Vintage Tips – Three Cleaning Products for Thrift Store Vintage China (and other stuff, too!)

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Molly from Moishi Moishi told me that her grandmother Myrna would say, “The higher the hat, the closer to heaven.”  Well, I’ve got some heavenly thrift store cleaning tips for you!

When I first started my vintage china collection for Southern Vintage Table, I labored over removing the stickers, tape and permanent marker prices.  I would peel, scape and soak every dish to get that mark off!  Now, I use three products that make cleaning thrift store vintage china a breeze!

1.  Mr. Clean Magic Eraser.  This product is fantastic – it will quickly remove the permanent ink some thrift stores use for pricing and easily takes care of sticker glue and tape residue. It also does a terrific job of cleaning the bottoms of plates and other china so that when you are finished, the plate looks almost brand new!  Do be gentle with some china patterns, especially if they have gold layering.  I also use Mr. Clean Magic Eraser for other cleaning tasks.  Today I cleaned the outside of two vintage suitcases and removed most of the scuff marks.  They both look amazing all cleaned up and are now ready for my next event!

2.  Eucalyptus Oil.  This stuff will also remove sticky stuff on dishes.  Sometimes the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser won’t get the mark off so I’ll dab some eucalyptus oil on a paper towel and wipe it off.  It also smells nice and clean.

3.  Very fIne sand paper.  Some of the older china that’s crazed or china that’s unglazed on the bottom will soak in the permanent ink pricing.  Using a very fine sand paper and lightly sanding can sometimes do the trick. Be gentle. I have also sanded down chips or sharp places on glass dishes and some china so that the imperfection is almost imperceivable.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
These beautiful plates are clean and ready for your next event!

Hope these tips work for you. If you have any other hints or advice for cleaning thrift store finds, please share!

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Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

Vintage Feature: The Blue Vintage China Table

blue willow set
Clementine would be pleased that her Blue Willow teapots will be enjoyed by many admirers of her favorite china pattern.

What do The Andy Griffith Show, The Munsters and old Westerns have in common?  Well, yes, they are all midcentury classic television but there’s something even cooler – they share a common dining table setting,  the Blue Willow vintage china pattern. These famous shows set their table with this blue and white pattern because it is crisp, vintage and full of history. First designed in the 18th century, Blue Willow has been on generations of family dining tables and continues to be popular today.  Read more about this fascinating pattern on Wikipedia.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
As told in the Blue Willow legend, star-crossed lovers were transformed into doves after their tragic deaths. According to Wikipedia, these birds did not appear on the early willow patterns.

There’s something special about blue vintage china that many folks appreciate.  Blue Willow features dark indigo against white that’s so striking. Blends of light blue vintage china are soothing and inviting.  Vintage turquoise has a romantic flair while blues with greens, pinks and yellows present a cheery table.

Whether it’s the classic blue and white vintage china table setting, a myriad of blue vintage china stoneware patterns or a mingling of soft elegant blue vintage china patterns, your guests will love it.  Check out more blue vintage china patterns available at Southern Vintage Table on our Pinterest Board! plate

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Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

A Vintage Adventure – Sold to Number 268!

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
I found this in the box lot of dishes I got for $5.00. This certainly made up for the chair I didn’t mean to buy!

The seemingly small place was packed – with stuff, people and lots of chairs. I signed in and then made my way up to the front to take a look at the box lots. The items I came for were listed to go first so I wanted to make sure I was ready.  I sat down, listened and absorbed all the sounds and sights of the auction house. A gentleman sat next to me in a chair that was marked with his name – definitely someone who knew what he was doing – and I would be quickly thankful he did.

My hats came up. I raised my card with the number 268 but the auctioneer didn’t see me at first. Some of the folks at the front got worried for me so they let him know I was there. The rest was a bit of a blur, but I did end up winning the bid.  I wish I had a picture of my face when he said, “Sold to 268”.  I bet it was hilarious!  My friend then advised me to let them take the stuff to the side room so I could pick it up when I was ready to leave. Good advice.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
My husband remarked that this orange beauty was a bit over styled. Well, not if you want to be noticed!
Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental
Classic red and black with a little veil

He then showed me on the ticket where you could keep track of the items you won. He said it helped him keep from overspending his budget.  Yep – more good advice. My hands were shaking as I wrote down my first auction win.

I was a quick learner and started bidding on the other items I had seen in the box lots.  The pace is fast and you’ve got to have quick reactions.  I was so quick that I ended up with something I didn’t mean to win – don’t know how that happened – but I was thankful it was only $7.50.  I also learned that you don’t go back in the room to pick up your stuff but you have to wait outside the door – that lesson came a bit harshly but the lady brought my stuff to me with a somewhat apologetic face.

In addition to the hats, I also got a box lot of miscellaneous china and glassware – well worth my $5 bid, a chair – which I didn’t mean to win, and a $5 wrought iron aquarium stand that I’m going to turn into something cool.

I decided to leave before the big ticket items came up.  Baby steps, I thought.  It was my first auction, and undoubtedly, won’t be my last.  As I was leaving with my arms full of hat boxes, another gentleman said to me, “I could see you were having a good time in there!”  He must have seen my face…

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
These plates are incredibly beautiful and the teacups are nice, too!

These hats, plates, bowls and cups are available for your next tea party or family dinner at Southern Vintage Table!

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Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

A Southern Vintage Table Event: A Family Dinner

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The Riley’s celebrated Jamie’s life with his family at their home with his favorite meal.

Jamie was a dear friend of my sister’s husband. They had been best pals ever since they were toddlers and had remained friends through their teenage years and adulthood.  They were at each other’s weddings, coached their sons’ baseball’s teams together and played golf on weekends.  When Phil heard that Jamie had passed away one morning, it was a life changing moment.

In a flurry, Jamie’s boys were coming home with their families and arrangements had to be made.  My sister wanted to pay tribute to her husband’s best friend and his family in a way only she could do  – prepare her home styled meal she had made for Jamie every time he came for dinner.  The menu was meatloaf, pinto beans, squash and biscuits.  She asked me to set the table for her special guests which I really wanted to do, especially for Marie.  You see, Marie, the mother of Jamie’s three boys, helped our family through our most challenging months when my twin brother passed away last year.  As a masseuse, Reiki master and family friend, Marie’s healing methods helped all of us cope, including my brother, Mike.  We will always be grateful for her calming guidance and spirituality.

Sharon prepared the meal, rented the tables and chairs and we set the table for her guests.  This evening will be forever remembered by Jamie’s family as a time of deep sadness yet also of beauty and love, as their family begins their path to healing after losing someone they all dearly loved.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

A Vintage Adventure – A Collection Builds One Piece at a Time

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
My collection of green thumbnail tumblers begins with this one but I have several of the clear goblet pattern. It once came filled with Big Top peanut butter! We later found the cool tree bark pitcher at the local Goodwill.

It was our annual beach trip to Louise’s condo and all the yayas (Jami, Louise, Mary, Pat and me) were coming except for Cis, who was caring for her mother.  (Cis, we missed you!) This tradition is something we all look forward to each summer – hanging out with each other, cooking a seafood feast, talking school talk, watching a movie and sometimes even going on the beach.  For this trip, Jami and I added another diversion – thrift store hopping – although a few of the stores were anything but thrift, but they did have some beautiful vintage things that inspired us.

Our first stop was incredible – it was like a huge, dusty museum of vintageness.  Most things didn’t have a price and were covered by a thick coat of dust and grime.  The aisles were tight, the shelves were high and the piles were deep.  In other words, perfect – well, almost. The dust did get a bit obnoxious.

We were there for nearly 3 hours – looking mostly for china but marveling at all the cool stuff there, too.  Jami was on the hunt for the perfect tureen for her succulent garden.  We took our finds up to the front counter and quickly a pile was started.  In our collection were plates, teacups, glasses, a hat and a tureen without a lid. (Oops – that’s what happens when your hands are full and you have to move 10 things before you can get to what you wanted to see. They weren’t going to make us pay for the lid but Jami got the bottom for $2 which was the best deal we got!)

In the end, I got a few things, including some pink rimmed luncheon plates and two glasses.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Vintage Fruit Luncheon Plates

So, I started two collections (green thumbnail tumbler which goes perfectly with the amber ones I already had and the square luncheon plates) and added to my Big Top Peanut Butter goblet collection.  A fruitful adventure, indeed!

These treasures are available at Southern Vintage Table for your next gathering!

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Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

A Vintage Feature – “If you come to a fork in the road, take it.” Yogi Berra

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Beautiful vintage stainless steel flatware patterns!

Especially if it’s vintage!  These vintage stainless steel beauties are mid century patterns, mostly made in Japan.  I love the engraved patterns and when they are mixed and matched, the place setting is delightful!  Did you know that the knife was the first piece of flatware to be invented?  You probably would have guessed that one…

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

These early and mid century silver plated flatware patterns are also very lovely!   The process of adding a layer of silver, called silver plating, was invented in the mid 1800s in England.   This process has allowed many of us to enjoy the beautiful sheen of silver on our dinner table.

Southern Vintage Table has both stainless and silver-plated flatware available along with our vintage china, glassware and linens.

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Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

A Vintage Feature – We Love Toes and a Foot – On Dishes!

Vintage Rental NC

I have always loved dishes that stood tall off the table.  They had a regal air about them with their straight pedestal and flared foot.  As a child I didn’t know they were called compotes or footed dishes, I just knew I liked them.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Footed dishes (some folks call them compotes or pedestal dishes but I like footed way better) come in all shapes, colors and sizes

Now the toed dishes – they are just cute!  Some have pudgy toes and others are long and lean, but nonetheless, they add an adorable factor to the dish.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Toed dishes

When I’m out looking for new dishes for Southern Vintage Table, I can’t resist ones with a foot or ones with toes.  They just add elegance to the tablescape that everyone appreciates.  Here is a full view of some of our footed and toed serving dishes in our collection and be sure to check out more photos on our Pinterest board.

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
We have an extensive collection of these beautiful serving dishes!

These as well as beautiful vintage china, glassware, linens and flatware are available from Southern Vintage Table!

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Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC

News! News! News!

August, 2013  New Vintage Decor Board added on Pinterest

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Vintage purse and teapot pair up beautifully!

We have just added a new board to Pinterest featuring Vintage Decor items to enhance your vintage gathering.  From vintage purses to a distressed hat rack to a vintage radio, we have lovely items that will get the conversation started!

June, 2013 – Southern Vintage Table is now on Facebook and Pinterest!
We now have a presence on Facebook and Pinterest!  Visit us there for more information and photos.  Comments and “Likes” will be greatly appreciated!

Southern Vintage Table Facebook Page

Southern Vintage Table Pinterest Boards

A Vintage Adventure – The Vintage Treasure I Almost Missed

I love to go to the thrift stores.  It’s a modern day treasure hunt – you never know what might be there.  Routinely I look for wares for my business, Southern Vintage Table, and I have gotten pretty savvy over time as to what’s vintage and what’s not.

Well, one day I saw a collection of pretty dishes.  The gold details were prefect and the flowers looked hand painted,  but to me, the pattern just didn’t have that “vintage” look.  I must have studied them for some time, trying to figure out what to do.  My collection was growing and I wanted to be smart with each and every investment.  In the end, something told me to pick up a few pieces, just in case, because they won’t be there tomorrow if I changed my mind.

I chose a set of 4 plates, cups, saucers as well as the creamer and sugar dish.  When I got home and unpacked them, I looked them up on the internet.  Of course, you know the end of the story – they became my oldest pattern in my collection, discontinued circa 1918, according to a major tableware replacements company.

After doing a bit more research, the pattern, Azalea by Noritake, was also a give-away by the Larken Company for buying and selling their products. I also see some conflicting information about the pattern being produced through the 1930s.  But, no matter, it’s vintage and beautiful!

Southern Vintage Table Vintage China Rental NC
Azalea was one of the most popular midcentury china patterns.

I went back to the thrift store the next day to pick up the remaining pieces, but all were gone.  Needless to say, that’s the tricky part of thrift store buying that many of us know and love.

Lesson learned that day for me – I’ve got alot more to learn!

This beautiful pattern is available at Southern Vintage Table!