Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Milagro Cupboard

I bought a collection of little things yesterday, a cigarette box for only $2.00 (they normally sell for a minimum of $10), five black and white dice for $3 (which I shall drill a hole through and string on a bracelet, a la Jennifer Heynen), a little charm of an old-fashioned pair of eggbeaters that will make a good addition to a pendant of some sort, some buttons (I can't show you the face of them, as they might end up as part of a gift I might make for someone who reads this blog) which were only 5 for $1 (I did I resist buying an entire large tin full of lots and lots of buttons for a mere $15, because so far, I haven't done nearly enough with the many buttons I already have in my collection) and a metal moose peace sign, which has a Christmas theme but which I shall display year round just because I like the picture and the sentiment.

However, the most exciting piece I bought (and the most expensive at $125.00) is what I am calling the "Milagro Cupboard". First I have to give you a little history on the name:

When we went to the Hacienda Mosaico in January, one of our excursions into Puerto Vallarta was to find a store which sold milagros - little metal charms in various shapes, "religious folk charms that are traditionally used for healing purposes and votive offerings in Mexico", per Wikipedia. We found several pieces of art that were covered with the little charms but only found a few of the actual pieces ourselves.

I saw this cupboard at the 3rd stall we visited, first thing in the morning. There were five cupboards all together and I must say, I was serioulsy tempted to take all of them. However, I restrained myself and told the vendor I definitely wanted one and told him exactly which one I wanted him to save for me. There were 3 smaller, thinner ones, in an off-white colour (all of them incredibly dirty and rather damp, as they'd been out in the rain overnight) and one larger one with double doors in a dark brown wood. They are all just over five feet high and about eight inches deep (the inside depth is about six inches). However, I restrained myself and told the vendor I definitely wanted one and told him exactly which one I wanted him to save for me.

As you can see, the front of the cupboard is covered with little aluminum tags, samples of the pieces that would have been stored inside in the factory in which these cupboards came from. They are different sizes but all of the ones on this cupboard are round in shape - several of them are about the size of a twonie (what we Canadians call our $2 coins), and some are about the size of a quarter (a 25 cent piece).

They would have been used for various service clubs, such as the Knights of Columbus, or school awards, that sort of thing. Anything that required some sort of commemorative medallion. All of them also have a little tag with a four digit number, probably used for ordering purposes. On the inside, there are several small, slanted shelves with the little number tags attached to show where the various tags belonged.

When I came back to pick up the piece several hours later, the vendor told me he had been getting a little nervous that I wouldn't come back, as several people had been interested in the cupboards and especially the one I had chosen. One man had even removed one of the tags to see if it was double-sided, before he was told that the cupboard was already sold. Luckily, the vendor saved the removed tag for me! Here's what it looks like, close up:

I haven't quite decided where I'm going to put this cupboard or how I will store some of my bead stash within it but I know it's going to be great and I'm really excited to own it. The only question is, is one going to be enough??

1 comment:

J9F said...

One is NEVER enough!!! you should know that ...