Possibly it’s been awhile?

1 Oct
That's right.

That’s right.

Hi. Remember how I was pretty good about updating the old blog, here…and then I got a job and I got busier and busier and then, yeah, notsomuch with the updates? And then, like, a year went by? Well, it happens, people. Look how much jadeite I managed to collect when I wasn’t blogging! So much I had to buy a cabinet to put it in. I blame Pinterest.
010 All this stuff went into the booth this week. Except for the pink clock. That one stayed right here with me.
014 I couldn’t keep these guys, though. Mother and I found them at the World’s Longest Yard sale. Their names are Poncho and Lefty and they are in the booth.
018 This is me at the World’s Longest Yard sale. I bought lots!
This is Mother. She was a trooper. The World’s Longest Yard Sale is very long! And hot.
Isn’t this cart cute? I already sold it.
034And in case you have been wondering what is up with my unpaid helper, she has grown 6 inches. And she still doesn’t like the flea market.

Mrs. T

Estate sale news

19 Mar


Hey y’all…we’re working on an estate sale in East Nashville this weekend at work that some of you local vintage enthusiasts who occasionally read my blog won’t want to miss….it’s on Estatesales.net. It’s one of those little old East Nashville houses where the owner literally did not throw away anything for 60 years. And yeah, some of it is garbage (I’ve racked up our highest trash hauling bill in recent memory for this sale…) but UNDER the garbage is a lot of cool stuff. The house has a kitchen on each level–one in the attic and one in the basement, with vintage appliances and kitchen stuff in each…lots of vintage clothing (Lisa!), vintage Christmas décor (Rae, Eartha!), vintage glassware, barware…vintage plates from various states–who collects those? I went through it today…it starts Thursday a.m., so be there early if you are coming. Address on estatesales.net, or if you get the newsletter from my work, you can see the address there. I’m actually working the sale on Thurs. because we are a little short-staffed, so say hi if you see me!  xoxo, LaurenT


Jadeite Akro Agate Tea Set

31 Jan
Hello, beautiful

Hello, beautiful

Hmm…what’s this? A child’s tea set? That I found at the January flea market? It is a well-known fact that I can’t resist retro kitchen toys. I love them. I want to buy ALL of them. But sadly, I am too old for toys and I don’t have unlimited room.

Not green glass. Jadeite. I know.

Not green glass. Jadeite. I know.

But it will be hard to sell this set, manufactured by the Akro Agate Co., in Clarkesburg, West Virginia….because it is jadeite. And you know how I feel about the jadeite.



So…this is adorable. And in the original box, with the killer-diller retro graphics. UGH. Whyyyy must I sell it?? Well, I will tell you. Because the booth seems to be moving a stupid amount of merchandise and I need to keep up with it, for profitability and all that nonsense. Whatever. Who wants to have a tea party before it goes to the booth??

Other people want to be warm, too, for cryin' out loud!

Other people want to be warm, too, for cryin’ out loud!

Also, any thoughts on how to get this dog off the heating vent so that it can be warm in my living room? She’s living on this vent. It’s not okay. xoxo, Mrs. T

Happy New Year!

5 Jan

disney4 Hi there! We spent last week with my parents and children in Florida, which was not quite as warm and sunny as I would have preferred but still very fun. Here we are at Disney Studios…I always like the 1980’s-does-’50’s charm of the park’s Prime Time Café, but we never eat here anymore because the menu isn’t actually that great. I picked the Brown Derby this year, but Mother and I actually like the Drive-in restaurant the best…the monster movies are too fun.  Disney Studios has the best theming if you like retro…the lobby décor of the Tower of Terror is pretty much my favorite thing in the whole park (the ride is fun, but I actually go to see the lobby.
010 If you know me, you know that I cannot resist a ridiculous handbag. Bejeweled, themed, tacky…if it’s something that most people look at and say, “I would never carry that”, the more likely I am to fall head-over-heels in love with it. So, when I saw that there was a Disney-themed Dooney & Bourke bag with retro-looking graphics? Yeah…I am powerless to resist that sort of thing. There’s really nothing I can do about it. I wish I could quit you, tacky handbags! But I can’t.

Every blog I read seems to be all about the new years resolutions. Which I think is awesome. I’m a big fan of resolutions and goal-setting and it makes me happy when other people get equally enthusiastic about it.  One of my resolutions for this year is to dress up more–and especially to wear the vintage or vintage-inspired things I like, even if I don’t have a reason. I have a lot of skirts and dresses, and I like to buy them…but when it comes time to get dressed in the morning, I think I just default to jeans and a knit top because it’s comfortable. And also, I really hate it when people ask me what I’m all dressed up for, as if they can’t imagine that I would possibly have somewhere to go to that would warrant dressing up. (I don’t. I go to work and Kroger and that’s all. But still.) Honestly, after several days of people-watching at the various Florida theme parks and traipsing through several airports, I’m becoming convinced that dressing up is possibly the most sartorially outside-of-the-norm thing that you can do. People who are dressed up DO look out-of-place…because it’s really not what everyone is doing.  It’s interesting to me that I no longer really notice things like facial piercings and those earrings that stretch out your earlobes…people who have them just seem to kind of blend in with the crowd. Large tattoos? Who doesn’t have those, anymore? Dyed pastel-colored hair? You can buy the dye at Target so why not? Not that I have anything against any of these things, but it’s that what used to be considered counterculture is now just kind of the norm, in my opinion, and dressing up, which went totally unnoticed 50 years ago, has become a little on the weird side. I don’t know…it is interesting to me to think about it. Also, I’m not the sort of person who likes to stick out in a crowd. I like to blend in. Which makes it easier to not bother with the dressing up…but anyway, I’m going to work on it.  I recently read a memoir about a women in the Pacific Northwest who wears a corset and a sort of nouveau-Victorian outfit every day. I’m not going that crazy. But I will endeavor to wear skirts more.  Okay, writing this out makes me think that I am probably way more self-conscious than I need to be.

So, happy new year to you, and I hope that yours is off to a great start! The Mister and I are actually taking a big trip this week that we’ve been looking forward to for a long time. I will look forward to sharing pictures with you when we return. xoxo, Mrs. T

Booth update

23 Dec

asv Season’s Greetings!

The Mister and I have worked extra-hard on the booth this month because we sold some furniture pieces in November…the red Nu-Maid Hoosier-style cabinet and the red-and-white dinette set found a new home (we suspect that they were purchased for a new restaurant in East Nashville, but do not have confirmation–we’ll let you know when/if we do, though!). November was my biggest month since the booth opened, and December has been pretty good, too…we have been scrambling to source enough saleable vintage to keep the mix fresh, given our busy schedules. ASV 12.21.13

Here’s me at the booth…in my favorite horse sweater and $10 flea market skirt (wool, lined, circa 1950’s with union label…totally mint, very warm!).

The Mister recently sent a picture of our kitchen to the Big Chill folks and they posted it on their Facebook page. That was fun, but when you put yourself out there, you are always opening yourself to mean-spirited or critical comments. We got a few. big chillSome people thought that the black-and white tile was too cold. Some people thought the vent was placed too high (it is, we know!). Some people thought that the green wasn’t good and they would have chosen another color (ah, do you think I didn’t agonize about the color? I did, oh, I did!) But other people “got” it. Some people loved it. And all I can say…is that you really do have to create the house that YOU love. I once built a house with granite countertops and stainless appliances. It was everything I was supposed to like–popular, high-end finishes…but the only thing I really liked was the salvage-yard cast iron farmhouse sink. That kitchen WAS really nice. But it wasn’t really me. I’m the kind of person who has to learn the hard way, but I do learn! This house looks like me. The real me.

So, Merry Christmas to you from me and the Mister! We are looking forward to another year of flea markets, estate sales, definitely a return to the World’s Longest Yard Sale, and sharing our love of old junk with our friends.  xoxo, Mrs. T

Oh hai there

6 Dec

There are things going on…it just seems like there are TOO many for me to sit down and write a blog post about them. I do have a flea market treasure or two to share with you, though. And this wreath–I made this! I found a couple of bags of ornaments at a sale last spring and figured that I would give this project a try…turns out I needed a ton more ornaments that I first projected. Retro Renovation.com has instructions if you want to make one, but I just kind of winged it. christmaswreath So…from the flea market, we have this. Do you know what it is? 001 Well, yes, it’s a Double Cola bottle…but it’s the stopper that makes it a laundry sprinkler! I’ve heard of these things but I’ve never found one for cheap. Apparently in the days before you had a steam setting on your iron, you would sprinkle your clothes with water prior to ironing to create that nice, crisp finish. The stoppers were made to fit any old soda bottle. This is a 16-oz bottle…I’ve seen several old ads advertising this size of bottle as “family-sized.” It’s a far cry from our modern-day 32oz Big Gulp, which is a drink for just one person. I bought it to put in the booth but probably I will have to try it on my own laundry first.
003 I also found this super-cute Enid Collins “EC” bag at the flea. Very nice condition; all gems attached…I like these darker-colored ones for fall/winter. This will head to the booth.
005 This sign is courtesy of the wheeling/dealing skills of the Mister. That guy has zero shame in his bargaining game…we got this in a house that smelled SO strongly of cat pee that I’m not sure how the estate sale setting team dealt with it. Whew! Stinky house. Cute sign, though (it doesn’t stink, don’t worry). It’s headed to the booth, as well. As for the booth, we had our biggest month ever in November…and now I need to be back to the sales to keep it going. Fortunately for me, the slower estate sale season means fewer hours in my regular job so I can hit a few sales. Hope you are having a happy holiday season! xoxo, Mrs. T

Making Merry in Berry Hill

10 Nov

makingmerry2 Today we went to Making Merry in Berry Hill, the holiday craft/arts festival. We pretty much just went because it was local and why not…but also Gas Lamp Too had a booth there, and they told me yesterday that they were featuring some of my holiday stuff at their booth.
makingmerry So, they were selling my stuff…at a booth I didn’t have to pay for, and I didn’t have to move it or merchandise it or man the booth! Nice, right? I am totally on top of the holidays without even trying! Actually, I just sold the big red Nu-Maid cabinet and the dinette set out of my regular booth and so the Mister and I are going to be in the market for a new display piece or two. It was bittersweet to see those pieces go…they were pretty awesome, but the fun of having a booth is setting and re-setting, and so now we have room for something new. Hope you are having a good fall weekend, too!


1 Nov

003 Halloween’s barely over so I best get crackin’ on Christmas, right?
004 I actually have a really nice larger silver tinsel tree that I need to take in, as well….but I have to find it in the basement, first. It even has a color wheel. This tiny one is from a Michael Taylor sale over the summer. I was so thrilled to find it with the original box and everything. I keep a bin all year long and just toss in little bits of Christmas here and there that I find at estate sales…it is fun to open it and remember all the sales I went to and all the things I got.
005 Check out these kitchen curtains. September flea market…$15. LOVE THEM.
49er Here’s me on the way to the flea market this month is a faux 49’er jacket–1940’s era, from an estate sale a couple of blocks away that Leanne Patterson did last spring. It has big shoulder pads. I love the colors.
40skitchen Here’s an Instagram picture Mark took with a vintage-y filter. Pretty time-warp-y, right? That’s the way I like it. Hope you are having a good fall! I’m too busy to blog on the regular right now but I hope to pop in here and there. xoxo, LaurenT

New stuff

29 Sep

Hello! Long time, no talk. Sorry, friends…work and kids and the house and the booth all conspire to steal my blogging mojo. Aren’t you glad it’s fall, though? I am. The Mister and I have bought mums on three separate occasions because we keep deciding that we don’t have enough for the front porch. And this weekend’s weather was perfect for the flea market. fleamarketlady The Mister and I had a great time and picked up a few things…we also hit the Bettie Page store downtown. I had no idea this store had come to Nashville until I read it on another blog.  I was super-excited and had to go. I love their assortment of retro-inspired dresses…and I also LOVE that the Tatyana Designs line carried in the store comes in a range of sizes from XXS-3XL.  It’s a rare women’s specialty clothing retailer that has figured out that women come in all sizes. If you’re downtown, it’s a fun place to go in and try on. bettiepageWell, on to the stuff I’ve found lately for the booth… Aren’t these boxes of cards sweet? 003They are from the 1960’s and are packets of assorted cards for various occasions, like birthdays, anniversaries, get-well…etc.  I like the pastel colors and retro designs on the boxes…and how they have fancy names like “Sparkling Pets” and “Satin Fantasy.” They are in great shape, too, and headed to the booth. 004These are new, too….you know I love my green appliances! This salt and pepper shaker set were a promotional piece manufactured by Westinghouse to promote a mid-1950’s washer and dryer set. The shakers also came in white and pink, and I presume the appliances did, too. 003Is two vintage hair dryers a collection? Uh oh…

This is my newly-installed shelf in our downstairs bathroom. The Mister put it up this morning…he is a real perfectionist about hanging things and he measures and uses a level and everything.  My traditional method of hanging things is to eyeball it, hope for the best and slam a nail into the wall with whatever I have handy (shoe, can opener…who can be bothered to find a hammer??). The Mister will not put up with those sorts of shenanigans and so now he hangs all my pictures and shelves the “correct” way.  Do you love these hair dryers? I do. I’m not allowed to use them because the Mister has declared them a huge fire hazard and also I don’t generally have 30 or so hours to spare every time I need to dry my hair. These dryers are SUPER slow and not very powerful. But they are so darned cute. The green one was supposed to go to the booth several months ago and as you can see….yeah, that ain’t really happening.

love from Lauren T–xoxo

New stuff for the booth

16 Sep

craigslist3 A few cute things in the booth this week. These hangers aren’t vintage, but they are darling and handmade…I used to hang my daughter’s clothes on them, but she’s gotten too big for baby-sized hangers. My kids have both had huge growth spurts over the summer. I don’t recall approving that plan, but they seem to have gone ahead with it. The Pyrex is new, too.  Love that pink with flowers.
craigslistI’m still culling out the Enid Collins bags…this one is a real deal for a SUPER-cute bag. I still love it but my collection has grown and I have too many of this type of bag, so it needs a new owner. craigslist2 This one is cute, too. The box bags are really fun–if you don’t have one, you need one. Run, don’t walk.

As for us here are Apron Strings Vintage HQ, we are busy as usual. Apparently you can take the Mister out of New York, but you cannot take the New York out of the Mister…today I found out that he yelled at two guys who attempted to cut in line at an estate sale on Thursday. Let this be a lesson to all local estate sale line-jumpers; the Mister is there for the jadite but he has no reservations about doling out vigilante justice. You’re welcome, Nashville!  (Also watch out because I’ve coached him to throw elbows when he spots pastel-colored Pyrex.)

Yesterday we went to a sale and to some antique stores in Springfield…we were very good and only came home with a Weller vase. No elbows thrown!  Hope you are having a good weekend and enjoying this pretty weather! xoxo, LaurenT


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