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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Bargain Hunting in Washington!

This past weekend, I was delighted to visit MoS Washington on her home turf!  It was my first time spending the night away from baby boy (my husband tells me he has a newfound respect for single moms), so I opted for a short 24 hour trip.  We packed A LOT into that short little visit! 

First off, let me say that I am convinced that big cities where people have limited storage options are the best places to bargain hunt.  When you don't have 3000 square feet and a walk-up attic, you might end up donating great Aunt Margaret's dishes instead of holding on to them.  Or when you decide to purchase a new nightstand, you get rid of the old one to make room for the new one.  I think the same is probably true of Craigslist being better in urban areas as well, although in NC we do have the advantage of having the furniture industry right at our fingertips.

Back to the weekend...  We didn't make it to her apartment from the airport without a stop!  Sloans and Kenyon in Chevy Chase has a fantastic assortment of well-priced antiques and collectibles.  I found this ceramic foo dog tray for $18.  Aren't the colors fabulous?  I, for one, can't have enough little trays and seem to have them on every surface in my home.  They are perfect for holding keys, change, jewelry, and so much more!

Next up was the St. Albans Opportunity Shop.  You duck down some dark stairs into a church basement, and wow, it didn't disappoint!  MoS Washington found this pair of ceramic monkeys for $4 each!  They are perfect for her "sophisticated Florida" style!

I spotted a stack of three of these little blue and white plates for $2 each.   As I picked one up to examine the "Made in Japan" that was hand-painted on the back, someone grabbed another one out from under me.  Thankfully MoS Washington was there to pick up the third so I have a matching pair.  I think there must be really quick turnover at this shop!  If you see something good, you have to act fast.

How cute is this miniature milkglass urn?  It was $2, and MoS Washington suggested the perfect use for it that I will share with you on Friday!

This $5 hand-carved little elephant box is perfect for baby boy's nursery.  It is just the size for his hospital bracelets from when he was born!

My fanciest purchase at the St. Albans shop was this sterling (really!) compote for $15!  Frustratingly enough, the folks at the airport forced me to check my bag at the last minute, and despite (or rather because of) my pleas that my bag contained something fragile, the compote arrived a little bent up.  I think I have straightened it out pretty well, but still, I was a little disappointed. 

MoS Washington and I have been debating all week whether we should share our next stop with y'all.  We flipped a coin and decided to tell you about our best kept secret, the Georgia Avenue Thrift Store in the Brightwood area.  It's not for the faint of heart.  If "roughing it" for you means a trip to Homegoods, this place isn't for you!  But if you are willing to get down in the trenches and dig, you can find some real gems!

As soon as we walked in the door, MoS Washington spotted this elephant end table.  What a find!!  I have a (new) white wicker one in baby boy's nursery that I love, but this one is older and has so much character!  She was able to use her lawyerly negotiation skills to get the price down to $15!  She sees a paint job in this little guy's future- stay tuned! 

I found this large, heavy brass turtle door knocker for $10.  It will be perfect for my inlaws' beach house, although I secretly wish I could keep it for myself!

MoS Washington decided to buy this pair of framed sea life prints.  For less than $3 each, I know she will find the perfect place for them! 

After completing a loop around the store, I went back to the glasswear section one last time.  A bowl on a low shelf caught my eye.  It looked very familiar.  Because I received one exactly like it as a wedding gift.  From MoS Washington.  In a big blue box from Tiffany's.  Truly I think my heart skipped a beat when I picked it up and saw the "Tiffany and Co" etched on the bottom.  The bowl was in brand new condition, with its "Tiffany and Co, made in Germany" sticker still in-tact.  We tossed around lots of stories as to how this brand new crystal bamboo bowl from Tiffany's made its way to Georgia Avenue.  We'll probably never really know, but we do know that it came home with me!

Did I mention that it was $9.99?

After our success at Georgia Avenue, we headed over to Ruff and Ready, which MoS Washington posted about a while back, right here.   Sadly, we struck out at R&R.  After St. Albans and Georgia Avenue, Ruff & Ready felt so overpriced, ha.  But we did head next door to another consignment shop, where I spotted this fabulous shell mirror on the wall!

Of course it wasn't marked, so this time I got to use my lawyerly negotiating skills and get the price down to $20 (yes, the whole "walking away" thing really works!).  We posted about our love for shell mirrors, furniture, and accessories here.  And based upon the prices I've seen, I think I got a deal!     

Do you like what you see?  Stay tuned for Friday's post on how we style these fabulous finds in our homes!  We know that can be a challenge for people, to look past the grimy thrift store shelves and imagine these pieces living at home with you.  We certainly have to commend Eddie Ross, who has done a fantastic job of encouraging people to branch out and make thrift store treasures work with their personal style. 

We can't wait to share our thrifty styling with you on Friday!


Pemberley said...

Well done! Nice loot.

Emily Kathleen said...

What great finds! The crystal bamboo Tiffany bowl is TDF!

I adore milk glass and I can't wait to see what you do with the mini urn!

eddieross said...

Wow great finds!!!! Thank you so much for your sweet mention! I can't wait to see thenm in your house!

Risa West said...

thanks for mentioning all these shops. i recently moved to the DC metro area and left everything back home. so i have been using thrift shops to make our home feel like home again. now i have more places to check out.

tarheel said...

oh my gosh, I want those shell prints!! Under $3?! And the Tiffany bowl. Fab. We don't have anything like that in Charlotte.

Chelsea Gwynne said...

Wonderful finds! I love the milk glass urn! a bud vase?

Sarita said...

Those shell prints are amazing!! What a find!

Kitsch-y-Cool Vintage said...

I grew up in the Wash DC area, so it was so nice to see that some of my old shopping haunts are still around! One of my favorites that I still visit when I return to the area is the Pennywise thrift in Vienna...I think I outfitted most of my first apartment from there!

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