Vintage luggage always catches my eye at an estate sale or flea market. These pieces are the ultimate in vintage chic storage. I have quite a few pieces, but have become more discerning in selecting a new case for my collection.
These gray pieces were actually found on three different shopping trips, and two of them were from the thrift store. I love the gray color, a bit different from the typical beige case but still neutral to go into any room. Plus the darker color hides a few of the scuffs they may have suffered in their previous role.
I look for flat, not sloped sides so that when the pieces are stacked, they will be level. Then I can arrange a few things on top of the stack for decoration as well.
I also like to hold out for a piece that's in good shape, with all the latches and handles working as they should. Most importantly, I open the suitcase up and if doesn't pass the sniff test, it doesn't come home with me. There's no use in having a vintage suitcase for storage if it smells nasty. If it does, everything you put it in it will absorb that smell.
I have tried to remove the smell of mold or tobacco from a piece or two with sprays, baking soda, kitty litter and good old-fashioned sunshine. None of these methods has worked to the point where I'd like to store my things inside and take the chance that they might take on the odor. If you have a way to remedy this, please share!
Many of my cases have such pretty interiors that I don't mind seeing the delicate lining. The colors are usually unfaded and quite beautiful, especially on the women's suitcases.
This set is currently in my craft studio, hiding my many punches. Those by Martha Stewart reside in the top case as I use them most often. They are also the best looking--I love the off-white color.
The function of these cases is never permanent, I seem to move them around as needed and have quite a few in my bedroom to hold my scarves and out of season clothing. There are many pretty storage baskets, cubes and cases available in the stores today, but these suitcases have the most charm!