Thursday, August 20, 2015

Unbelievable "Finds" Me: Aqua Gooseberry

As a collector of all things vintage, it is hard sometimes to pick favorites. However, for me the choice is easy; Pyrex is the favorite. I have collected Pyrex for about 10 years and have developed quite the collection. Most common patterns and pieces I have so to have something really special come way is a rare treat.

Treasure hunting has a lot of perks but nothing takes the cake like the people you meet and the stories you hear along the way. Dealers and collectors build relationships that form a very electic club or community to which I am happy to belong. Through my "community" I was able to meet Canadian Cheryl or the pen lady as I sometimes refer to her because of her passion for collecting pens. Cheryl and her husband travel each year to Southern California to escape the coldest winter months and soak up the sun. Cheryl loves to find treasures from estate sales to auctions which is how we met.

So, hearing from Cheryl the middle of July came as a surprise. However, I knew it had to be good, when she said she found some interesting Pyrex at a local thrift store.

Cheryl writes:

This so NEVER happens to me! I was in a thrift store yesterday and spotted this Pyrex set. I knew Gooseberry, I knew Cinderella and I knew turquoise, but it wasn't till I got it home that I saw it was the English JAJ Crown Pyrex which you lust after. THEN I found out how rare the bloody thing is. What do you think? I bought it to use, but now I'm not so sure! I 've attached 2 pictures, but can send more if you'd like a better look.

You can imagine my excitement to see these in the photo. I emailed her back wanting more photos and asked more detailed question about condition. But the biggest question I had is are these for sale and how much?! A few email exchanges later we had determined that she wanted to sell and I wanted to buy. I knew Cheryl was about to do really well on her recent find but I told her to hold off telling me the entire story until after we had worked out a fair deal for both of us. The end result is I did get my coveted bowls and I paid up for them, but I believe was fair deal. But wait until you hear Cheryl's entire story.

Cheryl writes:

Here’s the story. I volunteer at a cancer resource centre in Oshawa and also crochet small blankets for their paediatric cancer programme. Kids get chilly when they’re having chemo and each child gets their own “bankie” to cuddle under. Yarn is a bit costly, so I go into thrift stores, buy old crochet or knitted blankets, undo them and re-use the yarn. In Ontario there’s a chain of thrift stores called Value Village (Valoo VillĂ ge or the Vee-Vee Boutique to the regulars – kinda like Tarzjay), the diabetic society collect clothes and household items, sell them to VV as a fund raiser and then VV re-sells them. The stores are all big, bright and well laid out, not the cheapest, but not unpleasant to shop in. So, there I was last week, I found two nice big blankets and thought “I’ll check the kitchen-ware aisle”, there at the end of a shelf priced at $12.99 (sorry), was a Pyrex Cinderella set. My kitchen has turquoise accents and I thought I’d buy it for myself. I have a Cinderella set in Homestead and a newer (non-Cinderella) set in 4 shades of blue that are my regular bowls. When I got home, did the research and found out what I had, I re-thought things! l suspect that the bowls came over here in the 50’s or 60’s with a woman who emigrated from the UK, a lot of the things at VV are donated by families emptying out parents’ homes if they can’t be bothered to yard sale the stuff. She obviously never had a dishwasher and maybe she wasn’t much of a cook, that’s why they got such little use. Who knows. If it had been a fabulous piece of Fire King Philbe though, I would have been reluctant to sell, THAT.

So that's the story of the $12.99 Turquoise Gooseberry Pyrex found in a Canadian thrift. Notice she said sorry in her email. Yep, Cheryl got a great return but I am so happy she thought of me instead of ebay! I got a fair deal and we kept it in the family lol. Here are my bowls that arrived safe and sound thanks to careful packing.

Nicely stacked!
Side by side!

In the Pyrex in pantry with all the other Pyrex friends! Special thanks to Cheryl for thinking of me. It was also a great reminder of the wonderful community of collectors that I get to be apart of and that my next treasure may show up in one their hands. Now to find a coveted pen that Cheryl will

Have A Wonderful Cherry Picked Week Y'all!


Monday, July 27, 2015

Going All Out then Reining Back In: Confession Time

I haven't blogged here in a while, so I thought it was time I made a contribution again. I have been collecting pyrex for several years now. I feel very, very lucky to have started when I did. The recent price inflation, onslaught of new collectors, attention for dedicated resellers, and trendiness of vintage in general have made Pyrex a very expensive habit. I do wish I could go back in time and buy a few pieces that I am on the hunt for now. At the time, I told myself prices were too high, that they were bound to come down. Boy, was I wrong.

So, here it is...what I would like to finish things off (and yes, some of these pieces are Glasbake and Fire King).

See? Crazy, I know. But having a simple visual reference has really helped to keep me focused. And it feels so good to finally check things off. When I finally got a Starburst after years of hunting and refusing to buy online, it was so satisfying.

I will consider myself "done" with U.S. Pyrex once I have these pieces. That doesn't mean I will stop looking for pieces to add to my collection; these are just the pieces I really want to round it out. I would never turn down Barcodes or more bakeware. And, because I am often a glutton for punishment, I have already started in on my JAJ and Agee collection; I have a few select pieces I would like to get and am sadly aware of just how much it is likely to cost to have them show up at my doorstep.

But reaching this point in my collecting has allowed me to reflect some. I had some foresight in that from the very beginning I kept track of every piece I brought home: what I paid and where I got it; if I traded it, and if so, for what and to whom; if I sold it, and if so, to whom and for how much. It's a bit compulsive but also very eye-opening. For example, I have run across enough Butterfly Gold to last me a lifetime. I have found enough Butterprint refrigerator dishes to build more than a handful of sets. And, in all my years of hunting, I have found Friendship in all shapes and sizes is very, very scarce in my area.

In the very beginning of my collecting I, like a lot of new collectors, started out with a huge wish list and buying every piece I came across. Then I started to panic, like most do, at where all this Pyrex around my house came from. So I started trading and sometimes selling, yet I still brought more in. Then I realized I really needed to focus. So I underwent several large purges. All the while I was still trying to figure out my collecting direction, and still bringing things home.

Over time, I have decided I have to use the piece, not just display it. And I mean it when I say I have to use it...I bake enchiladas in my Starburst and use my Blowing Leaves for leftovers. That meant I really, really had to narrow down my scope. I just don't have a lot of space so I have to be picky.

I am still working on letting go a large chunk of my collection. I have over 250 pieces just hanging around the house. I don't need it all, and I have slated about half of it to go. Complicating matters is my daughter's collection (which is part of that 250 pieces); she collects Pink Gooseberry and has everything but the 475. She's nine and has made it clear I am not to rehome her pieces.

As if having over 250 pieces is not a large enough confession, how about this: I have rehomed via trades or sales over 450 pieces. That is truly mind boggling. Obviously when I first started I was very lucky to find Pyrex seemingly everywhere!

What I have learned is I really enjoy the hunt. Sure, the hunt has become a lot harder over the last year or so. But it is still such a thrill to find that highly-coveted piece at a great price. So I continue the hunt, but over the last year have left more and more behind. And that also feels good, because I really hope that those pieces end up going home with a collector who will love them.

Thanks for listening to me ramble a bit! I wish all collectors much luck in finding their most-wanted pieces.


Monday, July 13, 2015

Deja Vu All Over Again

Hi PC3, SusieQT here from Practice in Time!

Several years ago, when I first began collecting Pyrex I had a recurring dream: I was at a sale in a dingy, old, stone basement with junk piled all about. I was digging through what amounted to trash, and found one lone piece of Pyrex- a black snowflake space saver. Of course I grabbed it and promptly woke up. I became obsessed with owning that piece and eventually caved and bought it on ebay. That was about four years ago.

Fast forward to this weekend and I found myself at a sale in a dingy old stone barn with junk piled all about. It was almost exactly like the dream I had. Now, it wasn't really trash, but what some might call rustiques: old furniture, farm equipment, canning jars, pots and pans, all covered with a layer of dirt and mildew. And one lone piece of Pyrex: 

OK, it's not a space saver, but a charcoal snowflake open baker. Maybe even better, because in my experience these are a bit harder to find. And I have been wanting one for a lone time!

So I guess dreams literally do come true sometimes!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

My $1 Finds

As much as I love thrift store shopping, I am so excited that it's yard sale season again. A city close to my dad had over 200 sales listed this weekend, so the boyfriend and I went up and out with him. We didn't hit nearly as many sales as we thought, but I think a lot of people didn't set up because it rained all day Friday and was supposed to rain all weekend. While I didn't get a whole lot, I did find two great pieces for $1 each.

An overpriced thrift store nearby had both the cracker and cookie jars last year for $10 each. I probably picked them up and put them down six times before leaving them behind. This one was only $1, and while it does have some marks on the front, I think I can get them off, and the gold is in great condition.

I also found this medium sized casserole for $1 at a completely different sale that was full of clothing and newer stuff. It didn't have a lid, but it's in good condition and frankly, I have way too many lids floating around in my cabinets already.

Hope everyone had a great weekend and found some good stuff! Head on over to my blog, Pyrex Picker, to check out some of my other weekend yard sale finds.


Saturday, June 13, 2015

Great Find, Happy Girl!

I found a beautiful space saver lid on a Friday and then I got a grungy Musical Staff space saver the following Thursday. $3.79 is too sweet to believe and I got her all cleaned up. I'm down to only the Starburst now and I'm not holding my breath.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Wanna Trade?

Hi There!  I've been a member of this page for awhile now and I've done two trades before...awhile ago.  What I have is a mint condition fridgie set minus one of the two small ones.

What I need:
Yellow Dots
Green Dots
Either of the Balloon dishes
The Large Eyes



Friday, June 5, 2015

Seeing Pink!

Hi There!

It's been a REALLY long time since I've written.  I had to share with you what I found today and ask for help in identifying.  Today I stumbled on an Sr. Citizen neighborhood yard sale.  It was so fun to mill around and chat with the people.  It was like a social even for them.  One of my favorite parts of sales is talking to the people and getting the history of items.

Imagine my surprise when I spotted these on a long table in the carport of an adorable 80 something lady's yard.

The sweet lady told me that she won this set at bingo years ago.  I inquired about the lids...I have NEVER seen these metal lids that fit on the top like this.  She said it was great for making jello in and transporting it because of the lids.  Sure enough, the lids say Pyrex on them.  I know that these are Daisy Space Savers, I just wondered if anyone knows if this is always how they came with this lid, or is this some special promotional?

PS  I'll bet you are wondering how much she charged me for the set?  TEN WHOLE DOLLARS!!!!!!  It made my day.

   Stacey at the Gluten Free Pastor's Wife
 Come on over...there's a new post!

PSS  Answered my own question!  It was a promo also had a black wire cradle with it!