Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Buying "Character"

They say that when a woman has age lines on her face, it just makes her look old; consequently, when a man has age lines, it gives him character. That's just not fair!

What about vintage china? …. If a dinner plate or teacup gets cracked or chipped, does it fatally flaw the piece or just give it character? Perhaps if we knew the story behind the damage, we could more easily appreciate a few dings and chips.

* * * * * * *

I recently bought this beautiful set of white luster canisters.

I’m not an expert, but my research leads me to believe that they were made in Czechoslovakia in the early 20th century. I was attracted to the blue/white cameo-like scenes and the beautiful opalescent iridescence of the set. I’ve seen canisters like this in numerous antique malls and they are always priced well above $100. A complete set usually has 6 large canisters/lids and 6 smaller spice canisters/lids. Sometimes they even have matching oil and vinegar cruets.

This set was priced considerably less. Perhaps this next picture might help you understand the reason for the lower price. Notice that one lid has been broken and re-glued and another is missing its handle. There are indeed 6 canisters, but only 3 spice canisters. Four of the canisters have breaks or hairline cracks.

So I’m curious.

Would you have bought this set or would you have passed it up because of the damage and the missing spice canisters? 

Would you have not considered repurposing one of the broken canisters for a bouquet of flowers?

Or maybe a holder for wooden utensils?

Would you have bought them?
How much would you have paid? 

I’ll be linking to:
Nifty Thrifty Tuesday at Coastal Charm


  1. Probably would not have purchased them, have enough 'stuff' I need to get rid of, thinking of doing an etsy shop.

  2. I think they look very nice, even with the flaws. I love the idea of using them for wooden spoons or a plant. I love the words on them too.

    Have a great day.

  3. I got to be honest, I would have probably passed on them. Not because I don't think they are beautiful, I do. I'm just not good at seeing beauty & usage in things like that. I wish I were, I love vintage things once I see it in a setting. I love how you turned that one into a vase!

  4. I don't have enough room on my counters to show off these lovelies, so I would have passed on them. I have bought cracked, broken and repaired china before so that would not have stopped me. I love the flowers in the one canister! What are you doing with them? hugs, Linda

  5. Oh I like what you did with them and I think they are really pretty!!

  6. They are beautiful Sherry. If the coffee, tea, and sugar canisters were in good shape and there were at least three good lids, I would have bought them; and used the rest of the set in other ways; maybe even breaking the most damaged one, and using the pieces to create something beautiful. My price would have depended upon how many good canisters there were. Blessings.

  7. They are gorgeous! Yes! I would have bought them..mostly because of the blue (as you probably guessed by now is my favorite color). I have purchased damaged vintage items before just because they are still beautiful in my eyes. And, yes! I would have used them just like you to hold utensils (or flowers). Great find!!

  8. Damage doesn't bother me one bit. I think it adds character and it means that something was used a lot, so it must have been so loved. Those are love lines, you know.
    Hugs- Tete

  9. The flaws do give them character -- and would not have prevented me from buying them. Space would have been my problem. I don't use enough canister-friendly staples to have such a large set. They are beautiful, and I love the way you used them. As for price, I have no idea!!!


  10. I don't mind a chip or crack if the price is right and I love the item. Lately I've been seeing lots of little china sugar bowls and dishes repurposed with plants in them.

  11. They are charming (as are women of a certain age) cracks and all. A second life for things that have seen better days is wonderful.

  12. Love your comparison of age or character. I probably would have bought them, but probably for a small amount of money, $10 or less. If not, I would pass them by in hopes of the next great find.

  13. What a find! I love using vintage items throughout my home.
    Though these arent exactly my style I still think they are really cool!

  14. A little chippiness doesn't bother me. I like your idea of repurposing the ones with the bad lids.

  15. Beautiful but I would have passed would never have the room to display them all but they sure are lovely!

  16. The flaws don't bother me (now). In the past I would have walked right by, but I've come to appreciate "character". I would have passed though because they aren't my color.

  17. They are lovely and as you have shown the broken ones can be repurposed.If I was buying for me I probably would not have paid more than 35 dollars. Possibly more if I thought I could sell individually on E-Bay-maybe someone needs one to complete their set.

  18. Yes I would have bought them! I just bought a cracked ironstone pitcher and I love it!
    I love how you used them as a vase and for your wooden spoons.
    I got to come visit you someday, you always find such great stuff!!!

  19. What a beautiful set! I don't shy away from something a little worn or damaged either! But I have no idea how much to pay for something like that! What I pay depends on how much I want something! ♥

  20. Hmmm. that's a tough one. They are GORGEOUS and I surely would have stood and thought long and hard about them. If the price was right I probably would have bought them and used the ones I could...and the broken ones to repurpose like you have shown.


  21. It's a lovely set, even with the flaws!

    One of these days, I plan to email you a picture of a pitcher and glass set and also a bowl, so you can tell me about them.

    Hope you are planning on joining me next week for the first Potpourri Party!

  22. They're gorgeous and I would have bought them with the damage if the price was right. I don't care about a little damage when I'm using the item for myself, I can always repurposed it in some way. I love the flowers in the oatmeal jar.

  23. Oh Ya, don't you hate it we get old and men get character!!!! This is a tough one, I probably would not have bought it for a canister set, but I would have bought it for re-purposing. they look great with utensils and flowers


  24. I really like your new cannister set and yes I would have bought it cracked or not

    You said it right on about a wrinkled woman making her look old however a man is looking good and with chacacter with his wrinkles.

    I have chacater, wrinkles and a cracked cannister set and I use my odd pieces for vases and put some old silver spoons in them

    Lookin good there Back 2 Vintage


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