Sunday, November 20, 2011

Modern Homesteading Mercantile a.k.a. 2nd Hand Store

Yesterday Woodsrunner & I headed out to rural Genesee County for a few errands. While there we stopped off in Indian Falls @ an awesome modern day homesteading mercantile. As the sign reads Your 2nd Hand Store.
For an urban homesteader, a fugal homesteader like myself it's like going to the mall with a pocket full of coupons and some change in my pocket. While this isn't a true mercantile in that I didn't see any food for sale for the average fugalista or treasure hunter it's a gold mine; cloth & sewing supplies vintage patterns, sick room equipment, dishes, pots and pans, furniture, appliances (more on that later).

There is the usual "antiques" which to a homesteader really translates into lifestyle tools. This hand cranked wringer would require both elbow grease to use & restore. The wood is solid on this model, surface rust only but the rollers would need to be replaced. I've often wondered if something like a rubber inner tube could be slid over each roller, a sleeve. Just something I've been playing with in my head. The hack would have to be of clean laundry quality of course.  

A lamp to read by - there were no Aladdin Lamps but plenty of good usable complete oil lamps, as well as parts to be had. Sconces & candle holders, wick snuffers too.

See anything you need?
 For a mercantile like this you should dress accordingly. Clothes that you can crawl around in. I also like to have a fanny pack or a nail apron (think waitress apron two big pockets), that I keep camera, note pad & pen, tape measure, baby wipes for hand washing.  If I'm shopping for a specific item like a lid for a fry pan I have those measurements.

Medical prepps

Good things come to those who search - hemo stats, cuticle scissors, tweezers. To the right was bar supplies like ice strainers & shot tumblers.

Sausage making - Breakfast, Italian, Polish, and yes even Blood. 
Manual meat grinders and a few that did more. The large one might be a cherry pitter. To the left is a container full of poultry trivets, cooling racks & toaster oven shelves. * Note to self bring camp oven to fit for extra shelves !

Valuable tool come Apple harvesting time.
Some homesteading tools are in mint condition minus the box. Notice the aluminum colored press? I didn't when I snapped this pic. Might be something I haven't realized I can't live without.

Stop, look, touch, consider with an open mind. 
Sometimes a homesteader's tools are hiding in plain sight. On this shelf was a Squeezeo style food strainer (center tool with wooden handle), four red bottle cappers, more manual grinders, and some shop tools.

I saw a few non-wire bail canning jars, huge selection of funnels & tongs along with water bath canners or pots that would work. No pressure canners but quite a few pressure cookers.

Next Saturday is shop small local biz day an add marketing campaign sponsored by American Express - FYI bring cash. We have always found everything here reasonably price so I've never attempted negotiating.
If your in the area stop by 48 A to Z. Please give Ginger the owner a shout out from me.

Do you have a favorite junk store full of hidden treasures ?

~~ pelenaka ~~