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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A Tale of Three Bargains for Three or More Tuesday!

It is Three Or More Tuesday, hosted by Tam at The Gypsy's Corner. Visit her here:

The Gypsy's Corner: Three Or More on a new day and a Surprise!!!

This is my tale of acquiring three things I am proud to have found at what I think are rock-bottom prices. Including free.

This house is larger than our last. What was enough furniture for our sweet brick Craftsman was not enough for That Old House! We needed furniture, and it's lucky we like things old.

So first goal -- a breakfront. A big breakfront, to hold china and stemware and all sorts of stuff. I searched Ebay and Craigslist until I found two I liked.

The Ebay item had an opening bid of 800-dollars. Ouch. I liked it, but I don't like anything that much! Lucky for me, it didn't sell. It didn't sell on its next go-round eith
er. Nor the next. Finally, I bid when it reached an opening of $200.00. And that's what we paid:

My husband and a friend from work, Andy, picked it up at its East Side Manhattan location, and brought it to That Old House.

I won't describe how hard it was for them to get it down our old stone steps and into the house, because mostly I had my eyes close
d and pretty much only heard some cussing and occasional yelps of pain.

It's by Saginaw Furniture, and it's big and it's pine, unusual because most breakfronts of its style and manufacture are mahogany. I think the pine goes well with the old floors in the dining room. That middle drawer folds down into a butler's desk, with little cubbies and things. The butler didn't come with it.

Another breakfront, smaller, and mahogany, beckoned from Craigslist:

It was the last item being sold in an estate sale, and there were no takers. I communicated -- a lot -- with the nephew handling the sale. I
couldn't pay the $400 he was asking, it was more than my self-imposed limit. And after all, I already had a breakfront, and two is one too many.

But we chatted, and I told him about our old house, and he finally said, "No one else wants this, and my aunt loved it. You take it. I know you will give it a good home." I protested, as I felt very awkward about this -- it had never been my intent to get it for free.

However, he was ready to call the junkman, and the piece would end up in a landfull. So, we took it.

I need to work on placing items on the shelves and on top -- it's all rather haphazard now -- but it's a sweet, compact piece. It likes living in our parlor, I think. And we have indeed given it a good home! It, too, has a butler's desk hidden behind that middle drawer. We have two breakfronts with butler's desks, and a butler's pantry now. All we need is the butler. Ummm... yeah.

The third treasure is another Craigslist discovery. I saw an ad f
or a needlepoint chair from a seller in a posh neighborhood nearby. I went, I saw, I loved, and I offered less than the asking price. I got it: $100.

It's in excellent vintage condition, lovely crisp carved frame, pristine needlepoint, and it is solid and sturdy and clean. The colors set the palette for the guest room.

I visit in that corner of this guest room nearly every morning, before going downstairs... just sit in the lovely old blue chair and spend a few moments, thinking. It's a peaceful room.

I'd already painted the walls Benjamin Moore's Cornsilk, a lovely soft yellow, but the blue and peachy-rose of the chair ga
ve me my accent colors. Serendipity.

And the picture, above, was taken Sunday at a Judy Collins concert. See the little "Annie" at the upper right hand corner? That's my daughter! She is part of a singing group at Ramapo College -- CantaNova -- and they sang back-up for Judy Collins at her two New Jersey concerts. Sorry, that's not three of anything for this Tuesday, but it's one big Mama brag. Ms. Collins was amazing, and so was CantaNova (of course!).


  1. I enjoyed seeing your three bargains. Each one is a great design of heirloom quality.

  2. Those were some true bargains! Love how you spend a few minutes every morn in that chair!

  3. I am so jealous of those beautiful hutches (that's what we call them) What is a breakfront? And the chair is just such a lovely shade of blue! Great bargains, I would never find such fabulous finds around this neck of the woods. Cindy

  4. Cass,
    Happy 'Three Or More' Tuesday.
    WOW - I'm sooooo envious what beautiful pieces and what bargains!!!! I've been searching our craigslist for month for a piece like the first one for our dining room but nothing so far. You are one lucky lady!!!! Thank you for participating in 'Three Or More' and have a wonderful evening,

  5. Love your why can't I find any???


    PS Your link on Tam's page doesn't work

  6. These "finds" are so inspiring! It does seem they belong in a wonderful old house. Great post.

  7. Wow, those are fabulous finds!
    I love the mahogany piece.
    It is so nice to have a lovely place to start each day.

  8. Your first bargain is gorgeous!! I can't believe that you got it for $200! That's incredible!


  9. Thanks for the info on the front of the secretary! Interesting. Love yours also...very nice. Thanks for stopping by the blog.


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