From the cottage of Maud and Claude

Friday, October 11, 2013

Just Listed: Sometimes It's All About the Story

Just listed on Etsy:







Sometimes it's more about the story than the item and in this case, it's ALL about the story. But before I get there, let me give you some specifics:

This is a Harker Pottery pitcher with a delightful floral design. The flowers look like Irises to me in the colors of orange and purple. It measures about 7 1/2" tall at the top handle by 8" wide.

There are plenty of issues:

The top handle has broken off and has been glued back together minus a chip. Speaking of chips, there is one on the lid that has been repainted to try and cover and one chip on the pour lip of the pitcher. There are also some flea bites and a bit of paint loss. You'll also notice some crazing, which is relatively common for older pottery pieces.

So what makes this extra special?

I attended an estate auction a few weeks back in central Missouri. The former owner was an antique dealer but had already consolidated her antiques and was now consolidating her estate. She had moved into the rest home and had two rooms, which she was very excited about. 

When I first arrived an older gentleman asked if I knew Ruth. I told him I didn't which made him launch into the sweetest description of Ruth. Oh, everyone just loves Ruth. She was born and raised in this small central Missouri town. She could strike up a conversation with anyone and there was never a shortage of people who had something nice to say about her. Infact, he pointed out, she was standing a few tables down and I should go up and say hello.

I looked over and she was in a deep conversation with a few other people. She stood maybe 4 feet 8" tall bent over. Her bald head was covered by a black crocheted hat and she was stylishly dressed in black pants, a grey sweater with a matching grey scarf. She held on to her cane for dear life, but she sure didn't look like life slowed her down. She was happy and smiling and giggling like a young girl and that, in and of itself, made me smile.

Later as I was looking at another table she ambled up to me and asked, "Do you like my things, honey?" I smiled and told her she had very good taste. She nodded her head and smiled, "This is JUST my household! Can you believe it? I've had fun with everything, but now it's time to pass it along."

As the auction started the auctioneer gave a long speech about Ruth and then asked her if there was anything she would like to tell the crowd and she yelled, "Turn it all into money!" Everyone, including me, laughed. And money she received. The auction went very well for her.

At one point, I overheard several people talking about this pitcher. "It was Ruth's mother's and she remembered her using this pitcher every day for orange juice." When it went up for auction I purchased it quickly. As I walked away to put it carefully in packaging, a few people smiled and said, "Oh, I'm so happy you bought her mother's old orange juice pitcher." When I was putting it away I found the note tucked inside that reads, "This was my mother's and she made orange juice in it with a small can of frozen juice."

Near the end of the auction I was talking with someone who said that Ruth tucked notes in several of her items that were up at auction as a surprise to the new owner. I was happy I bought one of those items and I hope that by passing it along, you will enjoy the pitcher and the story, too.

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