Vintage Mercury Glass and Nativity Angels

As much as I love kitsch and color (which I do!) I have a side that loves the time worn beauty of mercury glass and old plaster figures as well.  Growing up we had a lovely old nativity set filled with beautiful figures and it was always a very ceremonious occasion when we unwrapped each piece and set it out for display carefully on a fancy table near the big picture window.

Back in 1990, as a new wife and homeowner I made it my mission that first Christmas to find a vintage set of my own.  It did not take long as they seem to be at almost every estate sale I go to.  The thing is, my finding nativities and their sometimes mis-matched and chipped up pieces never ended.  Flash forward 22 years and I still have an incredibly hard time leaving a bag filled with random Shepherds, donkeys, sheep, angels etc. alone.  You see, at these estate sales they often take whatever nativity pieces that have survived the years and dump them into a ziploc bag and staple it shut and put a price of 3 to 10 dollars on the whole bag.

 Me being me, I pick up the bag and see an angel suffocating inside and I need to rescue the bag.  That is why we currently have approx 25 angels on our mantle right now and own about 50 sheep, 25 donkeys and more Wise Men than you can shake a stick at.  I have kept so many forlorn and incomplete sets that we really have no more room at the Inn for them all.  Over the years I've sold off many of them at basically the price I purchased them for to others in my shop who are missing this or that specific piece to their sets.  Basically I've become an adoption agency for nativity figures.  I just want them to find a good home.

This particular angel is in my house and she is one of my very favorites.  The older ones have such pretty faces.  She was made in Italy and in general the Italian nativity pieces are to me the prettiest.

I also have a small collection of mercury glass.  The vases and such are really hard to come by these days.  Repros abound but I'm really looking for the old stuff.  I don't try that hard to find it.  If I stumble upon a piece at a sale it's fun but I never feel like my collections have to grow at a fast pace.  Some things I've been collecting for 20 years and only have 3 of them.  I like to keep my collecting organic and not something filled with pressure.  What do you collect or rescue?? Pin It


Santa Says ...

Santa talks to me, does he talk to you???

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Tiny vintage ornaments asleep in their beds ...

What better way to start out a new week than with some festive vintage cuties!  The tiny glass ornaments were found by me at an estate sale a few years back and they are so deliciously nestled in their cellophane beds that I can't seem to take them out to use.  I love looking at the box and seeing all of the gorgeous colors.  Maybe next year I'll do something with them.  But I doubt it.

I love the tiny magic everywhere jar and think it the perfect vessel to give a gift in.  The art is done by Leigh Standley of Curly Girl Design.  We have many other little jars and some adorable wine glasses done by her in shop right now.

I do love a vintage pixie or a big eyed deer with mushrooms .... soooo cute!  Many deer and pixie items can be found at the shop right now.

We made it thru the very busy "Black Friday" and "Small Business Saturday" weekend and are all tired but happy and SO GRATEFUL that our local community loves and supports us.  We couldn't do it without you .... duh!

We have been re-stocking vintage holiday goods all weekend as space to put them out opens up so please stop in soon to take a peek! Pin It


A Thanksgiving Day Wish ...

 Sure hope that all of you will have a Grand Thanksgiving Day.  A day that turns out right for you in every single way.  And when the day is over, sure do hope all of you will find that every day ahead will be the very nicest kind! 

Well, I couldn't have said it better had I come up with it myself!  Happy Thanksgiving friends and family near and far.  Hope it's a great day for all!  I've got my fingers crossed that my redemption turkey will turn out good today.  Or at least cooked all the way thru.  Hope yours goes without a hitch too!  
p.s.   this old card was made by Hallmark back when it was marked Hall Brothers Inc. which if my research is correct (no guarantees on that) means it is from 1954 or earlier.  I don't have many vintage Thanksgiving cards in my vintage card collection so this is a highly prized piece to me. Pin It


Happy Snowman

This little fellow makes me smile.  He is made out of a celluloid type material and he is so friendly looking.  I find it much harder to find vintage snowmen than santas.  So when I find a cute old snowman it is quite a happy thing.  Hope you all have a great week and a happy Thanksgiving! Pin It


Happy and Thankful

Today is a good day.  Our annual Holiday Open House was this past weekend and it was a wonderfully busy and happy event.  The moxie elves all worked so hard for the past 4 weeks getting the shop all gussied up for it's Holiday debut.  It warmed our elfin insides to see so many of you visit us at our party like many of you have been doing for the last 12 or so years.  Your loyalty, kindness, friendship and patronage to us and to the cause of shopping locally is simply wonderful.  It does not go unnoticed or unappreciated that's for sure.  This week we will be putting the shop back together again and putting out more items -- vintage and new.  

Don't forget to mark your calendars for our Moonlight Shopping Party.  This year it is on Friday Dec. 7th from 6 to 9 pm.  Dare I say this once a year event has become almost legendary for it's festive good times and attendance.  If you've been you know what I mean, and if you haven't you really need to try to make it this year.  Even the husbands love this event.  Do you think the wine, cheese, shrimp and veggies have anything to do with that??? Once again Mr. Moxie will be bar-tending and you know he's fun!  

The above image is a vintage postcard from my collection of ephemera.  I will try to use some of these gorgeous images from time to time.  Seems a shame to just keep them in a box.  I've got about 1000 vintage Christmas cards waiting for me to do something fabulous with.  I need more hours in the day!!  

Happy Thanksgiving week to you all.   I have so many things to be thankful for!  

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vintage ornament wreaths and a sigh of relief

Tomorrow we officially kick off the start of our holiday season at the shop with our Annual Holiday Open House.  We've been baking, decorating, tree trimming and laughing up a storm over here at Moxie.  I've even suffered a serious hot glue gun burn or two or three while creating my vintage ornament wreaths but now as all is in place and we wait for our friends and family to come thru the doors this weekend, we feel at peace as once again the annual month long frenzy of getting the shop ready ends and we can move on to phase two .... the six week frenzy of gift bagging, re-stocking and being the best little shop elves that we can be.  I wouldn't change a thing!
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Turkey Day Redemption

 I'm hosting Thanksgiving dinner next week and it is only the second time I've had the opportunity in the 22 years I've been married.  The first time was not a success.  No one but me said that but I did the actual cliche of not calculating the proper cooking time for the bird and we were all salivating next to the oven for two hours past it's scheduled done time.  

This year I'm determined to do it right.  I've even ordered a fresh Ho-Ka turkey so there is no mishap with thawing out the Butterball.  I'm looking forward to righting my wrong and I'm glad the opportunity to host has fallen upon me once again.  My sister Lara is making the dressing for me and will guide me patiently thru the homemade gravy process so I feel like this year's meal might be a success.  It will be a smaller group this year as member's of my big family keep moving far away at an alarming rate (waaaaaaahhhhhh)!  On the bright side, smaller group equals a little less pressure that an angry mob is going to turn on me for not feeding them in a timely manner.  
 My family has traditionally had a dressing made of what I'd call the standard pepperidge farm bread mix and never a cornbread dressing.  I'm thinking of making an extra batch and trying out a cornbread mix too.  It sounds good to me.... I love regular cornbread.  Any feelings out there on cornbread dressing??
What are your plans for Thanksgiving??  And, do you have any turkey tips for me??  Happy Thursday everyone ... Turkey day it's only a week away.  I'd better get that grocery list going now! Pin It


Snowflake Pyrex and Hedgehogs

I'm up early today baking cookies for our big Holiday Open House this weekend.  The house is empty and quiet.  No music or tv.  Just the sound of the mixer and my early morning random thoughts.  I like this time of day.  The husband has left already for his long commute to work and the neighborhood is quiet.  A perfect time to bake cookies (and to make a quick blog post).  Lots and lots of cookies.  Today I'm baking the Swedish Butterballs that I learned to make with my grandma Mimi.  She has long ago passed but my happy memories of baking with her as a young girl will always be with me.

I don't have any perfectly styled photos of a gorgeous looking plate of cookies to show you in this post as my cookies and kitchen aren't meant for photo ops.  Actually my kitchen looks like a flour barrel exploded in it and I think there are several random cookie dough plops stuck to the floor right now.  Not to mention the dirty bowls in the sink and the empty sugar and flour bags on the counter.  Let's just say no one is going to see this show on cable tv anytime soon.

So instead, I posted some photos of the shop.  I hope you all have a wonderful week!  Oh and if you are local I'd love to invite you to our Holiday Open House.  It is Sat Nov 17th 10 to 5 and Sun Nov 18th 10 to 4. Pin It


sweet vintage painting and a dreamer

I'm a dreamer.  I cannot stop my imagination from doing a merry whirl around my brain at almost any given time.  I've been accused on more than one occasion by people I love that it seems like I'm not paying attention when they are talking to me and I have felt really badly about this.  I try extra hard to listen to my loved ones and stay present in the moment because I care very much about what they have to say but I will admit that my mind drifts off into the enchanted world of possibilities, make-believe and romantic wanderlust very very easily.  This proclivity towards drifting off into a dream like state can be dangerous or at the very least problematic.  Heck, I'm the girl who drove into the outskirts of Chicago because I got on the highway going the wrong way which in and of itself isn't that terrible but then continued on for a half an hour going the wrong way and was not "shook" (is that even a word?) out of my highway hypnosis until I saw the Sears tower off in the not that far distance.  I wish I could say that these type of things didn't happen but I'd be lying. 

Take for instance this vintage painting.  It was found this summer at an estate sale I was shopping at with my sweet husband.  All he wanted to know was did I think I wanted to buy it.  Like, was the price right for re--selling and would it be fun for the shop.  Simple enough thought process.  But as I'm standing in front of it at the sale probably not answering my husband's questions I'm thinking that I wonder where this sweet church is located and is Laura Ingalls Wilder a member and did people arrive in a horse driven sleigh to get there on this magical snowy morning.  Is there a woman inside wearing an ivory coat with a little shoulder cape attached and is her winter hat trimmed in fluffy white fur.  What would it be like to go to this church as opposed to any other more modern church.  Do they sing beautiful hymns and most importantly do they host a rockin church bizarre rummage sale annually because you know I love those!  

It's a good thing my husband loves me and even more importantly gets me.  He will nudge me out of my vintage dreaming stupors to keep things moving along but he never chastises me in any way for taking the imaginative journeys in the first place.  
I hid this gorgeous vintage painting away all summer long in anticipation of using it in one of our holiday windows and I'm so happy I did.  It looks so happy amongst our other snowy white finds.  If you are near to the shop please take a peek into the west window and see the painting.  Maybe it will take you on a journey too. 

Is there anyone else out there who suffers from my sweet affliction?  I'd love to hear about it if you do.  

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Jacket Love at Moxie

Since we are right in the middle of getting ready for our holiday open house this week (the Open House is Nov. 17th and 18th ... hope to see you!) I am burning the candle at both ends and am going to rely on some photos to do the talking for me here.  

We've got jackets and blazers a plenty in shop right now.  Here are a few that will get put out tomorrow.  Thanks to Miss Stephenie for doing the modeling once again.  If it weren't for the fact that she may possibly be in the top 3 nicest people I've ever known I'd have to kick her sweet behind for being so darn gorgeous.  Oh to be young and skinny.  Sigh. 
Chloe made in France ... so graphic - $29

love the banded waist and self belt ... flattering $29

we love black and tan .... nice tailored blazer - $29

tux style jacket ... cute for an evening out - $29

military details in black and white - $26

tailored camel jacket - $29

Ellen Tracy - $29

love the big buttons and 3/4 sleeves - $19

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little Christmas houses make a merry window

Take a little peek into our freshly decorated shop window ... won't you please!  The moxie elves have been so busy lately that some of them are forgetting to eat lunch or keep hydrated.  It's a risky business this getting ready for the Holidays. They don't live for food or water, they live for making merry and they love it when you oooh and ahhh at the magical world they create just for you.  They're needy like that. 
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vintage bottle brush christmas trees

swoon, swoon, swoon!

The sight of bottle brush trees all gussied up in their brightly colored glass ornaments makes me all giddy inside.  Like stepping into an old-fashioned candy shop and peering into the big glass jar full of gumballs. 

 I grew up in a town that had one of those candy shops full of the glass jars with tiny and wondrous candies inside.  I used to save up my pennies and nickels from chores (or more likely looking inside my parents coat pockets...resourceful yes??) and on Saturdays bike the three miles to downtown to buy myself a treat.  In our house we never had candy or much in the way of store bought treats.  It was a big deal to get homemade chocolate chip cookies every once in awhile.  I'm sure it was hard enough to feed all 7 of us kids healthy food let alone find the money for junk food.  But we were allowed to spend our independent finances (does that make 45 cents sound important?) as we saw fit.  I admit that I was jealous of my school friends whose whimsical lunch boxes were adorned with twinkies, ho ho's and cinnabuns while my brown bag that I was supposed to keep nice and re-use throughout the week was lucky if it got an apple to go along with the pbj sandwich.  Don't even get me started about those mini bags of chips we never got either.... sigh, woe is me.  So when I got the green light from mom and dad to do what I wanted with my money, I did what my sugar-deprived heart desired.  I biked like the witch in Wizard of Oz (insert crazy noise ....of Wicked Witch pedaling with all her might here) the whole 3 miles without looking up.  Just another kid on a mission!   Gumballs were often on my list of possible procurements.  Gumballs and candy dots stuck to long ribbons of paper along with candy necklaces and ring pops.  Even as a child I was drawn to the world of whimsy, color and adornments.  

Now as an adult I've substituted visual candy for real candy.  And I can't get enough of these gorgeous bottle brush trees.  What vintage item makes your heart swoon?
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vintage hat love

Not much time for a post today so I'm going to let the photos do the talking!  Here are some vintage hats we love at the shop currently.  All are under 30 dollars.  Thanks to Stephenie for modeling them for the photoshoot!  My personal favorite is the first one.  A 1940s with sculpted bow.  Divine.

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Our Anthropologie Giveaway Winner is .....

Congratulations to sproutbabysprout!  You have won the gift certificate to Anthropologie.  Please message us via Facebook  to discuss the delivery or pick up of your prize.  Thanks so much!

And a huge thank you to all who entered the contest.  We really appreciate you helping us to launch our new blog.  We hope you'll keep following us and if you haven't already ... please follow us with google connect or by email subscription or bloglovin.  

xoxo, team moxie
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