Monday, April 14, 2014

Junk, Glorious Junk: PART 1!

We're still catching our breath from the great show that was the Spring 2014 Junk Bonanza!
Here are a few pictures we wanted to share of all of the great junk we saw!
There will be many installments!
Can't wait to see what there is at the next Bonanza, Sept. 25-27!
Without further adieu...more junk!

Coming soon...more installments!


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Whirling Dervish: A Survivor's Story

 Sue Burgener of Whirling Dervish Folk Art is thankful for the opportunity to continue selling junk.
The longtime antiques dealer in Merrill, WI, survived Stage 4 Hodgkin's Lymphoma three years ago. She said it has inspired her to celebrate ordinary moments in her life, and the ability to keep attending sales. That includes the Bonanza, where she is is a first-time vendor in spot #529.
"Thanks to Ki; she's a visionary. She sees beauty in simple things, and look at this she has created," Sue said with a sweep of her arm. "People are out at 9 in the morning with their friends, having a Bloody Mary. They are so happy! It's a gathering. They are stepping out of their boxes a bit and they are so happy."
Sue had always worked with antiques, and her store, Traditions, was a place she worked to refurbish furniture. During the 6-month course of chemotherapy, she said, she was tired, "but I didn't quit. With one month of chemo left, I said to myself, 'Pull on your big girl pants and go to a show.' "
 At the show in Eagle River, WI, Sue said, she overheard customers saying the booth looked like her style, but she realized they didn't realize from behind that she actually was the shopkeeper.
That's because her hair, usually to her waist, was gone, and she was not wearing a wig.
"You know that undefinable space between what was said and when you realize it and you are not comfortable? I just opened my mouth and said, 'It IS me!' "
"In the first few months it was difficult for me," Sue continued. "I couldn't do the furniture restoration and lifting. That's when I started concentrating on the folk art."
And the name to accompany her new focus?
 "It's from JoAnn, my very good friend. She would say to me, "What are you up to, you whirling dervish?!" And that's how my name was born."

Sue's hallmarks include a fast smile and joyous laugh.
"I have words of advice for everybody," she said, "whether they are going through treatment for cancer or not: Live life every day, don't take anything about your life for granted, and keep on junkin'!"


We're Shooting Video at the Bonanza!

The Junk Bonanza is all about multi-media!
In addition to many blog posts, tweets and Instagram photos we put up before, during and after the event, this year, we're adding video!
Meet Katie Harris, our video shooter for the Bonanza!
She will be shooting and uploading videos to the Junk Bonanza's Instagram site (follow @junkbonanza and search for the #junkbonanza hashtag!) and YouTube channel (search for Junk Bonanza)!
Here are a few of the You Tube videos up so far:

Early Bird line

detail shots

vendor setup

She began shooting full time in 2011, and is a bona fide junk lover! All the better for her, as she believes a beautiful home is for anyone, and can be achieved on a small budget, aided by upcycled discards! The Bonanza is one of her favorite hunting grounds!
Katie blogs at, and her work has appeared in Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, Bon Appetit, on Apartment Therapy's website and on 3M's Pinterest page. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota, and lives in the Uptown area of Minneapolis.
Give her a great smile when you see her!


It's in the the Ki Nassauer Shop!

Ki's talented sister, Karla Cunningham of Remixed Stitches, is bringing some of her seamstress wizardry to the Junk Bonanza!
Also an amazing repurposer, Karla fashioned these from vintage U.S. Army bags of olive drab canvas. (The vintage bags are great, Karla says, because the new ones on longer are made of the same canvas-type fabric.) She machine washed and air dried the bags before starting.
The fabric on the bags shown here is from a vintage '50s quilt topper that never got its backing! The hexagon squares are hand-sewn together. (Like the pattern? She also turned parts of the quilt topper into cute half-aprons!)
Each of the one-of-a-kind bags have roomy insides with a zippered pocket for valuables. Outside, they have vintage patches and pockets for small items such as cell phones. There's also a vintage, adjustable shoulder strap and a handle for carrying, and buckled straps front and back with a magnetic front closure.
At 15 inches by 8 inches by 8 inches, these would make a great computer, diaper, gym or overnight bag!
If you don't get yours at the Ki Nassauer Shop at the Bonanza, Karla is busily sewing, and hopes to have more for sale on her Etsy shop, Remixed Stitches, by May!


Friday, April 11, 2014

Junk, Glorious Junk! PART 3

Here are a few more images of the great stuff we saw at Junk Bonanza!!!

We'll keep the images coming!

Don't worry, we're not done! More great photos to come!


Another Happy Bonanza Customer!

One of the many great attributes of which the Bonanza can boast is uber-talented vendors, and extremely satisfied customers!
We wanted to share the story of these pieces -- a music-themed desk and lamp -- for a customer of Lee and Tracie Anderson's. They own Histories, a business where they create vintage industrial repurposed furniture, lighting and home accessories. 
Debi Beall of Bloomington saw one of Lee's custom pieces during the Fall 2013 Bonanza, and simply fell in love. She commissioned these pieces, and the pair collaborated via email throughout the winter to arrive at these amazing pieces. using parts "purchased from other vendors at the Bonanza," Lee noted.
"My grandfather was a music professor in Washington D.C.," Debi said, "and my father was a concert  pianist. So music is important to me."
Among the amazing touches in these pieces:
*parts from a cymbal and flute keys on the lamp
* a clock face set to 2:06, to commemorate the morning birth of Beall's daughter, Jillayne.
* piano pedals at the bottom of the desk.
These pieces, destined for Beall's writing room, pleased her greatly. "They are just amazing," she said.
We concur!


Tatiana and Aaron: A Bonanza Love Story!

We love a good love story! Especially when the Junk Bonanza is part of the plot!
We received a letter from Tatiana, explaining why the Bonanza is very near and dear to her -- and her partner Aaron's -- heart! Read on:

Dear Ki,
This April marks a very special anniversary for me -- Spring Junk Bonanza 2012! More correctly, it was my and my partner, Aaron's, first date! Yes, we went "junking" on our first date. Although admittedly neither of us call it a date: I paid for our tickets and he paid for lunch. So looking back on it, yep. Date.
It started innocently enough when our friend Jenni (A Vintage Parcel), a mutual friend, told Aaron to bring me to the Bonanza. Separately, she told me to bring him. We laughed when we found out what she'd done.
Aaron was so meticulous about going through the Bonanza, yet so laid-back and casual. He took an interest in what I liked and what I wanted to see. We have a funny picture he took of me wearing a pair of silly glasses. We laughed from booth to booth, finding interesting things to talk about and where our mutual interests were. He bought a boat motor, of all things. This teeny thing, no taller than a yardstick, but it was a cool sea foam color. And of course, a sign that said "Fat Tire Road" because all of our friends have Fat Tire Bikes. We had an amazing time. And I thought to myself, if I can take a man antiques shopping and he actually is having a good time, I am keeping him.

A month or so later, our junking started again after Aaron had mentioned that he wanted a grandfather clock. They had one at Empty the Nest. I dragged Aaron down and we went home with a whole carful. A grandfather clock, several chairs, a wonky butcher block, a vintage sewing table and other odds and ends. I should mention that at the time, Aaron's house was a total bachelor pad. No furniture. Well, a couch (covered in man junk) and a bed. I love the man, but seriously, he had only hand-me-downs, car parts...and a boat motor. LOL.

That weekend he went on a business trip and was away for two weeks. He came home to a totally redecorated house, all of which I had bought through junking or thrifting. We had a new Stickley coffee table, some neat wooden boxes. I had fixed the butcher block and was using it as a kitchen island. I bought a magnetic board and threw our keys on it, an old toy bucket holds our climbing harnesses. I also but out some beautiful slide boxes and a neat old card catalog box. Of course, "Fat Tire Road" got hung with a bunch of other cool, thrifted signs.

Tatiana went on to share other junking stories, and about how their home is now furnished with treasures from a '60s table for $40 to a 125-year-old rocker to an industrial hotel safe.
Every time we sit down on the couch we remark to one another how much we love the space we've built together. And then we laugh even more when we think how little we've actually spent. Every piece is a treasure that we love or we've saved, refinished or love the way it looks. It's a testament to our relationship -- we've built this entire house on junking and merging our lives and passions together.
She concluded:
When we told our story to one of the shopkeepers at Shop 501, she laughed and said exactly what I will tell Aaron for the rest of our time together: Don't give me diamonds, give me rust.
So here's to our one-year anniversary and a lifetime more of junking! Can't wait to see the next Junk Bonanza!

Happy Anniversary to Tatiana and Aaron!
We're told this pair will be roaming Canterbury Park today! Be sure to send them your best wishes!