what i'm collecting: salt-n-pepper shakers

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As some one who is extremely fond of food and cooking, it’d be easy to develop an obsession with those two essential seasonings — salt and pepper. For me though, it’s not the spice that does it but rather the shakers that feed my fancy. I’m consistently drawn to them (in all of their millions of permutations) as I scour street markets, surf design sites on the web, and window shop at some of my favorite (but pricey) kitchen stores in NYC. I picked up this 1960’s Pyrex pair this weekend at a thrift store down the street. I love how amazingly modern the design is, especially the way the salt and pepper pour out around the sides of the stopper rather than through standard holes in the top. Here are two more I have my eye on:

These Shake-A-Leg Salt and Pepper Shakers from Perch in Brooklyn may be my next purchase. The irony of seasoning my eggs with this set is just too good to pass up.

Though $90 for this set seems like a lot, what could be more elegant than these Vic Firth Salt and Pepper Mills from Stonewall Kitchen. The simple, hardwood design and French flare would surely add instant glamour to my table (even if my meal is coming out of white cardboard takeout boxes!).

Does anyone else out there love salt-n-pepper shakers? I’d love to know what you’ve found! — Erica P.

From our partners

fab gift idea: vintage book journals

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ExLibrisAnonymous was started a couple of years ago by a young couple in Portland, OR with a passion for collecting books. One day they realized that they could turn their vast collection into wonderful one-of-kind sprial-binder journals. Preserving the front and back covers, as well as some of the pages inside, each one is made from a vintage gem. I picked up Glenda’s Long Swim for a scubing diving friend, and The Inca: Indians of the Andes for another who loves native cultures. Not only are they amazingly personal, they also are an inventive way of recycling and preserving a dying art form. All the journals on the site are $12 with no shipping fee. If there’s something specific you’re looking for, or just a theme, let Jasmine and Jason know and they will do their best to accomodate. Alternately, if you have been hanging on to that favorite library book you never returned from seventh grade, send it into them and they will bind it for only $9. Read more about the book journals here. — Angela M.

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truly affordable art: lumas gallery

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Last weekend’s Affordable Art Fair didn’t quite live up to its name: Though the range may have been from $100 to $5,000, it seemed that $4,000 was the average price of work on display. The inspiring exception was Lumas, a Berlin-based gallery that really does make owning art possible. They specialize in limited-edition, hand-signed art photography that includes new artists as well as established ones like Nan Goldin and Martin Parr. Editions usually range from 75 to 100 prints, and the sizes can be quite large. What’s small is the price, starting at around $150 but not getting higher than $700. Some work from their pool is above, left to right: Julia Christie, Julia Kissina and Robert Davies. Visit lumas.com to browse and order.

From our partners

weekend fun! renegade crafts + affordable art

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Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy. There’s lots of Shelterrific stuff happening around town this weekend, and Allison R and I will be there with digital cameras in hand. The Renegade Craft Fair is happening in Williamsburg this Saturday and Sunday, and some of our favorite crafty ladies like Jezebel and Vickie Howell will be there representin’. And in Manhattan, The Affordable Art Fair is on West 18th. I try to go every year, if only to admire and drool, though with pieces starting as low as $100, I just might buy myself a one-of-kind treasure. (Images above from selected galleries at AAF). Stay tuned. — Angela M.

From our partners

this little piggy… holds your spare change

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Last week we asked What do you do with your spare change? and were amazed by your resourcefulness. Beer cans, bowls, mugs, jugs — even a hallow garden gnome — just about anything can be a receptacle for coins. We thought we take a moment to surf around for something more traditional — good old fashioned piggy banks — and found there were lot of options in stores now. Some of them are way too cute — and pricey — to ever smash with a hammer, like the Bank in the Form of a Pig, $95, by artist Harry Allen, above. Supposedly made from a cast of a real pig that died of natural causes, $10 of its price will be donated to Human Society. Click through to the next page for four more cute piggy banks. (more…)

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