What Have You Acquired From Family?

Discussion in 'The Display Case' started by Penny Dreadful, Jan 4, 2011.

  1. Penny Dreadful

    Penny Dreadful One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    224
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    My grandma has always been a very generous person. Recently her aunt died, and before giving a pile of both their stuff to the church rummage sale she gave a bunch to me and my husband. Among it all was a red and white polka dot apron, a bunch of silk scarves, and an elaborate looking bronze tin. So it got me thinking, what beautiful and interesting old things/heirlooms have you received from grandparents and other family members?
     
    MisterCairo likes this.
  2. I inherited a few things, but these are on the top of the list:

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    The chest in front of the bed saved my great grandparents from suffering through the depression, because it's where they kept their money. My great grandfather didn't trust banks (Thank God). It's also where my great grandmother kept her dead daughter's baby shoes. She died around the age of 3 :(

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    This was my great grandmother's Welsh hutch and my mom gave it to me during her last move because she knew how much I loved it and she didn't have the room, since she downsized.

    These two pieces may not mean anything to anyone else and they may not be of any monetary value, but they mean the world to me.

    I completely understand your love for the things that have been passed down to you :)
     
  3. Drappa

    Drappa One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,141
    Location:
    Hampshire, UK
    Beautiful items Rue!
    I have most of my grandmother's jewellery, mainly pearls and amber, a cardigan from the 60's she wore and one of her fur coats, which I don't wear but treasure.
    I also have some family silver cutlery and some mugs my grandparents had, which mean the world to me. Lastly, I have some oil paintings a relative of my grandparents painted, but they are currently being stored by my Dad. Oh, and some etchings my grandfather acquired in the 50's, but haven't found a place to hang them yet that is worthy.

    My father has some papers and my grandfather's WWII medals, which will one day be passed down to me.
    My mom has a lot of gold jewellery at thebank, which belonged to my other gran.
     
  4. Berlin

    Berlin Practically Family

    Messages:
    510
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    Quite alot!
    Jewelry boxes, jewelry, china, silver cutlery, very old pictures, photoframes, fox stola {I don't wear it, even if it's vintage!}, milk jugs, decanters. Hmm probably some more....which I forgot to mention.
     
  5. Thank you Drappa :)

    You're so lucky, as are all of you ladies that have inherited personal items like clothing. I wish I had something like that too. One of my grandfathers cardigans would have been worth more than gold to me, but I have no idea what happened to them [huh]
     
  6. amynbebes

    amynbebes New in Town

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Florida
    Great grandmother's cardigan, which I have on right now :) Great grandmother's cedar chest, great great grandmother's engagement ring, another great great grandmother's civil war era (actually hidden from Gen. Sherman) silver tea pot. Grandmother's wedding china. I'm sure there's more that I can't think of right now :) And I know there will be more when my mom passes in a bagillion years from now ;)
     
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  7. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    My grandparents didn't have much to pass down, and what they did, my mother has. But I do have my great-grandmother's breadboard -- I'm the fourth generation to knead dough on it, and probably the last, since my niece is afraid she'll get germs if she cooks her own food.

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    The edge isn't broken, it's worn away from 130 years of constant use.

    I also have my grandfather's pocket watch, which he won from some poor soul in a card game, and has that unfortunate pigeon's name and "1908" engraved in the back. There are also multiple pawn ticket numbers scratched into the back of the case as evidence of time spent in hock to feed the family.
     
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  8. That really and truly has to be one of the most wonderful family heirlooms I've ever seen Lizzie. How seriously special that it was passed onto you. I'm sorry about your niece, but she may just change her mind one day :)
     
  9. Foofoogal

    Foofoogal Banned

    Messages:
    4,891
    Location:
    Vintage Land
    Lizzie, many, many ladies covet a bread board like this.
    Believe it or not they can run into the 100s. Tell your niece this. I bet she will want it then. lol
    ------------
    Your hutch is stunning Rue.
     
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  10. Amy Jeanne

    Amy Jeanne Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,850
    Location:
    Colorado
    http://snapped-garters.blogspot.com/2010/12/1938-kenmore-rotary-deluxe.html

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    My grandmother's 1938 sewing machine. She used into the 1970s (the decade she died) and then my mom would ocassionally use it into the early/mid 80s. Then it went into hibernation for about 25 years until I rescued it from that dark closet and breathed new life into it. I got it fixed and it works fine. I even dropped it once and it made no impact on it whatsoever. I'm sure if I dropped my modern Brother machine it would shatter into a million pieces. lol
     
  11. Land-O-LakesGal

    Land-O-LakesGal Practically Family

    Messages:
    864
    Location:
    St Paul, Minnesota
    I have some porcelain fish complete with bubbles that used to hang in my Grandma's bathroom at her cabin. My husbands grandmother just passed this October she was a lovely woman. My mother in law gave me her portable sewing machine (we didn't know she had one as no one ever saw her sew). I was also given a 60's basket purse. But the best thing my mother in law gave me was the bling ring she bought in Vegas when attending our wedding I think she only paid a few dollars for it but it has great sentimental value for us.
     
  12. Miss Elisabeth

    Miss Elisabeth New in Town

    Messages:
    24
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    I have my maternal grandma's prom dress from the late 50s. My industrious Scottish great grandmother, however, decided to cut the tulle overskirt off in the most terrible uneven way to make padded hangers.

    Yeeep. I also have all of my maternal great grandmother's kilt skirts (bless her heart she was my size!) as well as sweaters. My paternal grandmother gave me a beautiful wool dress from the 1960s that is just stunning. I also have my paternal great grandmother's girdle, though it's far too big for me, as well as many of the hats passed down through the family. There's other stuff that has been given to me but it's not been in my family from the begining - for example, there is a loooovely silk hat circa 1915 that my grandmother purchased at a vintage car swap meet. Some of my grandmother's friends, as well, give me fabric and dresses. I have some beautiful stuff that their mothers wore and they love to see me wear. I also have my great grandfather's suitcase, which is beautiful and lovely.

    Both of my dressers are from the family, as is one of our pianos, my treadle machine, one of our bunkbeds, several assorted tables, a beautiful early 20th century rocking chair, and my personal favorite, some paintings done by my great aunt Vera. My grandmother gave me one to have of my very own - a charming 16x20 oil painting of a blond girl. My father has a childhood portrait of himself as well as a scene from the Yakima Valley, where he grew up.

    We also have some books from different eras of the family, and my father has his grandfather's drafting tools. There are major pros to coming from families who are borderline packrats. My maternal grandpa has a huge body of research on the area where our family has been for the past 110 years. In addition to that he's got a huge collection of vintage cars, and it'll be interesting to see what all happens with that stuff.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011
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  13. Marla

    Marla A-List Customer

    Messages:
    421
    Location:
    USA
    Most of the vintage items I have I acquired for free thanks to family and friends who are aware of my interest. Once I honed the skill of recognizing and separating antiques from things that were junk, I was surprised by how many antique things were around me. And that knowledge is very useful if you collect vintage/antique things, because it gives you the upper hand over the layperson who has no understanding of an item's true value because to them it just looks "old" (a.k.a. useless).

    In this way I've managed to acquire cheaply or to convince my extended relatives to give me their antique furniture and decorations. Once I knew the identifying characteristics I found a beautiful, functioning vintage umbrella in my parents' basement. I'd seen it before but had forgotten about it. One day it caught my eye in a way it never had before. In the same way I acquired a 1940s quilt from the same basement, my step-grandmother's high school diploma and jewelry, a box of old family photographs, and a Waterfall-style queen-size bed (which the previous owner of the house left there).

    Once my grandmothers discovered my interest they specifically gave me an heirloom silverware set, and vintage fabric and buttons that they had been hoarding since at least the 1950s. When they pass on I'm also in line to inherit my grandparents' 1950s furniture, glass Christmas ornaments, suitcases, jewelry, and anything else from my favorite era.
     
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  14. RodeoRose

    RodeoRose A-List Customer

    Messages:
    415
    Location:
    Vermont
    Wow, I really envy you girls who've inherited vintage clothing! It must be so exciting to have pieces with such provenance.

    A lot of the furniture in my house is from my late grandmother and her family (an old Southern line with roots to the original Virginia colonists, or so they say-- we have heirlooms galore!).

    One of my favorite vintage pieces was once my mothers-- it's a hand-embroidered late Victorian or Edwardian jacket that she bought as an antique back in the late 70s or early 80s. She was living in London and into the punk scene, and I don't think it got much wear as it's still in amazingly good condition. It's the kind of piece I could never have afforded now, and I'm so lucky to have it. Here's a picture; it's not a close up, but you get the idea:
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    And all of those gold flowers are completely embroidered in thread!
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011
  15. Marla

    Marla A-List Customer

    Messages:
    421
    Location:
    USA
    Broadcasting your interest is a smart move because in most cases relatives will be shower you with their unwanted antiques. They'll be relieved that there's someone in the family to whom they can give their old furniture and the like when they're 'upgrading'. No guilt for them for selling a family heirloom, and you will have the benefit of adding new items to your collection for free. Grandma wants to cut up her wedding dress because she doesn't have room for it anymore? Offer to take it off her hands.
     
  16. wahine

    wahine Practically Family

    Messages:
    535
    Location:
    Lower Saxony, Germany
    I guess Marla is right, but it still doesn't always work out. I keep on telling my grandma for years that she should at least show me anything she wants to get rid of before she throws it away. Still, she keeps on dumping clothes and other stuff that's in a good condition and tells me much later (she's 92, I got to add - so I guess she doesn't always remember that I'm interested in her goodies). Unfortunately, she got rid of her pre-sixties stuff decades ago. So all the clothing I have from her is sixties and seventies stuff e.g. half a dozen skirts. The style isnt really on my line but better than nothing and sometimes it can be combined with the earlier (looking) pieces.

    She also gave me about a dozen ties of my grandpa - mostly also sixties and seventies styles but still quite wearable.

    The same grandma also gave me a big wooden mirror that her own mother used as a dressing and make up mirror.

    From my other grandma I got a few pieces of jewelery (cheap but nonetheless precious to me) and from my grandpa a wonderful wooden inlay box - he was a carpenter. Unfortunately both these grandparents died years ago and loads of wonderful wooden furniture had to be gotten rid of when the big house was given up (I wasn't there when they did it and I'm glad about it, since I wouldn't have had the place to take a single thing at the time). :confused:
     
  17. Geiamama

    Geiamama One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    201
    Location:
    Cheltenham, UK
    I've got a few things of my family including my great-great-aunts wedding ring, my grandmother's pearls but my absolute favourite 'hand-me-down' has to be my mother's furs.

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    (Please excuse the unset hair and no make-up.)

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    (My boy trying it on for size with his school hat.)

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    I know some object to fur, and often feel the need to confront me with their objections, but I adore them and try to find an excuse to wear them as often as possible.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011
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  18. AmateisGal

    AmateisGal I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,818
    Location:
    Nebraska
    Over Christmas, my grandmother gave me a pair of her earrings that my grandfather bought for her years ago. Since he passed away two years ago, they are all the more special to me. :)
     
  19. Tatum

    Tatum Practically Family

    Messages:
    959
    Location:
    Sunshine State
    Oh boy, I wish I could say I got vintage clothes from my family! We have a lot of furniture and things of that nature from family. Some of the really sentimental stuff...My grandfather was stationed in the Pacific during WWII, and I have the kimono he purchased for his mother in my dressing room. I also have one of his batons from back then, he was a drum major and performed during his tour. We are in possession of an old wooden washtub that my grandmother, mother, father and uncle "appropriated" from my grandmother's mother's barn in Louisiana! Went from grandmother to mom to us, it was our housewarming gift this year!
     
  20. BoPeep

    BoPeep Practically Family

    Messages:
    638
    Location:
    Pasturelands, Wisc
    On my dad's side, I've acquired a 1946 Singer from my grandmother (my daily machine), and a 1911 Singer treadle from my great-grandmother.

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    Also a 1940s secretary from Grandma.

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    On my mom's side, my favorite piece is Grandma's cewpie wedding cake topper (married in 1938).

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    And her mother's (my great grandmother's) yellowware bowl and rolling pin. Great Grandma immigrated to America at the turn of the century from Austria with her husband and three children. This bowl makes the best German potato salad ever (from the family recipe, of course)!

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