Wednesday, August 5, 2009

An Ode to craigslist

How do I love thee, craigslist...let me count the ways.

You've got to love craigslist, as long as you can take the Rants and Raves section with a grain of salt. According to Wikipedia, craigslist started in 1995 by Craig Newmark, "as an email distribution list of friends, featuring local events in the San Francisco Bay Area, before becoming a web-based service in 1996. After incorporation as a private for-profit company in 1999, craigslist expanded into nine more U.S. cities in 2000, four each in 2001 and 2002, and 14 in 2003. As of April 2009, craigslist has established itself in approximately 570 cities in 50 countries...Having observed people helping one another in friendly, social and trusting communal ways on the Internet, the WELL, and Usenet, and feeling isolated as a relative newcomer to San Francisco, craigslist founder Craig Newmark decided to create something similar for local events."

My reason for loving craigslist? Well, I like to lurk around in the various forums. I had been looking through the free and furniture for sale sections for an art deco dresser or wardrobe for our second bedroom. Yeah, I know it's a little crazy, like I'm going to find a decent art deco dresser for free. But last year, someone up in Williamsburg had given one away because they no longer had room for it, and I missed out on it.

Last Monday, I got lucky. Someone was selling a wardrobe for a whopping $25. I jumped on that ad like a monkey on a cupcake. We traded a few emails and arranged to meet on Tuesday afternoon. It was in pretty good shape, as it just needed a good cleaning inside and out. For that price and some elbow grease, what a deal!

I'm not necessarily into antiques or even art deco furniture. I just wanted a dresser or wardrobe to help organize our second bedroom, and because it would match the vanity I have in there. The reason I bought the vanity (at Bill's Big Flea out in Va Beach, a couple years before it caught on fire) was because my grandma had an art deco bedroom set and I always liked sitting at her vanity.

Thank God for the Blazer my husband bought us. I practically giggled like an idiot on the way home from the storage place we had met, my new found, long sought after prize bouncing in the Blazer with every bump in the road. It's already sitting in the bedroom, having already gotten a thorough cleaning inside and out with Windex and two coats of wood conditioner. Tomorrow, I'll rub some Old English Scratch cover all over it, just to brighten the color a little bit.

So the wardrobe is way #1 that I love craigslist. Way #2 would be because I posted a small particle board dresser today under furniture for sale for $10. It's already been picked up and taken to a new home. I'm even waiting for someone to contact me about the second small dresser. That wardrobe has so much room in it, that I'm able to get rid of those two little dressers. I could have donated them to a thrift store, I suppose, and gotten more for tax credit on them than $10 a piece, but I figured why not try to sell them?

According to Yahoo! Education, art deco is a, "...term that designates a style of design popular during the 1920s and 30s. Coined in the 1960s, the name derives from the 1925 Paris Exposition of Decorative Arts, where the style reached its apex. Art deco is characterized by long, thin forms, curving surfaces, and geometric patterning. The practitioners of the style attempted to describe the sleekness they thought expressive of the machine age. The style influenced all aspects of art and architecture, as well as the decorative, graphic, and industrial arts. Works executed in the art deco style range from skyscrapers and ocean liners to toasters and jewelry. Since the 1970s the style has undergone a resurgence of popularity." Basically, art deco furniture in good shape is hard to find anymore.

I even checked eBay tonight to see what kind of wardrobes were being sold there and for how much. There weren't any that looked too similar to mine. There weren't any more listed in craigslist either. I feel like I got such a steal! By the way, if you do look for art deco furniture on craigslist, you may find the vanities listed more often. I think people don't realize what they have and just see it as old furniture that will take too much work to clean up themselves. The vanities are often listed as dressers because they have 4-6 drawers in them. Happy hunting!

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