Tuesday, June 2, 2015

In Pursuit Of The Orange Couch

This post is for Memorial Day weekend. We are just a little behind on our blogging again but we will be caught up soon! 

Monica always looks at the estate sale listings, even on days when we are unavailable. Rob does not. Monica wants to know about every sale whether we can be there or not. Rob doesn't want to think about things that we might want but have no chance to get. Monica wants to know anyway...and that's why Memorial Day Weekend saling wound up having an early start.

For weeks, there was a sale advertised on a Friday that Monica kept watching. We were not off from work and the hours of the sale were completely contained within the confines of the hours in which we would both be at work. Still, Monica kept looking at the sale. It was the furniture that intrigued her. 

Both of us grew up with orange couches in our lives. This is a picture of Monica's mom posing in front of the orange couch that was in Monica's living room when she was growing up.

This is a picture of the orange couch that belonged to Rob's grandmother until the 1980's. Rob grew up next door to his grandmother and saw this couch every day. 

We have both talked about getting an orange couch but neither of us had seen one in years; that is until Monica started looking at the details of the sale that was on a working Friday. Days before the sale, it was postponed for two weeks. Tragically, a New York City police officer was killed in the line of duty and his funeral was scheduled on the date of this sale. The funeral home was just around the corner and the organizers of the sale must have known that people would have great difficulty getting there on that day. The sale was postponed for twelve days...until the Wednesday before Memorial Day weekend. 

Monica continued to look at this sale and, now, Rob did too. It occupied our thoughts several times per day. The couch in the picture looked to be in great condition and we both thought it would look real nice in our living room. About a week before the sale date, we made the decision to take a vacation day on the dale of the sale. We both had the vacation time and what better way to spend it than in the pursuit of the orange couch?

We arrived at the sale almost an hour before its opening, not knowing who else might have interest in the couch. We were the ninth and tenth people to arrive. The tag sale company running the sale (who we know quite well and who we like a lot), had the garage open for early shopping. In there, we found a vintage barbecue tray and an old plastic Easter plate so our early arrival paid off immediately. Still, our real target was the couch. Would it be in good condition? Would we like it as much as we did in the photo? Would the asking price be reasonable? Would anyone ahead of us also have this couch as their target? There were a lot of questions running through our minds. Luckily, we did not have to think about it too long. We were soon inside.

It was an old house but it was much smaller inside than we expected. One of the first things we saw were these great starburst door knobs which we would have loved to have but, as we found out a little later, they were not for sale. We couldn't be too disappointed. The success of our trip here would be solely based on the couch. 

And here it was...the couch. This is the picture from the ad. It looked great but we had a slight concern about the top of the left section which, in this picture, seemed to be either dusty or faded. We hoped for the former. Good news...it was dust. A close inspection of the furniture told us that it was in better condition than we ever could have hoped and we loved it...and we seemed to be the only ones that showed any interest in it. Very quickly, three questions that we had were answered and with the answers we wanted.  The last question was the price and, upon casually asking, the price was very reasonable but we still managed to negotiate the price down to get a 33% reduction from their original price...

...and we got the matching chair as well! Four trips and three hours later (the sale was just twenty minutes from our house), the orange couch that obsessed us was in our home. It is sitting downstairs right now and will be permanently set up in our living room in another week or two. 

 Saturday, our normal saling day, found us with just three potential stops. It was Memorial Day weekend and we expected that there wouldn't be much out there. That was okay with us. First of all, we had our couch. Secondly, we had a barbecue scheduled for later in the day and our time would be limited. None of the three sales were too far away and none of them looked especially good. We knew that we would have plenty of time to stop at all three.

Sale #1 was located just ten minutes from home and was run by a tag sale company. We didn't see much in the pictures from their ad but there were one or two Christmas items which may or may not have been vintage. We took the ride to see. When we got there, we saw a line twenty five people deep and this was thirty minutes after the beginning of the sale. We did not even get out of the car, What we saw in the ad did not justify the wait. Off to sale #2.

Our next target was listed as an estate sale but described as "30 years" of accumulation. Normally, this would have scared us away but there was something about the description that intrigued Monica. Her intuition paid off. There were lots of items on the lawn and one room inside to search. When we finished up here, we did not leave alone. A set of barkcloth curtains, a ceramic deer, a Hamburglar glass, one ashtray and a couple of other things came home with us.

Our final stop was an outdoor sale which was the contents of a storage bin from an estate. This was actually a surprise to us as all we knew about this sale was that it was run by an estate sale company that we know. There were lots and lots of boxes to comb through and we spent almost an hour here. In the end, we came home with several cookbooks, a couple of Christmas items and a few other things.

We made it home in plenty of time to take a quick nap and then go to Monica's sister's house for the barbecue. Monica's oldest sister, our niece and our great nephew were visiting from Florida for a few days and this would be our third and final time to see them on this trip.

Monica's dad with all of his grandchildren...and one great grandson!

Monica's dad with all of his children

Monica's dad, Rob, Michelle (our niece), Monica and Lenny (our brother-in-law)

It was a lot of fun seeing them and we'll miss them. They returned to Florida that Sunday but they are hoping to visit again in October! 

Oh...we almost forgot to show you what we brought home this week. Aside from our new couch and matching chair, we also added these things to our home:

One record


Cookbooks...and a cut-out doll book

A pair of barkcloth curtains (folded for the picture)

A vintage metal barbecue tray

A honeycomb turkey (marked Japan)

A Lufthansa ash tray, an old plastic Easter dish, a ceramic deer (marked Japan), a McDonald's Hamburglar glass (1977) and an old wind-up hula girl with a metal base.

A creepy Santa, a snow globe and a plastic Santa night light. Both Santas are marked Japan

We barbecued at our house on Sunday for the first time this year (and the last time with this barbecue. The grill stand rusted after many years and broke after the barbecue) and took our first walk around town this year on Memorial Day evening. Much of the rest of the weekend was spent catching up on a million things we wanted to do around the house (like planting vegetables in our garden) but, although the weekend went way too fast, we still found some time just to relax together and that, alone, always makes it a pretty special weekend.

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