A while ago, my good friend gave me this beautiful vintage platter she had bought at a flea market some years earlier. I love, love, love it. When I accidentally cracked it, I was heartbroken. I instantly knew I could never use it to serve food again.
I spent some time trying to figure out what to do to keep or store it. It holds so many fond memories for me. Then I started to think about how we, as many of us, have gotten into this bad habit of throwing away things we consider “damaged goods.” I could never toss this in the garbage. In fact, I’ve come to look at the crack as a scar that helps tell the story of this piece. This platter has lived!
Looking back at some other items I adore, like my antique powder compacts and cigarette cases, I remembered how much I loved that they were all very scratched up. The wounds these pieces had acquired over time confirmed that they had history. While these marks, like all scars, tell both good and bad stories, they have become part of a whole. Or better yet, part of a soul.
Now this doesn’t mean that you should buy broken items at flea markets or antique shops. It really depends on what you’re collecting. Beat up sterling silver may feel like a historical piece, but broken glass is broken glass. A sampler with a hole in it, as we learned in a previous Piece by Piece article, is no good. However, it also depends on the collector. Personally, I would buy a battered tea pot to add to my collection. I will love it and maybe even fix, if I think it’s necessary.
Needless to say, my friend’s platter is still part of my home. I love looking at it with all the trinkets and other non-food items that have taken up residence inside it.
P.S. Speaking on collecting delicate items like glass, we recently found three great pieces of Depression Glassware worth adding to your collection—or starting a new one! Read more in this week’s Good Buy on Your Budget.