Sunday, September 21, 2014

In Search of Ghosts

I mentioned before that I am working on plans for a ghost walk to be held in my town of Ripley--I call it my town since it's the one closest to us and where I do most of my shopping. I thought I knew the history, basically, of this town but I am finding I know just the tip of the iceberg and as I search for ghost stories connected with the area, the history is becoming pretty important.

I don't know about other storytellers or ghost story collectors, but I need to know the place where the events happened. That means digging into online records, books, genealogy and even those sites with the black background and flashing lights and creepy lettering. Folklore, fact, legend, hearsay, court records--it's all grist to the storyteller's mill.

And I have found some things that are becoming stories, tales from the early settlement of the area to the Civil War to the Victorian era. Later than that I will not search because there may still be relatives living who could be offended by telling any more recent events. As I work I find in every case that I need to know more, and so back to the digging I go.

Fortunately, I am aided by two knowledgeable ladies and quite a few other people who know the history of this area. One of my companions on this story-seeking journey is a local writer who is looking over my stories and editing them to add more of what I call the "chill factor." The other lady who has offered assistance is also a writer, working on a book about West Virginia's last public hanging, an event that happened in our town. She has rich background material that will really fill out the tour with descriptions of the town at a specific time, biographical information, and so on. I am blessed to have these two partners in crime to help get these stories ready to tell on October 10th and 11th.

There are others who are helping out too, with resources, phone numbers, books and more. I am almost finished writing the stories; the next step is finding the key elements I want to include in the telling, and that all-important "universal truth" that makes the story hit home for anyone who hears it.

Tomorrow I'm on the road again, and I am hoping these stories will be rolling around my subconscious while I'm away so that when I come back to them I will have fresh insights.

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

The Spencer Booth

This has been a busy week with the booths; not just stocking them but also painting and pricing things. We didn't expect to be back at our Spencer booth today but we found this amazing buffet yesterday afternoon and decided it needed to go straight to a booth rather than trying to store it. And the only booth with any space for it was the one in Spencer.

I love the detail on this, and it still has all the original pulls, too. Why isn't my house big enough for it?!

 I enjoy arranging things in my booths. This one I wanted to give a warm feel with a hint of fall colors, so I chose a lot of ruby and amber pieces.

And remember the green sideboard I painted this week? It's now in the booth and is also sporting a fall look.

This booth is pretty full, but I still have space on the wall, and in the two china cabinets in this area.

A pretty cobalt-edged tea set is called Queen's China and was made in England. I picked it up for a song and almost priced it way too low. I took a few minutes to look it up, and my goodness! The amber candle holders are Fenton's thumbprint pattern.

I may take this old chest of drawers home if it doesn't sell in the next couple months. It would be stunning if we refinished it, but right now we don't have time to take it on. Maybe this winter it will be one of our projects, although I hope someone just buys it as is and does the refurbishing themselves. We've got plenty lined up to work on already.

Glass, glass, glass, how I love it! The blue piece on the left kept me busy trying to find its maker and age. Finally a Facebook vintage glass group identified it as Kemple Glass Company of Kenova, WV, a company in business from 1945-1970. Kemple used old molds of McKee glass, which is why this confused me--the pattern and style looked out, but the color seemed wrong. The middle one is, I believe, by Jeannette and called "Lombardi"--made in the 50's. The last is Indiana Glass' diamond point pattern.

And here is the little gossip bench I painted this past week, all settled in to our other Spencer booth.

I like the way it looks with that red and ivory Hoosier cabinet. I pulled a lot of fall colors into this booth too.

We picked up the small drop-front desk last week; it's a perfect size for a kitchen or bedroom desk.

Here's a better look at the little desk. I had some wiggling to do to get everything into my spaces this week.

A few more additions to the booth: old tin canisters and a sweet little green spice rack. We lucked out yesterday--we went to the local Bargain Days flea market (only held a couple times a year) and although there were few vendors, there was one lady who had tables full of things from her mother's house. We picked up quilts and quilt tops, crockery, thimbles, and a lot of kitchenware at absolutely dirt cheap prices. I took some of it to the booth after giving it a good washing. These canisters were from that lot.

Another small shelf in this booth could still hold a few more things. Next trip I'll be reorganizing this one.
That's all the photos I took today. There were a few people browsing so I was limited a bit by what I could take. Next trip perhaps I'll be able to take more.

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

Friday, September 19, 2014

The Steel Kitchen Cabinet: Finished

And done! This cabinet is now ready to take to our Ravenswood booth as soon as one of our furniture pieces is off layaway and out of the booth so we have space.

 I love its clean lines. The top is Formica, the kind with those little gold speckles in it, and it's in very good condition with just a few knife marks in it.

Oops! Sorry about the shadow! That's my camera, if you haven't guessed. It was a lovely morning! Don't you just love those retro chrome handles?

The insides of the drawers are in really good shape, very clean with just a few rust spots here and there.

And the bottom is the same way. Someone had put contact paper in the top shelf so that really helped protect it from scratches and damage. Even the very bottom is looks pretty good.

There is just so much storage in this thing! I think the big middle drawer above would be perfect for dishtowels and hot pads...or no, maybe for lids...or for cooking supplies we always need right at hand, or...the possibilities are endless. And just think how many pots and pan would fit in that cavernous bottom.

Ah me. Can't keep it so off it will go soon. In the meantime, it will be gracing my living room because there is nowhere else to store it! The life of a junker. But I am glad we got this cabinet all cleaned up and ready for its next home. Now it's on to that chest of drawers (or Chester Drawers, as someone called it on one of those buy-sell-trade sites).

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.
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