Tag Archives: collector’s item

What do you collect?


Do you have a hobby or tradition of collecting something interesting? I used to love collecting items when I was a kid… from stickers to old perfume bottles (which gave off such a collective heady pong that I eventually scrapped that!)… I’m not a fan of too much clutter, but I do like meaningful collections 🙂

About two years ago, Ninja and I suddenly decided to start a tradition of collecting fridge magnets from our day trips and other travels. We don’t have a massive collection, but it’s colourful and unique and grows a little bigger each year.

Our magnets so far

Our magnets so far

The first magnet with the dangling metal skulls was what started it all: a souvenir from our trip to Sterkfontein Caves at the so-called ‘Cradle of Mankind’ just outside Joburg. The next was from a romantic long weekend we took to a log cabin in Dullstroom (briefly mentioned here).

The next five magnets are all from highlights of our last long holiday along South Africa’s West Coast: the Butterflies for Africa butterfly sanctuary, the Durban waterfront, uShaka Marine World and the birds and crocodiles we saw at CrocWorld.

In the next row you can see magnets commemorating our trip to the Montecasino Bird Gardens and the South African Lipizzaners. The tiny bird magnet is from the Sasol Bird Fair, and the ratty is from the World of Dogs and Cats (WODAC) pet expo this year.

The rat club stand at WODAC sold the cutest ratty magnets, so of course we got the whole set :mrgreen:

Rat magnets

Rat magnets

In case you can’t read the text on them, the sayings are:

  • A balanced person has a rat on each shoulder
  • GGMRS – Gotta Get More Rats Syndrome
  • Rat addiction is not fattening
  • My rats live here, you don’t
  • The rat race is over. The rats won!

So, what do you collect? 🙂

My top 10 unusual possessions


For a while now I’ve wanted to write this fun post about 10 of my favourite and most interesting, unusual and special possessions. So here they are, in no particular order. Hope you enjoy! 🙂

Item #1: 3D-printed coaster and fridge magnet

Item #1 is a plastic coaster and fridge magnet. These are unusual because one of my friends designed and printed these himself using his own 3D printer. Quite impressive!

Item #2: Limited edition painted plate

Item #2 is a special W. S. George fine china plate that I received as a gift many years ago from my aunt in Austria. It comes with a certificate of authenticity and depicts a painting of kittens by Henriette Ronner. It’s a beautiful collector’s item and has special meaning for me because of my relationship with my aunt.

Item #3: Swarovski crystal duck

Item #3 is a tiny Swarovski crystal duckie. It’s precious and unusual for me because this is the first and only Valentine’s Day gift I’ve ever received! Ninja warned me from the start that he didn’t believe in Valentine’s Day, so he’d only be getting me something special for our very first one together 🙂

Item #4: A homemade shell necklace

Item #4, a homemade shell necklace, is unusual mainly because I didn’t need to put a single hole in those shells when I made this. They all already had tiny holes in them when I collected them on the beach! This item is also special because I used shells collected during our honeymoon.

Item #5: Cloud Strife earrings

Item #5 is my pair of Cloud Strife Cloudy Wolf/Fenrir errings. Need I say more 🙂

Item #6: Earrings from my man

Item #6 is more jewellery: a set of earrings and a necklace pendant. The thing that makes them unusual is that Ninja made these for me himself! He was watching me work with some of my beading kits when he decided to make me this set.

Item #7: Toy soldier

Item #7 isn’t technically mine: Ninja brought it with into the marriage and now I’ve adopted it too. This toy soldier has brought us loads of laughs as we’ve used it to suprise each other. It’s a fully articulating model, so we can make it cling to shelves, hold love notes, hide in cupboards and support items. In fact, we’ve used him in such a variety of poses and situations that I think he deserves a blog post of his own. Watch this space 😉

Item #8: Hat with badges

Perhaps there’s not too much that’s unusual about Item #8 – after all, it’s just a hat with badges. But in my circle of friends it’s very unusual, and one of these badges even started my romance with Ninja! The very first time I met Ninja I was wearing this hat. He shook my hand in greeting and proceeded to read my interesting badges. Once he saw this one…

… he promptly dashed off in search of a sticker. When he came back, he covered the ‘Don’t’ on the badge, so that it read ‘Assume I Cook’. Hah! That was one way to strike up a conversation 😛

Item #9: A small trophy

There’d be nothing unusual about Item #9 if it wasn’t for what it represented. I received this small trophy at an awards ceremony for my Hindi language class. I was the only non-Indian participant and I passed the exam with a distinction. OK, it was only at first-grader level… but it’s still an unusual achievement 🙂

Item #10: Wooden carving

I’ve saved the best for last. Item #10 is a beautiful and intricate wooden carving of old ships at sea. I absolutely love old-world things like this. I’m astounded by the detail and the time it must have taken the artist to carve this.

Look at the tiny details of the figures on the ship. It blows my mind. Here are some more close-ups:

Unusual items 15

Great detail on the rigging above, and on the ship’s cannons below:

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I also like the rope surrounding the title of this creation. The Drommedaris and the Reijger were two actual ships that travelled to the Cape of Good Hope in 1652. On board was Jan van Riebeeck – the dude who helped begin the European colonisation of South Africa.

Unusual items 17

Unbelievably, I bought this for the price of your average hamburger at a ‘kitsch’ store that sold all manner of second-hand ‘junk’. I think it’s a treasure 🙂 I’d love to know the history of this carving. The signature says it was crafted by Chris in 1975. Who was the man who carved it? Did he sell it for a good profit or was it handed down as a keepsake in his family? How did it end up on sale for 30 bucks in a junk store?

I guess I’ll never know, but I’m very glad it found its way to me.