i dunno if thrift store shopping is considered chowhound....anyone have any kitchen ware thrift store scores? or....er....um, obsessions?
i can't seem to stop buying those 50s style corning/pyrex coffee carafes -- you know, the ones with the tapered top and the gold stars on them. it's like a sickness or something. i do get a lot of use out of them as iced tea or juice pitchers.
i also love the vintage coffee cups / mugs - those hideously ugly fire king ones from my late 60s early 70s childhood.
not very martha, i know.
I always find myself drifting around the "household goods" section of thirft stores. Lots of Ron Popiel cooking gadgets, some useful (dice o matic really does make decent french frys...) most not (inside the shell egg scrambler?).
I often see perfectly nice stainsteel cooking utensils -- the old Faberware with bakelight handles are very well made. Sometimes I see decent carving sets, especially nice are the real stag horn ones.
Another common find are those large "air pots" with glass vacuum bottles. Some seem to have gotten zero use and are easily disassembled and sanitized -- very handy for cold drinks at summer parties or coffee.
Thrift store scores are the best! I've been doing if for years and have found some amazing things. Hall china, Pyrex bowls, vintage utensils, custard cups...I have a collection of Chemex coffee makers in all the sizes they made. I also have the Chemex glass tea kettle that I bought for $5. My basement is overflowing with cake stands from thrift stores. I too collect cool mugs such as Fire King and Holt Howard. I really love those white, chunky diner mugs. I buy them whenever I see them.
re: Gin and It
I used to have a collection of the Diner Special plates; the three-part divided, thick, heavy, Blue willow pattern ones. They were really a hoot to use for a dinner partys.
I like the old Pyrex and Fire King, have picked up some really decent knives and pots. I also really like old pieces of silverwear. I definately pick up pieces I like, even if it is one or two of a kind. So while I do not have a set of anything, I have a collection of plates, glasses and silverwear that works. I got the biggest delight when I once saw a guest, spying out the dinner table ahead of time, to find the place setting she liked best.
I always head for the housewares section at Ross for Less, you never know what you might find.
oh i'm all over the housewares section of the thrift store--
can often find great bakeware, ramekins, and heavy cast iron for pennies. i always buy ugly large platters-- they will be lined with greens anyway, so who cares? white serving pieces are a huge score. i still have a whole set of stainless mixing bowls & a heavy stock pot i got from the "free pile" at college-- a rich international student moving back home after graduation. . .