Monday, September 19, 2011

36 2011 Junk Bonanza!

If you followed me on Twitter and Facebook, you may have seen that on Friday, the Mr. and I took a road trip to Shakopee, MN, so that I could visit the annual Junk Bonanza!

So what is Junk Bonanza?  Well, the website would describe it as follows:

"The Bonanza hosts more than 130 juried "junk" vendors of vintage finds, beautiful antiques, one-of-a-kind and artisan-repurposed pieces. The 2010 gathering included more than 10,000 visitors who found their special treasure at the three-day, indoor, event."

I have an easier description:


That's right.  Junk galore.  But it was beautiful junk.  I wanted to bring so much junk home, I just didn't know if it would all fit in the trunk.  Oh yeah, I went there.  The hubs and I were immature ones repeating the ol' "Junk in the Trunk" joke all day.  I am sure we weren't the only ones...

And because I am trying to be better about filling my home with a mixture of old and new... this was the perfect place to be!

So what did I want?  What ideas did I spy?  Why, I would love to share!

Not only did I love the old tool crate that the door hardware was snuggled in, look at that awesome door hardware!  They would look awesome lined up in a giant shadow box frame as art, or on actual doors!

All of the furniture was just GORGEOUS!  And I couldn't help but spot this pretty caddy/tray which would be fantastic on the top of a coffee table for corralling remotes in a living room!

Old blocks?  Could be pretty adorable in a nursery!

LOVE LOVE LOVE the blue glass jars.  I picture them on a patio with tea-lights in a giant grouping... Sigh...

Something about those handmade floral magnets left me gazing at their beauty.  I was so drawn to the style and the colors!

I really took note of all of the storage ideas.  Like using fun contact paper chalkboard labels combined with antique crates.  I can't wait to replicate this idea in my pantry or on the bathroom counter!

Looking back at these photos I am kicking myself for this one.  We always chat about our little "Peas" since we have a Preston, Peyton & Parker.  This oh too perfect crate had me at hello, wish I would have snagged this one up.  Totally a "Why didn't I?" moment!

I have been on the hunt for some old storage drawers such as these for awhile now, as I think they would be just wonderful for office supplies or in a kitchen.  But at a minimum of $100 a pop, I just couldn't pull the trigger this round... 

I stalked this shelf and baskets for awhile, but again, a little pricey since I think I could replicate the look for less.  But now that I have the inspiration, I just may do that!

There were antique collectables a plenty.  Seriously, anything and everything you could think of.  I loved all of the skeleton keys.  They had every flavor you could imagine.

One of my favorite items spotted all day!  That tiered storage was absolutely large and fantastic.  Talk about DIY inspiration!

The lamp shade was covered in an old vintage map.  Such a sweet idea, could be perfect in a kid's room!

Because there was so much jewelry for sale, there was also a lot of jewelry on creative display!  I really adored the look of this distressed frame with the burlap backing.  So chic!

Speaking of creative jewelry storage, what's not to love about the use of a garden rake to display necklaces and even the handheld mirror?  Wow, so smart and cute!

More fun random items.  This was pretty much the sight everywhere you turn.  Booth after booth of random stuff.  After awhile, it all started to look the same.  But I went through twice anyway because I was totally in a happy place....

So what did I come home with?

  • One absolutely amazing distressed teal stool that provides me with a giant perma-grin each time I catch it out of the corner of my eye.  I want to put it in every room in my house... where will it land?
  • One wooden letter "P" stamp.  Just to keep as a cute display piece.
  • One of those pretty blue jars.  It could go in my bath or laundry room as decorative storage.  The two rooms will have to fight it out.
  • One galvanized tin bucket which will live next to the front door and hold the kiddo's umbrellas.
Out of everything I oohed and aahhed at, that's all I came home with.  I think I had sensory overload.  Next year I will be so much more ready for some splurges now that I am more prepared, and already know what I am missing now that I am back home.  The best part though, is all of the inspiration I took in!

Do you have a shop you go and browse, just for inspirational purposes?  Did anyone spy me on Friday or visit the Junk Bonanza over the three days it was here?  What thrifty scores did you scoop up this weekend?


  1. I was there on Friday, too, but I didn't see you. Then again, that place was a ZOO, so I'm not sure I would've noticed my own husband there. ;)

    I would've killed for some of those repurposed wood tables that were there. The only thing stopping me was no way to get them home.

    I came home with a crate similar to the one you wanted, but mine had a four leaf clover logo on it. I love it!

  2. I was at the Country Living Fair in Columbus OH. It was just as amazing and inspiring!

  3. I live in Shakopee and was at the Junk Bonanza two years ago. "Sensory Overload" was right! And I was very happy to hear you say that everything started to look the same after awhile; I felt this way too. I wouldn't mind going again next year but I have a problem buying anything. I keep looking at the stuff saying, "That's cute...but I could make it for way less!" or "They want $30 for a beat up old stool?" I have no idea what is a "good" price. It makes it difficult to shop! Glad you had fun!

  4. I love the teal is so cute! I just noticed your new labels in your sidebar...they are so awesome! Did you do them yourself?

  5. On the theme of thrifty - I have been uninspired by my office for a while now (gold and cream overload with pale ash desk and cabinets) - it was all just a bit blah. I tried to liven it up with some dark red accent pieces - fail. It just didn't seem to work.

    I then asked (pleaded!) with hubby to redecorate it for me and we merrily set off on the wallpaper hunt - only to come home with wallpaper for the master bedroom which is now half stripped of its existing teal, pink and purple rainbow combo (don't ask it was the 90s!).

    So I then had to come up with a more creative solution to my office. As ever since discovering I Heart Organising, I turned to you for my inspiration. I loved the idea of shopping from within my own home and that's exactly what I did. All the red accessories were removed and replaced with - white vases from the conservatory, various different coloured wood boxes from the den, some white pots originally bought for the kitchen that I didn't like in there, a westie painting from the hall and 3 gold frames that had just been lying in a cupboard. The boxes and vases are now in the bookcase; I got some cream and gold paisley patterned wallpaper samples to put in the frames and hung them above my desk, the westie pic is opposite my desk and the pots on the desk for storage. I cleared all the clutter off the desk, sorted all the cabling out and the only purchase was a £12 ($18 ish?) desk lamp with a taupe shade.

    Sorry for the super long comment but I just wanted to let you know what an inspiration your website is every day and how appreciative I am. I now have a super cute, super organised and super cheap office makeover! Thanks Jen! M from Scotland

  6. I was there on Saturday! First time going and it was awesome! I also blogged about it:)
    I LOVE the stool you found!

  7. I think the junk bonanza has my name written all over it. I love what you picked up. The stool is great.

  8. Oh I so wish I lived fun!! Love what you picked up too.

  9. What a cute post, I love the goodies you picked up! I am a new follower of your blog! I love it!! Im in the process of redoing or redecorating many things and rooms around my is fun! I hope to blog about them soon!!!

  10. I was there on Saturday with my 2 friends visiting from Chicago. They are junkers... I am SO not. But... I sucked it up and played the good hostess. I ended up finding the BEST things ever! A blue water pitcher that perfectly matches the blue in my guestroom (it's more of a sea blue than a baby blue and is very hard to match) and some very old books filled with never used ration stamps! I was looking for Gold Bond and/or S&H Green stamps (for vintage cards) and not being a person to dig through boxes (ick) I asked. This nice lady says "hmmmm, I have a couple, but what about these?" SCORE!

  11. Ok, I feel sick. I live right near Shakopee and I missed it!!!!! It is going on the calendar for next year for sure. By the way, how much were those blue mason jars going for? I have had incredible luck finding them in my favourite thrift stores lately and want to know if I got them at a good price or not at $2.99 ea. I think I have nearly 20 of them now (of course, I should actually think of a use for them! But they are so pretty!).

  12. Love flea markets and this sounds awesome. BTW, I love what you are wearing. Those jeans are awesome! Sorry, for the fashion detour in my comment, but wherever did you find them? So hard to spot these in the right size.

    Kudos on snagging the teal stool.

  13. ~sigh~ I would love to find a junk bonanza! I love that teal stool.
    An idea to save $$ on those blue canning jars, especially if you want them for candle holders and don't need the vintage lids. You can tint new clear jars using modge podge- there's instructions at or just google it and you'll find many places with the how-to.

  14. I'm so glad you went! I live about 10 minutes from Shakopee, so I went last year, but I thought the prices were pretty steep, especially since I was still an undergrad in college at the time. I didn't go this year because my hubby and I are trying to save lots of money and I know we don't absolutely need anything there (although I loved so much the time before). I loved going just to check everything out, but I'd much rather go to flea markets and estate sales to find the treasures at bottom dollar than buy them from someone else who did all the hard work. I have about 30 blue mason jars from estate sales that I probably paid $20 for but could sell for well over $100 or more (although I love them too much to part for them - they were part of our wedding in August). I enjoy the thrill of the hunt as long as it saves me some money!

  15. Thanks for all the inspiration. Great pictures you took. Love that teal stool you brought home. I wish we {Long Island,NY} had stuff like this. Of course we have some Antique Stores, but they are expensive. I think I need a road trip to go to one of these places instead one year. I would love to know how much you paid for that Mason Jar. I'm in love with those right now. :) Great finds Jen!!!

  16. Sounds like fun! We have the Farm Chicks show up here in Eastern Washington in the spring. I finally got to go this year and it was amazing! Your pictures reminded me of it quite a bit. Its almost overwhelming to see so many amazing things all in one space! And congrats on the show!

  17. nice finds! I grew up close to there and people go crazy for this!

  18. how fun! i was there last year and i about died over all the awesome junk! glad you got to go see what all the hype is about :)

  19. Looks like a fun trip! The teal stool is my fave.!

  20. I adore the map lampshade and your teal stool, and I know that you can re-create that Peas crate! Thanks for sharing!

  21. Our junk market was this weekend, too!! I saw so much stuff I loved, but didn't walk away with anything. We also had our trade days and I bought a frame (just like yours!) a printer's tray, some keys and a corn dog.

  22. Those kind of places are the best! So much fun to look and look and find some treasures! You got some great stuff!

  23. Are you going to do anything special with the galvanized tin bucket? I hope so because I have one just like it.

  24. You are such an example. There is such a balance between going nuts in that kind of situation and talking yourself out of every purchase. Seems like you got a lot of inspiration and a few tangible pieces. Way to go!

  25. wow - that looks awesome! maybe i need to make a trip for that next year - thanks for sharing!

  26. We have a similar event four time a year called Collectarama. So much fun! I have found a vintage camera, suitcase, jewerly & teatowels. It is on again at the of November, can't wait. Will be doing some Christmas shopping.

  27. I heart that map lamp shade!!! Super fun idea!

  28. Hi friends!

    Found the jar with the lid for $5. It was the cheapest I found it there that day, since most were $7 and up. However, I am going to start stalking thrift stores for more! :)


  29. H-E-A-V-E-N!!!!!!!!!! I think you should suggest to Junk Bonanza to bring themselves and their wares to Western Australia!!!!! We just don't have enough of that type of "junk" over here. x

  30. OMG, those prices are so high! I hate going to places like that!

  31. The $2 each for the kids blocks is killing me the most, are they for real! How about 2 for a freaking dollar!


  32. I found the most adorable little green giant doll

  33. No way! I live in Shakopee! I had no idea this was going on. Looks fun.

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