Sunday, June 13, 2010

A Shelfski, known as "Putting your best side forward."

SHELFSKI: (noun) An item that is imperfect but not without some merit in use as a decorative object only, as in form without function. No, you won't find this word in Websters Dictionary nor can I say that I was creative enough to have coined the phrase; however, I did write up this proper definition.

I first heard the word from a flea market dealer while he was trying to convince me to buy a Weller vase that had a crack, albeit only a hairline crack at best. His remark needed no explanation, I immediately got the concept. With a Shelfski, the crack, chip, missing piece, paint discoloration and any other flaw, simply faces the back of the shelf. This allows me to display pedigree pieces of pottery, that I otherwise would not be able to afford such as Majolica and Roseville. I do not purchase a Shelfski with the intent of resale, but rather, personal use only.

So I decided to display a few of my favorite Shelfski pieces for Rhoda at Southern Hospitality's Today's Thrifty Treasures, Linda at Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays, Diane at A Picture is worth a 1,000 words for 2nd Time Around and Suzanne at Coloradolady's Vintage Thingies Thursday. Please be sure to join these fun ladies for their parties to see what the other guests are showcasing on their respective days.

My first piece is the cream/tan Weller Vase (next to the birds). I had been looking for this color combination for my family room and was thrilled to find the piece. It was this seller that gave me the word Shelfski. He successfully argued that the hairline crack would not be seen on the shelf under normal viewing circumstances. (In fact, it took me a moment or two to even see the crack as I was holding it.) So for $8.00 I bought it and I love it.

My dining room is rose colored and until recently, the china cabinet contained pretty-in-pink dishes and glassware. I found this lovely Roseville vase at a lawnsale for only $1.00. I was surprised to have even found it as I recognized several dealers just leaving the sale as I was walking in.

Then I turned the vase around and saw the 2 chips along the rim. But hey, Roseville for only $1.00, I knew it would be perfect for a dining room hutch Shelfski.

This Nippon teapot, a $.50 cent lawnsale find, makes a lovely vase filled with peonies fresh from the garden.

One would never know that the backside is missing a chunk along the rim, especially, when filled with the flowers.

This is a McCoy plant pot (thank you Angela at I'm Like a Little Bird for the correction) purchased at a lawnsale for $1.00. It is a hanging plant pot. You can see the holes for the chain along the top of the planter. I love the color. It is in an upstairs bedroom (I removed the plant for the photo) and no one is the wiser as to it's little flaw .......

a rather large chip located on the underside of the planter.

The two cream pitchers on the right side of the photo were both recent Goodwill finds. Since I am redoing my diningroom china cabinet to a cream/ivory palette, I thought they would be perfect. However, both had very large cracks which someone had tried to repair.

Now I will spend $.25 - $1.00 at a lawnsale for what is obviously going to be regulated as a shelfski-only decoration. I will not spend $4.99 as each was marked, for something that most would consider simply trash. I love my Goodwill stores, don't get me wrong. It is just that the employees are taught to recognize certain names as being valuable, whether it is in housewares or fashions. They are so intent on the search for names, in this case Spode, that they don't consider the condition of the item. Don't even get me started on the ridiculous prices for dishwasher-over-washed-destroyed-design-and-scratched-up-Pyrex. Realistically, these pitchers should not have been donated, much less stocked on a Goodwill shelf. After a brief talk with the Manager, the pitchers came home with me, both for $.99 cents.

The discolored brown lines identify the cracks on each piece.

I know what you are thinking, aren't these the mushroom canisters that I just showed for my "Orange you glad to find such treasures day". Well they are the same, but not the exact ones. I just found these 2 pieces at a church sale this weekend. I had sizes 2 & 3, these are sizes 1 & 4. Both for $1.00. I was very happy. What are the odds of finding mushrooms 2 weeks in a row, at 2 different places. Mushrooms are just popping up all over. (It must be all the rain we are having .... sorry, lame joke.)

I didn't realize till I got home that the smaller piece had a crack and chip. On the shelf it is fine but I think I will be using it for holding pens and paintbrushes in my craft room.

My last piece isn't a proper Shelfski in the sense that the flaw is hidden from view. It is a piece I received from my mom that I grew up with and loved. It is a sugar canister that belonged to dad's mom, my grandmother, and her mother before her. From my earliest recollections, the crack was always a part of the piece. It doesn't matter. Whenever I look upon it, I am brought back to the kitchen of my childhood, where it was warm, safe and cozy, and always smelled of something good cooking. Not just a Shelfski, this is a priceless treasure.

So the next time you are at that lawn, church, rummage, tag sale or flea market, just remember, that the occasional Shelfski is okay. Just between us friends, don't we all have a few on our shelves and in our cupboards? Come on, you can admit it.

Be sure to check out all the parties and have a great day.

Got it at Goodwill


Linda @ A La Carte said...

Thank you for the word I've been looking for! Shelfski! Perfect, Of course I have some, in fact many! I really have a thing for chipped and cracked anyway! They need love and most 'collectors' won't touch them. So lots come home with me. I do admit now that I'm entering the re-sell arena I have to look at things differently. Of course there are other 'shelfski' collectors out there I'm sure!! Great post!

Diane and Kelly said...

Hi Sherrie,
Love the term "shelfski". I must admit, some of my favorite finds are shelfskis.

I know what you mean about the weird pricing at the thrifts. The upside is that sometimes you get a great deal on something that is very valuable because the pricers don't know what it is.

Second Hand Chicks

Angela said...

That is a great name for them. I love my shelfskis!! That aqua one of yours is McCoy and it's a beauty. Those other dealers were foolish to leave the Roseville behind...aren't you glad?

Oakland Daily Photo said...

Taking the shelfski concept one step further: Years ago I bought a large Imari platter at auction that had a big crack down the middle. What I love about the piece is that it was repaired (probably in Japan) using the ancient method of fusing two pieces of pottery with a thin rivulet of gold. It is so pretty and is a wonderful example of what I assume is a now abandoned process. They didn't try to do a hidden repair and I bought it because I thought it made the tray more interesting. It wasn't cheap ($90) but I've loved it for many years and display it with pride.

Charlotte said...

If I like something, I could care less that it has a chip or crack. You got some good deals.

Protector of Vintage said...

Fun post!!

Rose said...

i think that if an item has a flaw and there is something that attracts you to it, go for it. rose

Diann said...

Well being a lover of the old and chippy long forgotten treasures, I just love all your things! But, I have to admit, that last piece that came from your mom is the best!!

And I won't even begin on the topic of highway robbery at the thrift stores or the moronic thought that they use to price things. okay, I did say I wasn't going to say here's me shutting up and wishing you a good day!

Three Birds Inspired said...

You are one very clever woman! I will add your new word to my vocabulary!

I also can live with cracks, chips, etc if I love the piece. I like knowing that I have "rescued" something that someone else might totally ignore.

Anonymous said...

Love the Roseville--Who cares if it is chipped? And I am with you on the thrift pricing! Love your blog-

craftyles said...

Great finds. I also buy stuff if it has a chip or crack-who cares if it's for a display. Good job!

Kim said...

I just finished reading your profile and I think we must have been separated at birth! I love your blog and will surely be following to see all of your future treasures!

Kim @ Starshine Chic said...

I love it!!! I have lots of shelfskis too. I like that word.

Unknown said...

: ) What a great word! If I love something I ignore minor chips and major cracks. Old things deserve to look their age.

Anonymous said...

Great finds, and I love the new word. Even if I bought something in pristine condition, it would end up being shelfski in no time. Thanks for popping by.

Barbara Jean said...

This is an adorable post with all your sweet finds.

I especially love the tea pot with the flowers, and tha sweet plate.
You are right for, a little crack does not matter. It is still so enjoyable!

blessings and thanks for coming by
barbara jean

Unknown said...

Thank you for commenting on my blog! I definitely think investing in a u-haul is a great idea! I always have to go garage saleing alone because I can't fit any other person beside myself in the car. :)

Unknown said...

Thank you for a new word and definition for my vocabulary. I really was already familiar with the concept though....I recently aquired a shelfski Red Wing Vase at GW for #3.00. The hairline crack faces the back :)


Anonymous said...

You have some great treasures there! Chips and cracks just make them more unique!

Postcardy said...

I have a painted dish that was my grandmother's and it has a big chip. I don't even really like it, but it was about the only thing my mother saved that was her mother's so I am saving it too.

Sally Annie Magundy said...

I have some shelfski's courtesy of the 1994 earthquake here in So. Cal. I lost about half of my knick knacks in it. WAH! But I couldn't part with my damaged Hummels, Bunnykins and Beatrix Potter figurines, etc. ... so shelfski's they've become. Or perhaps they are wabi sabi pieces as I can't hide some of the missing ears, tails, arms, etc. ;)
Love that you found a Roseville vase!

Happy VTT!

CC said...

I loved your post and your beautiful pieces. And you're right. A few shelfskis never hurt anyone and don't they look pretty... Have a beautiful weekend and Happy VTT..

Tara Beaulieu said...

Ha! I love the term "shelfski" that's great! My house is filled with them and I wouldn't have it any other way. I love finding things a great discounts because of small chips and cracks. Makes me feel like I got away with something, lol.

I remember the mushroom canisters you posted a few weeks ago- how cool that you've found two more to go in your set!

Susan said...

shelfsky is a good term!! I love the colors of cream and ivory, I have lots of that in my house.

Coloradolady said...

Well, I can not believe your luck! My grandma had these very canisters, and I always look for them where ever I go, so far, no luck!! I almost yelled....softly!!! when I was these in your post!

I too don't care if a piece is perfect, if I like it, I get it!! Have a great VTT!

Adie said...

Thanks for visiting? Shelfski is a very clever word and describes so well several of my favorites in my house. (Those four little chairs in my post? One is quite bent even after I did my best to bend it straight again. But who can really tell?)

Donna @ The House on the Corner said...

Shelfski!! I love it!!

I also use those in spaces that are relatively high up in my house i.e. top shelf kinda stuff - no one can reach them to turn them around and find my secret :-)

Thanks for stopping by!!

fitty's pinky rose cottage said...

thanks for the word.. seems like we have something in common.. we are shelfski buddy! hehehhe.. don't we just love a lit bit of flea bite, chips, cracks here and there as long as the pretties are pretty! wishing you a great weekends!

Terry @ La Bella Vie said...

OK I love this posting! I love all the photos they are adorable! I also want to tell you, this blog is wonderful!!!!!!! I will be back for sure as I'm now following you. I'd would like to extend the invitation to become a FOLLOWER on my blog as well.
Hope to see you there,

Linda@Coastal Charm said...

Roseville for only $1.00...chip included:) It just gives it some exrta style! Thanks for coming to my party!


prashant said...
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