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Grundig Speakers, Clamshell aka Hoop Chairs, Tension Pole Lamp etc.


Mel and I had a few good finds, let me tell you about a few of them.

It’s the end of another weekend and Mel and I were able to squeeze in a little picking.  Here is what we came across!


A couple John Hauser, circa early 1950’s iconic “clamshell” chairs aka “hoop” chairs.


These are in good shape for their age.  We plan to recover them in either aqua or pink Naugahyde.  The frames need to be sanded and repainted.  These will look soo cool on the patio with the vintage Royal Chef BBQ!


We were able to score a set of these really cool Grundig speakers for $40!  Although, my stereo repair guy Luis at “Stereoadvisor” told me if you’re going to buy any vintage electronics, he recommends Telefunken.  He said the sound of these German units are unbelievable.  I have one Telefunken table top and 3 floor counsels and I have to agree with him.
But, I’m a sucker for pointy legs and couldn’t resist these Grundig speakers.  These will be pretty easy to restore…just some stripper, light sanding, a little bit of stain, and semi-gloss polyurethane for the wood.  As far as  the speaker fabric, I’ll remove it and clean the stains with “Awesome”.


The final item we got was this fantastic tension pole lamp.  I have never seen this style before and really dig it.  This is a keeper.


All this light really needs is to be cleaned up and put into the perfect spot!


50’s Style Souvenir Flour Sack Kitchen Towels

IMG_2190I was cruising eBay when I came across these wonderful reproduction flour sack kitchen towels.  I think I ordered every style the seller had.  I know these will look great in our kitchen.  Flour sacks or feed sacks have a long history of being reused as fabric to make clothes, towels or any other things you could think of.  In my opinion, these are as good as the originals.  Here are the ones we ordered…

IMG_2188 IMG_2187 IMG_2186 IMG_2185 IMG_2184 IMG_2183 IMG_2182

IMG_2189Normally I am not into remakes, but who could pass on these?



Now that Mel and I are starting to focus on decorating our kitchen, we are discovering a whole new world of vintage goodness.  We came across this Lustro-Ware container set on Craigslist, and loved the color scheme of pink and gray.




This set came with the Flour, Sugar, Coffee, Tea, Salt, Pepper, Recipe Box and a Bread Box.  We are still looking for the Cookie canister, Waxed Paper and Paper Towel dispenser, Spice Rack & Waste basket (let me know if anyone has the pink and gray ones for sale).


LIFE October 4, 1948


Gebhard Keny is the father of Lustro-Ware.  A Harvard graduate, Gebhard took over a Columbus, Ohio plastics molding firm in the late 1930s. The line of products he produced was originally coined Columbus Plastics Products and then later became well-known under the Lustro-Ware line.  Gebhard used a new type of technology in plastics production that allowed for a good product at a decent price for consumers.  The company formed their own in-house design staff and production soared.  They became known for blow molding items such as waste baskets and water cans (very popular on Ebay) and then produced thermoplastic canister sets which are still popular today.
LIFE magazine of October 4, 1948 focused on production in America and Columbus Plastics was included in this write up.  The one page feature displayed this great inside shot of the woman at work-LIFE commented on the plastic boom in the States & how Columbus Plastics Products was a part of this increase in plastics manufacturing.  In the year this article was published, Columbus Plastics was able to make a $2million business from a $400,000 investment.  Production continued through the 1950s and during this time plastic doilies became one of the items made by Columbus Plastics.  These doilies are also popular items on Ebay today. Starting in the 1960s, the simple look of the products started to fade and more ornate styles came into production.  In 1966, the company was bought by the Borden Company and the Lustro-Ware line, while stile being produced, slowly faded into the background.

Here are some other cool pieces they produced…

vintage_lustro_ware_spices paper_towel_holder_lustroware




lustroware.d c0063182_1101996


Mid Century Hall Tree/ Coat Rack


This is a great example of the one we picked up. This one looks complete and appears to even have the water catcher tray for umbrellas.

Mel and I hit one of our old haunts, the Antique Company on “X” street and came across this really cool piece.  The owner of this shop routinely gets shipping containers full of mid-century and art deco furniture from England and this is one of those pieces!


This is the one we picked up. It is in really fantastic shape, but I think I am going to change some things up on it.  First, I want to replace the green fabric with either a black or dusty rose/ pink fabric.  Then, I will replace the cording that goes button to button with a gold or black cord depending on what fabric I choose.


As you can see, this unit is missing the water catcher tray, but I am sure I can come up with something.


This will be a perfect place to put your keys when you get home.  Mel always loses her keys, so this might just do the trick.


The brass buttons and hooks need cleaning.


Unfortunately, the mirror is worn and the foil appears to have separated in a few spots.  I will have to get a mirror cut for this piece to replace the old one.  The shelf up top is really cool, a great place to put hats and gloves.  When I was researching this piece I came across some other racks I wouldn’t mind getting my hands on…


Love the styling on this one.  The shape of the mirror is eye-catching just like the fabric!


MUST HAVE!  This also appears to be a room divider.


This one has a Danish feel to it.


This one is a trip!  I love the colors and the imagery on the bottom of the center panel.


This just SCREAMS atomic!


1950’s Phone Table Quick Restoration


I really dig this table and think it will be a nice addition to our pad.

Mel and I acquired this table from our friend Vic. I wanted one of these tables so we could set our aqua colored phone on when we get into our new place. I liked the styling of this phone table but the fabric was soo blah that it needed something that would breath new life into it.


Here it is! I think it turned out great!


This phone is made by Bell System Western Electric.


I can just see us chilling on the chair talking to family. It will be a cool experience.

Things That Are In The Works

Right now is a pretty active time for me.  I have lots of projects that are being worked on and will be coming together soon……..hopefully.  Anyway, I thought I would give you a sample of what is coming!

Vintage Desk & Chair


This is what I am starting with.

I have eyeballing this piece for a while because I am a huge sucker for unique Formica from the 50’s.  This was at an antique store we frequent often and it had been there for some time.  The only hitch to getting this piece is there was no chair for it.  After cruising Craigslist for a week or so, I found a chair that when re-upholstered will look like it went to this desk.  The desk is marked but the mark is unreadable :(.  Here are some pics of it before it gets its refresh!


I can’t put my finger on what era this desk is from.  It is either the 40’s of 50’s.  I really wish the makers mark was more legible, but it is an ink stamp that bled out.

I fell in love with this desk because of the tapered leg, and of course the Formica that I just go ape for!


Here is a close up of the Formica.


With my chair upholstery choice, I will have to paint the drawer pulls gold to pick up the gold in the fabric.


The upholstery has to go, but what I love about this chair is the styling.  I will have to paint the wood black so it ties better to the desk.


I searched for a while for fabric I though would look great with this desk and I found this ultra atomic fabric!  I will be dropping the chair off at B&T Upholstery as soon as my fabric arrives.

RCA Victor Stereo Orthophonic Mark XIII


These units were produced in the 50’s.

I found this piece on Craigslist in San Francisco.  I used to own one of these in a cherry finish and always regretted getting rid of it.  I am a huge audiophile and would fill a warehouse with audio equipment if I had the chance.  As you can tell, this unit needs some work.  I am going to refinish the wood on this piece, but will have to re-veneer the top of the lid.  I plan to use the champagne Heywood Wakefield stain to finish the cabinet.  I will need to get it over to my audio guy to get it running perfect again.


As you can see, this unit needs a refinish. I do have the gold metal legs too!


It also needs some detailing and a good cleaning.  My stereo guy said that these have such great sound when working properly, so I can’t wait to get it back!

RCA Victor Stereo Orthophonic Mark III


The next unit I have I got off of Craigslist as well.  I had to drive to Walnut Creek to pick this unit up.  This unit is very clean and just needs a tune up!  I can’t wait to play some Como on this sucker.


The cabinet just needed some oil to bring back the luster of the finish.


The radio has a green “Cats Eye” that brightens as you tune into a radio station.  The dials light up when on as well.

Here is a cool advertisement educating us about the “New Living Stereo” technology of Orthophonic!

Heywood Wakefield M590 China Cabinet


As you can see, this cabinet was well used.  I plan to refinish it to go with the Heywood Wakefield dog bone table and chairs we picked up that I will post later.

This is such a cool hutch when restored.  I have the shelves and glass doors in storage.  The cabinet doors look rough but after sanding, they will look like new.



I have a lot of work ahead of me and I will keep you all up to date on my progress.  We are going to be moving soon to hopefully a mid-century ranch style home, so there will be a whole lot to cover in our new place.

Atomic Bar Quick Restoration


This bar didn’t need a lot of work.  All I needed to do was repaint all the metal, redo the Formica, recover the seats and replace the bumper strip on the top.

Mel and I drove out to Clovis to grab this really cool bar.  As you can see, the bar stool cushions needed to be recovered.  The bar top was warped and curled upwards on the ends.   The metal feet on the bar and the stools had to be repainted as well.


To fix the top of the bar, I flipped it and screwed it down which helped flatten out the top.  Once that was done, I sanded the surface to prep it for new white Formica.


The Fabric matches the bar really well!


I added simple little details like gold tips to the bar and the bar stool feet.

I had to recover the stools because the fabric was so old that it was brittle and cracked.  I used some of the cool aqua colored frieze fabric that Bill from B&T Upholstery gave me from a couch he stripped (THANKS BILL!!!!).  The frames of the stools just needed a quick repaint.


I think the fabric really goes well with the bar!

 After a long search at Lowes, Home Depot and local cabinetry shops, I was unable to find a replacement bumper strip (t-molding) that goes around the bar top.  I had to jump on eBay and order a strip of it to replace the worn old strip.  After a few days it arrived and I popped it on and BANG! The bar is done.


This quick little freshen up brings this bar back to its former glory.  This will end up in our booth at Midway Antique Mall in Sacramento.


As you can see, the top is as good as new.


On a side note, we finally found a total of four super atomic “Old Forester” decanters.  These will stay in our collection.


Mel and I hope whomever ends up with this bar will enjoy it!  On to the next resto.

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