I’m a crafty kind of tourist. Wherever I go on vacation, I like to check out a thrift shop or two, a craft supply shop or two, and any shop that I can find that specializes in indie handmade goods.
Any time that I happen to find myself in Ann Arbor, Michigan, I make sure, I not only check out the farmer’s market and the Hands-on, but that I absolutely visit what may be my favorite thrift shop AND craft supply shop AND shop that specializes in indie handmade goods: Found.
Found focuses on vintage and recycled items- these are the things that are found and given a new life. A range of local artists make things for Found that are as varied as pendant necklaces made from parts of license plates, baskets woven from recycled film strip, and angel figurines formed from old spoons.
The emphasis is on the craft of the found and there is much there to inspire the DIY spirit. At Found you can also find sets of vintage buttons or beads, antique rubber stamps, and a huge variety of old tchotchkes and trinkets and doo-dads. Some items have suggestions on them, noting what you could perhaps do with vintage sheet music or Scrabble tiles, and other items are blissfully unspecified. Want to stand there and happily wonder what you could do with those tea-stained BINGO cards, or those antique marbles? Go ahead- that’s half the fun!
In my latest trip to Found, I dawdled over the button bracelets and seriously considered a very old set of handmade alphabet stamps, but when I saw a small box of magnifying lenses, I knew that I’d found what I’d been looking for. Did they originally come from eyeglasses? Telescopes? Who knows?!
What I do know is that I’m going to solder around the circumference of all three lenses, solder on a jump ring, tie on elastic cord, and then each of my girls and I are going to have take-along magnifier necklaces to use on our next nature walk.
And that’s just what I found today.