When I first moved to Chicago 4 years ago I couldn’t get enough of vintage kitchenware; it was plentiful and cheap at every thrift store and estate sale I visited. I have since scaled back on the kitchenware due to a bursting china hutch and packed pantry shelves. There is also NO counter space in my kitchen (we made do with a portable island and several carts) so I’ve steered clear of vintage appliances. When I spied this yellow Juice King from the 1950s (maybe ’40s?) at an estate sale, however, I knew it would be perfect in my kitchen. My kitchen’s color scheme is aqua and yellow and all my appliances are yellow.
The Juice King is a perfect example of Modernism: it celebrates streamlined style with form following function. Best of all it doesn’t require electricity, just ‘woman power’ to crank down the arm. Also look at all that shiny chrome and gentle curves; it’s downright sexy for a kitchen appliance!
Scroll down for more photos of the Juice King in action and other items found at 2 Chicago estate sales.
Yes, I bought that orange just for the photos! The design is so simple & clever, the metal cone has holes in it so the juice drains into the metal cup below. I’m not sure how many oranges it would take to fill up the cup!
The main draw of the sale where I found the Juice King was not Midcentury kitchenware but a trophy room with a dozen mounted taxidermied heads of African animals hunted in the 1920s in Africa. There was also a rug (!) made from a whole cheetah. Despite the fact that I’m a carnivore and enjoying fishing, it made me sad to see animals I’d only previously seen in zoos stuffed on a wall. I also kept having flashbacks to Lion King as there actually was a lion head and a warthog too. They were actually having a silent auction for the items so I’m not sure how much they cost.
Anyways, I went to the sale as I was intensely curious what the rest of the home would look like– there were animal motifs everywhere, including elephant knickknacks, hunting magazines and safari hats. Besides the trophy room it was a fairly standard Chicago-style bungalow, no leopard wallpaper (sadly).
This sweet little stuffed animal is probably from the 1970s and has its original tag. The tag identifies it as a ‘big leopard’, part of the Nature Babies series produced by R. Dakin & Co. It was made in Japan out of all new materials.
My leopard is resting upon a humorous 1955 pulp style Safari magazine. It was shocking to see how people thought about wild animals back then– it’s all about hunting rather than preservation.
Even the tag is fabulous, I like how the little gray cat is popping out of the mod style leaves.
A little stuffed camel to continue the African animal theme. He was made in Japan but has no manufacturer name, but he’s similar to the Dakin dream pets from the 1960s and ’70s.
An early molded plastic pin, it’s unfortunately missing one of the little pieces of plastic in the binoculars but it would look great on a navy blazer. After doing research the only information I found on it is that a seller on ebay identified it as being from the 1920s or 1930s (I’m thinking it’s actually from the 1940s or ’50s). On the right is an enameled pin that was a souvenir from Japan– it seems older based on the clasp, maybe 1950s or ’60s?
Above and below are a few spreads from the 1955 “Safari” magazine– there are some over the top illustrations in there but I found the behind the scenes look on how to shoot a cobra fascinating.
I didn’t expect to find the above hand tinted photobooth photo at the safari sale, it was the only vernacular photo there. It’s framed in a metal frame from the 1930s and has the date August 15, 1934 written on the back.
The other sale I went to was located only blocks from my house (which never happens). Most of the items were more contemporary but I found a few older tidbits there. The sunflower above is a large pin and the fabric flowers below are Made in Japan craft supplies that I’ll be incorporating into a hat or headbands.
An anachromism of the past, hankerchiefs! I can’t imagine blowing my nose on any of these novelty print hankerchiefs though as they’re all too adorable.
Vintage kangaroo items seem rare, maybe this was a souvenir from Australia?
When I first saw the above hankerchief I thought it was Valentine’s Day with cupids. Imagine my surprise when I looked closer and realized the little sprites had nets and were catching atomic butterflies!
Closeup of the atomic butterflies, I’d love a shirt in this print. Or stationery!
A wildly colored 1950s Christmas hanky, not sure what the designers were thinking at the time– there is a neon green reindeer up there!
The best find of the second sale is this straw market bag with leather straps. I’d been searching for a market bag for ages (and nearly broke down and bought one off ebay) but was ecstatic to find this in the basement of the sale of all places! It’s going to get lots of mileage this summer; it will be filled with fresh bread, fruits and veggies from the farmer’s market or will hold my towel & flip flops for the beach! Not sure how old it is, probably 1970s or 1980s.