Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Find: Panning for Gold

Even though I've told the story of how Mark Ciolli of Carl & Co. discovered a hidden treasure at an East Side  Housing Works, finding a photo taken on the day of its discovery gave me reason to repeat it. I would never have noticed the metal structure hidden by a leather chair, two dinette chairs and a pile of Mediterranean-style accent pillows stacked upon its glass top. The price? $45.

Then the transaction that took place reminded me of an undercover operation that only takes place in spy films. I told it best in The Find: The Housing Works Book of Decorating With Thrift Shop Treasures, Flea Market Objects, and Vintage Details:

"I couldn't understand why Ciolli would get so worked up over what looked like garbage to me," I recounted in The Find. "I leaned against an upended tacky, ruffled floral sofa as he flipped open his mobile phone and started dictating specific pickup instructions to his delivery service, ending his conversation with 'and leave the glass top there.'"

I didn't quite get it until he explained later: "Honey, those were two Maison Jansen gueridons holding up that horrible glass, and they alone are worth at least a thousand bucks a piece."

Photograph by Jim Franco

Here's how one of them looks once Mark incorporated it into his apartment, which was featured among the pages of The Find. The moral of this story? When thrifting, keep your eyes open for you never know what you'll find.

What treasures have you stumbled upon lately?

Always Frugal, Always Fabulous,

The Elegant Thrifter


  1. Glorious find for a wonderful room. I am keeping my eyes open and on the hunt for something a fraction as fabulous.

  2. Gosh, so beautiful! I think I would have passed those by as well. My find this week was an 1890 mantle clock. The person sold it to me for $50 saying it wouldn't work. It was only missing it's weight (bob) and now it's chiming every 15 minutes like...um... clockwork.

    1. That reminds me of a cuckoo clock we had when I was a kid. It would cuckoo on the half hour and about drove my dad crazy. He would get up in the middle of the night and somehow stop its noise!



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