My mom’s visiting this weekend, so with a little coaxing she got me to head out for a day trip to Adamstown, PA— known locally as ‘Antiques Capital, USA.’ I left the kids with my husband where they had an exciting day of eating at a diner, seeing a movie in the theater, and swimming at the pool (I’m so boring, apparently, because that’s like a week’s worth of activities for me and he squeezed it into one morning). But with sunny skies beckoning, my mom and I set out to see what treasures we could find in a town packed full of antique and vintage goods.
I was in the mood to find some deals, especially after getting my thrifting fix on Saturday when I found this cute shot glass set– not that we need a shot glass set, but for a few dollars I could see it making an appearance or two over the next few years.
While there, I couldn’t help but oogle this desk with the vintage brass hardware that is SO hot right now. Seriously, three years ago would you ever believe brass hardware would be hot again? The desk was made out of laminate and not in great shape, otherwise I probably would have bought it… if just for that hot trendy brass hardware alone. 😉
Our first stop was Oley Valley Architechtural Salvage. If you were expecting to find chippy paint and rusty iron pieces, there’s some of that, but mostly it’s crowded floor to ceiling with priceless salvaged pieces. I’m talking full $20,000 mahogany back bars and built in wardrobes that cost $9,900 and this cabinet, with no price tag but such exquisite detailing and turned legs that I’m guessing it was in the several thousands of dollars:
There was SO MUCH of it– aisles were tight, and everywhere you turned you’d find massive andirons and huge wooden pieces and massive stained glass windows and doors. Signs pointed out that many of the antiques from the movie Lincoln were bought there, as were scores of other movie props. It was like a museum; certainly beautiful to look at and appreciate but nothing that belongs in a home with 2 preschoolers. On the way out, this industrial cart stopped me in my tracks, check out those wheels (which were really pretty in person):
Doesn’t it look like the coffee tables you see in the Restoration Hardware catalogs and in Houzz Lookbooks?! Like, literally. I just got this picture from a Houzz Lookbook.
We passed tons of huge antique malls and shops, and headed right for Renningers. It wasn’t their big extravaganza weekend, and the hot temps meant that dealers were already packing up their goods at 11AM. But I found a dealer with a box of great vintage costume jewelry pieces and he was willing to wheel and deal. Check out my haul; I plan to rework the earrings into magnets and pushpins, and the brooches into Stella and Dot type necklaces. That scorpion? I DIE.
And how could I resist this gold toned chevron/arrow necklace? It’s going right into my Etsy shop, once it get it revitalized (aka, once the kids are back in school).
By far my biggest score of the day was this HUGE vintage chocolate mold from the Wilbur Suchar factory. It was used to make 10 lb blocks of chocolate. Wilbur claims to have invented the Hershey Kiss first, but they call theirs a ‘bud’. It’s a Pennsylvania chocolate war! Anyways, I loved the look of it as a piece to go above my kitchen cabinets but since it was an impulse buy I couldn’t spend a lot. The piece itself was burning hot from being in the sun, realllly heavy, and I could tell the dealer didn’t want to lug it home. Even though he sold the 4 others for between $75-$100 each he let me talk him down to $25. He said he made his money on the other 4 and was willing to let it go so he didn’t have to pack it up again. Yippee!
The top of my kitchen cabinets are almost totally styled now with things I’ve collected these past few months. I have a few tweaks to make, but here’s a sneak peek of the cabinets from back when we were in the Inquirer a few weeks ago– though I’ve added more since that photo was taken. I’m so glad I waited for the perfect pieces to come to me, instead of forcing it by trying to find things to go up there all in one shopping trip.
We only hit about .001% of the antique stores and booths in Adamstown. It’s totally overwhelming, so I was happy with seeing some of Renningers and then it was time to eat a quick lunch before we wilted in the heat. On the way home, I forced a side trip to a store called Interior Alternatives in Morgantown. Can you see why I wanted to go? This is just one wall:
It’s a fabric outlet with great prices and fabric like Waverly so I was hoping they’d have the mystery fabric to match my swatch I’ve been carrying with me for the past few months:
No. Dice. Boo. Does anyone know that pattern? They also didn’t have any oilcloth, which I wanted to use when I recovered our two kitchen barstools. Bummer. But I did grab a yard of this green houndstooth because it matches the mystery fabric nicely. I’ll either use THAT to cover our barstools or it’ll become a nice pillow or two. 😉
That’s my day-tripping, vintage-hunting, mama-daughter day out adventure. I feel so lucky to have had a day out with my mom, with nothing on our agenda but to find the perfect thing that we didn’t know we needed before we found it. 😉
Last but not least, I’ll leave you with this:
Date night with my husband. Those are mini-donuts with three sauces: caramel coffee, raspberry vanilla, and chocolate. Hold me.
What did you do this weekend? Any adventures, treasure hunting, or mini-donut eating to share?
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