We have a great circuit of antique shows here in Cincinnati (old river towns have a lot of cool people with a lot of cool junk). I’ve done Burlington (Kentucky) and Lawrenceburg (Indiana) several times. But I hadn’t been down to Covington (Kentucky) to the 4th Sunday Antique Show on MainStrasse for quite a few years.
I like this show because it’s small. There are just a few dozen vendors, and you can walk it pretty well in an hour or so. And it’s such a nice, urban backdrop too.

I didn’t spend a ton of money, but I found some really cool stuff. My favorite was Secondhand Fancy’s booth. Okay, not just because I enjoyed talking with her about Sew Retro! (Also, her Pinterest boards are a little bit to-die-for. ) She made these super cute magnets (I bought the cameo ones).
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And I really, really wanted this owl she had. But the practical side of me won over: too many children running around in this house right now, and no where to put really cool things. Someday . . .

I also scored some pretty jewelry (a silver pendant with a tiny silver apple, banana, and pear), and saw a lot of other things I wanted. And I found some antique keys for my friend, Whitney, who likes to make jewelry out of them.

There was also a guy selling some great architectural salvage and old signs. I snagged a big piece of slate for an upcoming project. But I wished I had a reason to buy this sign!
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Oh, and my sister and I were cracking up looking through these books from the 1920s. (The one about birth control was the best—don’t know why I didn’t get a picture of that one!) We really wanted them. But alas, we were just feeling too practical. I hate when I’m in a practical mood at an antique show. Like I know my 2-year-old would go crazy over this horse, but I just couldn't quite do it . . .

Anyway, Lawrenceburg is this Sunday. I hope to be there!

 
 
I’ve heard about the 127 Corridor Sale for years, but I’ve never gone (even though it comes right here through Cincinnati). But since I had a magazine assignment to cover a stretch of it, I finally had an excuse to check it out. And, the coolest part: I invited my two sisters and my niece to come along.

So last Friday and Saturday, we scouted the stretch from Celina, Ohio to Owenton, Kentucky. We were four ladies on the open road, perusing the junk and wonderfulness that is the World’s Longest Yard Sale.
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Here is what we learned:

1.  People will sell anything. Motorcyles. Empty Cool Whip containers. Pantyliners. Anything. A lot of it is very cool. A lot of is not.

2.  It’s the one time when you should absolutely drive far slower than the speed limit. If you stick to 55, you will miss most of the random kitsch. Don’t be in a hurry.

3.  The more cars you see piled on the side of the road, the more you know that you should stop.

4.  Don’t second-guess what you’re drawn to. If it pulls you toward it, there’s a reason. (I have two different items I regret not buying and I’m still thinking about them! I should have respected the magnetic attraction.)

5. Bring snacks. Many of the stretches are not heavily populated, and there are not a lot of restaurant options sometimes. Lots of vendors do sell water and hot dogs. But have your own stash in the car.

6. Keep your eyes open for all of the signs: there are lots of sales off of 127 too. Be ready for anything. Ask the locals for tips about what might be off the beaten path.
7. Anytime you see a diner advertising homemade pie, absolutely stop.
8. Practice your haggling skills. Never be afraid to make an offer.
9. Whatever you say on 127, stays on 127. Especially when one of your sisters is reading 50 Shades of Grey in the back of the car.

10. The whole thing will be way more fun if you pretend that a film crew is following you for some fabulous cable show about picking through junk.
Thanks for the memories and the loot, 127. I’ll be back next year!
 
 
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I had a great time at the Springfield Antique Show Extravaganza today! This was my third consecutive year, and I think it gets better every year! According to the show's blog, they had record attendance on Friday, and today, they had the best attendance they've had in 10 years. The word is out that this is the best show in the Midwest!

My sister Laura and I now make Springfield a yearly ritual, and this year, my husband joined us, and we brought Georgia. We saw a sign that said 3,300 dealers, and that sounds about right. The show is HUGE--impossibly huge. I'm sure we only saw about 1/3 of it (it's hard to move fast with a baby).
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I'm trying to be more restrained in my acquiring of things (our house is small!), so I thought about what I really wanted to buy. In the end, I only had a few specific I was looking for, including nice wood toys for Max. This great wooden tractor ($12) turned out to be the perfect find (he's already played with it this evening!)
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Speaking of toys, I wanted this play house SO BAD, because I had this exact one when I was little. I almost got it, but it didn't have the people and furniture that come with it. And I realized that even though I loved it, my kids might think it was stupid. So I passed. But I'm still thinking about it . . .
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Springfield is known for being a great place to shop for vintage fabric, feedsacks, linens, pattern, and notions. I didn't see as much this year, but I think it's because I didn't cover as much ground. Still, plenty of great retro finds . . .
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I think my favorite purchase of the day was a spoon ring. Laura reminded me that our Grandma Ketteler wore a spoon ring, and I suddenly had a memory of that spoon ring clanking against the side of the whiskey glass (Grandma always had one shot of whiskey in a glass with ice when she came on Friday nights). I don't have a picture of me wearing mine yet, but it's in here!
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As always, there was some great furniture there. Allen and I bought one small mid-century chair. But mostly, I just browsed.
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The two things I wish I would have had a reason to buy: these chandeliers, and these dishes!
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But looking gives me great ideas and inspiration--and that's free (and doesn't clutter up your house). So, even though I only bought a few things, it was still a great year at Springfield!
 
 
  I love October madly, except for one thing: it signals the end of our awesome local vintage market circuit. And since I was ridiculously pregnant this summer, and it was 300 degrees most weekends, I only got to hit up a few flea markets. Sure, there are antique stores to tide me over for the winter, but it’s just not the same.

My sister, Laura, and I love to scour places like the Springfield Antique Show and Flea Market (if you are anywhere near Springfield, Ohio, clear your schedule now for their May 2011 extravaganza—it’s that good!). This past year, I got an adorable 1950s diner table that I just wrote about on Shelterpop.
  (I got to interview Elyse Luray, which was really cool.)

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  So, this is what I had as a table before . . .

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And this is what I found at Springfield. Much better, don’t you think? The reproduction diner chairs are from Richardson Seating, but we ordered them through Target.

 The only bad thing is that the table is bit rickety, so you have to be careful about hitting the legs when you scoot the chairs in and out (otherwise, the water glasses start spilling over). And it’s a bit narrow. But I still love the way it looks in our kitchen. Since our little Cape Cod was built in 1949, this table feels like something that the original owners very well may have bought.

Who knows what next spring will bring? I, for one, can’t wait to hit the flea markets, sans swollen ankles.