19 May

A Tale of Trash in Two Cities

close up carving detail

Lately, the weather in southeastern Wisconsin has been all over the board. For those of you who live in an area that doesn’t see much change in temps from spring to summer and fall to winter come hang out with me – you’ll probably experience all four seasons in one day.

This past Friday I managed to get a sunburn while it snowed 15 miles south. A couple of days before that I was sweating bullets in the garage while tornado sirens blared. About two weeks ago I had to skip my weekly curb surf rounds due to early morning sleet and hail.

Although it certainly didn’t feel like it, the next day the kid and I headed down to visit my folks for Spring Break. It’s about a 3-hour drive to a small town of 1500 people. The last time we went for a visit I spent most of the time bringing a vintage wardrobe back to life so this time I planned on visiting family and friends.

Funny thing about plans though…

About half an hour after we’d settled in my little brother popped over and made mention of the town’s curbside pickup scheduled for the following morning. I perked up – wait, what? My mom insisted nothing would be set out until the designated 6:00 pm start time yet as I cruised up and down side streets at 2:00 pm I immediately came across these three vintage wooden chairs. One was stamped ‘Grace Bible Church’ along the back and all had years-worth of dust and cobwebs.

vintage church chairs

I’m pretty sure I lapped that small town ten times in the course of 2 hours and while most of the stuff was trash, I was fortunate to find a really cool old rocking chair.

antique rocking chair

The guy at the antique place uptown estimated it being from the late 1800’s (however I’m guessing the shitty paint job is Circa 2010). If you look closely you can see the floral stencil along the back top rail.

large hinged box

Probably not an antique yet pretty cool in its own right was this large, hinged wooden box just hanging out on a dirty mattress. That’s duct tape and a nickel glued to the top.

old wooden table

I’m not sure if this is a dainty side table or a stool for a very, very lightweight person. The top is slightly curved so I doubt anything could be set on it without being off kilter but I can’t imagine it would be sturdy enough to allow anyone to sit on it. It would make for a perfect feline perch though.

I had come across a really nice coffee table that didn’t need much work but passed it up thinking someone might really need it. Sure enough, when Mom sent me back out for it, it was already gone. Apparently I wasn’t the only one out treasure hunting.

While we were out of town, the handyman I had install plumbing and electrical in the basement shop dropped off a Lane table he thought I might be able to do something with.

Lane side table

And a couple of days later I scooped up a chest (along with a random drawer) the neighbors set out on the curb.

short dresser

At the same time I noticed a large cardboard box taped up and laying on the ground. Four days later the trashmen had come and gone yet the cardboard box was still on the curb. I had no idea what was inside but I tossed it into the back of the SUV and took it home.

Imagine my surprise when I opened up the box to find this…

vintage full size mirror

close up carving detail

By the way, all the paint in the mirror’s reflection? Yep, nearly full and left on the curb after someone’s rummage sale.

I guess the weather isn’t the only thing fickle ’round these parts.

4 thoughts on “A Tale of Trash in Two Cities

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