Old Beach Cottage Lanterns, Vintage Finds & Early Days

Sat 30th, Jan, 2010

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G’day chickadees, how you all doin’ this fine Saturday?

Well I had a very full morning, awoken very rudely by two middle-aged women, who at 5.45am, on their early morning hike, thought nothing of shouting to each other as they walked down the hill past our cottage.

If it hadn’t been for the fact that I was wearing little bar the odd dab of Chanel, I may well have chased them down the street….rolling pin in hand.

..not one to be bright eyed and up at this hour as a rule I thought I might as well make the most of it…and the benefit of getting out early?  Firstly normally it means I am alone, always a good thing ’round here.  And secondly means you’re first to the treasure.  Usually.

But today I missed out on a vintage leather hatbox (which I must say was so absolutely Anthropologie Delightful I thought twice about accosting the old dealer who had swooped on it before me) and a *huge old vintage mixing bowl, which I spied from afar but missed in a split second and which I had already decided as soon as I saw if from afar that I would purchase & giveaway right here on this blog….best laid plans…

Soooo, anyhoo, after a round of disappointing places (and that happens in this treasure-hunting-game people) I decided to head home for coffee and a bagel…a little sit out the back under the Fig Tree in the cool…and on the way home came across a few of these old beauties…and couldn’t pass ‘em up.


The lovely lady who I bought them from, proceeded to tell me at length, how they used to light her path before they could afford to put lights in….how wonderful they would look cleaned up…and kindly lectured me in just how I would go about this mammoth clean up of a few old vintage lanterns ;-)

I thought for a quick second about letting her in on the secret.  

Sweetie I want them like that. 

Money cannot buy old, weathered, rusty and vintage.  With in-built embossing.  

But I saved my breath, for sure, she was never gonna get that. 


And so I came home to a house still quiet, Mr Beach Cottage still in the land of nod, Mr Teenage Beach Cottage certainly not even anywhere near emerging.

And later went out for more, and came back with lots of little beautiful things, not big things which is what I prefer really, but that’s why this Treasure Game is so much fun…

…and I have to tell you, I came across this old book, well really I suppose it is a collection of pages, with two huge staples, I picked it up firstly because I liked the fact that the paper was very aged and beautifully yellowed and also the old typography caught my eye…each page just typed at the top…I thought I might use it for wrapping…

Once I was browsing through later with some Afternoon Tea, I realised what a treasure I have in my possession, for this dear friends & Lurkers is a compilation documenting memories of the residents of a local Nursing Home…from what I can ascertain it was put together in the 60′s so these old folks were remembering right back to the 1880′s…all sorts of things about this area that we moved our family to from the other side of the world to all these years later…

To say that I feel honoured to have this in my possession is an understatement, it sent shivers down my spine.

And that is why I play this Game.  When one scores, the shivers are pretty darn good.

See you around…


oh and yeah, the beading??

it’s kinda nearly done and I’m gonna show you the WIP…but yep I’m making you ladies wait until tomorrow…or perhaps the next day….

a new giveaway’s coming next week..(it’s nice!) winners from all comments from now

those in Lurkdom welcome to apply for Beach Cottage entry…;-)



{* Bella-Casa and Sheilagh from Ticking and Toile have a magazine subscription on the way!  congrats!}

(pls. let me know your addresses)

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46 Responses to “Old Beach Cottage Lanterns, Vintage Finds & Early Days”

  1. Kimberly Knoess says:

    I almost felt warm here in 20 degrees Boston Mass when you described your morning treasure hunt…….a big “Thank You!”. I really like the blue lanterns and I want you to give us a peek at that book!

  2. Tina says:

    Hi Sarah! Sorry you were ambushed on the hatbox and bowl – darn it!! Loving your lanterns though! I remembered having one just like that when my hubby and I used to go camping when we were still in our teens…I showed him your pic and he said ‘yep but Mum spray-painted it gold’ I nearly choked!!! :( What a wonderful and very special find in your book – that truly is a priceless treasure! Thanks for sharing your wonderful finds:) Enjoy the rest of your evening!!-Tina x

  3. Angie says:

    Just love to have a look at that book! Hope it made up somewhat for missing out on the hatbox & bowl. Just how early does one HAVE to get up? Enjoy the rest of the W/E.

  4. Bec says:

    Oh, I love those lanterns! And the book… how special!

  5. Patricia says:

    I am really happy for you Sarah, that you found the book. How fabulous to end up in your hands, I couldn’t think of anyone more deserving of it. I can imagine how you will cherish it and the hisory it contains. Another little thing to make you feel closer to your new home ~ Australia. But…reading how you already feel about it here, I don’t think that could be possible :)

    By the way ….. love the lanterns, they are so very Beach Cottage.

  6. Lorraine says:

    5.45am! How rude! ;-) Still it got you up and out enjoying the morning! Sounds like you came across a little treasure in the book.

    Now those lanterns…I think I’ve seen some of those at my FIL’s house. Must take a look next time I go.

  7. Lori says:

    Loove the lanterns! They are yummy. And I absolutely understand the “high” that comes from the treasure game. That book sounds like a real find. Have a good weekend. We are currently having a heavy snowfall in Virginia, USA. Sigh. I had mentally moved on to spring!

  8. Su says:

    Love the lanterns, I can see them all lit up on your deck. What a treasure your book is too. Shame about your mixing bowl, but there is probably a much better one waiting at a sale for you somewhere. Maybe the lady that got it, visits your blog and was inspired by your others – you never know

  9. Ginger says:

    My absolute favorite time of day is very early in the morning. I wake up to a fireplace and coffe and just me and the baby lounge until the others roll out of bed.
    Those lanterns are to die for. Love the color and patina. Course, anything blue I’m gonna like. They’re perfect! I’m green with envy.

  10. Oh my that lantern is absolutely gorgeous.
    I am itching for warmer weather so I can go hunting myself.

  11. Your lantern finds are wonderful! The book sounds so special – I hope you’ll show us some pictures from it. What a treasure.

  12. Jennifer says:

    Those lanterns are gorgeous, shame about the other pieces that got away. Your new book sounds fascinating, it should make for some great reading.

  13. donna says:

    Everything happens for a reason. Had it not been for those rude women your whole day would have gone differentley and no way would you have that priceless book!I love when that happens. I also found a lantern last summer aged to the most perfect grayish whitish chippy color I’ve ever seen.Like Suzann I too am itching to get past this winter and treasure hunt.Yesterday I treated myself to two bunches of plum tulips from the grocery store and they have done wonders for my winter blues the same way your wonderful blog does. I adore all your finds and can’t wait to see the bead board.I kind of cheated and did the bead board wallpaper on the front of my (ugly formica) kitchen island and then framed it out with moulding. I have to tell you it looks so real, I love it no one believes its not the real thing until they touch it!

  14. Vicki K. says:

    Incredible treasures today!! The lanterns are wonderful and so beachy. The right person found that book…

  15. gill says:

    i love those lanterns – what a great find for you

  16. jane says:

    what an amazing find! in your spare time you could write a book about the history of your area. really amazing. you are a history-magnet-> the trunk,the lanterns, the papers — well, everything it seems. very cool.jkj

  17. Kat says:

    I love the blue of those lanterns, what a wonderful find…and your photos really do them justice! The book is a treasure and I’m sure a great read!

    Maybe I should get up early some Saturday to see what I can find…nah who am I kidding?!

    Congrats to the magazine subscription winners!

    Kat :)

  18. Kim Michael says:

    G’Day~ They are very Lovely. I have several myself, can’t get enough.I think Ticking and Toile should play the lotto, she also won my Giveaway.Enjoy~Kim

  19. Lark says:

    Love the lanterns!!! They are inspiring me to get out to our local antique swap meet one of these days.

  20. Krista says:

    Love ‘em! Thanks for sharing with us.

  21. Light the lanterns and read the book…….. yes?


  22. DeAna says:

    LOVE the lanterns. They remind me of camping when I was a youngster. Probably the best memories of camping was when we would go with several extended family members and friends and go hunting/camping. Good times! Great memories thanks to a cool old lantern. Thanks!

  23. Bethany says:

    How wonderful of a morning, treasure hunting is great and how special to have that book! Happy Weekend!

  24. I spent my Sat am selling treasure to others-baseball team fundraiser “treasure sale” almost as much fun as chasing treasures…almost!

  25. fairmaiden says:

    Those old lanterns are so amazing. They are perfect for The Beach Cottage. Annnnnndddddddd the old book of writings from a local nursing home is a treasure that I would cherish just as much as you are. I am so glad it ended up in your hands where it will be loved and valued.

  26. Melinda says:

    The lanterns are lovely – the book truly precious, memories of a lifetime of those who walked before us. A true find indeed. That is the thrill of treasure hunting – the thought that another great piece of history may be just around the corner…

  27. Flick says:

    Oh it’s so annoying when you just miss something… especially when it calls your name, and you know it’s supposed to be yours! Well done with those lanterns though, I have a bit of an obsession with them at the mo, so always on the lookout..
    As far as those crazy old biddies go, put a sign up stating ‘sshh, people still sleeping here’ out the front, maybe they will get the message??

  28. Sarah Ann says:

    No I don’t that woman could have ever understood the beauty of time and age. Appreciating those things is a rare gift few have. And oh how glad I am you have it so that I may live vicariously through you.

  29. *Alex* says:

    What great finds! Lanterns and that special book, congrats! :)

  30. Hi Sarah, as usual I can’t keep up with visits! Great looking vintage lanterns you found there girlie. Glad someone is out thrifting,it’s cold & rainy here. I’m looking forward to March getting here.

  31. Oh, those lanterns are a great find! We have one that looks very similar from my husband’s great grandma. I love the blue color of it and after seeing your post I’m going to have to convince my hubby it needs to come out more often from the depths of the garage. He fixed and cleaned ours up and we take it camping, but now I think I should display it more! Thanks!

  32. Herself says:

    Ah, Sarah…
    You’re living my dream! Someday, I hope to get my own little beach cottage–I’d settle for a shack.

  33. Rachel says:

    Love your vintage lanterns! Great find!


  34. Mel says:

    Some precious finds there Sarah. I really should do the same and get up early and see whats about ! Mel xxx

  35. Jo says:

    I have heaps of those lanterns! Actually there’s quite a funny story to it. I raided my parents’ outbuildings for all sorts of old treasures. I took them home and placed them around my house and garden. My mum came and visited and admired all the new lovely old things I had. We were having tea out in the garden with mum exclaiming “they so don’t look like junk the way you do it” and “where did you get them all from?” When I told her that I stole them all from her she nearly died LOL she tried demanding them all back, but knew that she would never actually do anything with them anyway. She is now quite happy to come visit and admire all her stuff in it’s new location!

  36. Mel says:

    *sob sob sob* I didn’t win the subscription, I hope the lucky ladies enjoy! ;)

    The lanterns are great and the memories book sounds wonderful, how fascinating. That’s the trouble with treasure hunting, as soon as you let yourself realise there could literally be ANYTHING out there for the finding it becomes almost too addictive!

    Mel xxx

  37. Jeni says:

    What a wonderful find the book was. The lanterns are beautiful as well but those memories are so special. They keep so many people alive in a way.

  38. alice hanson says:

    What a double treat not only 2 lanterns but thoses letters!!! good on you!
    smiles, alice

  39. Kathleen H of Indiana says:

    Hi Sarah! oh i can’t wait for Spring and go treasure hunting again. I am so jealous. Just love it when I can get to a prize before the dealers. My favorite thing are vintage bowls, I have way too many but can’t stop. Do you get to garage sale year round in Sydney? That would be heaven. The early bird definitely gets the worm. Love your lanterns…can you believe some think everything must look new? yikes – have a great weekend with your lovely book, how fascinating – history first hand.
    Kathleen H

  40. These are fab, Sarah! Love that blue!! Perfect for a seaside cottage. {sigh}

  41. Molly says:

    Wow, now that is a find!!
    Love the lanterns too!

  42. Michelle says:

    Those lanterns are lovely …thought of you when I went garage sailing yesterday . Hmm what would Sarah buy . Oh did I find some lovely things , beautiful silver glass candelstick holder , some cute white freedom stools and a big straw bag for the beach . I was so excited ! gotta love a saturday morning .

  43. Sally says:

    Sarah…I loved this post! The lanterns are just stunning. And the book you found sounds like an absolute treasure. What a find!! Wish I could go treasure hunting with you. Oh what fun that would be!! :)

  44. The lanterns are beautiful, Sarah.

    What a find, in that book! Foxfire, I mentioned in a recent post, was a project by high school students during the 1970′s. They interviewed countless elder folks, in the mountains of Appalachia. Wonderful stories. I have several books in the series.

    We went to an ice carving festival yesterday. Fun!

  45. BethAnn says:

    Love those lanterns. What a great find.

  46. megs says:

    I used lanterns like that on my Peace Corps. mission to write letters at night. Just seeing them gives me a good feeling. :)