Friday, May 4, 2012

Fabulous Find Friday / N'awlins - Thrifting in the Big Easy

If you're a huge history nerd, as I am, you probably really like thrifting, which is basically what young people call antiquing to avoid sounding like their parents, because heaven forbid we should be anything like the former generation. Anyway, there is one store in particular here in New Orleans (well, technically in Metairie, if one is being picky) that I've gone to several times and have always found the most amazing things: Renaissance Interiors. I was going to put up some of the stuff I found last time I went but it just got swept under the "I'm supposed to be looking for a job" rug... Here is the stuff I saw on both trips:

First off, we have a pair of lobster traps. Feels like something you would see in an Abercrombie & Fitch.

This is an early-mid 20th century washer/dryer.

This is a type of fainting couch called a Duchesse Brisée, which means "Broken Duchess" in French (apparently the name origin is unknown). These were the original sectional sofa, and I suppose it came about when it became too difficult to lift ladies into the actual couches. Instead they would just sit her in the chair, lift her legs and push the rest of the couch under her...

Just a cute old-timey phone.

Here's something for you Puritans out there - a bible box from 1673. Yeah, you're reading that date correctly:

This was amazing - it's an index typewriter, an alternative to the typewriter that never really caught on like its cousin the typewriter. Can you imagine what computers would look like if these had become the business standard? Here's one in action.

I bought this for my dad (shhhh). It's an old-fashioned film editing device from when they actually used film in Hollywood (gasp!).

Guh. I flipped when I saw this - and the mid-century ashtrays? Yes, please. This is why I need a mansion.

This globe just exudes a sober, scholarly atmosphere, doesn't it? Oh, wait. It's a bar.

Here's a portable gramophone from around WWI.

Just a normal, regular lamp, right? Nope - that's a turn-of-the-20th-century fire extinguisher.

This was neat - though it took me a second to realize it was a mirror...!

Here we have something incredible. Many of you probably know what a hope chest is (if you don't, it's essentially where a bride-to-be put all of the clothes, linens, etc., she anticipates using in married life). Well, here is an example from 1750.

The decoration was beautiful, and I believe the "Marie" emblazoned on both sides wasn't her name but was added when she got married or "mariée" in French.

Now, not everything in the place was an amazing treasure... In fact, there were a few less-than-memorable items. Others were good fodder for nightmares:

For the low, low price of your soul you can have your very own Gladys!

Happy Cinco de Mayo, readers!


  1. rachel oporto =DMay 9, 2012 at 12:20 PM

    i would give my soul if that meant i could give my sister gladys!! that is awesome!

  2. Careful what you wish for - whether or not you gave it, she would take it!


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