Saturday, January 11, 2014

The Love of Vintage Valentines

My love of paper extends into an appreciation of things of a bygone era...vintage valentines. My collection consists of beautiful pieces that I have picked up over time at auctions, estate sales and antique shops. They are getting harder to find and prices seem to keep going up. I try to treat myself to one a year. 

Every year I bring them up from the basement (where I display them year round) and make a special display for Valentine's Day. My other crazy obsession is glass. You might have guessed this from a few pieces mixed in with the valentines.

The first thing that catches my eye is usually the build of the valentine. I mean really, some of these are four layers of intricate paper carefully crafted together {{something you would never see today}}. They stand up, fold out or even hold another component of the valentine. Note the horse valentine on the top shelf. It is supported by the triangle of flowers and is able to swing back and forth like a pendulum. 

A few valentines have a problem here or there such as in the honeycomb detaching or slight fading. These, should I call them "flaws?", are the result of many years of storage and I hope display by the original owners. 

I also like to look at the back of the valentines. Often they are signed and sometimes dated. This tugs at my heart just a bit...kinda like a wedding photo in an antique shop. The people who exchanged these valentines are now gone and their things are for sale. Where, when, how did theses precious items loose their family? 

Well, I just wanted to take a break from decorating and write this as it was all right there in the front of my mind. Often I don't have much to say or can't think what to write when I sit down to add a photo to my blog. Tonight was an essay for me. I think I will study these valentines and try to take some inspiration from them for the cards I will be making for the holiday.

Isn't someone cool...they made a "D" letter out of an old book!!
That is stuck in there for our last name initial.

Horse portion of the valentine is being supported by the front piece and swings freely back and forth.

Book on the shelf, in back, was gift from my mom one year. The 25th creamer and sugar, left, came from an auction (Dale and Jean Fox, for those of you from my area that might have known them). 

"Rainbow" pitcher,  middle shelf, far left, belonged to my Grandma.
The odd looking blue item, middle farthest forward, is a "ring-box" my husband attempted to make in grade school art. There should be a lid and bottom, but when it was glazed, the lid stuck to the bottom for eternity.

Just beautiful...this one has embossing on the back layer.

This lovely valentine was acquired at a local estate sale (Dixie Moltz...for those of you who may have known her). All of the opalescent hobnail glass pieces you see are part of a full collection of  "Moonstone" glassware. It was in Five and Dime stores in the 1940s. The Moonstone collection also started with one piece my grandmother had in her home.

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