Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What?! Where Did THIS Come From?!

 How in the world did a giant pickle end up in my living room?

Oh, that's right. I stopped in at my first auction yesterday and I'm now the proud owner of a giant pickle sign. Lest you think I have lost my mind or had a momentary lapse in judgement or made an impulse buy, let me correct those misguided impressions. If any lapse in judgement exists, it's firmly ensconced in my being - probably long term. I actually stalked this pickle sign for weeks and weeks, along with this incredible heavy duty metal cart. Yes I wanted the sign, with a passion and this cart.

I also got an under the counter mounted paper dispenser, with paper (not shown). They were all at a store liquidation auction near where I work. Anyway, I planned this. Sort of. I say sort of because I didn't think I'd actually be able to get to the auction because it was during work hours. The sale kept getting postponed, and the day it finally came up, my friend, who is also my boss, said we should go because work was slow at that moment. The auction was right around the corner, so we went over to have a look and maybe give it a try if we were feeling brave. It tuned out to be very low key, and that suited us just fine, so we joined in.

As you can see, I was successful in my quest to secure what I had stalked. I even scored the sign for $5 below the starting bid, so I was very happy with that. After all, how many people do you think were bidding on the giant pickle? I'm pretty sure that would be just me. I did not go over my maximum planned bids on anything and I deliberately did not aspire to anything over $20 for the most part. There were two things I was going to go as high as $30 on, but those items quickly got beyond my limits, and I was off the hook. Yea! They were both large items I didn't want to have to deal with right now due to space considerations. Yes, the pickle sign is large, but it's also flat and can be hung up. I didn't need the hassle of large cumbersome items, even though one was a huge stainless steel table and the other was a yellow metal locker for combustible materials that was about 6 feet tall or so and about 2 1/2 feet wide. Oh well, I'm sure I'll live just fine without them.

While the auction was going on, I was walking around checking some things out and spotted a bunch of metal letters lying about on and under a table with a bunch of other plastic junk, and there were some in a huge tupperware bin as well. They didn't have a lot number and weren't on the docket, so after the auction, I asked if they'd sell them. The auctioneer asked the owner, who okayed it, and they were added so I could bid. There are ten letters and each is 13 1/2" high and up to 12" wide. I can't for the life of me figure out what they once spelled, so I'm wondering if there were more somewhere around there that didn't get included. Meanwhile, I have been trying to come up with words to create out of them.

Now, as a kid, I was a champ at those puzzles teachers like to give kids to keep them out of their hair. I could always come up with all the combinations from a given set of letters. Last night I was having a bit more trouble at it, but that could be because after spending over an hour or so in the kitchen with them spread out everywhere while cleaning them, I didn't want to think about them any more.

It turned out they were neon letters. The inserts with the neon are a complicated mess which consists of a lucite backing, huge long screws poking out, metal pipe fittings, rubber tubes and the neon light bulbs, all of which were broken except for three. Even the ones with the light bulbs still intact each had their lines cut, so I have no idea if there's any way to make them work again. I'll have to look into that. I have a feeling I can forget about the neon aspect. That's fine; the letters themselves are fabulous!

I painstakingly cleaned all the neon inserts just in case they can be salvaged, which took forever, and amazingly I didn't even cut myself. However, now there are letters all over my dining room table, neon workings all over the kitchen and a giant pickle sign leaning up against "The Beast" (the hutch that I found some months back and painted white).

The rolling cart is currently residing in my friend/boss's garage awaiting Lynette (my partner in junk crime), who is going to go and pick it up for me.

So there you have it. So much for clearing things out and finishing things off. I'm up to my eyeballs in stuff. Oh, and after the auction buyers are responsible for getting their items out of there on their own. Any idea how high up that pickle sign was or how heavy and awkward it might be? Well, unfortunately I had no camera with me, so I have no images to give you a sense of it, and the auction shots are no longer online. Let's just say we had to go get my friend's 16 foot adjustable ladder, haul it in and get it set up, which took some muscle. Thankfully we didn't need the full extension. One of the guys there who was much taller than I was kind enough to climb up and unhook it and get it down for me. I couldn't get the chains it was hung from though because they were up about 20 ft or so. I'm just glad we could get the sign at all. Luckily I keep a screwdriver in the glove compartment as well because I had to get under the counter to undo 8, 2 inch screws that were holding the paper dispenser in. That took me quite a while. Awkward angles. We had to make three trips to get everything back to the office because aside from what I got, my friend, Kathryn, also got a bunch of wire standing racks and humongous pictures in frames. We were exhausted by the end of the day.

So the pickle sign resides for now, right in your face as you walk in our front door. Casey came home from classes last night and I cut her off at the pass so as to provide a sort of pickle intervention in case the shock proved too much for her. Was she impressed? Maybe a little. I'm not sure, but at least she wasn't pickle hostile. That's always a good sign. Then I proceeded to excitedly tell her how we could hang it on the wall where the lotus picture currently resides in the dining room, just until we get a shop, of course. (You can see the wall I intend to hang it on in the first picture above.) She declared something to the effect of the following: "No! We are not going to be the kind of people who hang a huge pickle in their house!"

I begged to differ.

We'll have to see about that.

Meanwhile tomorrow is trash day, so is it my fault if this bathroom cabinet crossed my path on the way home?

It is pretty big and is covered inside and out with mirrors, and it has some glass shelves inside. After driving the streets awhile thinking about whether I should take it or not (due to current space considerations, you know), I came back and scooped it up. Heather's words rang in my ears (Heather from New House, New Home, New Life).... she told me her mother used to always say, "Don't look a gift horse in the mouth. You can always make glue out of him later." I've decided that will be my dashboard motto to remind me to just take the goods now and figure it out later. I find this prevents "picker's remorse". So I picked it up, (a filthy dirty, heavy thing) and figured I could throw it away when I got home if I wanted, or do so after I stripped it of its mirrors and glass. I did get the glass shelves out, but I'm not sure how to remove the mirror. I'm thinking it might ruin them.

Then, on a round about drive home, I came upon a great, old white door under a bit of junk. It was almost dark out though, and I didn't have room for it in the back seat. I really want it, so we'll see what I can work out for the early morning. It's right down the street, but the garbage men come to our street first thing. So I'll have to be quick if I mean to have it for my own.

Casey just returned with some ice cream in tow. I guess that makes us THE place for pickles and ice cream.

Cravings anyone? Well, let's just say we've got "pickle" to spare. Come on by.

I'll be sharing this at:

Knick of Time Tuesdays @ Knick of Time
Sunday's Best @ My 1929 Charmer
Thrifty Treasures @ Southern Hospitality
Mop it Up Mondays @ I Should Be Mopping the Floor
Time Travel Thursday @ The Brambleberry Cottage


  1. I love a good pickle and that sign is to die for!

  2. Hi Liz,
    I'll be doing a drive by tonite to nab that pickle sign from I'll have some ice cream, too! ;)
    I found 4 giant neon letters this summer...same dirty story. It took forever to clean those things out. I'm going to see if white twinkles will work in them. I might have to rig some sort of harness to hold them in place, though. I took out all the guts, not thinking about securing lights back into them. Smushed in white lights will work, I hope!
    I like chocolate ice cream with my pickles, BTW!

  3. OMG, and I was worried about bringing "big stuff" home. I love your pickle sign and those letters are fabulous! I had to laugh when you mentioned the metal locker for combustible materials:-)

  4. That pickle sign is totally awesome! It makes a big bold statement and it's just plain fun!

  5. What is not to love about a giant pickle sign. Of course you have to hang it.

  6. Please, please, please do not paint the pickle sign! It's absolutely adorable, definitely hang worthy, as is. -Angela @ Mrs. White Twig & Tea

  7. Liz----------Close your blinds..the truck outside>the ppl in it are all wearing WHITE COATS girl! ROFL -with /at both :^))))

    Girl I AM EXHAUSTED after reading this post..I mean ex-hausted. You do know this is an ADDICTION, RIGHT?? i SHOULD KNOW!
    Do you have something to help you sleep!!!!!rofl.

    Headed out to Georgia ..plan to stop briefly in the little PLAINS place again..wonder what we will find < >


  8. Hi Liz! I love the pickle sign. It has some sort of a "vintage" look for me and I love all things vintage :)

  9. Lucky you hitting the auction! I LOVE the pickle sign... I may just have to make one like it for our kitchen seeings as the other two eat dills like crazy. Fabulous design on it, love the shape too. Great finds. I'm thinking you've got to be close to running out of room at your place. Not even room for one of those little lizards to squeeze in. :) Have a great weekend Liz!


  11. How fun! I love auctions! I would have wanted that cart too! aNd thos letters!!! If you want to sell any of them let me know!

  12. Who needs to clean things up and make some space when you find things like you just scored!!! The pickle sign makes me smile :)

  13. I am afraid I am going to have to copy that pickle sign for my niece for Christmas. Pickles are her favorite food! I am not sure that you should have discovered auctions. They are as addicting as junking and curb shopping. My husband gently reminded me that every room in the downstairs is teeming with projects so he guessed we would not be going to yard sales tomorrow. Don't worry - I have already stolen his truck keys and will be out and about before he wakes up! Yes, my truck is full.

  14. This made me laugh as my husband is making some pickle today! What a fun find!

  15. Your pickle sign is hilarious! What a once-in-a-lifetime find! It will look terrific on your wall....

  16. I LOVE your pickle sign!!! I've got an old pickle lapel pin, but it doesn't even come close to your fabulous find!!! One of a kind, that's for sure. :@

  17. Love your pickle (that sounds strange). And, Im lovin your blog. So now Im your newest follower from Please come visit me. THANKS.

  18. Oh my gosh I want that pickle sign, I mean I really want it. Oh well. Maybe I should start checking out the auctions if this shows me what great finds that can be had. Nothing like this at GW. Do NOT paint that pickle sign it would be a sin, and you'd have to do penance! Thanks for sharing your inspiration with Sunday’s Best – you helped make the party a success!

  19. Just found you through The Shabby Nest. Cant wait to look around somemore! I am as green as that pickle because I am so envious of your great finds! ;) Cant wait to check out more!

  20. Well I'm pickle impressed! or more like in love. and those letters - WOW!

  21. I agree with everyone else--that pickle sign is fantastic! Love it!

  22. You have me over here gigglin' about that giant pickle! Very cute.
    Amber @ The Honeysuckle Bus Stop

  23. Love your sign and the cart is wonderful! I can see you now picking that mirrored cabinet up off the side of the road...been there, done that! LOL!


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