belt buckles

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Brooklyn, 2001

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A Tale of Two Turntables

It was the best of finds, it was the worst of finds. Linda spotted the first one at a school sale (like a neighborhood sale inside an elementary school) and thought we'd finally found the turntable that would end the seemingly yearly trading-up of yard sale turntables. A Bang & Olufsen Beogram, made in Denmark! ($10)We brought it home, hooked it up, but out came awful, scratchy noises- the unfortunate sign that the needle might as well be a shard of beach glass, and finding a new replacement needle online was like looking in a virtual haystack. But then yesterday we were driving through Scarborough and Linda saw a yard sale sign reading "treadmill, waterbed" and explained to me as I kept driving away from it that "waterbed" means 70's and "treadmill" means "in shape", and combined there could be some excellent things- along the lines of vintage Sharper Image, and Playboy's 11th-hour Santa gift pages. And lo and behold there on the driveway was a pile of Harman Kardon rectangles with a Beogram RX on top. ($4 for all) What luck! What are the odds- we're just about to possibly break down and spend $$$ for a new stylus when here's yet another Bang & Olufsen turntable with the elusive MMC5 needle! But when we hooked this one up it sounded like the needle was made out of marshmallow, so alas, we're back where we started. However they do look great, at least. And far, far better than last year's.

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Today we took a trip up to Lewiston Maine, and while we we there we stopped at a yard sale, a Salvation Army, and the Marden's Offprice. The yard sale was a bust, but the usually stale Salvation Army actually had us needing a cart, and the Marden's was like walking into a time capsule. Last stop was an excellent lunch at the Milton Glaser/Love Boat-typefaced Italian Bakery.

Linda walking towards disappointment


The Salvation Army cart filled with old Ski-Doo helmets and a mint condition Stokke Balans Variable, which used to seem to me the height of nerdyness, but I now see as very sophisticated Scandinavian design.


The Marden's Offprice. Where have these posters been for the past 30 years to suddenly appear here, in a half price bin? (Sorry Loni and Cheryl, we opted for Farrah.)


Pappa Bouna! (what little Italian kids say): The Italian Bakery

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Locd of the Rings

Keep on Tolkien!
I can't even explain why I have so many of these.
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We drove down to New York and on the way detoured over to my parents' house in Connecticut to preview their yard sale. Among the things we bought (back) was this old copy of  Irving Penn's Moments Preserved, for $1. Penn is the master of composition and still life, and his portable studio with the canvas backdrop is eternally inspiring. If you're in Los Angeles this September, The Getty Museum is having a massive retrospective. 

also at the tag sale: 

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Pucci Stationery Set

From this swank estate in Buffalo, a beautiful old set of Pucci stationery- 25¢! (and unfortunately written on the box). I've stopped using them to send letters as there's only a few left and I think I'd like to save them for a letter to a future hypothetical daughter or granddaughter. 

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R.I.P. Bulk Trash Pick-up

Portland Maine had an amazing bulk trash pick-up. Twice a year it was a blow-out event that seemed like ½ the town was putting stuff on their curb and the other ½ was picking it up. John enjoyed bulk trash pick-up tremendously and never tired of driving around for hours, looking for the perfect find. He always found incredible things and they came in especially handy for “Tossed & Found”. Unfortunately as of last year Portland eliminated the bulky item festival due to budget cuts.

John sifting through a pile of household debris with the guidance of the curious homeowner.
An incredible example of how not everything found on the street is trash: we came across this treasure trove of pottery lined up neatly on a wood shelf under a free sign. Signed "Jeffery Lipton", he is obviously very talented. If this is what he's throwing out, imagine what he's keeping.
I'm not quite sure what to say about this huge mooring ball John dragged home except that he absolutely loves it.
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Ludwig Sander

This is one of the first things I ever bought at a yard sale. About 30 years ago, from a tag sale in Ridgefield Ct, it's an oil on canvas titled "Small Blue", by Ludwig Sander. The tag on the back states that in March of 1959, from The Art Rental Gallery in Washington DC you could have bought it for $200, or rented it for $15. I think I paid $10. It wasn't in the best of shape- the paint was all crazed, and years traveling with me have added a few chips and patina, but it does have a nice old vs. new look to it now, and seems more like an object than a painting.

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Gerald Thurston lamp

a nice old Gerald Thurston lamp was $3 at a yard sale
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natural high

Found rolled up inside an old prescription bottle at the Melrose/Fairfax flea market ten years ago. I was going to use it as a prop for a hippie-esque room we designed for the opening of Anthropologie Tampa in 1999, but it was just too cool to leave there. However I did use it on the cover of the store opening report. 
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love in the afternoon

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World of Exteriors

Biddeford Pool, Maine

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sunglasses collection

Since the the beginning of time I’ve been collecting sunglasses. In honor of spring I’m posting my collection. Despite losing my first pair ever to a high school crush (Shane, if your reading this, I’d LOVE to have my Oakly Frogskins with the fire lenses back!) i’ve been lucky enough to still have pretty much every pair I’ve owned. The collection continues to grow, not only do I find new ones all the time but I rarely pay more then a couple of dollars per pair. About a year ago John & I bought a lot of 80’s Iski and Jean-Claude Killy Bolle’ sunglasses at a defunct 5-and-Dime (last 3 columns on far left). Pin It

score of the week

This pair of awesome wicker peacock chairs found at a yard sale up in Brunswick. $50 for the set (including the stool). Pin It

Florida Keys

Spring is here, and finally it's yard sale season again. We spent the fall and winter putting the finishing edits on our book "Wary Meyers Tossed & Found", and then celebrated by driving down to the Florida Keys, where Linda's parents' put us up in their beautiful basement. The days were spent going to the beach, and thrift shops, and the weekends yard saling and checking out interesting architecture, wondering why there aren't any round rotating brutalist houses or Lego-like postmodern chateaux in Maine. Nights were spent painting my father in-laws fishing buddy's wife on a swordfish bill. Yard saling there wasn't as great as in previous years, but Linda found some nice Patrick Nagel prints and enough Kino sandals to last a lifetime.

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Virgin Mary

Up in Fort Lauderdale, after a disappointing Sunrise Swap Shop (we went on a friday) we headed down to the equally disappointing Salvation Army by the highway, but then were blessed with some real salvation when we parked next to this Virgin Mary stain gracing the side wall of the Habitat Re Store. Inside was a mint condition Kohler low-profile porcelain toilet and matching bidet in sleek jet black, the kind you'd see in ultra modern interior design from the 70's. Score! Although upon closer inspection, the sleek black turned out to be just dark blue, so we passed. But I still have faith that on its own closer inspection, the stain is not just a stain. Pin It