Gold Rush | Aug 2019

by | Aug 21, 2019 | All Things Home, Antiques | 23 comments

Last Friday, my friend Cheri and I hit Gold Rush Days in Oronoco, MN.  It’s a huge antique event that takes over the entire sleepy town.  I’ve gone the past two years and found some fun things, but for some reason, I wasn’t enthusiastic about going this year.  I’ve been busy, I was certain it would be hot and humid, and I wasn’t optimistic that I would find anything I was looking for.  Great attitude, right?  I couldn’t believe I was feeling that way about antiquing!  Jeff encouraged me to go, though.

I almost bailed, but I didn’t and I can’t tell you how glad I am that I went.  It was the best Gold Rush, yet!  (You can read about previous years HERE.)

Right off the bat, Cheri and I were making a beeline to a couple of vendors.  I spotted a bunch of gilded frames leaned up against a tree and Cheri spotted a pretty chest of drawers that was wearing the best green chippy paint.

I found one frame that was a good size for an oil painting and Cheri found a transferware sugar bowl for $5.00.  We were off to a good start!

I was completely smitten with this indigo dresses, but $75 was a bit too steep…

…although now I’m imaging it pressed and hung in a frame and that would be pretty cute.  Maybe I should try painting a trompe l’oeil version of one.  That would be cool!  Excuse me while I have a little conversation with myself.

I drooled over the antique European linens, but I didn’t buy any.  I already have fabric waiting for me to use on various projects.  I need to use what’s in my stash before I buy more.

Discipline, Marian.  Discipline.

Both Cheri and I bought a French market basket.  At $55, they were a good price.  I have a few already, but I wanted one to put one on the wardrobe in the sewing room.  I had one up there, but I moved it to the studio, on top of the closet we built.  I’ll show where the new one ended up.

I was tempted to buy an enamel baby bath.  I had one in the studio, but I sold it before we moved.  I thought about getting one to put on the deck under the kitchen window and fill with herbs, but I decided against it for this year.  Maybe I’ll buy one next year.

I was also tempted to buy this bench, but I really didn’t have a place for it.  It would be great with a custom cushion, though!

Here are a few other pieces that caught my eye, but didn’t come home with me…

I saw several trunks with beautiful paint colors and hand lettering.  They were all pretty pricey, though…

And I loved this chippy blue washstand…

…and this jelly cupboard…

There were so many yummy things in this booth!  I ended up buying a plant, a stool, and some porcupine quills.

How sweet is the “label” on this coverlet?  Grandma Warden and Aunt Lizzie…

The price actually wasn’t bad for an 1860’s coverlet, but it wasn’t in very good condition, unfortunately.

I also loved these patriotic paper streamers…

They would be so fun to use, but not very practical.  You’d get one or two uses out of them at best.

And this oil painting captured my attention.  I might try to do a study of it…

We made several trips back to the car to drop off our purchases and I found two furniture pieces I’ve been trying to find for over a year, so it ended up being a great shopping trip.

I texted Jeff a couple of hours in and thanked him for coaxing me to go.

Before picking up our furniture, we had a homemade ice cream sandwich, which was every bit as good as it sounds.  I ordered “just vanilla” from the vendor and he assured me that his ice cream sandwiches weren’t just anything.

I’ll share what I bought in another post along with our experience shopping in this historic building…

It was one of the highlights of the day and definitely deserves its own post.


  1. Cheri Dietzman

    You make me wish I took more pictures! That booth where you bought the quills was definitely my favorite!

    Anything haunting you? Wish you’d bought?

    • Carrie Schwab

      That’s Diane Passi’s booth from Checkpoint 19 Antiques – she always has the most fabulous stuff and is a brilliant stylist!

  2. Janet in Kansas City

    My vote would be the jelly cupboard. That would be the one I needed. ; )

  3. Susan

    You and I had our eye on the same hunting dog painting 🙂
    We have been going to Gold Rush, in downtown Oronoco, for 43 years. It is so fun and an occasion that we
    look forward to each year! We had great luck and good prices on our “finds.”

  4. Teresa

    Looks like this years show was well worth going. Its funny how shows can change from year to year as I was disappointed in Lucketts this year after making some great finds the year before. Cant wait to see the piece that is replacing the pie safe!

  5. Sharon Rexroad

    What is this concept of which you speak? Using your stash before buying more? Hogwash!

  6. Jody K

    Loved Oronoco again this year and kept my eye out for you. It was a tad humid on Friday but we took hydration breaks and an (ice cream sandwich break.) Loved that plant booth and wanted a topiary but I didn’t have the heart to kill it. I ended up with 2 Red Wing crocks for the plants I haven’t killed yet, and some large commercial letters. Also bought some cute homemade framed art. We’ll be back next year.

    • Sherry

      I love the gilded frames! Here in Texas I never ever come across European linens and grain sacks I would love to see some of those, looks like a fun event and can’t wait to see the furniture pieces you bought!

      • Joy

        Spring and fall. Try Round Top, Texas. The Big Red Barn show.

  7. Donna

    I LOVE THAT BENCH! i would have figured something out for it. I am glad you went, and still miss you on the east coast. But i still have some of your treasures and a lavender topiary, so i have little pieces of Miss Mustard Seed all over my home.

  8. Cindy

    Looks like a fantastic show. We have a huge flea coming up in September in Springfield, Ohio with 2000 vendors, and I’d like to try and find some of the things you’ve shown in your photos. Fingers crossed. You seem to find the best places to shop and come home with wonderful unique pieces. Looking forward to seeing what else you found.

    • Cheri Dietzman

      Cindy, I’m hoping to get to the Springfield show while visiting my daughter in Cincinnati. Any tips for me?

  9. Kate

    I also love the bench ! We have similar bench which my husband put together but wood color. I love worn-out white. Your pictures inspire us. Thank you.

  10. Maeva

    I love the baskets! I have been looking for one for a while! Do you have any suggestions of where I could find them? I was calling them laundry basket, but now I will look for market baskets.
    Maybe next year I will go to MN!
    Thank you so much for sharing, I am learning so much from you.

  11. Mary

    Looks like a road trip is in my future. WhT a great looking flea market!

  12. penny gharst

    Absolutely loved all the pictures. I am older now and have all boys that don’t want my things and they even complain about eating off silverware that I picked up in S.Carolina. I told them someone loved those pieces and I am going keep and enjoy them. I eat off Flow Blue now, thinking I should save, rather use it and enjoy it. Would check that town out. I have son living in Minnesota and maybe I could connect that trip with the festival.

  13. Pauline

    I also like that bench. My house is full and would have to get rid of something to put anything new in it. It is always fun to go and look though.

  14. Susan guillebeau

    I wish they had more shows like that down here in the South.

  15. Julie | Home On The Hill

    I really liked that jelly Cabinet (although after picturing it full of wobbling jellies, I realised it was probably what we would call a jam cabinet here in Australia?). The cabinet was nice & shallow, so could fit in lots of places where deeper cabinets would block the flow of traffic in a house. I was coveting it from afar.

    We don’t have as many markets like your gold rush here – I so wish we did, I drool over all the wonderful things you see in US shops & markets. We never see antique grain sacks like that for example.

    We do have a vintage fair in my area in September, but I don’t hold out hope for anything too exciting, it’s likely to be more retro mid century modern stuff I expect. Oh well, it’s the hunt that is half the fun anyway! 🙂

  16. Michelle Johnson

    I was up in Fergus Falls late July for our annual trip home. I expected humid and mosquitoes but was pleasantly surprised by great weather and less bugs than home in Colorado. I love going to these smaller town events when we are in MN. Looks like a fun event to check out if we are there at that time. We probably should drive vs flying then 😉

  17. Sue

    Thanks for sharing your finds! I purchased a 1920s European grain sack in the butterscotch tones. I usually purchase 1 item from the vintage textile booth every year. I love the texture, colors and stories behind them. They make lovely runners. I’m anxious to see what you purchased from the building that warrants it’s own post!

  18. Angela

    All that fabric and grain sacks…..(sigh) Looking forward to seeing the piece you bought.

  19. Robyn

    Isn’t that the way it goes, you seem to stumble upon the most wonderful items when you least expect it (or don’t have the money for them ~ lol). I have to mark on the calendar that I left empty-handed this year (but did also have one of their infamous ice cream sandwiches), but my son found a cute little 1950’s tube radio that managed to draw attention from every vendor we stopped at following that purchase.


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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