Saturday, March 11, 2017

A Busy Shopping Week

This winter has been so LONG!  So has my time between posts.  Here's what's been going on...

Since New Year's, I've been working hard on reorganizing my work area, cleaning out things I don't love or will never sell and NOT buying anything new.  We only had 2 sunny days in all of January and into February here in SE Michigan and the weather really got to me this year.  I just wanted to stay in and I guess it brought out the 'nesting' instinct in me.
My 94-year-old great aunt moved into a full-nursing room from her 2-room assisted living apartment and my sister and I have been sorting through the 'leftovers'.   My aunt was a minimalist long before it had a name or was cool, so she didn't have much, but still there was a lot to go through.  It made me really mindful of how much stuff I have and how I need to get it whittled down before someone else has to.

Since I keep stock to sell, I can't exactly follow the 'if it doesn't bring you joy, get rid of it' plan, but I have modified it to work with an e-business.  If I don't like something, I'm not going to sell it.  No more selling a thing because I know other people like it and will buy it.  That's left me with a lot of 'leftovers' of my own, which are all going to a local resale shop or are donated.  It feels really good to get rid of things (See?  I'm NOT a hoarder)

My new motto:
Some day, I'll post pictures of my newly-organized and streamlined work area...but that will have to wait until it actually IS organized and streamlined.  Sigh...

Organization is fun (seriously, I love organizing things....weird, I know), but so is retail therapy.  This week I finally got to go shopping.  My friend Bargain Hunter had an unexpected day off of work -- thanks to high winds and power failure -- and we took a trip up to Bay City and Saginaw, where we hadn't shopped in years.
Does anyone else think this is creepy?
Sign in the bathroom in Bay City
Always one of my favorite booths
I still don't know why I didn't buy this phone!

I remember making hundreds of these daisies for an afghan

I have the square canisters, but had never seen round ones
On Friday, I made a last-minute trip to a family-run estate sale because there were some books there I've been searching for.  I was too late for the books, but got some great Christmas and kitsch.

A complete set of Branchell melmac!
Then today, we went to the local Masonic Lodge's antique show fundraiser.  Each year it gets a little bigger, with more dealers, so there was lots to see.  Not many bargains to be had, though...it was mostly mall prices or even higher.  It was fun to see some of the dealers from my old antique mall and great to get out in the cold (20 degrees) sunshine.

Bargain Hunter and I always talk about who the winner is (sadly, that means who spent the most money).  I'm usually the winner because I buy not just for myself, but also to sell.  Today, though she was the clear winner, having struck the mother lode of linens...until I saw these draperies!  Four panels of red barkcloth wonderfulness in great condition...AND they go perfectly in my living room!  I took the lead with those and 'won' by a landslide.  
The panels go perfectly with the colors in the living room

This came home with me this week:
No shopping trip is complete without pennants!
I was super excited to see these pennants from my hometown, Cincinnati!  I'm definitely keeping the zoo pennant and might keep Coney Island, too
The little elf pincushion and Fisher Price chick & basket will have to live here for a while, I think
Cool cowboy chenille throw!

 Hope you're having a great weekend and that Spring is coming to where you live!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Why I Love What I Do...

In my Etsy shop remarks, I say that sometimes I feel like a matchmaker who gets an invitation to the wedding.  It's the best feeling in the world to connect someone with an item they've been looking for or have a childhood memory of.

Last week I listed a signed photo I'd picked up of the Ted Herbert Orchestra from the swing era.  If you're from New England, you may know Ted Herbert, but growing up in Ohio and living in the Midwest, I'd never heard of him.  I did some research (one of my favorite parts of any listing) and learned that he'd been a band leader in New England for decades, taught at university in Manchester, New Hampshire and had well-known music store there, too.


The photo sold within one day.  I just got the nicest review from the buyer, with this comment:
As a Manchester native who ended up as a music teacher, Ted Herbert and his music store hold a special place in my heart. This picture is so cool, great shape, I'm so excited to have found it! I absolutely love it!

Right after Christmas, I sold a Dillon's Grocery Store glass.  I'd never heard of Dillon's (a big name in the Kansas City area) but learned all about it as I researched the glass.  It, too, sold very quickly to someone who grew up in Kansas City and wanted a little bit of her childhood.
If you've read my blog for a while, you know I'm hooked on souvenirs -- especially pennants!  I have over a hundred of them...some listed, many waiting to be listed and some I'll never part with.  (If there's a pennant you're looking for, message me...there's a good chance that I have it!)

I sold a Mohawk Valley pennant not long ago and this is what I heard from the buyer:

I just wanted to let you know that the pennant is great, and the graphics are amazing. I live fairly close to the Mohawk Trail, and have even traveled on the illustrated "Hairpin Turn" in a snowstorm. Yesterday was a lousy day at work, and finding your package in my mailbox made it a little bit better.


What could be better than making someone's day?  I love what I do!

Friday, June 10, 2016

An Unexpected Journey

My morning started with a text message from my junking buddy, Bargain Hunter:  "Can you be dressed and meet me in an hour?"  When I asked where we were going, she just said, "Not telling...but you'll really like it!"

Never mind cleaning the bathrooms...or watering the garden...or working in the barn -- I was going on an adventure!

We'd talked a lot about how the sales always seemed better in the older neighborhoods around Detroit than they are by us and that we wanted to go to some garage sales there.  That's what we did today!  Bargain Hunter had four sales mapped out and ready to go.

The first sale was advertised as 'Pyrex and Vintage'.  I felt sure the Pyrex would be all gone, but it wasn't -- there was a lot there, plus some other good stuff.  I got a few things for my collection and a birthday gift for someone (I can't tell, in case she sees this post)
This Bluebirds casserole and Apple Tree carafe will look great in my kitchen!
Gold spattered Fire King baking dish in a white metal cradle
 Sale #2 was a real frog.  Advertised as 'vintage', but the oldest thing there was from the late 90s -- not my idea of old (I have kids older than most of the stuff at that sale)!

Next stop was an estate sale and it was a Prince (with a capital P)!  The basement was packed.  I got so much Christmas and fun kids' stuff there that I could hardly claim it fast enough.  I filled a plastic salad bowl with Christmas kitsch AND got a Santa & sleigh for just $4!
Santa & his sleigh have the original box.  The spaghetti Santa has blue rhinestone eyes (just a little creepy)
Gurley candles and Hong Kong nativities are always popular
Love this Japanese stocking face pose doll 
I also picked up 2 partial rolls of vintage Christmas wrap and a big roll of commercial Christmas paper.  I think I'll use it to wrap my Etsy orders this holiday season.   Today was the second day of the sale, so everything was 25% off, too!  The estate sale company was a new one to me, but one I'll watch for in the future --  the people running it were really nice and VERY organized (always a plus).
The chalkware puppy will have to stay here, I think...I've really become attached to him
Fun kids' books
I think the paper dolls go with the Betsy McCall set...they have mohair doll hair
Embroidered tea towels
Of course, there had to be a pennant there somewhere!
The last place we went to was another estate sale with lots of fishing stuff.  I got a few lures for my son and a Pyrex percolator.  Bargain Hunter found a live catch basket and an anchor for her son...the guys made out pretty well at that sale!
Cowboy and western glasses are so cool!
So a big thank you to Bargain Hunter and her spur-of-the-moment invitation!  This adventure was a happy end to a long week of work.  I'll be up for an unexpected journey any time.

Hope you have a great weekend!

Saturday, June 4, 2016

A Perfect Day for a Vintage Flea Market

Today was the first flea market of the season at Midland Fairgrounds.  My friend Bargain Hunter couldn't go, so Mr. KV kindly offered to go with me (what a guy!)  It was fun shopping with him and he even found a few things to buy.  It was a perfect day, too...blue skies, wispy clouds and a high of 80.

I laughed with him about how I'd really have to rein in my buying because I didn't have Bargain Hunter's granny cart to use, in addition to my own (I usually end up spilling over into hers when I run out of space in mine).  I really held back!  My total purchases (and his) didn't even fill my cart.  I think having a huge yard sale and still donating a lot of the leftovers may have had something to do with my frugality, too -- I'm just oh-so aware that I have so much stuff!

There were the usual sights to see at Midland...many favorite dealers were back, though their prices were noticeably higher.  Even the 'digger' vendors who just pile their stuff on plywood and sawhorse tables were priced like malls today!

I did see some very cool things, though...
This big Pepsi Santa was pretty creepy
Love this tin toy
This glider and chair sold almost immediately after I took the picture
SO many Hummels!  (and no one was stopping to look at them...)
Great starburst entertainment set and holder!
Outstanding red & gray barkcloth, but not for me at $25

The prize for 'most creative' goes to the man who makes these birdhouses -- he told me that no two are ever alike, since he uses whatever he can find to decorate them.  I'm kicking myself (pun intended) for not buying one of the cowboy boots.

 Here's what I actually bought:
A few souvenirs (of course...)
Some Christmas (also of course...)  The Helen Gallagher Christmas catalog is from 1967 and the ceramic tree is a music box!
Love these flocked apple ornaments with the pixies inside...four will make their way to the Etsy shop, but one will have to live on our tree
My newest passion...colored aluminum!  These dessert bowls will end up on Etsy, too
 You always find the most random and unusual stuff at flea markets -- that's what makes them so much fun!  Here are some of the unexpected things that came home with me:
The Wilken family (whoever they were) published a cookbook and photo album in 1935.  I really like the previous owner's handwritten note, 'very good biscuits', on the front.  It makes me want to try the recipe before I sell it
Stiff cardboard calendar pages from 1937, illustrated with monkeys and orangutans doing sports -- they're very strange
A 'my pal' dog night light for a child's room, a turquoise wall sconce (which needs a really good cleaning!) and a pair of cemetery vases with spikes
Here are my favorite finds of the day:
Black cat's eye glasses decorated with rhinestones (with case), a red Swingline pencil sharpener and best of all, a ceramic 'My Rosary' angel rosary holder, that came with a little girl's rosary.  I think she's pretty rare
 And this is the only thing I actually bought for myself...
Pyrex pink daisy space saver with lid -- in great condition!
It was just a fun day all around...I hope you're having a great weekend!