Typically after my workout class I run a few errands. I’m all sweaty and disheveled, but many of the places I frequent are on my route home, so it makes sense to take care of them when I’m already out and about. But today my youngest daughter (home from college for a month) had gone to the gym with me and was not ready to be seen all sweaty in Goodwill. So she waited in the car and I promised to be “just a few minutes.”
First I was enchanted by this small 1950s/60s tapestry evening bag (made in Hong Kong) with rhinestone clasp. Strangely enough it was in the Halloween section. Thought that was a mistake, but the price tag had it listed as “Seasonal, Halloween”!! Good grief…really?? It’s not worth much (I probably shouldn’t have bothered with it), but still it’s a nice thing. I’ll be listing this for $18.
I also found this vintage Vera Neumann chiffon butterfly scarf/shawl that had just been put out on the racks. Personally I don’t wear these colors, but I thought it was quite fun and in beautiful condition. I can picture someone throwing this over a little black dress as she carries her little orange Hermès Kelly bag. (Photo from TheRealReal.com) While this pre-owned purse is $4,700, I will be listing the scarf for a modest $30. 🙂
I found one newer item that I was waffling over in the store…a heavy, unmarked glass perfume bottle for $7.50. Hmmm. As I was looking it over, a woman kept hovering around me. (Well, honestly!) I put the bottle in my basket and that ended that! At home I discovered the bottle was a “Modern Morocco Crystal Glass Perfume Bottle, Double ‘O’, by Zodax.” Other than a bit of sticky residue on the outside (easily cleaned), it appears to be in unused condition. Brand new these sell for $42-58, so there is “meat on the bone,” but this isn’t my usual type of thing. Still it is rather nice. Might be worth selling on eBay. (Still waffling!!)
So I was in and out of the store in 15 minutes with three nice finds. This reminded me of all the times I had driven to estate sales, waited hours in line before they opened, got jostled when they finally opened the doors and sometimes came away with only a few things. I would drive home, the morning gone, with the distinct thought, “That wasn’t worth it.”
Nowadays I’m more selective about how I spend my sourcing time. I still go to the occasional estate sale, but typically an hour or two after they’ve opened so I can just walk in. I love yard sales, but don’t bother with ones that list baby or kid items. I’m also fond of finding things online. Here’s something I bought from an eBay seller a few days ago just because they were lovely and a good bargain ($17.25 including shipping)…a set of 6 Rogers Bros. silver-plated fruit knives in the Arabesque pattern. These are circa 1887, in remarkably good condition and ready to be used to cut cheese and fruit or spread butter and tapenade. I love the textured paisley detail. It’s amazing to think that these have been around for 130 years and are still so beautiful and usable. Brie anyone??
But to be honest, my small neighborhood Goodwill still remains my prime sourcing spot. Here’s why…of my last nine sales, six were items I purchased at this store. After subtracting cost of goods ($51) and fees, I made $277 profit from these six items, which is okay in my books. Bonus, it’s less than a mile from my house. I zip in. I zip out.
Wishing you happy hunting this Labor Day Weekend!!
Sure wish I lived near your Goodwill! Ours is just ok. but not fascinating….
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Joyce, I am realizing how fortunate I am to live near this Goodwill in CA! It’s been good to me. 🙂 I’ve been to others in TX, NY, NE and PA and have never found anything stellar. – Karen
P.S. Thanks for being a faithful reader!
Paisley is my favorite pattern.
I love finding Vera scarves as well.
best scarf for me was a thick silk Hermes one with horse and native American motif. only 3 dollars.
smiling at your daughter waiting on car.
that is often the case in our family .
shoppers and nonshoppers separate…
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Hi Tess. Paisley is a passion of mine too. Hermes scarf for $3!!! That’s the holy grail. 🙂 I found a fake one for $5. Yah, our family is evenly split between shoppers and non-shoppers. – Karen