Our story begins last Wednesday, my husband's birthday, when he wanted to take the day off work and go gallivanting. He's fun to go gallivanting with, so I was game. We were driving through the country just past Roanoke, Ala. when we saw what looked like a mile of cars parked along both sides of the road. What on earth?
It was Ruth's Flea Market, which a nice teased-hair lady told us is held only on Wednesdays, and "you really need to get here by 7 or 8 to get anything."
Online listings later revealed Ruth's is open on Saturday as well, but we were just astonished at how many vendors and buyers were milling about right there in the middle of the week. The offerings ranged from cases of neon-colored bras in sizes I didn't know existed to deer heads, homemade canned goods, old weapons, fresh produce, plants, these bunny rabbits, and of course old flea market favorites such as glassware, china and silver. I don't suppose I have to tell you what caught my eye!
But I do have to tell you what I bought: this gorgeous old three-piece silver set, and for just $10! The sticker said 5 pieces for $10, and the other two pieces were ...
... egg cups, maybe? You tell me. They surely don't match, but who cares, I got those great silver pieces for a song!
Here's what the set looked like before the first round of polishing.
Now I just adore these old pieces of silver with Repoussé work, or embossing, that's near the top, and the chasing, or etched design, that's on the lower half.
I was drawn to this set because I love the Victorian design, and a little research revealed that indeed this maker, Homan, was in business in the late 1880s and changed its name to the Homan Silverplate Co. in 1896. I wondered why there are what look like two sugar bowls, only one without a lid. Here you can see that in the bowl at front there is a rim, while the bowl at back has no rim. When I searched online for similar sets, some listings described the odd piece without a lid as a waste pot or slop bowl (what a name!), which was used to pour off the old, cooled tea before the hostess refilled her guests' cups. Whatever the case, I'm quite happy with the gifts I got for my husband's birthday this year!