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Royal Pain

June 20, 2010

Cherry Valley haul

I receive email notifications of local estate sales, and last week I got one with very interesting preview pictures … one especially caught my eye: it showed the shell of a vintage pickup with a huge painted-metal crown atop its cab. I wanted that crown, bad. Only thing was the sale would start on a Friday, and the sale organizers were withholding the address. Drat! I hate the Friday sale habit these organizers insist on (what about those of us who work?!), and I was crazed to know where the sale was. Finally, Wednesday this week, it was revealed the sale would be in Cherry Valley, a small rural town of less than 10,000, off the 10 Freeway and about a half-hour away. I crossed my fingers and hoped that pickup’s crown would be waiting for me when we arrived Saturday morning, early and first-in-line. Well, it was not to be. This morning when we got there 20 minutes before the sale opened at 8 a.m., the crown was nowhere to be seen. Once the caution tape was removed and we were allowed into the sale,  I rushed to ask the organizer where the crown I’d seen in the picture was. He informed me that someone had bought it yesterday, late in the day (FRIDAY!), and he added that it had been really cool, too. *sigh* Oh, well … It was a good sale, actually, and the picture above is the stuff we came home with. And while it’s great junk, it’s not that cool crown — that elusive object of desire that spoke less of the royal court and more about some down-on-it’s-luck carnival, and that I really, really loved. See more, and read a description of the haul, after the jump …

From soup bowls to noir

Lots. Of. Stuff. Inside and out, at this sale. Not really a true estate sale (no one had died; the property was being sold) there was a store, and a large yard to explore. There were tables-full of everything from books, to kitchen items, to LPs, dishware, tools, and you-name-it. I like this kind of sale; it’s fun walking through again and again and finding something new with each pass …

Not sure how they roll

A unique feature was the number of vintage trucks, cars, and even a hippie bus, for sale. In various states of decrepitude, they were still very interesting to look at. Paul and I both really liked the small vintage travel trailer, with its paneled-wood interior, complete with tiny kitchenette. Wouldn’t it make the perfect on-site retreat, or guest suite for an overnight visitor?

This + that = weird

Along with the crown that got away, there were other one-of-a-kind pieces to enjoy looking at, if not to buy. As with most conglomerations of junk for sale, whether at swap meets, flea markets, or estate sales, things find themselves in weird juxtapositions I call accidental surrealism. The top photo in this group includes not only impressive succulents but also an old circus lion’s cage, like the one animal crackers are modeled on. At lower left, we find a rather chintzy etagere displaying both an earless decoupaged cow and a mismatched pair of hands, one male, one not. Lastly, a comely Miss leans wistfully (and armlessly) under a tree, while an ‘African’ mask seems to cover its eyes with nearby leaves, lest he be caught ogling. Two satisfying estate sale moments: a woman going through my items in the ‘hold’ area and pointing out that I’d gotten “all the good stuff “;  and a man and his wife rushing over to me as I loaded the car, saying: “Not the bull — we saw him yesterday and drove all the way back for him!” Sorry, people — I don’t get the crown, you don’t get the bull!

Fun sale, here’s the haul, from top left: sculptural metal thing on a wooden base; 50s metal plant stand (fiberglass bullet planter not included); heavy metal grinding wheel (used as table top); curvy metal thing, probably lamp base; pot saucer (table top, again); diamond-shaped black metal stand; 4 etch-y Colin Cowie bowls; whethered fence post with graphic punch-outs;  rusted metal bull with black rubber head (score!); rusted steel trough planter; small wrought-iron plant holder (with horseshoe); assorted rusted barrel rings; two old Chevy hubcaps (weathered and pleasingly distressed); a very heavy electrical meter cover that kind of looks like an 80s New Wave cartoon character.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. June 21, 2010 3:00 am

    Lordy! And your ‘haul’ all looks so good together…a stylish little vignette!

  2. mattisalomaki permalink
    June 22, 2010 1:43 pm

    I am drooling over here. That is the most awesome looking sale..ever. You know, apparently Friday is a great day to have a sale. When we sold everything before moving out to CA, we held a sale on Friday and Saturday. The Friday was packed all day from 7am – 6PM when we had to cut people off.

    • reubix1 permalink*
      June 22, 2010 3:09 pm

      I understand the Friday sale, and have taken advantage of it the couple of times I’ve been off on a Friday to get to one, but, gawd! I lost that awesome crown … oh, well…

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