Saturday, April 30, 2011

Collecting for the Vintage Kitchen

I've been collecting for a few years now, and I have to say, I still don't have an overwhelmingly vintage kitchen. Areas of it are 'vintagey' (especially the Hoosier-style cabinet) but otherwise, it's pretty functional/cluttered. Part of my problem, I suppose, is that I get distracted easily; if I see something that I like, I buy it, even if it doesn't fit in my kitchen... yet.

That's the problem. I love so much stuff that I don't get any theme or overall look going. It's kind of haphazard. So in the interest of starting to really think about my collecting, I am doing some research, which I will share as I go along on my route to building the better vintage kitchen! First up... do I need a theme?

At C. Dianne Zweig's blog 'Kitsch 'n Stuff' (cute, right? 'Kitchen Stuff'?) she explores the use of a theme in her polka dots entry: Check it out; I just love the photos of the Fireking polka dot bowls! So retro! She suggests that narrowing to a theme makes the hunt for vintage more challenging, but more interesting, too.

Ideas for a theme for my kitchen could include narrowing the vintage hunt to a certain era, I suppose, or a single color theme, or some kind of harmony in pattern, but I love such a wide array of stuff. I've got old oil lamps, lots of vintage bowls, milk pitchers in the shape of animals, vintage Pyrex, tea paraphernalia, old kitchen utensils, vintage linens... and on and on. Narrowing it would mean breaking my heart by eliminating stuff! 

I'm going to have to find some way of making my collection actually look like a collection, though, so I will ponder this and make some decisions. I also collect teacups, and a friend made me a fabulous shelf that shows off eight of my best teacups and saucers as well as some of my cat-shaped teapots and creamers. I will post photos soon, as I love how it looks.

Tell me your tale; are there any collectors out there, of anything? Not just kitchen related, anything. How do you display your collection? Or do you let it become a happy jumble, like mine?


  1. I have some old kitchen things that were my Mom's and some from my Grandma's. They are hanging on a wall or sitting around. I have a collection of mugs on a shelf attached to the soffit that my husband put up for me. And in the china cabinet (late 1800s, from a Sears catalog) we have a collection of cruets. Don't "collect" much any more. I'm at that age when it's time to downsize. Kids won't want the cruets. Daughter will love the stuff from HER grandma and greatgrandma. Enjoy the chase!! I know how much we loved it.

  2. I try to be selective, but boy-o-boy is there a lot of stuff I love to 'select'!

    Now, what got you into collecting cruets, Rita???