“Fall” in Love with Library Card Catalog Cabinets

Nov 4, 2009 by

Although it’s been five years since I left the hallowed hallways of Berkeley, the fall always reminds me of the promise of new knowledge.  For the fall issue of UPPERCASE magazine (which you can still enjoy through a subscription), I was inspired by the quintessential symbol of  timeless wisdom: library card catalogs.  Of course, in the spirit of Poetic Home, my article is filled with ideas on how to repurpose these wonderful biblio-antiquities.

uppercase - library card catalog feature

Here is a closer look at the current rendition of my most recent library card catalog cabinet find.  It’s a cabinet of vintage curiosities for now, but I’m in the process of repurposing it for the baby’s nursery.

Mid Century Modern Library Card Catalog Cabinet

Does the fall remind you of back-to-school nostalgia too? It may be time for me to take a trip to the library this afternoon….

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Living Happily Ever After This Fall

Oct 29, 2009 by

spellbound slippers

“Ah!” our fairy godmother exclaimed.  “How could I forget the magic slippers?”

However, we would not see any of that glass slipper nonsense.  Our fairy godmother, who has been fashionable through the centuries, knew that only stilettos would suit a modern goddaughter.  And being an intelligent godmother, she fashioned from the House of Nature a pair of slippers – with cute ankle ties, nonetheless – that would not fall of any respectable lady’s feet.  Indeed, not walking barefoot was more important than leaving behind a “clue” about the transformed princess.  After all, with the population boom the fairy godmother has seen in the last century, it would be impossible for a modern prince to find his princess with just one shoe.  “That’s what Facebook is for,” she thought to herself.

And so our lovely fairy godmother waits in her fall fairytale, ready to come to the aid of any goddaughter looking for a modern “happily ever after!”

And on that note, I wish you a happy, happy Halloween friends!

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Jeweled Pumpkins Star in a Fall Fairytale

Oct 28, 2009 by

bewitching baubles - fall decor ideas

With the pumpkins ready for an instant carriage transformation, our fairy godmother started gathering baubles and regalia to adorn a needy goddaughter.  While she had no diamonds, emeralds, or rubies, she knew that with love and a wave of her magic wand, the rhinestones, pearls, and brass would transform into glittering beauty.

“Oh!  I must be getting old and forgetful!” the fairy godmother cried.  At the last minute, she pulled out her trusty antique alarm clock and set the bells for midnight.  “An ounce of preparation is worth a pound of magic dust,” she proclaimed.

However, our fairy godmother knew she was missing something else in her planning.  What could it be?  Chime in to help her remember what she’s missing, and tune in tomorrow for the final chapter of this fall fairytale.

(P.S.  If you don’t have time to carve your pumpkins for Halloween, why not adorn them with a few of your choice costume jewelry pieces?   Your dark sapphire and onyx pieces would look spooktacular!)

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A Fall Fairytale by Poetic Home

Oct 27, 2009 by

Once upon a time, orange pumpkins were touched by a magical godmother, who transformed the gourds into pale, whimsical pumpkins with a natural vintage patina.  While the fairy godmother had already completed her duty for her famed goddaughter, Cindy, she still had plenty of magic to share.

pumpkin centerpiece - fall fairytale

Just in case another poverty-stricken goddaughter needed to be transformed into a princess for just one night (we are, after all, in a recession), the godmother readied her collection of pumpkins.  To expedite the transformation from pumpkin to carriage, she repurposed her Victorian-inspired orchid magnifier into a ready frame for a royal carriage.

But the fairy godmother’s work is not done!  After all, she is all about preemptive planning.  What’s next for this fall fairytale?  Tune in tomorrow, as this story is to be continued….

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My Soul Mate: A Vintage Writing Desk

Sep 15, 2009 by

The adage “If you love something, set it free.  If it comes back, it was truly meant to be yours” is true — and I have definitive proof!


You may recall my 1930s ladies writing desk from My Favorite Vintage Things series.  Sadly, I had to sell the antique desk during the preparation for the move to Hawaii, as there was no economical way to ship this incredibly heavy wooden desk to the islands.

Imagine my surprise and utter elation, then, when I returned to San Diego — and my husband found the desk again!  Indeed, the lady to whom I had sold the desk was herself moving and had the desk listed for sale on Craigslist.  When we went to her home to pick up my desk, it was like all the stars cosmically aligned and all in the world was right (save the recession, disease, and global warming, that is).

Doesn’t my desk look happy to be back with me in my new home?  This MY desk — I had set it free, but it was truly meant to be mine!

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Fresh Vintage’s Favorite Things

Mar 24, 2009 by

For three reasons, I am delighted to welcome Colleen from FreshVintage today to share some of her favorite vintage things.  1) She has fantastic taste in vintage treasures.  2) I marvel over her scores of treasures that she finds for mind-blogging low prices.   3) Most importantly, she is the Conan O’Brian of the junking and antiqing world.  How can you not appreciate a vintage lover who shares her stool samples? (We’re talking about the antique furniture kind silly!)    Without further ado, here’s Colleen on the mic!


“This aqua painted shelf has that crackly alligator patina that is impossible to reproduce. At one point in its life, someone added another piece of wood to extend the top of the shelf. This makes it the perfect depth for a pair of fans that I found at a yard sale for a few dollars.”


“I purchased this folk art red schoolhouse at a yard sale five years ago. The woman who sold it to me said that a friend of the family had made it for her when she was a little girl in the 1930’s. It is difficult to tell from the photo, but it is rather large at 18 inches high. There was probably a school bell on the roof at one time, but it has since been lost.”


“My favorite part can be found when you open the doors. There are several rows of little benches and a rustic teacher’s desk hidden inside.”


“This painted orange tin was one of my first purchases when I began to collect vintage items for my home. I have an affinity for orange, so it was the color that first caught my eye. And I love the simplicity of the hand-painted daisies and grass.”

Thank you Colleen very much for sharing your wonderful favorite things! (If the schoolhouse goes missing, it wasn’t me!)

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