I say this all the time, but I honestly never know what I’m going to find at my local thrift store.
The store I go to most is located in the town where I work , just a couple of stores down from the office. I go to this thrift store several times a week during my lunch break.
Things go fast at this store because the prices are usually right, and the volunteers go through donations very carefully.
On days when I don’t or can’t go, because I have other things I need to do, I always wonder what treasure I’m missing out on.
This past Wednesday I didn’t miss out at all, and I grabbed the first things I saw when I walked in the door.
Two vintage Chinese wooden abacuses, or abaci, which are ancient calculating tools.
Even though I haven’t seen one for years I knew what they were right away, and was struck by how cool they looked at the back of the thrift store shelf.
I immediately picked them both up, because I know in this store if you snooze you lose. lol.
The larger one didn’t have a price label on it anywhere, so I thought… oh oh… probably too much for me.
Then I found one on the back of the smaller abacus, and I was thrilled to see that it was just a dollar. Woo hoo!
And they gave me the larger one for a dollar too. Woo hoo again!
The larger abacus has a metal label nailed on the top side.
The smaller one doesn’t have a label, so I can’t be completely sure if it’s made by the same company.
I watched a couple of you tube videos about how to use these abaci, but quite frankly even though the videos were rather simplified it really seemed quite complicated to me.
I’m definitely no math whiz. lol.
But like with anything new… once you learned what you had to know and gave it some practice, I guess it would get easier.
I did some research and saw some similar abaci on etsy and ebay, and these probably date back to the 50s-60s.
They were priced in the $20 -$50 dollar range each , depending on their age and condition.
Not bad for my $2 investment.
These abaci might never be used for calculating again, but that doesn’t mean they won’t be enjoyed.
They have a modern-artish look that I love, and I find the whole bead set up rather mesmerizing to look at.
I think they’ll look cool displayed anywhere.
Now I just have to find a place for them. Any ideas?
Thanks so much for reading, and until next time…
keep on keepin’ on!