Monday, December 5, 2016

Crankie! Or, Why I've Been So Quiet

I've wanted to make a crankie for a long time, ever since seeing them demonstrated at the Augusta Heritage Workshop in Elkins, WV. So last month I cajoled my hubby into making the box for one. Then I found a song that would work with it, and finally last week I started my part of the crankie.

What is a crankie? It's basically a simple folk theatre, operated manually with a crank that turns the spools that the story is rolled on. It is usually, but not always, lit from behind with a lamp or other light. Larry remembers that his music teacher had one when he was in elementary school. He hadn't thought of it in years, but it came back to him when he watched the online videos for making one. They're older than that, though (even though he'll tell you he's as old as dirt).

According to the website of The Crankie Factory, the "moving panorama" became popular sometime in the 19th century. Some were quite small, possibly made for a child, and eventually there were some so large they could fill a stage. Some of the makers of crankies took their shows on the road. There are examples of crankies in several museums. Henry "Box" Brown, a slave who escaped by literally shipping himself to freedom in Philadelphia in a shipping box, created a moving panorama to tell the story of his escape and took it on the road until the looming battle over slavery made him leave the US for England. There is much more history of crankies at The Crankie Factoy's page.

So I suppose you could say that crankies were the forerunner of motion picture, in a way. I was enchanted with the ones made by Ellen Gozion, Elizabeth LaPrelle and Penny Anderson when they were demonstrated at Augusta. That was three or four years ago so you can see it took me a while to get around to making one myself.

I learned a lot of what not to do on this first attempt, but I am happy enough with the end results. I hope to use this one at some of the Christmas shows that Jeff Seager and I have coming up this month. And I think I'll make another one for this summer's library programs.

I will try to make a video soon of my crankie in action. Right now, I have to wash marker and pencil off my hands, and then practice, practice, practice. Just wanted to show this because I thought it was so cool.

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

More Marietta Booth Updates

I took a lot of pictures at Marietta--it's been a while since I've done that, usually just grabbing a few as we left. So here's the second installment. Marietta is actually 5 spaces, scattered around the same general area so we have a lot of stuff there.

I don't have a great deal of Christmas items in my booths, and what I've had at Marietta has sold pretty quickly. This little candle tree is by Avon, but cute as can be.


Wexford crystal is a steady seller--not fast, but steady. It's a great go-to for parties because it's plentifyl and if one breaks it's not a great loss. It's also quite sturdy, making it doubly attractive for parties. And at the prices it brings, it's not much more expensive than plastic.

I've been bringing in blue jars as I get them washed up. We found two totes full of them in the cellar when we cleaned it up last month. I've also been bringing in half-gallon jars because we just don't need that size these days with just two of us here.


A little Fiesta, anyone? I don't carry a great deal of it, but it's very popular with buyers. These pitchers might be due for a price reduction as I've had them for a while.


What Blenko I have in the booth is on the bottom shelf in the above photo. A few candleholders, a Blenko plaque, an ashtray--I tend to keep Blenko for my own collection 😉

Below, a shelf full of various collectible glass.


A Fenton lamp, "married" pitcher and bowl set, a pink milk glass vase, two wall pockets, and a lot of et cetera--which is really the lifeblood of a booth.


 Mugs, measuring cups, Jumbo peanut butter jars, polka dot bowls and more.




I added a lot of tumblers to these shelves--some Boscul, some Kentucky Derby mint julep glasses, some tulip juice glasses, and others.


Mixing bowls, which I hope find a home during the holiday baking season.









I kept this checkerboard table for a while, but finally decided to sell it. It's handmade, around 1930-1940 and probably chestnut as gthe ma who made it seemed to use a good bit of that wood in his work.


Pretty glass--I can't resist it! The green and yellow bowls have matching ladles, proably for mayonnaise. People made their own mayo and served it in pretty dishes like this. Nice!


Cranberry etched shade lamps that Larry rewired, along with more pretty glass. What can I say, I'm an addict!


Another recent addition is the wall-mounted coffee grinder. This was an eBay find--needed the lid and the catch cup which I also found on eBay, to make it complete.



 More bowls! And all sizes. My own cabinets are full of bowls too--apparently another addiction.




Tea cups were a good seller, but have been slow lately, Maybe they'll pick up again in spring, for tea parties.


 Uniforms are regular sellers too, so we pick them up whenever we find them. Even newer ones will sell, probably for hunters?

And the shelf of amberina! I do love amberina glass, and have a good bit at my house (all Blenko, which is called tangerine by that company). These are West Virginia glass makers Kanawha and Fenton, along with some Mosser and Moon & Star glass by L.E. Smith.


Well that's the tour for today! The booths are full to bursting, and I hope sales are good during the holiday season. Things tend to slow down in January and February, so we look for a good December to carry us through. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Booth Update: Marietta

We worked for hours, literally, on our Marietta booth yesterday while we waited on some people who wanted to look at a few things we had there. They never showed up, but the booth got a good going-over and we added lots of new things, so it was a good day after all.

Getting in the holiday mood with green Anchor Hocking glasses and pitcher, and some budweiser Cydesdale pilsner glasses.


I loved this long framed piece featuring New Yorker covers. The woven seat chairs are in front of a rusty old Chevy tailgate.


More green! I don't know who made this set, but it's heavy and has an interesting design.

A glass dome, globe bookends, musical note ornaments co-exist on top of a victrola.


Teapots! Lots to choose from here, along with an antique apple peeler, a chrome percolator (it works) and a lovely tureen with its ladle.


A friend recently hooked me up with a family that wanted to get rid of boxes and boxes of afghans and linens. These are just a few of them. Beautiful workmanship in these cozy pieces.


Tick tock goes the clock(s). Vintage clocks fascinate me.


Holidays strike again with these two lamps.



A better look at the chairs. These are in really nice shape.


Aprons, anyone?


Framed art, a huge old trunk, beer stein ornament and Budweiser mugs.


This dressing table might come home and get a mirror and some paint added.


Seems like I'vee added a llot of beer items! The big deer is another metal beer sign.


Two Hoosiers at Marietta. These take a while to sell but they make great display pieces meanwhile.



That's all for this post. I have many more pics from Marietta I'll share later.

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.
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