Saturday, July 05, 2008

Collecting the Capricorn Way

Cappies are known for practicality and I'm so totally there it distresses even me sometimes. My dad hammered "quality over quantity" into my receptive nature so thoroughly it's part of me on a cellular level. The first question I always ask when confronted with a purchase is, do I need it and is it made well? I can't think of a thing I own that's shoddy. It actually hurts to see friends spending money on cheap, new furniture when they could get a solid piece at a yard sale for a fraction of the cost. Well-made trumps beauty almost every time.

Yet, a paradox has always battled within: the need to collect. The need to own things of beauty that also appeal to my emotions, or to my impractical, romantic, sensual side as well as that deep seated love of nostalgia.

Who among us doesn't have this need?

I finally found a way to indulge this duality. I collect vintage airline memorabilia -- but only stuff I can use. And I do use it, on a daily, hourly basis. Take a look at some examples of my stuff!

A new acquisition! Just bought a set of four after waiting about five years to find a set that matched my meager budget.

I have two of these 60s/70s Braniff coffee cups. They're made by Hall China. Totally indestructible.

Eastern Airlines nut cups -- and we all thought pilots had bigger ones! Embossed logo on the bottom. I have six.

The crown jewel of my flight bag collection, this one was used in the 50s.

What collection would be complete without some inflight silverware? I have scads of it that I've picked up for a song -- TWA, Eastern, United, American. How much more fun is it to eat with these utensils than some cheap Target ware?

My favorite bag. I use it all the time and get stopped constantly in airports by people who want to reminisce about those old grand and glamorous days of air travel. There aren't too many people left who remember them! I'm one of the fortunate few.

What about you? What objects appeal to you so deeply they're irresistible? Do you use them, gaze at them, or hide them like treasure, only to be brought out on special occasions? What do you collect?

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