Joe’s Vintage Trophies and Another Collection!


You know I have issues.

Collecting issues that is (my other issues need to be discussed when we have much more time and over a bottle of wine).


It all started with my instant loving cup collection …

Vintage loving cups

Let’s start from the beginning.


I was at this barn sale …

Beautiful old barn

with a friend the other day and she told me about a great estate sale she had been to that morning.

Of course, I threatened her physically if she didn’t take me there immediately so we packed up our barn sale haul and off we went.


I recognized the house right away – I had been there over a year ago when I bought this mid century console table for my foyer from a man in his 90’s named Joe.

He was an inventor and insisted I take home one of his inventions: a small alarm to put on hotel doors so I would be safe when traveling.

I chatted with him and his daughter for awhile then left with my console table and a few other goodies (he really knew how to drive a hard bargain too)!

Vintage green glass collection

This time, when I walked into the house, Joe wasn’t there – just a younger couple.

Oh no, did he pass away, I asked?

Thankfully, his son told me he’s still alive and kicking just not living in the house anymore.

Vintage trophies - so many ways to repurpose them

Sitting alone on a dusty basement shelf was Joe’s bowling trophy collection.

Over 50 years ago, that man bowled up a storm.

Old trophy

Now they sit in my house waiting to be turned into something amazing.

Would Joe approve?

I hope so and every time I look at them or my console table, I’ll remember that nice little old man who wanted me to be safe while traveling alone.


P.S. See what my friend Denise does to repurpose old trophies.

P.P.S. What would you do with these?

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  1. Well, you could spray paint them black so they look like sculptures. lol I gave away the “bowling trophy” collection that used to live here. lol I would have gladly given them to you. What a sweet reminder of that dear old man, though- xo Diana

  2. When my mom was cleaning out their home she gave away boxes of trophies, my dad was a celebrated golfer as well as bowler. She didn’t think I would want “those old things”. Just this past weekend we were discussing this with friends and I said I just hope whoever has them put that part of my dads life to good use. Joe would be happy too.

  3. What a precious story! I think Joe would be proud that someone is loving his trophies. This story reminded me of a piece of art I saw in the Tate Museum in London called “Thirty Pieces of Silver.” The artist Cornelia Parker scoured junk ships to collect silver objects no longer wanted by their owners (or their families). She then laid them out on a road and arranged for them to be steamrolled. She turned the remains into 30 disc-like formations which she hung from the ceiling on thin cables so that they almost touched the floor. She titled the installation “thirty Pieces of Silver” as a biblical reference to Judas’ betrayal of Jesus for that amount, suggesting that these once loved trophies and wedding gifts and charm bracelets have been betrayed as well in their abandonment. I’m glad that Joe’s trophies are not abandoned but rather adopted!

  4. What fun Kelly! There was a home not far from us that had trophies displayed along a sidelight in their doorway that was shelved. Row after row after row. The owner has since passed on, but I’ve always wondered what happened to his trophies.
    It’s so sweet to read your story and hopefully his, found a home as wonderful as yours.

  5. Kelly, You are so sweet! I think Joe would love for you to have them and he would encourage you to re-invent them anyway you wish!! Then he’d probably ask, “Have you checked your batteries in your alarm, lately?”

  6. Love your latest score Kelly! And I love Joe’s story too, right now the trophies look great the way it is, but I know you can always convince me otherwise once you whip up your ‘magic ‘ with them!

  7. My girlfriend bought a bunch of trophies a few years ago at a barn sale. She would love some ideas. In fact she thought the figures might look good on a fence.

  8. What a lovely story! I can’t think of a better person to win the the collection. All those trophies! I am bowled over!

  9. I really like the old loving cup trophies! I have one – it is most treasured. Every spring I put some silk daisies in them and put them on the mantel.. not too imaginative but I love it!!

  10. Can’t wait to see what you will do with those trophies..I came across an estate sale where the owners of the house were into show dogs…lots and lots of dog trophies..I bought a few..I should have bought more!…A friend of mine completely spray painted her hubby’s old trophies with great pastel colors…

  11. I have an original wilkinson sword trophy one of only 500 made all engraved anyone know how much this is worth 🙂

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