What do you collect?

50

At some point during my recent travels, I popped into the coolest store  in Asbury Park, NJ, and purchased the awesome midcentury vase you see here. It’s from a German company called Jasba, and while I can see where some might think the aesthetic quite hideous, I find myself loving it and wanting more.

Here’s a jug with a very similar color combination to above.

And this vase from 1960 is just crazy good.

A pretty trippy option.

You can find lots of under $100 Jasba specimens on Etsy. I’m a fan of this red one.

And finally, eBay’s got some good choices too, including this very chic little number.

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50 Thoughts on What do you collect?
    Karen
    10 Aug 2022
    6:31am

    Books, I have never past a book store that didn’t have some thing I wanted. And i have a physiological inability to get rid of them once they have crossed my front door. And yes, I’ve got a kindle now, so now, if I’ve read a book and loved it, I find a used copy and buy it.

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      Jax
      10 Aug 2022
      11:12pm

      Kindle has saved my life and space! I hate that it’s true because it ties me to Amazon, but it is. Have tried Libby but I just can’t manage finishing a book in 3 rounds.

      3

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    Mouse
    10 Aug 2022
    7:02am

    I collect pottery from thrift shops, the stuff made by everyday people. I’ve gotten some quite beautiful things that way. But my favorite collecting was when I was on the road for 30 years, for work, and didn’t want to lug large purchases home. I would buy interesting pencils and erasers, often from museum gift shops. Not expensive and satisfying.

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    C.D.
    9 Aug 2022
    11:02am

    Had never heard of Jasba, so learned something new! I really like the dramatic color of the one you bought. I collect small silver heart charms from the 1940s. The charms are puffy with sentimental sayings and designs on the front and often old-fashioned names engraved on the back. I wear the nearly 30 I own on a jangly bracelet that always draws comments.

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      Betsy P
      10 Aug 2022
      9:26am

      Please post a picture!

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    Mindy
    9 Aug 2022
    10:36am

    Lipsticks. Way, way too many lipsticks. If a loved one looked in my drawer, I know an intervention would be arranged.

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      Mamavalveeta03
      9 Aug 2022
      12:55pm

      And if you’re anything like me, they’re all a variation on the same shade. Like I’m looking for the Prince Charming of rosy nude lipsticks!

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        Kimberly
        10 Aug 2022
        8:45am

        Have you tried any of Lisa Eldridges?

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        anastasia Christou
        9 Aug 2022
        10:23pm

        everyone is after that perfect rosy nude lipcolour lipstick shade!!
        theres a blog post idea for Kim…

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      Rosie
      9 Aug 2022
      1:58pm

      OMG, me too! They are everywhere. I do use them all the time but still.

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      Linda Kerr
      9 Aug 2022
      1:16pm

      Same here, Mindy. From YSL down to NYX, with plenty of MAC, etc. in between….

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    Bevin Wallace
    9 Aug 2022
    12:35pm

    My sister and I each inherited an Alessio Tasca platter from our aunt. I didn’t know anything about it but I loved the very retro green-blue coloring and graphic animal design. However, mine broke a couple years ago when my son was horsing around, and I started researching the artist online so I could find a replacement. He was Italian and worked in the 1950s and 60s. The pieces are fairly rare and can be expensive, but I love the hunt and they are sentimental to me, so I guess I “collect” them now.

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      marjorie
      9 Aug 2022
      6:44pm

      Wow, Bevin, I’d never heard of Alessio Tasca and I love his stuff!

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    Mamavalveeta03
    9 Aug 2022
    12:46pm

    The Jasba look very MCM, of which I’m a big fan. Not hideous at all! I used to be a much bigger “collector of stuff,” but moving a ton over the years cured me of that. I have a few things that are meaningful to me, like my heart-shaped beach rocks in an antique wooden bread bowl, and a few textiles from countries my daughters have visited (I live vicariously through them. 🤗) but that’s about it. On second thought, cloth Covid masks? *wink wink*

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    Liz
    9 Aug 2022
    12:47pm

    Fashion magazines from the 60s and early 70s. Cosmo was especially great because of their bonkers dinner party articles and all the short works from quality authors like Didion and Capote they used to feature. And while I’m not sure you’d call this a collection, I’ve saved almost all my favorite books and records from the time I was in college until now.

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      Corinne Rayne
      9 Aug 2022
      12:54pm

      Peacock brooches, NYC subway tokens and 1964 nickels

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    Jen
    9 Aug 2022
    8:57pm

    Blue and white splatterware, Bennington pottery, vintage textiles (there’s a lady who sells on IG who’s gonna bankrupt me). It’s like I was meant to be a member of the Bloomsbury Group.

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      anastasia Christou
      9 Aug 2022
      10:25pm

      oh pls share the insta page – i love love vintage textiles. I have a beautiful embroidered silk piece that I plan to hang up one day!

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    anastasia Christou
    9 Aug 2022
    9:25pm

    these are stunning! i do love midcentury lines too….
    I used to collect magazine clippings of the supermodel era – haha that was a long time ago! then I collected vintage textiles for while.
    Once we built a new home, six years ago – minimalist style my collecting stopped! I now collect beach glass – they hubby and I do a beach walk every Sunday morning before our cafe stop and I always look out for it, the colours are stunning!

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    Jax
    9 Aug 2022
    9:55pm

    I’ve been the kind of collector who had more appetite than space, esp. after I married and had a family. At this stage, I try to limit myself to whatever art/photography/design/architecture books would fit in a specific shelf (if they can’t fit, I have to let go of something). I already have a substantial collection of CDs (let go of a smaller assortment of records many years ago) in the hundreds (may be around ~1000) that I’ve tried to weed through but still holding on to. Considering doing an exercise to listen to 1 CD per day (or more realistically, 3 CDs per weekend) and post each with some thoughts on Instagram. There’s some fun CD/vinyl listening accounts like that. Living in a city apartment, I just can’t collect any more decorative objects, alas. I do have a huge boner for great vintage glassware (once brought home 2 mid century glass vases from Copenhagen), small ceramics and some framed artwork, but I don’t have space even for my collection. Like others with their never-ending lipstick collections, I do seem to be amassing too big of a skincare and haircare collection — serums, treatments, cleansers, moisturizers, eye creams. I’ve been very proud that I’ve tried to not buy any more and focusing on using up the bottles. But then I just bought some Jonathan Van Ness hair products to try out — btw, anybody have any luck with his line?

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    Sara
    9 Aug 2022
    3:39pm

    Patria is my fave shop in Asbury Park! Love that you shared it and love the German MCM pottery!

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    D.Morgendorffer
    9 Aug 2022
    1:39pm

    Categories that are close to saturation point: Lipstick (red, pink, pink-red, and red-pink), Camay soap, Publix holiday salt and pepper shakers (started out as an unincorporated salt-and-pepper community and is now a bustling salt-and-pepper village on my mantlepiece country each Christmas), and 90s anime boxsets (well, maybe not saturation point).
    Categories of dangling just out of reach: Pamela Kohler-Camp pottery (there are hardly any art festivals now where I could buy more of her stuff…only have two pieces, but they’re so cool…) and manga (I try to steer clear of OOP stuff, but I obsessively check Ebay in hopes of finishing my Please Save My Earth manga collection…tip of my hat to my unknown nemesis who outbid me on Vol. 9).

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      Sara
      10 Aug 2022
      7:43am

      Milk glass pieces, especially Jadeite and in pink, McCoy and similar mid-century pottery pieces. I’d say my collection is highly curated because I am a minimalist at heart after moving so many times during grad school years, but those items always draw my eye!

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        marjorie
        10 Aug 2022
        12:37pm

        Oh, I ADORE milk glass! i have one (1) milk glass hobnail vase and if I had space I’d collect way more, plus other colors and kinds of textured and pressed milk glass.

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    Mimi A
    9 Aug 2022
    1:18pm

    Vintage travel posters, splatterware, but not the enamel kind, and belts. Tory Burch’s site has some nice splatterware pieces in good colors. I don’t hunt to expand these collections as much as I once did. Surprisingly, having too much stuff can be a thing.

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    RebeccaToo
    9 Aug 2022
    3:16pm

    Twenty years ago I snooped in a wooden box on the back of my Sister In Law’s guest bathroom toilet. It was kind of fancy and the size of a big shoe box. It was filled with lipsticks. Cool. I love lipstick. BUT SHE HAD THROWN AWAY ALL THE LIDS. Just a big box of used and open lipstick. Why? Gross!

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    Melissa
    9 Aug 2022
    11:58am

    I love these Jasba vases! I love old linens and doyles. I also love collecting shells on beach vacations.

    The eBay link was fun to look at. Thanks

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    Elisabeth
    9 Aug 2022
    11:59am

    Great idea for a post, Kim! I went down the Etsy/eBay rabbit hole during the staying at home times, first for vintage Dansk Kobenstyle cookware. I have two red pieces, a lidded casserole and a lasagne pan, and two yellow, a frying pan and a butter warmer. I’d love something blue! You kind of have to be aware of when Dansk was bought by Lenox, because the quality declined (although the color range expanded). Then I got interested in dishes, some French Gien but mostly Russel Wright for Iroquois in pink sherbet, which are really affordable and sturdy and we use them and run them through the dishwasher regularly. Side note: I was nervous to buy used kitchen items online, but have had nothing but excellent experiences. I ask questions and request additional photos when I’m unsure and all the sellers so far have been lovely! And all the info you’d ever need about years of manufacture and such is readily available online. All of my buys have cost less than the same or comparable brands sold new.

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      JB
      10 Aug 2022
      7:49am

      I collect Russel Wright as well!

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      Elizabeth
      9 Aug 2022
      2:40pm

      Oohhhh. Love the Russel Wright, I never heard of him so just looked him up. Thanks for the tip!

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    Amy
    9 Aug 2022
    12:07pm

    Milk glass, swung glass, elephants, glass insulators, Fiesta Ware, earrings, Birkenstocks, foo dogs, vintage ceramic Christmas trees and white porcelain bisque. I had a serious Value Village phase a couple years ago where I accumulated most of the glass and ceramic goodies.

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      Amy
      11 Aug 2022
      10:57am

      I forgot: Coach bags, tattoos, glass hens-on-nests, 70s vintage embroidered scenes, and fortune cookie fortunes.

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        Elisabeth
        11 Aug 2022
        11:12am

        Coach bags! There’s still nothing like them. Recently bought a ‘90’s Murphy bag on Etsy, love! There are a ton of fakes out there, though, which is a bummer.

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    Tahe Z
    9 Aug 2022
    12:14pm

    I love collecting rocks and shells from all the places I’ve been. Cheap!

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    Joannawnyc
    9 Aug 2022
    11:17am

    Mid-century costume jewelry, decorative glassware and china (40s-70s), mostly by shape/color (not individual makers). Vintage handbags (ditto). Your vases look fab!

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    Betsy P
    9 Aug 2022
    11:29am

    Head vases from the fifties and apparently, decorative pillows.

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    Wendy
    9 Aug 2022
    11:40am

    Teapots, tea cups and saucers, sugar bowls and milk pitchers. Nothing precious, all usable and mostly thrifted.

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    cw
    9 Aug 2022
    11:43am

    When I take walks on the beach (any beach) I pick up sea glass/beach glass (whatever you want to call it). I also pick up other occasional beach finds––left behind kid toys, occasional pieces of driftwood that sort of thing. I always leave the kids toys by the beach trailhead in case some other kid wants it. I also pick up trash, but I don’t collect that! I’ve come across a surprising number of left behind undies (male and female) which I pick up using a doggie poop bag so I don’t have to touch them––and, yes, another item I don’t collect! Side note: for those following past posts I do know the difference between a compound word and a conjunction––nothing like an editorial error to knock you off your high horse! 😉

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      Viajera
      9 Aug 2022
      12:26pm

      cw, I do the same thing with the kiddie toys on the beach – it makes me glad to think they will be re-used. I think it is adorable how small children leave their toys behind – it’s so trusting (or something.) When adults leave trash though, that is annoying – and they should all stop.

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    Anne at Large
    11 Aug 2022
    12:47am

    This is so fun! I just finished an episode of a pottery competition reality tv show (such British comfort tv) where the challenge was literally this vintage look with the “leopard skin” layered glaze like your crazy good fourth photo. It’s such an interesting technique and I had never heard of it until this week so it’s funny to see it again all of a sudden!

    I am a plant collector so I have to keep my indoor collecting under control since my hoard is in the garden. But there is always room for one more out there…

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    Michele
    10 Aug 2022
    9:53am

    Fancy perfume, and I can’t believe no one has claimed that yet here! I have considerably less than many perfumistas I know but still, I have a modest collection from vintage to recent, mainly small niche houses but also some number of Guerlains. It’s maybe 40 bottles-ish these days, plus a box of smaller vials I acquired through bottle “splits”.

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      marjorie
      10 Aug 2022
      12:40pm

      I keep almost buying vintage bottles of Shalimar, because that’s what my grandmother wore. I hate the smell of it! But those bottles sure are purty.

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      Elisabeth
      10 Aug 2022
      1:28pm

      Funny, my grandmother loved Mitsouko. I have a bottle that’s at least 10 years old, and while I do love the scent, I find it hard to wear because of the persistence and, I don’t know, is weight the right word?? A tiny bit will do, but that’s my feeling about scent anyway, that someone should have to be well inside your personal space to really smell it.

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    Tricia
    10 Aug 2022
    12:02pm

    I collect vintage McCoy vases. Mostly turquoise. I love them ❤️

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      Viajera
      10 Aug 2022
      3:14pm

      Uh oh. Mayday! Those are amazing! I imagegoggled. Hmm. Maybe shouldn’t have!!

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    Marjorie
    10 Aug 2022
    12:28pm

    Kim, I absolutely love that vase!

    I collect vintage insulators (they look like little bells) that used to go on the tops of telephone poles and telegraph lines to prevent electrical loss. They’re mostly glass; a few are porcelain. My awesome great-aunt Lyn used to collect them—they were on her window sills, with the sunlight bouncing through them as I sat in her kitchen as a tiny kid and she lectured me on Cesar Chavez and why we shouldn’t eat raisins. She was a fierce and glamorous interior designer who started using a Mac in her work in the late ’80s. Just super-cool. I inherited part of her collection and sometimes add to it. (Not too often, as collectors are crazed and rabid.) If you ever visit the architect Paul Rudolph’s house in midtown, you can see his collections of insulators and ’80s Transformer toys! Somehow he made the latter look incredibly mod and high-design. Overview here: https://www.nia.org/

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      Liz
      10 Aug 2022
      2:45pm

      I dated a guy who collected insulators! At one point I had a few, but they got lost in a move. They were so pretty in my windowsill.

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    Meryl
    10 Aug 2022
    8:31pm

    I collect vintage costume jewellery – late 60s through late 70s mostly.
    Vintage Lanvin lucite is my fave but my budget keeps me in Monet, Napier, Trifari and unsigned pieces that speak to me. I notice an uptick in instagram sellers doing the treasure hunting and re-selling resulting in fewer things makinf their way to Etsy and Ebay.

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    Leah
    12 Aug 2022
    10:40pm

    I collect vintage glass and pottery flower frogs, as well as various vintage vases like McCoy and Roseville. Also, rocks.

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Kim France

I was born in Houston, Texas in 1964 and have lived in New York City since 1988. I had a long career in magazines, working at Sassy, Elle, New York, and Spin, and in 2000, I founded Lucky magazine, which I edited for ten years.

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