I think it probably stems back to my childhood, while I have a few things that belonged to my Mom, there aren't many. You see my parents came to this country with very little and through hard work and determination they built a life for themselves and their children. Possessions were few and stepping foot in the 'Promised Land' gave way to the American ideal that new was better. My Parents didn't save objects, if things wore out their usefulness they were replaced with newer, better things. If they still had some life in them they were passed on. Many of my own clothes and toys were frequently recycled and sent back to the homeland to help those who needed them.Don't get me wrong, my parents were frugal and didn't have much but I guess because they had to leave behind so much when they came to the U.S. they didn't get sentimental over possessions.
I never really gave it much thought growing up and I certainly didn't mind giving away my things. I had been to Portugal enough times growing up to know the poverty and need that existed. Actually it was a good learning experience and has taught me to be generous and kind to those who are less fortunate.
I believe that this did fuel a love of all things vintage, I am captivated by the history of things. I often find myself wondering where an item came from, who used it last. Was it something passed down from a mother to a daughter? Were the stitches of embroidery done by someone's beloved aunt or grandmother? Were the dishes used to feed a large extended family, did the linens grace the Sunday dinner table?
Some things I simply love for their uniqueness or design. It's as if each piece speaks to my heart. Perhaps because I never grew up with grandparents or because there are so few momentos left from my own childhood, I cherish these items.
When I find an item that calls to me I feel this need to bring it home, to give it new life. I find myself wondering how someone's heirlooms ended up in a thrift shop or antique store. How did a family let go of a piece of their history? Perhaps like my own parents they were simply passed on until they no longer held any significance to the owner, maybe the carefully embroidered tablecloth was not appreciated by the great great niece who came to own it.
I realize they are only things but to me they carry a story, they were once loved by someone and so I scour countless places to bring home someone elses history. Over the next few posts I shall share some of the things that have come home to live with me, perhaps some of you will recognize them and remember when your Mom or Grandmother had one just like it. I hope you enjoy a 'few of my favorite things' and perhaps a trip down memory lane!