Follow me on my pathtojunkentreasure as I hunt for treasures at flea markets, garage sales, rummage sales, thrift stores, estate sales and wherever I can find a treasure. I'll share my love of hammered aluminum, vintage Christmas, vintage jewelry, doilies and tablecloths, milk glass, garden items and other treasures. I'll also share some advice on my crafting projects, gardening and recycling items. Please join me on my pathtojunkentreasure!

Friday, November 10, 2017

Holiday Open House

This week has been a whirlwind of Holiday Open Houses. First was the Shops on Pepper Road in Barrington. It was so much fun with lots of holiday finds and food.

Then, I have been setting up all week for the open house at the Carriage House. Yesterday was the first day.

I had so many vintage ornaments that I filled up a bassinet!

There is a huge selection of vintage Christmas pins.

I put the pins on flash cards so that they were easier to handle and to see.  They fit nicely in a primitive carry all.

Here was my creative way to display the reindeer. Super cute!

Lots of vintage greeting cards. On the top shelf are trees that I designed. Below the shelf are jalopies with Santa's driving that I also designed.

That's a really cute Santa bobble head like decoration.

Another creative way to display Christmas picks. The reindeer work perfectly in the milk glass vase.

The vintage coat pairs well with the vintage dress.  My space is really packed with vintage Christmas but the customers loved it! Yesterday was the first day and it was so crowded. We couldn't have been happier that our tastes were loved and appreciated by so many. It's so much fun looking for treasured items that bring happiness to others as much as finding them bring to us.

I managed to fit it all in!

As items sold, I was able to replenish with vintage boxed ornaments. I find these treasures all year long and price/store them in bins. Opening each bin is like Christmas to me! I'm amazed at what's inside each one.

So tomorrow, a few friends are going with me to the 3 French Hens Holiday Market in Morris. I'm really excited for this one!

Happy treasure hunting!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

A Few New Additions

I know. I said that I wasn't buying anything for myself.  Well, that all changed recently when I found this....a Westmoreland milk glass rabbit covered dish.

So, I rearranged my cabinet, reduced my head vase collection, and redisplayed the treasures that I was keeping. (for now) I had been collecting head vases for at least 20 years and felt that it was time to let go of some of them. My whole thing with my collections has been that if it doesn't bring me joy, out it goes. Otherwise, it just becomes clutter.

While at an estate sale in a Victorian home, I found this wonderful jeweled basket made from vintage costume jewelry pieces.

I had been looking for something like this for a long time that was reasonably priced.  It came home with me!

Once again, I rearranged my collections and found a nice prominent spot for it.  That's what is so nice about treasure hunting. You can mix and change constantly whenever something "new" comes along. I love that part of it!

My fun "new" finds along with my "old" finds.

Complete for now!

I can't promise that I won't keep any more finds.  Especially since I kept him....

How could I not? I had never seen anything like him and that face was too cute to let go. He will be a part of my vintage Christmas decor.

I have been really busy getting everything together for the Carriage House Holiday Open House November 9-12. 

This is always an exciting Open House. It is vintage Christmas wonderland!

This Friday and Saturday is the Christmas at the Farm with Nellie's Barn Sale in Belvidere IL. It is always a fun sale! 3 French Hens market in Morris IL is November 10-11. There are so many wonderful holiday markets coming up. I am interested in Jen's Fresh Vintage holiday market in Elburn, IL and Washington Street Holiday Market in Naperville, IL. I have not been to them but would love to.

Happy treasure hunting!

Thursday, October 26, 2017


Always at this time of year, I get the crazy energy to reorganize, or should I say to purge my collections. It happened again this week. Maybe it's because I have started volunteering in a local thrift store a few times a month and am busy filling their shelves with donated merchandise.

Of course, this was my busiest week so that's where the extra energy probably came from.  I really wanted to reduce my milk glass collection, so I started there.

There is so much more room in this cabinet for colored glass and more hammered aluminum. At least you can see the pieces now.

It really has been reduced from previous pictures. Before pieces were on top of each other. Now only a few small pieces are.  I purposely left some bare areas in case I find another piece that I just have to buy.

I have two cabinets filled with my milk glass collection.  This one was paired down too and some hammered aluminum has been added.  The bottom left side has a hammered aluminum covered dish on top of a milk glass cake plate.  I just found that Arthur Armour piece in Lake Geneva and was so thrilled! It's really awesome.  I am trying to limit my hammered aluminum collection to only certain makers so as not to get too carried away.  I have been really good so far but a few pieces have snuck in.

My tastes have been changing so I'm sure there will be another day of purging my milk glass collection. But for now I'm done.  Not with my other collections though.  I cleaned out my room of some vintage planters and even decided to sell my collection of dog planters that I had lined up on the basement window ledge.  I have kept that area with frog planters and a few farm animals.  Some of those planters will be regifted to friends I know would love them.

Garage sales are winding down but the Crystal Lake Antique Mall is celebrating their 5th anniversary this weekend with a flea market in their parking lot on Saturday.

Holiday sales are just getting started. There's a Country Christmas craft show in Crystal Lake this weekend.  I really like this one. There is a nice selection with a few primitive looking craft makers. There is a 3 French Hens Holiday Market November 10-11 in Morris. I have never been to this one but a few friends are making a day of it with me. I'm super excited about that! My favorite, Mistletoe Magic in Woodstock, is cancelled this year. I was told it will be back next year. Stay tuned.

Happy treasure hunting!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Fall Finds

What beautiful weather we have been having! Hardly feels like fall is here with the holidays a short time away.

I have been finding the best holiday treasures the past few weeks.

More Christmas pins (and others) to add to my collection....some to sell.

Christmas treasures galore.

I'm getting ready for the Holiday Open House at the Carriage House on Nov 9-12.  I have 10 bins full of vintage Christmas! I don't know where I'll put it all.  It's so exciting to see the whole place filled with vintage treasures from Christmas's past.  The customers love it and I love it.  I buy all year for it.  I never get tired of looking at it.

But, it's not Halloween yet and I can't overlook that.  I'm still keeping my decor simple but I just had to add this wonderful scale I found yesterday. I couldn't believe that no one had bought it yet and it was 1pm!

I put it on my kitchen table with a pumpkin basket on top of it.  Simple. Cute. Perfect.

Autumn Drive in Woodstock is going on this weekend.  It was beautiful today out in the country. Tomorrow should be the perfect weather for it too.

Happy treasure hunting!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017


I just finished dusting and vacuuming my house while playing the last music CD, Southern Blood, that Greg Allman made.  Boy, does it touch my heart.  The first song, My Only True Friend, brings tears to my eyes each time. I guess that some soul searching is good.

With M&M's by my side, I'm just going to let my thought run..... It's a nice cool day after my hair kinked up from the morning rain.  So much for straightening it!

I have found some really great treasures lately.  I am going to show you lots of those.  Mostly small items but really fun anyway.

I have an idea for that wonderful frame in my room.  I have to play around with it for awhile before I can make a final decision.

I also found a ready made collection of oil cans. Great patina on them.

I couldn't part with this daisy basket.  I decided to keep it.  It's by my basement window and looks so cute with a vintage non working clock.  The clock has the best patina that I couldn't part with it either.

It cheers up that area and will be really nice when it's snowing outside.  It will always be spring in my house.

I just have to share a close up of it...

Here's some more finds...

I just loved this mini hat stand with vintage doll hats.  That's sitting on my case that's filled with Statue of Liberty figures.

I don't usually do a lot of decorating for Halloween.  I usually do more of a fall theme.  (Christmas is when I go way out with the decorating).

A round French mirror looks nice with a giant pumpkin on it.  I found that pumpkin years ago at a rummage sale for $3.  It's sitting on a fall themed quilt that was also from a rummage sale for $5.

Hello Fall keeps it simple.

My friend Cecilia gave me this crazy picture that reminded her of our outings! It's fun to put it out during Halloween. Doilies are always a part of my decor.  It doesn't look finished to me unless I have a doily in the display.  I guess that stems from my growing up where there was always a doily on the furniture.

My fireplace mantel is really long so I try to create small vignettes along it.  

Simple but fall like.  

Enjoy the fall weather and the rummage/garage sales. Thursday is the Methodist Church rummage sale in McHenry starting at 9am.  On Saturday is a barn sale in Richmond at 4219 W. Solon Rd by Rubbish Farm from 8-2.  Nellies Barn Sale is Friday and Saturday in Roscoe.  This is always a great sale with lots of wonderful vendors.  

Happy treasure hunting!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Even Though....

Even though the temperature yesterday was in the 80's, I had Christmas on my mind.  I try to create holiday themed items all during the year so that I'm not bogged down at the last minute.  So, I put on a Bon Jovi cd and got out my vintage holiday treasures. Here's what I created!

Now back to the fall.  I hit some great sales last weekend!

Lots of small items....

And some great fabric pieces.  I especially love the tray with a vintage quilt piece in it.

I added to my vintage leather coach purse collection. Love that they were not used.

I changed a decor piece in my yard.  I had been using a column just for some added design but it was falling apart and I didn't like the look of it anymore anyway.

I had my eye on this metal table at the Carriage House for a while so I decided to buy it.

I love the curly legs on it!

Make sure to follow me on Instagram for more photos of my space at Carriage House Antiques.

Mt Hope Church in Johnsburg is having their rummage sale on Friday.  Sept 24th is the last Elkhorn WI flea market for the season.  It's also the Master Gardener Farm Stroll. On Sept 30th is the Johnny Appleseed festival in downtown Crystal Lake.  At the same time around the corner is a flea market at the Crystal Lake Antique mall which is across the street from the Carriage House Antiques.  Oct 1 is the last Cedarburg WI flea market for the season. Watch out for church rummage sales that are starting to pop up now.

Happy treasure hunting!

Sunday, September 17, 2017

A Cart.....Room Redo

It's funny how one new treasure can cause a whole room redo.  Years ago I found a vintage dress form (for $10) at an estate sale.  The family holding the sale didn't think that anyone in their right mind would want it.  Well, say no more.  I had to have it. It's been a part of  "my" room ever since.

Usually when I wish hard enough for something, I'm bound to find it.  I had been looking for a metal cart. Kind of like a plant metal cart.  Well, I found one at a garage sale along with other wonderful items.

I just knew that the cart would look perfect holding wire baskets filled with my favorite magazines. Wire baskets are another weakness of mine, but that's another blog post.  In order to fit the cart in "my" room, I needed to rearrange some things and purge a few things. I decided to get rid of the blue stand that held some yarn and magazines and another corner stand. But, the dress form stays exactly where it was.  I even left the floral wreath on it.

There is so much more room on my floors now.  Easier to dust too!  I like the original wood patina on most of my furniture.  Even with the scratches and chips, I like this dresser as is.  I use it to store my hankey and embroidered pillowcase collections.

The little black cart on the other side of the dress form is also from a garage sale years ago.  Another piece that I'm not parting with.  I have displayed so many items on it. I change it up often.  The skeins of yarn are in the basket underneath and the metal truck was a flea market find.  I'm super happy with how it turned out.  All because of a one item purchase.

Something I realized while putting this all together is that sometimes ideas need a little help. This site might be some help.  I haven't used it myself but it seems to have some great resources and ideas with a long list of designers to choose from. Let me know if you use them and how you benefited from the ideas/experience.

Happy treasure hunting!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Bringing in Fall

I love fall! Especially when Edwards Apple Orchard in Poplar Grove opens.

It's the perfect way to bring in fall.

Fall is also the perfect time to rearrange and declutter.  I moved the cabinet that I brought back from New Jersey into MY room and filled it with gardening books (after I decluttered them) and my Statue of Liberty collection.  I found another one this weekend at the Cedarburg WI flea market.  They are all so different.

Here'a a close up of the Lady Liberty's.

I treasure hunted at a 90 year accumulation estate sale on Friday.  I packed my car!

I love those kinds of sales.  Packed and slightly dirty where you have to dig.  The best finds are always in places like that.

Sunday was perfect weather for the Cedarburg WI flea market.  There were lots of treasures there also.

Here's a sampling of my outdoor finds this weekend.

And my indoor decor finds.

I spent many hours yesterday at the Carriage House getting my space ready for our 13th Anniversary celebration (my 3 years with them) and the Vintage Finds Off Route 14 Shop Hop.

I still have the outside to work on, but the inside is pretty much done.

I always try to fit in as much as possible.  It's jammed packed in there right now!

It's always so exciting working during the sale.  It's great to see the reactions of our customers when they find that perfect item.

Happy treasure hunting!