Fun Day at the Expo

Today I had a girl’s day adventure with the awesome Sarah Smith. We had been talking about it for weeks at work, but the time was finally here, time for the quote, ‘America’s Largest Antique and Collectible Show’ at the Portland Expo Center.

The day started out a bit rainy, but this is Portland so it wasn’t out of the norm. We hurried to the doors of the expo trying hard not to step into any huge puddles or slip. Which is a great feat for me since I can be on the rather clumsy side. I definitely am not the key adjective in my name, even though I truly wish I was graceful. But any who. After shaking off a bit of the excess rain from our jackets and paying to get in, we walked through the doors of the main hall.

Now let me say this, it is definitely a bit overwhelming the moment you walk in. There were aisles upon aisles, each way you turned. It looked like a huge giant labyrinth of antique goodness busting at the seams. I didn’t know which way I wanted to go first. Left, right, down the center. My ADD brain was going about a mile a minute.

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We decided to start with the left side first and make our way to the right. There was just far too much to take in. I couldn’t believe how many vendors there were. I know that the flyer said that there would be over 1000 booths, but I honestly didn’t believe there would be that many. Each table we came across had at least a dozen or so vintage books mixed in with crates upon crates of vintage advertisement ads from the 30’s-60’s.

I knew I wanted to pick up at least a few vintage movie posters for sure, being a big movie nerd and all. At the third vendor we got to I picked up a vintage Gulliver’s Travels Print and a vintage Sinbad the Sailor Print. Then at the next vendor I picked up a vintage Rita Hayworth print from her film, The Many Lives of Carmen. I wasn’t quite sure where in the house I would put them, I just knew that they would get framed and go somewhere.

I had to snap a shot of the extremely vintage Canadian war poster. Being a WWI and WWII buff, it was a must.

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In the next aisle we came across one vendor who had an incredible collection of vintage brownie cameras that were in perfect working order. I wished I could have bought all of them so I could create this wall of cameras in my home, but that was wishful thinking. Maybe some day, but not today. I did however purchase one, which I was very happy with. I have a thing for vintage cameras of any sort.

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The next vendor had this collection of retro soda pop bottles. Many of them were brands were ones I knew and grew up with. But there were some that I had never even heard of before, these ones were specific to the Pacific Northwest.

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Along with the vintage ad prints and movie prints, many vendors had stacks of old magazines, like this one who promptly displayed their collection of MAD. Every time I see anything relating to Alfred E. Neuman I think of that Simpson’s episode where Bart wears a t-shirt he made from an iron-on in a MAD magazine, down with homework. Lol.

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Many of the vendors carried old signage from gas stations, garages, and restaurants. Most of these dating back to the 50’s. There were a few signs dating back to the 30’s as well.

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There was just so much to see and only so many hours to see it. After getting through nearly half of the main hall, we saw a door leading into another hall just as big as the first. This hall was just as filled with vendors and furnishings as the first. I couldn’t believe how much stuff there was to see.

I made a b-line to one of the tables immediately that had an extensive display of depression area glass. And as I did I came across a vendor who had these incredible old Corona typewriters. They were simply gorgeous and would make an amazing display piece on one of our shelves. I knew I wanted to purchase one right there and then, but I didn’t want to have to lug it around the whole time. So instead I decided to wait and just come back to the table when I was ready to leave the event. Making it so much easier on me.

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There truly was something for everyone at the show. Classic books and comics for just about any genre of reader. I am partial to the classics myself, but they had it all.

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I wished I would have dragged the Hubs along with us. He would have gotten a kick out of seeing a lot of the vintage sci-fi toys and games that I came across. There were even a few from NASA. And of course they had plenty of Star Wars and Star Trek items for all us nerds out there. I walked away with some very cool Star Trek blueprints.

One of my favorites of the entire show was seeing the vintage cameras. I truly do have a complete love for cameras, and the vintage just appeal to my heart. Aren’t these gorgeous?

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And like the cameras, whenever I am doing any sort of vintage shopping I am always on the hunt for pyrex. This show had plenty of them for my pyrex loving heart. There were so many patterns and colors. I really liked this set of rust and orange colored pyrex with the wheat grain pattern on them. They matched my kitchen colors beautifully. I have a thing for orange. And since most of my kitchen was in orange hues and gold hues I knew these had to come home with me.

Another interesting item that one vendor had was an old scuba military helmet. Full functional.

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Look at these beautiful English porcelain tea cups from the turn of the century. Stunning right. I had to resist the urge to purchase a ton of them to host my own Downton Abbey tea party.

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There were also a lot of items that were specific to the Pacific Northwest. Like all these gorgeous wooden carvings and carved masks from the Chinook, Nez Perce and Klickitat tribes.

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It was a fantastic show and I definitely had such a great time exploring all the vintage treasures, as well as chat it up with a lot of the vendors selling them. I can’t wait to drag the Hubs along for the next one.

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