Last week wasn’t particularly productive but I have some things to show you nonetheless. That apartment building again supplied most of my finds.

It’s pretty clear now that whoever lives, or lived here worked in the fashion industry. A while back I found this folder full of designs, and now I find …

… a whole bunch of buttons, many of which are sets. Most look to have been made in the 70s and 80s, but some of them could be a bit older. I put them all in one medium-sized box and listed them as an eBay auction – I usually do “Buy it Now,” but I don’t really know much about the market and didn’t feel like listing them individually.

There’s some nice stuff in there, like these mother of pearl (?) buttons that were made in Japan …

… and some vintage needles and threads. The auctions ends today at 10:10PM EST, so if you’re interested put in a bid! Unfortunately, because of the weight of the package it would be kind of expensive to ship to the States. A local buyer who can come and pick them up would definitely get the best deal. Here's the link, and there’s more pictures on the listing if you want a better look.

Some of my favourite finds from this spot were tucked away in this 1960s Chatelaine magazine. I didn’t even know they were there until a few days ago.

They were four hand-drawn fashion designs. The art is classic and very much “of its time.” I think they’d look great framed, even the one with a piece cut out as that part would have been negative space anyways. Do you like them too? Zoom in for a better look!

There’s a little description glued to the back of each of the coloured drawings. They look to be written in Italian, but I’m not sure.

I also thought this book was cool. It contains a collection of Svijet (which according to Google means “world” in Bosnian) magazines dating from the mid 1950s. From what I can tell this magazine was about the fashion scene, but I have a hard time figuring it out exactly.

Regardless, the images inside are pretty cool. The graphic design is very 1950s, and distinctly Eastern European.

Buttons nearly always come with other small items that aren’t buttons. This time it was vintage Christmas lights. These actually have decent value on eBay, and sell for 1-3$ each depending on the condition. Some other, more unusual ones sell for a lot more. I’ll hold onto these until next fall, by that time the Christmas light market should pick up again. Otherwise, I found a vintage receipt, some scissors, an old toothbrush, and a stamp last used on August 10 1984.

I also found a cool vintage Shell Oil file holder (I listed it on eBay for 100$, my go-to totally made up price in hopes that a petroliana collector might want it, but so far no bites) …

… some miscellaneous paper stuff, including a 1960s guide to Montreal and a small folder with photos inside (most of the photos I’ve seen here have been ripped up, so it’s nice to find some that aren’t);

… and a small collection of 1970s Playboys. These always make good yard sale material.

This spot produced a lot more stuff this week, I look forward to showing it to you!

The week was pretty dismal otherwise. I will share the story though of a random trash can that in recent times has offered me a small collection of books nearly every week.

Sometimes the books are cool, sometimes not so much (ie: textbooks from the 70s and 80s). This was my selection from last week’s offerings. My favourite of the bunch is the 1920s Ritter Practice Building Suggestions book, which details how new dentists should design their facilities. It’s in very nice condition for its age. The others I’ll try to sell at a yard sale, though I expect some will end up in a free box or donation bin.

A good number of the books feature old Montreal City Library bookplates. I imagine these were discards though they’re not marked as such. This one was last taken out in 1985.

Here’s the section for Montreal from that old 50s lodging book if anyone’s interested.

Some of the books I find there have been ruined by moisture. However, I salvaged these encyclopedias despite their non-optimal condition. The covers are in pretty rough shape, but the pages are in good condition.

A lot of people like making art, or doing collage with these. The print and the drawings can be pretty fun to work with.

One was an atlas. Most of the maps unfortunately are printed over two pages which makes them less desirable for framing. However, if someone was careful they might be able to cut them out and reattach them mostly seamlessly. The encyclopedias are from 1909 if I remember right, and as you’d expect the maps are very outdated. For instance, in this map Newfoundland is still its own dominion, and what’s now the north of Quebec is a territory called Ungava. Can you spot any more differences?

This week has been better, even with the recent snowstorm that mostly cancelled my Wednesday and Thursday runs. I’ll share it all with you soon!

Tomorrow I’m finally getting that root canal that I’ve been putting off. It’s my first one, and I hear they’re not that bad but I would appreciate any words of encouragement!

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to

Email: I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

21 thoughts on “Svijet”

  1. Interesting fashion finds. According to this article ( “Montreal was once considered the centre of the rag trade in Canada, and Chabanel street was its heart. … countless Italian-Montrealers were employed in the industry.”

    I hereby send you words of encouragement … and more words of encouragement … and yet more words of encouragement. It’ll all be over tomorrow. 🙂

    1. The Svijet magazines are Croatian, they were very popular when my mother was young, she would buy one each week. Cheers suzana

  2. The root canal is not as bad as it used to be, honest! The dentists and equipment have improved. Good luck! I really enjoy reading of your finds. Thanks.

  3. i had a root canal a few months wasnt as bad as I thought it would be. good luck.

  4. Practically the only thing that hurts about getting a root canal is your wallet! I’ve never had a root canal that hurt, so hopefully you won’t. I think the worst thing about going to the dentist {besides the wallet I previously mentioned} is that it takes time out of your busy day. It is a necessary evil, as is an appointment for a prostate exam. Whenever I go to the dentist, I make sure that I stay relaxed. I wear comfortable clothing, including a loose elastic waistband. I bend my knees out to the side and cross my ankles. That way, I don’t catch myself stiffening up. I find a good place for my hands, either in my pockets or on the arms of the chair. I monitor myself frequently to make sure I’m not stiffening up. And, I breathe. My dentist’s office has a TV in every cubicle. I prefer not to be entertained in that manner. Just stay loose and breathe. Hang in there, and let us know how it goes.

  5. Good luck with the root canal 🙂 I’ve had one and it wasn’t that bad, I’d suggest taking an Advil in advance though because once the freezing wears off you might be a bit sore.

  6. I loved seeing the entry on Mont Tremblant right below the one for Montreal in the old lodging book. I have fond childhood memories of my family’s visit from Chicago to Expo ’67 and from there to an out of season ski resort at Mont Tremblant. Look at the prices for lodging!!

    Good luck with the root canal. The best part about that is when it’s over.

  7. martin google this on ebay canada. A set of 10 is going for $26.99 and 3 people are watching. I would hold some back you can’t tell from the photo how many are in the bundle. People who ride would want these for their equestrian outfits

    Horse Stirrups Gold Tone Blazer Button Set Of 10 Buttons

    1. Yup some like that are in the auction. I can’t hold any back unfortunately, as it’s too late to cancel or change the details (once there are bids you can’t modify). I’m happy though to treat this as a learning curve and accept that I could have made more money selling them individually. Someone will get a pretty good deal probably, and maybe they can even make money on it if they’re good with buttons.

        1. On the right side of your ebay page that lists sold items there is a drop down under feedback that says other actions and there is a cancel order choice. Also industrial sewing machine needles can be valuable, like old phonograph needles, or any part to a defund technology that people still use. In the US people, want parts to pyrex coffee pots, especially pieces that break like the glass stems or cory coffee rods

          1. Cancelled orders though count as a defect against your seller account. I had to cancel an order last month (I put the books in the yard sale pile after a couple years, deleted the listing but accidentally renewed and then of course they finally sell) so I don’t want any more of those.

            On eBay Canada you can delete an auction with bidders is there’s 12 hours left, after that if you delete the listing you have to sell to the highest bidder.

            I’m not too worried in this case though. I’m sure I could make some more money off the buttons, but I’m also happy one of my readers got a pretty good deal and it was fun for all.

            Also, without giving away too much… I have more buttons I can list! Also some sewing needles I think will get a pretty nice price.

  8. One’s man’s junk is another’s man’s treasure, you have definitely made this saying true here. It’s interesting what kinds of things you can kind in the garbage. Where do you live? I only ask because I could never find anything like that where I live out in the country in a small town. I used to go dumpster diving but we had to so that in the city and the only good dumpster was the one behind the thrift store in the city. We would find good things like new shoes and luggage and clothes and things like that. If you would follow me or check out my blog I would greatly appreciate it. Either way thank you for your inspirational writings. -bel

    1. I live in Montreal, so a pretty big city. I think small town picking is probably a little harder because more people have trucks (or can borrow one) and can easily bring all their stuff to the thrift store or church. They’re probably a little less reliant on garbage collection too, as sometimes you can just bring it all to the dump (as a side note, you can find good stuff at the dump sometimes). But I bet there’s still some stuff to be found, especially in trash bags.

  9. Root canal “not that bad”? Depends on how much medication you can get from the dentist!!

  10. Congratulations on reaching the milestone of one million hits to your blog just now on March 21,the first day of spring.This is very auspicious.Please celebrate by drinking champagne,porto or red wine.Cheers and congratulations.

  11. Yeah that’s Italian. It’s just a description of what’s on the front, but Google translate will do better than me.

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