Last weekend antique collectors flocked to Portland’s Expo buildings for the spring Palmer-Wirf Antique Show to look at over 1000 booths hunting for that special thing. Sometimes when I’m around my friends who don’t collect, I begin to feel alone, but at these shows, I am reminded that I’m very far from alone. This year, I observed and met loads of interesting people. I met a man who has been on a 12 year hunt to collect photographs which were done by his great grandfather, and when sitting down for lunch I sat next to a woman dressed in early 20-century attire eating nachos. “I love your dress,” I commented, “Did you make it?” She nodded yes, and began to tell me how her and her husband are historical re -enactors who portray Teddy Roosevelt and his wife. Such interesting people and such wonderful things to buy! What could be better?
As for the finds, it was a day of really good deals…
Rose Hat with Veil
This little number I just adore. With its small cap, faux rose and veil, it screams I Love Lucy. Also, I’m half tempted to wear it for my wedding, or at least my going away hat. There are some condition issues, like the rose is a little flattened, and there are some rips in the netting, but overall, not too bad. There is not label. Cost: $3.00
Marche Exclusive Hat
Another classic 50s hat, one that says “Wear me on Easter Sunday”. Like the other one, this one has some rips in the netting, but nothing too horrifying.There are some remnants of fake leaves in the netting, which leads me to believe this too had some flowers of some sort. The label here reads “Marche Exclusive” with “Finlan” (yes, “Finlan” not Finland) on the side. And this hat was an even better deal, $1.00! Especially since my research is digging up an average of about $40.00 for this brand.
Beresford Fur Hat
This certainly was a day for hats, and white ones at that. This one I couldn’t resist, especially since it was just fun and reminded me of some of the hats that a few Elvgren girls wear. The top part is bunny fur, and soft as ever to the touch, and the label reads “Beresford”, but I’ve had little luck trying to dig up any info on it. Cost: $8.00
1955 Montgomery Ward Catalog
I just love old catalogs. They are wonderful portals into the past. And this one provides so much insight! Clothes, BBQs, cameras, furniture, shoes, appliances, it’s fabulous! It’s also interesting to see the cost of things. $7.98 for dresses! While that may seem like very little, you have to remember what minimum wages was a heck of a lot less! But the quality of things made then was a million times better that what comes out of department stores today. Cost: $5.00
As you know, I collect Franciscan Starburst. I usually don’t anticipate buying any at Expo because it tends to be very expensive. Condition is a particular issue with dishes, and especially with Starburst, and often can drastically bring down the price, which is all the better for me! I got this platter for $25.00 due to three small chips on the side.
In case you missed out on this March show, mark your calendars for the July show on the 10th and 11th! It’s bigger and better too!