First, Life Interrupted
Aargh! I had a flare up of a condition this weekend that I usually treat with ibuprofen and peppermint essential oil. But after a day of dosing, the pain wasn’t easing up, so I resorted to my big gun pain reliever–hydrocodone (an opiate narcotic) with acetaminophen. I’ve only used it once before because frankly the stuff kinda scares me. That and it makes me lightheaded, drowsy and a bit loopy. So the cost of getting some relief meant that I “lost” the better part of Saturday. I did get a potato salad made in the morning for a picnic I didn’t attend later on and eventually I got a few charms listed in my store. But mostly I did some quality laying around on the couch alternately watching vlogs on YouTube (which required no brain power) and dozing. I am feeling a bit better this morning so the big-gun meds won’t be needed today! Hope to be all ship shape when my friend arrives Monday night.
Now, Onto the Charms
I adore vintage sterling silver charm bracelets. At one point I owned over 30. In the process of building my collection I found I was particularly drawn to charms from the late 1800s – 1950s that had a soft warm patina and great detail.
Here’s one I still wear. I really like the little mother of pearl jack knife which opens. (It reminds me of my dad who makes knives.) And the heart is one I bought especially and added to the bracelet. It’s engraved “Bill” on one side and “Myrtle” on the other which just happen to be the names of my grandparents. The little ring is actually a Victorian-era baby ring. It’s engraved inside “April 27, 1879.”
While I still wear most of my charm bracelets, I have slowly been letting some go. And I also buy loaded charm bracelets to remove the charms and sell them individually. That’s not super lucrative unless you get the bracelet for really cheap (which I rarely do!) or you stumble upon some of the rarer charms, like the gruesome Iron Maiden or mechanical monkey on a pole. Still I enjoy doing it and make a small profit. In fact I am awaiting the delivery of a “new” vintage bracelet I bought from an eBay seller. He had marked it down to $85 and I knew I could make an acceptable profit at that price. The downside is that he/she didn’t list the individual charms and if they are all silver and/or marked as such. Still most of these charms are familiar to me so I felt confident buying this.
I’ve put numbers by the charms of particular interest.
Number Key (with typical sold price ranges)
- Engraved harmonica that can actually make sound ($20-25)
- A nice, large totem pole ($13-18)
- Doesn’t look like much but it’s a mechanical. The hen will open up to “No Cover Charge” or eggs. ($15-28)
- A nice looking teddy bear, always popular ($10-15)
- A European weather vane that appears to be mechanical (likely .800 silver) ($18-25)
- The charm bracelet itself that closes with a desirable heart padlock ($30-$40)
And of course there are lots of other charms on the bracelet. I think the cowboy hat, gun and Alamo charms might make a nice lot and I will price it attractively at $30. And the ’40s movable garden charms (lawn roller, weed sprayer and wheel barrow) would make a cute lot.
So while this bracelet wasn’t cheap, I hope to make at least $100 profit when all is said and done. Though it will come slowly, in dribs and drabs, but I don’t mind with items like this. Charms are quick to list, take up no room to store and are easy to ship.
Charms for Sale
After buying that bracelet I was astounded to realize that I have quite a cache of silver charms waiting to be listed. Including from bracelets I’ve bought over the past year to harvest, but haven’t So I’m making more of a concerted effort to list them. Here’s a few I did yesterday in my drug-induced stupor!
A fruit and veg cart with movable wheels, unmarked, but at least .800 silver.
A tiny engagement/wedding band ring charm, marked 925 on the inside.
A cool cheerleader’s megaphone from the 1950s, marked Wells Sterling on the jump ring.
If you are at all interested in old charms, please do visit my store. And if you have a specific charm you are looking for, do contact me. I have over 100 yet to list and might have just what you’re looking for! (BTW, I do not sell Pandora, Brighton or newer charms.)
]so lovely, imagining the care put into each charm
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Me too Tess. This is why I focus on older charms…they have a level of detail that is often missing from newer ones. – Karen