An occasionally updated chronicle of estate sales in the city and suburbs of Chicago.

"It's such a guilty pleasure..." Lynne Stiefel, Pioneer Press

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Wilmette Bits and Pieces from the Sixties and Seventies

This place was a mishmash of good and bad stuff from the sixties and seventies, all of it put together -- it seemed -- with little regard for logic or a sense of story. In its honor, this post will mirror that approach.

This was probably the coziest corner in the entire house, and you encountered it the moment you stepped over the threshold. Overstuffed leather (or pleather or vinyl) sofas and the warm glow of a table lamp: what's not to like? You could throw a comfortable cocktail party in a corner like this.

Especially if you filled that decanter with ice cold Mad Dog and kept everyone's shot glasses full.

But the further inside I ventured, the worse things got.

I probably shouldn't have made the basement my first stop, but when I see those stairs I'm helpless to resist their pull.

It was a fine example of the dank, musty-smelling and over-crowded style of basement decor, packed with kids toys from the sixties, several kitchens'-worth of outdated small electrics and stuff I can only categorize under the heading of "stuff."

How many times do you think this was used before they went back to making hot dogs the non-Big Top way?

I went upstairs. There were three floors, each one a little older and weirder than the last.

Most of the bedrooms had been set up to display a large collection of what had become vintage clothes.

What's that alluring scent? Could it be the late-seventies I smell?

So much wrong here. 1.) The matching hose. 2.) The name "Paris." 3.) It's for sale, used. 4.) That four-year guarantee is obviously expired. If anything goes wrong, caveat emptor!

This was the only bathroom I saw in the entire place. Let's take a closer look at that wallpaper, shall we?

Cartoon mushrooms. Thousands upon thousands of them. And each one guaranteed to produce a bad trip.

On the third floor was a final bedroom, tucked up under the house's eaves. One of the women working at the sale said to me, "Can't you just feel all the years of pretend that were played up here?"

Off the side was a little attic storage room full of Christmas stuff. That's where I found this grimacing black angel. I tried for quite a while to work him/her into my Christmas post, but never did come up with something that seemed right. I invite you, my dear readers, to take a crack at it and post your thoughts in the comments.


  1. That Mac in third photo might've been a collectors item, if it worked. Not worth that much, maybe between $50 to $200 dollars.

  2. That was a Mac Classic, wasn't it? I completely glossed over it, not only at the sale but even later in the photos.

    I am, as you might have guessed, Mac-blind.

  3. Oh, I think I would have had to take that sad little angel home. And then hide him, so that no one would ever know that I had a sad little black angel stashed somewhere in my house. Until I died, and someone came and took a picture of him.

  4. That mushroom wallpaper made me want to get out my collection of Sharpies and get to coloring.

    Believe it or not there are people in this world who would snatch up that antique Davol. Some things in this world I just don't understand.

    I tried to come up with a story on the grimacing angel, but I'm so politically incorrect I would cheese off all but a remote clan of nomadic yak herders living above the Arctic Circle who don't have Internet access. If they had a portable satellite dish I'd get them too.

  5. I had to google the davol... now i think i know what that is... and i'm flummoxed. Paris? WTF?


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