn't be advisable). Turns out, the guy was a designer dude who lived in California and helped manage a midcentury furniture gallery. He started his collection there and then moved back home to Cascade where he stored his entire collection in a storage unit. Recently he up and decided to move to New York City for a new job opportunity and can only take, like, one piece of furniture with him and a suitcase full of clothes. So, he is liquidating the contents of his storage unit in a rush. His loss was my gain, right?

The chairs in the ad were these:

He was asking $40 each for them. They have the original stickers and Herman Miller emblem on them. (Look up Eames shell chairs on e-bay to see what they normally sell for. Typically between $100-$300). I was planning to buy 2, but ended up with all 4 for $120.

Then there was this desk:

This is a Paul McCobb desk. My family isn't impressed. But look up Paul McCobb Planner Group desk on e-bay. (Original condition: $600+, refinished: $900+). Tom needs a desk when we finish our basement and confiscate our current office furniture for my craft room. He can use this for now (until we can buy something he likes better) and I can refinish and sell it for a significant profit. They'll be laughing at me then, I'm sure. All the way to the bank.

By the way, I purchased the desk for $100, and got him to throw in this Danish modern chair for free.

I love this chair. The designer dude said he recently re-upholstered the seat, but I think it deserves some cuter fabric. Like something by Orla Kiely perhaps.

My family thinks I'm a little nuts and some of you do too, I'm sure. :) Abby ran by why I was taking pictures, sat down in the chair, and said "Mom, this is comfortable!"

At least someone is on my side.

Craig's List find: followup

The dresser and nightstands have been acquired!

Not that I needed another project right now, or more furniture in my garage. I was able to purchase them without the bed, so thats good. She told me they were solid wood so I didn't look very closely when we picked them up, but when we got home I could see they were not. So I am a little dissapointed, but I don't have a lot of money into them and will try to refinish them anyway. It still has dove-tailed drawers and has has held up pretty well over the years.

I had a few of my own things to get rid of, so I listed this couch on Craig's List:

We bought it from my Grandpa for $5 in our family auction. I think it has a lot of mid-century charm, but the apolstery is thread-bare, several of the legs are broken, and it is missing quite a few buttons. I didn't have time for the project, nor did I have a good place to put it in our house. So I sold it for $50. Not bad! :)

I also sold the washer and dryer that was in the house. We intended to use them at first and sold our old set in Salt Lake. But when I ran the first load I noticed the water wasn't flowing in very well and ran my finger along the base of the rim to find lots of mucky hard water deposits. I wasn't too thrilled about washing my newborn baby clothes in it. We opted to buy a water-efficient front load model and so far I have no regrets. Water shortages are unfortunately a common occurance around here, and we do a LOT of laundry, especially with the cloth diapering. I cleaned up the old set and sold them very easily.

I am a huge fan of Craig's list (aside from the occasional creepy stuff) and I'm going to be a selling fool! I have some things to sell on ebay. I'll share my successes (and failures) as I go!