Okay, before we get started looking at some photos of my ma's place, I just want to make something clear. My dad actually lives in the house too - it's their 'recently decided to downsize' retirement house - but, as most of us know, the man of the house doesn't get much say about decor. He just gets to help with hauling the crap, refinishing it and rebuilding the house around it. A tip for all you dads and/or husbands out there, don't own a truck! Buy a Smart Car or a bike or a wheelchair, otherwise you can expect to be moving thrift store finds a little too often.
My mom has been a thrift store junkie for decades. She had my sister and I wearing pee stained pants as early as the 1st grade. Okay, not really, but we were shopping second hand WAY before it was considered socially acceptable and not because we were poor or had to shop there out of necessity, but because she knew even then that the quality of offerings were far superior to what you could find at the mall in 1982. Her decor style has always reflected this and I must say, she has great taste! She is especially fond of the color brown, as you will see in the following photos.
In fact, she's so fond of the color brown I'm starting to think she poops teak! She's always had a knack for finding cheap credenzas, chairs and coffee tables, although those days are starting to wane now that everyone is looking for the same thing. She used to visit a guy she called Peter the Junk Man who would sell her amazing mid century furniture for $3-5 a piece. I remember she used to always call me to see if I wanted yet another teak side cupboard or night stand because she'd been to see Peter. The funny thing about Peter was...he had a HUGE gut and would always want a kiss in addition to the $3-5. Mom, I'm not sure what you had to do for the amazing finds you got for me but I just want you to know I appreciate the fact that you MAY have had to go the 'extra mile' for a few things...
I think my mom has about 6 Lotte lamps and lampshades in her collection. They're amazing and one of the few mid century gems that can be considered uniquely Canadian. See that lamp in the corner, with the Lotte shade?
She found this sucker in the garbage! It was on the side of the road, all smashed up. She brought it home (well, my dad did in his big truck), fixed it up and added the Lotte shade.
Another Lotte lamp, this one is complete. I told you, she has a lotta Lotte! Err...
This Lotte shade was also an add-on to a pretty cool industrial floor lamp she found for $5 a few years ago.
She collects antique and vintage cameras as well as photography books.
Before we leave the living room, just take a closer look at this amazing beauty. I may have to switch out this piece with something else while she sleeps or just wait until she goes senile so she forgets she had it in the first place.
Onto the spare room, where she has chosen a black & white scheme. I think the b&w combo runs a close second to her love for brown.
I love that black lamp! Actually, I love this whole vignette situation going on here. She has a great collection of vintage Alfred Hitchcock books and also collects boxes, both wood and metal.
She also loves old photographs of simple houses or austere snow scenes, despite the fact that gray winter days depress the shit out of her! Okay, I'll leave it here for today and resume with part 2 tomorrow with photos of her dining room, kitchen and a few other things.