“Vintage” is a hot trend in home decor these days, isn’t it? Vintage this, vintage that. Shopping at antique malls, surfing Goodwill shelves, hunting at garage sales, right? Right. I love that kind of hunt myself, honest. If only…
If only I could make sure that this vase I’m holding did not come from a room of a person who died of TB. If only I could make sure that this particular bowl had not been used as a night vase of a terminally ill with a contagious disease. If only I could make sure that this lovely paining did not come from a home, where every male died at a certain age, or every woman in the line had divorced her first husband, or that this headboard, that basket or a hand mirror from 1800’s were not sold to get the money for drugs…
You see, I believe in energy. I believe that every single thing has its energy. And our life is nothing but constant exchange of energy. What goes around, comes around. Sounds familiar? Same thing here, with accessories we fill our homes with. Here is another one: If only these walls could speak. Meaning, I am not sure I want to hear all the stories the walls could have told about what they had witnesses over the years, should they be able to speak.
The idea is this: Things that surround us absorb our energy. They absorb all the fights, words spoken in anger, energies of illnesses, all the human negative emotions. Any item is a kind of vessel that is filling up with energies. As soon as the vessel if full, those energies absorbed during years, begin to spill out. Note, that it may take a long while to fill the vessel. And by the time you bring your new garage sale find home, it might be just the right time for it to spill all its energetic contents into your peaceful abode. As simple as that.
That is why I am often torn between the irresistible attraction to an antique vase and the fear to bring that vase, with all its questionable past, home…
The question is simple with cracked, chipped or torn items. It’s a No-Go. I never buy an old chipped thing. To me, cracks are too obviously symbolic. I cannot afford to waste money – which is a source of very powerful energy – on something broken. And think about this: isn’t that crack the exact reason you are seeing this item in a Goodwill? Moreover, I get rid of any and all broken pieces in my home myself!
Actually, there is a short list of old items that I never buy to bring home, no matter how vintage they are:
– Clocks: exception is only those inherited from my own grandfather
– Mirrors: who knows what they have had reflected?
– Dinnerware: I can’t let my family eat from dishes of unknown origin
– Cutlery: no knives, graters, silver spoons of unknown origin
– Fabric: who knows what this piece of cloth had been used for
– NO RUST on anything!
Perhaps, the greatest taboo is buying old jewelry. Since jewelry is worn touching our bodies, these pieces absorb the most of our energy. Besides, gold and silver are wonderful conductors, which means they give out the energy within as soon as you touch them. Stones are known to have healing powers. They absorb the illness and other negative energies directed toward the owner. Why would you want a stone full of envy that had been directed to its previous owner? I stay away, just to be on the safer side.
Now look, I love the old French country style in home decor, and the English cottage style, and an old farm-house style, too!! Just check out my Pinterest boards! But I am convinced that today it is relatively easy to decorate a home in literally any style without old, antique finds, but with safe, new items. Just take a look around! Pier 1, Pottery Barn, Crate & Barell and Macy’s. Target. Home Goods, Marshall’s and TJ Maxx. Check out your local craftsmen! There are scores of stores offering tons of new decor items to go well with any budget. And you spare yourself the worry for the sanitary condition of one or the other find.
Besides, how many of us can actually claim to be connoisseurs of history of decor? I mean, strolling along the kiosks with antiques, how can one be sure that this cup is 70 years old, and not made 20 years ago? How many of us actually know – and care! – how old should an item be to be considered vintage? Surely not I. Sometimes I pick a silver pitcher, dark with time (or dirt?) and I can’t help but wonder if it is as old as those of my great grandmother? It sure looks as if it is, but would the seller tell you the truth about the piece? Hm…
However, the items of family heritage such as photo frames, vases, family albums, silver bowls and spoons, bows, hand-crafted tablecloths, ancient suitcases, century-old wedding gowns and so on are a very different story. Personally I am strongly bound to such things, of which I used to have plenty, given that my grandmother was the keeper of my family history and its treasures. I would have never given any of 7 crystal bowls, camellias, or tiny silver goblets, empty jewelry boxes or great-grandmother knitting needles away, no matter how much misfortunes had there been in my blood-line. I confess, I am biased when it comes to things I am attached to.
To draw a line here, I would recommend ladies to use your common sense when shopping for old stuff.
Linking to WOW us Wednesdays at Savvy Southern Style