Monday, November 28, 2011

Radish contact paper: now I've seen it all.

I hereby nominate this pattern for the title of Most Charming Contact Paper for the year 2011. Yea or nay?

I snapped these photos at a local thrift shop while the other customers were staring at me. That happens a lot.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Timer times two

Vintage Sicomatic Timer

How many timers does a person need? Browsing the shelves of a local thrift shop I stumbled upon this beauty, a Sicomatic-brand timer probably from the '60s or '70s made by the fine people at Silit, who continue to manufacture high-quality pressure cookers.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Vintage Recycling

In my post about a batch of warm, toasty vintage underwear that I picked up at a local thrift store, I mentioned that the plastic bag from one of the stockinette underdresses was covered in attractive drawings encouraging the consumer to recycle the packaging in any number of ways. Today I want to bring you a closer look at this most creative and charming bag.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Practical advice, and then some

The past two weeks I've brought you excerpts from "Die Rechte Hand der Hausfrau", a book of advice from 1950 for solving common household problems. Today I want to bring you not only some practical entries from this charming manual, but also some of the more, shall we say, strange bits of advice.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A quick treat

Found this at the store yesterday: Mändelchen-Pudding, which translates to "Little Almond Pudding".  Although the brand name "Polak" might suggest it comes from Poland, the company is actually from Quakenbrück, a little town between Oldenburg and Osnabrück. Later today I'll whip up a batch to see how it tastes.

A lovely old-fashioned logo

Please tell me I'm not the only one to jump with delight when I see retro packaging in the grocery store!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Classy clips and chic chignons

A weekend treat for my dear readers: a glimpse of my two most recent acquisitions. The first item is a Lotos brand hair clip which I like to imagine gives its wearer the magical power to emulate a "come hither" look even more alluring than the one on the package. A girl can dream...

Friday, November 11, 2011

More practical advice for the Hausfrau

How useful! Postage prices from 1948

Last week I wrote about a practical guide for German housewives that I picked up for the practical price of one Euro. To add to the confusion of how to date this book (the name of the publishing house suggests it predates 1947, but the preface is dated 1950), I discovered that on the inside of the back cover the postage prices from 1948 are printed. The plot thickened when I ran into an eBay classified ad for a 1950 edition of this book showing a picture of the cover that lists a different price from mine! Here is a screen shot:

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Fashion brochures at the Görlitzer Warenhaus

Over the summer I had the pleasure of traveling to Görlitz, a city in far eastern Germany whose small size is disproportionate to its magnificence. Among the city's many architectural treasures is a department store building (Kaufhaus or Warenhaus) built in the German equivalent of the Art Nouveau style, known as Jugendstil.

The Görlitzer Warenhaus in the early 1950s

Monday, November 7, 2011

Tins, tins, tins!

Actually, just two tins. Two very stylish ones, if you ask me.

Kaufmanns Haut- und Kinder-Creme can still be found on the shelves of drugstores all over Germany. The cream itself has a very distinctive (and I would argue pleasant) smell that comes from a number of ingredients that are supposed to help heal chapped skin. I mostly bought it because I thought the design was attractive.

This 1925 reproduction tin came bundled with a larger Nivea tin that my husband bought for himself. Knowing how much I would enjoy its sleek design and older font, he naturally handed it immediately over to me. I have no idea if it is still on the market, but I suppose one could contact the company to find out.

Has anyone else run into interesting tins still on the market?

Friday, November 4, 2011

1123 pieces of practical advice

No, not all of them at once! But I would like to share with you over the course of a few months some excerpts from a book I picked up for a Euro at a local antique store.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

A treasure trove of warm vintage underwear

Two weeks ago when the temperatures were on the chilly side, I head on over to my favorite thrift shop in town to see if I could find any stylish clothing to keep me warm. Figuring I was going to end up finding a nice winter coat or a warm sweater, I was surprised to stumble upon a bounty of warm vintage undergarments.

One of the owners of the store, a nice woman probably in her early 50s, set me up at a table next to the cash register. Despite my slight discomfort at poring over a stack of ladies' underthings with all the other customers walking by (okay, it was quite awkward!), I got to work sorting through the items for ones that would fit me.

Unfortunately the three girdles dating from the 60s, two in white, one in a pinkish/skin color, were much too large, but I did not go home empty-handed. Here is what I picked up for a grand total of nine Euros:

Schießer high waisted woolen knickers