A vintage art nouveau lamp – from dumpster-diving (literally) Laura

lauras-lamp.jpgLaura’s entry in our Found Objects Found Art contest…oh, and be sure to read on, how she ends upside down in a dumpster!

She writes:

Hi Pam,

One day, David & I were on our way “thrift-storing” when we drove by our locally owned hardware store and saw people with lamps lined up AROUND the building. Considering my obsession with lamps – I rebuild, reburbish, make and collect lamps, we doubled-back and HAD to see what was going on.

Turns out the hardware store & our public electric company had a promotion going, bring in your old lamp and they would trade you for a new one. (The new one was so bland and generic that no one with any taste would’ve wanted it.)

So Dave and I go ’round back where the people are handing off there old lamps and the electric company guys were THROWING them into a giant crate. CraSH, BaNG, cRAck… You get the picture.

I asked the men what they were going to do with the lamps in the crate and was told they were to be dumped. I then asked if I could have some of them. “Sure, help yourself.”

To the right and in the back, laying on the ground, I see this lamp on its side and squealed (quietly) . I am wondering why it’s not in the crate. “What about this one?, I asked. One of the men, (mind you- he certainly didn’t look like a man that would appreciate such a thing) takes a look at me and then the lamp. He says, “I was saving that aside for myself.”

Heart sinking, it must have been visible on my face. He smiles and says, “No, I just couldn’t see it broken. You can have it.”

“THANK YOU!!” My free Art Nouveau lamp is one of my favorites.

We actually ended up loading the van with many barrel-shaped lampshades and a few other cool lamps. Hey – just made their work a little less, saved a few precious lamps from landfills and made Dave and I REALLY happy!!

(Dave’s note: at one point Laura was upended in said crate. At 5’1″ all I could see were her feet! lol)

  1. atomicbowler says:

    Wow, thanks for all the wonderful comments. The best thing about the lamp is the finial at the top.

    Yes, the lamp works great. It’s next to my side of the bed, so it better! and not a chip on the lamp anywhere. It truly is nearly pristine.

    If Dave and I ever get our pics up on flickr, I’ll post a picture of the topper over my bed. BTW- The dozens of hankies… I could never bring myself to cut them, so I just hung them diagonally over a rod as a valance. Best thing, I could take them down, mix ’em up, etc. And my apron collection. I made a valance our of those for the dining room window. It turned out really cool. just used the old fashtion squeeze curtain clips on a rod and tied the apron ties to each other. Ya gotta see it.

  2. retropink57 says:

    atomicbowler – Ooooooh, I am nuts about vintage linens and doilies, especially sheets! Most of mine are tucked away in the closet but you have inspired me to turn them into curtains!!! I have snatched up so many for next to nothing yet they stay hidden away and the whole reason I got them was for their pretty prints. I would really need to line them with something to make them heavier since my windows are so terribly drafty. Maybe I should sew two sheets together? I bet your window topper is to die for!

  3. atomicbowler says:

    retropink57 – I collect doilies (along with many other things (hankies, crocheted blankets, Barbies, depression glass, aprons, etc.) Funny you like my curtain. I make lots of curtains out of vintage sheets. I lucked out and found 2 twin flat sheets with the same pattern – one pink, one yellow., the blue stripe was actually a very expensive new cut of fabric I just HAD to have. I cut my twin sheets into two to make narrow panels. I have 6 different (sheet) panels in my shabby chic bedroom. You should see the savaged window topper with antique door knobs that the panel you see is attached to. One of my pride and joys…’cuz I made it…

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