Forever Bound Art

The Glorious side of digging…

In Collecting, Furniture, Traveling & Antiques on September 10, 2012 at 4:35 pm

Ahh, yes. The Glorious side of digging.  We all want THE FIND of the century.  We hear ALL about the deals that other people get.  They’re like hunting or fishing stories (I AM from Michigan), the tales get grander as the years go by.  There’s the 16th Century piece of furniture “find” in a dumpster, or Great-Great Grandpa’s civil war bayonet found in Aunt Cecil’s attic; and everyone makes a bundle at auction.   Everyone makes a bundle, except us.  I’m actually laughing at this moment because isn’t that how everyone feels?   Goes to show that what we hear, is in actuality news itself because it doesn’t happen every day.  News worthy junk.  Then there’s the dirty junk.  The real deal.  The digging in layers of filth from century old mouse feces and antique cobwebs.  Let’s agree to forget about the mysterious stains and what was once a ‘wet substance’ that is favorably found on all those glorious finds.  Yes, the glorious part of digging for the gold.   For some reason though we get a little high off of the search.   The real hardcore diggers don’t truly mind a little filth.  It makes us feel as if there might be something even better than something in a clean and organized store.   As we almost toss our cookies sifting through inanimate grossness we tell ourselves, almost in a chant, “I am gonna FIND something here, gonna find something. LaLaLaLa, don’t pay attention to that smell, or that stain over there. LaLaLa, It’s not that bad.  It will be worth it when I find it.”   Sometimes we find things, sometimes we don’t, but one thing’s for certain.  We’ll do it again, and again, and again.  One other thing is for certain too, there will always be people collecting this special junk and cramming it somewhere as if they are chipmunks hoarding for a long winter.    Ohhhh, WE LOVE THAT!

On one of our adventures through North East Ohio we made our way to Kinsman.  In this little town, established over 200 years ago, an old building stands in the center of commerce holding decades and decades of stuff.  Phew, (she breaths) STUFF that is, lots and lots of STUFF.  I can’t even say stuff, I have to yell it, STUFF.  That’s how much there is.  Three levels of stuff.  Market Square of Kinsman, Ohio.  What a place.  Here is a review I just came across on yelp.  The reviewer  writes :        “Woohoo! As good as it gets!


you like old dusty musty buildings full of worthless knick knacks and stinky old books, then this place is for you, multiple levels of it.”

Yep, that sums it up.  Some of you saw some pictures posted on our Facebook page.  Well, “here’s the rest of the story” (side tribute to Mr. Andy Rooney because that was the best part of 60 Minutes and I AM reporting a news worthy junk story).

It’s hard to tell by the front of this building what you are going to find inside.  Wallpaper? Computers in disrepair all over a counter or two? Where do I take my music lesson? Maybe I can buy an antique clarinet there and then learn how to play it?  I see by other signs that there is a Book Den inside and some type of market.  I guess I can get a soda from the Soda Jerk while I contemplate all that is going on.  This first picture is what you see as you enter this entrapment.  Books everywhere, some food in coolers and miles and miles of stuff.  Let’s not forget the extremely friendly gentleman that owns and runs this establishment and various town folk chatting away about todays gossip.  It’s great.   You round the corner after the first room and the gentleman calls after you, “Have you been here before?”  We tell him that we had and that we just had to come back in order to take it all in.  I believe the first time around when he asked us, his instructions were basically to be careful and try not to get lost.  Just kidding, I seem to recall he did say be careful, but have fun exploring three levels of stuff.   He might of have even called it STUFF.    You see, The Market Square is a hodge podge of various businesses long gone and antiques found from sales sprinkled throughout.  It’s a hunt, the true dig.  Man vs. junk : Can you find the real deal?  One room dedicated to an old Hallmark store, one section dedicated to an old hardware store including wallpaper, nails, sewing patterns and thread, and lamp shades.  Don’t forget all the signs you’ve seen already stating “BOOKS” including arrows making sure you don’t miss them.  Not possible, they are everywhere.  All 100,000 of them.  Just look at that stairway that takes you up to those books on the third level.

The basement is a whole other story.  Light fixtures may or may not be working, plenty of low ceilings with cobwebs hanging from beam to beam (or from antique to antique).  You can hear street noise through various cracks and thin window panes.  I found this a tad comforting allowing me to use that as part of my chant.  “You are not alone, there are people outside.  They will hear your screams if you are buried alive in stuff.”  These next pictures are of the amazing lower level of The Market Square in Kinsman, Ohio.  Even though this was our second experience here it never ceases to amaze us.  The basement does hold books, but here is where there are dishes and loads of records.  I loved this antique medicine cabinet just sitting on the floor next to other nonsense stuff.

It was one of those experiences where it’s funny and scary at the same time.  Especially, when Mike kept hitting his head on miscellaneous items hanging from the ceiling.  If you ever want to travel Route 7 down through Ohio then we recommend making a stop at The Market Square in Kinsman.  You’ll even want to write home about it.  For more information check out their blog on WordPress.  (and yes, that was advertised on one of their store front signs)    Leave a comment on our blog if you’ve ever been here or someplace like this!

So, what about that very first picture under the title of this blog entry?  I have one more place to tell you about.  Here my friends lie the story of the real glorious side of digging.  Bat, mice, rat feces, and bird droppings all in one place.  Oh, and antiques under the poop.  Real antiques in this place.  The kind of antiques that make you want to be in a place hosting the waste from rodents.   The name of this location was hard to find, in fact after we were leaving I asked if they had a business card or something sharing their information.  He thought about it for a minute and came back from his house with a flyer. Ron & Trish’s Place in North Branch, Michigan.   I was able to ‘Check in’ with Facebook, so that must mean we weren’t seeing things.   We were heading over to a friend’s cottage and saw some furniture on the side of the road and then a huge barn behind it that said “Antiques”.  (Our favorite sign to see, and then the word OPEN after it) The first barn was like stepping back into time.  You weren’t sure if you were going to fall through the floor, or whether furniture was going to topple on you.   It was fantastic.  I even found fabulous light fixtures.  My new “little obsession”, btw.  We came out the other side of the barn and into a make shift farm type courtyard.  Not sure what else to call a place that is fenced in, with multiple buildings and a house all fenced in including a sign, “puppies for sale”.  Those puppies were pretty big and wanted to smell in places I wasn’t comfortable with.  Very antique farmy kind of place of business, and with no name appearing anywhere.  Giggle, it was great.

When he saw that we were serious about digging he said to us, “Your welcome to go into our barn back there”  We couldn’t believe our ears, there’s MORE?  So, we nod a bit with disbelief in our eyes for our worthiness for yet one more barn.  He unlocks the gate from his farm courtyard and lets us go on by ourselves down to the other barn of goodies.  We pass by loads of stuff laying all over the place.  I take note of a pile of old brick that I’d love to get my hands on.  I’m the type of person that when I see something I calculate in my head if 1.  can I get it in the van? and 2. how much will my husband think I’m crazy?  I decided to only take a picture instead of inquire about all the old bricks.

We open the barn door that seems to be twenty feet tall and there before our eyes lies a camper.  Lot’s of other stuff, but all we see is that camper.  We made our way around furniture, antique sleighs, peddle push cars, and other various things that you weren’t sure what they were at one time.  I of course, can only think about that camper.

We get back there to the camper after making our way through a maze of that same grossness that I talked about earlier.  Under the light that seeped through the cracks in that old barn roof, we realized what we had been standing on.   Loads and loads of feces, the mother of mother loads of *x*8%@)+* BLEEP!  EWWWW!!!  But wait, there was the camper!  WhaWhaWha…….. It had bird padookie splattered on it from the birds rafter home.  Still positive, I say, “come on honey, you can’t get a great deal on a camper unless it’s rough!”   My beloved looks at me blankly, as he always does when he doesn’t quite know what to say to me.   When we both realize that the rivets are coming apart literally at the seems due to a rotting frame, I then did give up in hoisting this barn queen from its misery.   Ahhh, yet another crazy idea left behind with the bricks.  “Thank God”, my husband says.

Here lies the moral of the story.   The more the poop and cobwebs, the more we like it.   Err, something like that.  With all this fun, one asks, “well, what did you buy huh, what DID you find?”   Well, not much in all honestly.  Lot’s of fun memories and one long blog entry.   I did pick up a vintage separated Pyrex dish, round antique tin sewing box,  and a Wonder Woman glass.  The latter was not old, just awesome.  I stand tall with my hands on my hips.  The best super hero stance I can give you and state with confidence, ” I will touch and do anything for my junk!”   We just wash real good after and use lots of sanitary squeeze bottle stuff.

  1. That looks about the most perfect afternoon’s browsing I can think of 🙂 Lovely post. And that feature picture is priceless.

    • Makes me so very happy that people from all over the world have enjoyed these adventurous stories. I love that you called it “browsing”. That will make me smile all day. I will probably use that one next time I step in some bat poo and grab the cobwebbed chair as I catch my fall. I’ll simply say, “I’m okay, I’m meerily browsing” (all in a days work)
      Smooches Britain!

  2. wow! incredible stuff! you have a discerning eye and sometimes it’s the fun of the chse rather than the spoils at the end!

    • Thankfully, the only “real” spoil is if we don’t jump on buying something and then we regret it later. That should be another blog entry – all the items that Mike and I left behind over the past year. The vintage umbrella is the most upsetting. 😦
      I don’t even want to talk about it (I say with poutty lips & baby voice)

  3. Hahaha. Oh my. You are a riot. I’m sorry your bravery didn’t yield you more to show for it.

Thank you & remember Historic Preservation IS fun!

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