16 March 2010

Rescuing stitching

I didn't have time to take photos of my thrift store haul from the weekend, but I made out pretty well. I've discovered thrift store and yard sale shopping seems to be a lot better in towns with a large military presence. I have gotten REALLY nice things in Virginia Beach. Marjolein Bastin things, primitive prints, lots of good stash. This weekend, I got really pretty music box for Christmas that had foxes on it. I have a lot of woodland-themed Christmas decorations, so it will fit right in, plus I LOVE foxes, and it was $2. Not a bad purchase. I take luck like this to happen because people get reassigned to new duty stations and have to get rid of the things they just don't think will go. Sad for them, but I'm happy.

Anyway, I notice people give away a lot of finished, custom-framed stitching. My aunt found a cute little nursey-themed piece a few years ago, and I found a really cool picture of carousel horses. Tall. Custom-framed (although it should be in more modern frame, it may end up in one if I hang it). Neatly stitched. For $7. I figured that was worth it to get it out of here. I know I found a kitchen piece one time, not my taste, but it was a dollar, and I sold it on Ebay to a person who loved it for $14. I felt good for that; it was a pretty piece, inscribed, "For your new home." It didn't deserve to be cast aside in a pile. I hope it's up in a kitchen somewhere.

I always wonder about the person who stitched these pieces. Did he or she sit up late at nights? Was it a gift for a first baby, stitched with joy and hope, and wrapped lovingly in pastel paper? Was it for a teenager who begged her mom for carousel horses? Would the stitcher have been crushed to know their work ended up in the DAV thrift store? Or would it be OK for them to know it's in a place where it will be cherished? I know how I agonize over my stitching. Was it the same for these people?

The funny thing is, I know I'm not alone in this. Cross stitch sells on E-bay. It's not a high-dollar segment of their sales, but it's there. People must want it. There was an older lady who saw my carousel horses, and said, "Oh, my. I wish I'd seen that. I rescue stitching when I find it. I don't hang it up but I can't bear to leave it here. I might donate it to a museum one day. " I like that idea. As a stitcher, I would like to hope someone might come up on one of my things and think it deserves a place in their home.

Does anyone else rescue stitching?


Nic said...

Oh definitely! I rescue stitching if I like it - although sometimes only for the frame - and if I don't want to keep it, I give it away to a good home through my blog.

I rescue UFOs in charity shops too, on occasion - just last week I picked up two barely started Lanarte kits of Tutankamun and Nefertiti which will go nicely with my other Egyptian stuff.

Now all I need is to be able to buy time in the same stores!

Nick said...

I get the same feeling when I see stitched pieces in thrift stores. I have found some really nicely stitched and custom framed pieces @ Goodwill for $2-4. I usually always buy them because it makes me almost sad that something someone spent the time to make and paid to have custom framed ended up someplace for $2. Maybe its because I know from experience how much work goes into making a piece and how much it costs, esp if its stretched, matted & framed professionally.

Elaine said...

Love your new look blog Rachel, the piccy at the top is adorable.

Pumpkin said...

I have never seen anything stitchy like in any of the thrift/antique stores that I've been in :o( I always keep an eye out though ;o)

Julie M said...

I rarely see stitching at our local thrift stores. Sometimes I rescue and sometimes I don't.

Your blog looks great!

Bette said...

I've rescued old linens in antique stores, mostly huck weaved ones. I haven't been garage saling of in a thrift shop in a while. I figure if I don't go, I don't spend money. But I do miss it sometimes.

Siobhan said...

I rescue stitching if I like it, just because I have so much of my own--and want to do cagillions more. It does break my heart to see it in garage sales and so on. There's a warehouse near my mom's house in Delaware that is full of people's estate items, household goods that people have sold them. Last time I was there, they had lots of L&L pieces for $30 or so. The time and effort that goes into them, and then framed, only going for $30. Eek.

I do my thing and you do yours. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other, then it is beautiful. If not, it can’t be helped--Frederick Perls