The United States Marine Corps is 239 years old today. Hooray!
They got their start on November 10, 1775 in Philadelphia as the Continental Marines. Sharpshooters from General Washington’s army who knew their way around boats were organized into two platoons. Their job was to do stuff like climb high into the swaying rigging of tall-masted American ships serving as our naval forces–we didn’t have an official navy yet—to fire at enemy officers.
Imagine yourself 100 feet over the deck of a madly tossing vessel, hanging on to the rigging while aiming a muzzle-loading weapon at a small target far away on the deck of a different madly tossing vessel.
Yes, the Marines have always done crazy manly stuff.
Here’s to the Leathernecks!
And here’s to all the nice-smelling ladies—especially the 1940s ones—who’ve landed their Marines!
I just found a kitchen tool that was so caked in dirt that it was hard to tell what it was.
But I could tell that it was cast iron, that it was green, and that it was certainly old.
It took me twenty minutes of careful scrubbing to get the gunk off the cast iron without also removing what remained of that wonderful green paint. Sorry that I don’t have a “before” picture.
Here are the clean parts:
First, a crank with a silky polished wooden knob. I love that little wooden flange that keeps your fingertips from rubbing against the crank. A very thoughtful design detail!
I wasn’t looking for tablecloths, honest!
Janeray and I sold so much furniture at September’s Vintage Bazaar that I went to the flea market at a bracing 6 a.m. to see what I could scare up to replenish our meager remaining stock.
You gotta go early to get the good stuff. I’ve seen customers there before daylight, shining their flashlights into dealers’ vans as the poor guys are trying to unload in the darkness!
Alas, I wasn’t quite early enough for a piece I would have snapped up in heartbeat—a vintage wood desk with a single drawer, a big old glass knob, and a black painted finish that just needed a little polishing. The lady standing right in front of me snagged it for under ten bucks. Darn!
You win some, you lose some.
So I lost on furniture this time, but boy did I ever win it big on tablecloths!
A whole bunch of dealers had piles of vintage linens that they seemed willing to practically give away. The reason probably is that almost all of them have stains small or large. If a dealer doesn’t specialize in linens, she usually doesn’t want to be bothered trying to get stained ones back to pristine shape.
I don’t exactly specialize in linens, but I do love them, and I consider stains a professional laundry challenge, so . . . .
Here’s what I came home with!
A card-table size Florida souvenir cloth. I love those blue . . . coconuts? giant dates? in the trees.
Part of the fun of going to Sage Farm is seeing how the best dealers merchandise their stuff. I always try to look at that. It’s a free education if you pay attention!
But a few smalls always catch my eye, too. Here are six of them from last weekend’s Sage Farm show. First, a McCoy iris vase displayed with other pottery. I don’t care that it’s McCoy, I just love the flutey shape, and the yellow. Because yellow is a happy color. (A vase identical to the green one behind the yellow McCoy is sitting on my mantel right now!) An almost-rusty steel window screen displays vintage postcards. Wouldn’t this be great in your kitchen for recipes and notes? Too bad rust isn’t my thing. Now if I found a white enameled steel version . . .
At the October Sage Farm show, one dealer had a big stack of these hot mats, in two sizes, shaped like bunches of grapes.
I thought they were made of crocheted puffs that were stuffed with fiberfill or something. And then I picked one up.