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Vintage Kitchen Finds

I’m just crazy over vintage kitchen things. Though I’m not too fond of gadgets that clutter up the kitchen, I love anything that’s useful and sturdy.

I love a good thrift store, garage sale, estate sale or flea market. I love the weight of old things.

Ever notice how things made long ago are {still} sturdier than the things we have now?  Of course most kitchen gadgets today are made with lightweight materials like plastic or silicone. Sure, they look nice and make our lives seem easier, but there’s character to things from an era gone by. The colors are fun and vibrant, the sayings on towels and magnets are quirky; they just seem to resonate a more earthy presence and more time spent in the kitchen.

But wait– isn’t the kitchen what every woman wanted to escape?

Now vintage items are all the rage, not just kitchen vintage. Just take a look at Etsy.com and you’ll see how much interest there is in retro clothing, decor and yes, kitchenware. Don’t throw away those old Mason jars- they’re worth something to people like me…

Since flea market and garage sale season are over right now in cold climates (though I have seen some estate sales), thrift stores and online shopping are great ways to get deals on vintage items, especially during a snowstorm like the one we’re having now in the Midwest.

Though there’s more from my kitchen I need to photograph, I thought I’d share with you a couple of my favorite vintage kitchen finds, where you can get yours and some tips on shopping for the best deals.

Have fun and get inspired– then tell me where I can go ‘hunting’ in your neck of the woods…

Petit Pans by Corningware found at Unique Thrift in Cleveland, Ohio

Tips for Finding the Best Deals in Kitchen Vintage

  • Find out what days the cookware items are discounted: For example, one of my favorite thrift stores in Chicago has an extra 20% off on all kitchen items every Thursday. It’s the only day I’ll buy those items.
  • Know What You’re Looking For: It’s easy to get distracted by the multitude of things: glassware, stemware, bakeware, cookware, etc. Bring a list or make a mental note of the needs and wants you have. That should make the hunt a lot less overwhelming.
  • Read Local Newspapers & Magazines: This is especially true when traveling. I love to shop for vintage while on vacation or business travel, especially in rural and mountainous areas. It’s fun to see what’s local to the area and also quite historic. You’ll be surprised what can be found in mom & pop shops, most of which are covered in the area’s local media. Don’t overlook hospitals, community centers, religious centers and more- they often have thrift shops as a way to earn money to help their community. They usually have odd/short hours of operation due to volunteers operating them so call ahead.
  • Ask for a Rewards Card. Yes, many thrift stores big and small have jumped on the bandwagon of rewards cards just like many other major retailers. Some have punch cards, some have reward cards that offer discounts after you’ve spent a certain amount. Stores like Goodwill also send you emails with coupons, so be sure to ask about mailing lists.
  • Follow the Stores on Social Media. Some stores have Twitter accounts and Facebook fan pages where you can find out about upcoming deals, what’s new at the stores and more.
  • Find out What Day New Items Get on the Shelves. Some stores put items out as they come, others put them on shelves only on particular days. Many times it depends on the amount of storage each store has, due to fire hazard rules and regulations. Ask a store manager so you know when the latest items will be stocked– then, get there early!

RESOURCES

My Fave Thrift Stores

Wing’s Resale Stores (Illinois)

Unique Thrift Store (Chicago & Cleveland areas)

Lakewood Hospital Thrifty Peddler Resale Shop is located at 14501 Detroit Avenue in Cleveland, OH 44107-4316. (216) 226-9988

Goodwill (U.S. locations found everywhere)

ICNA Relief Thrift Store is located at 17W731 Roosevelt Road – Unit D in OakBrook Terrace, Illinois 60181.  

The Salvation Army (U.S. locations found everywhere)

Maryville Community Thrift Shop (Des Plaines, IL)

My Fave Flea Markets

Kane County Flea Market in St. Charles, IL- a hot spot for buyers and decorators, you’ll find vintage furniture, jewelry, textiles and more. Go early because you’ll need the whole day to see everything. Check out the barns- that’s where all the kitchen vintage seems to be centered most of  the time.

Jamie’s Flea Market in Amherst, Ohio. I used to go here as a kid and haven’t been in a very long time, but it’s still going strong. You can find Amish baked goods, furniture, comic books, handmade doll clothes, plants and more. It’s indoors and out. Don’t miss it if you’re ever in the area.

My Fave Discount Knock-Off Stores (for vintage look-alike)

These stores may not technically sell vintage items, but I’ve found plenty of look-alike and old-school kitchen items at all of them.  For the best deals, go to the closeouts or clearance sections. It’s always hit or miss, which is part of the fun and the thrill of the hunt, in my opinion.

Marc’s Stores (Ohio only)

Marshall’s (U.S. locations everywhere)

TJ Maxx (U.S. locations everywhere)

Small canning jars by Cinch Seal found at Marc’s store in Cleveland, Ohio

3 comments

  1. marcs is one of the things i miss most about Ohio! we wish they had it here in PA.

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