Itching to Go Thrifting

Some days I wake up just itching to go thrifting. (Know that feeling?) I just knew there were treasures waiting to be found yesterday and I wanted to find them.

My sensible self told me to stay home and list the items I’ve already bought. I’ve got plenty. My sensible self said stay home and get some chores done. I’ve got plenty. And I usually listen to my sensible self, but today, today was not that day. As soon as my neighborhood thrift store opened at 9:00 a.m., I was there.

My first find was this little crystal sugar bowl or jam jar (in perfect condition though it’s missing the spoon) with the acid-etched Villeroy & Boch mark on the bottom.

I found a similar one on WorthPoint that sold for $25 but with its spoon. Hmmm. I may sell this with a little sterling silver demi-sized spoon from my collection.

Then I spotted a massive bundle of pewter (marked KMD for Royal Holland). Everything was taped up so you couldn’t fully inspect the pieces. I did some quick in-store research and prices for similar sets were all over the place–from $20 to $100+ After vacillating a bit, I finally decided to buy the bundle for $29.99.

Not my wisest decision as the tape prevented me from being able to see the condition inside the pots. But my thrifting friend Patty who was at the store at the time said, “Oh, don’t worry. No one actually uses this stuff. It’ll be fine.”

Well, Patty was wrong. When I got home and cut away the tape I discovered the inside of the teapot and coffeepot were rusty. Poop! It would take a lot of elbow grease to get these usable and really wouldn’t be worth the effort. The sugar bowl even had remnants of sugar. This was definitely a well-loved, well-used set.

I was considering taping it all up again and taking it back for exchange, but then took a closer look at the tray. The large serving tray (16″ by 12″) weighs a whopping six pounds! It wasn’t part of the original KMD set but made for the Victoria & Albert Museum (in 1996) by Royal Selangor.

And bless ’em, Royal Selangor is known for its quality, high-end pewter (since 1885) and is sold at stores like Harrods.

After a little cleaning and polishing, the tray alone made the buy worthwhile. I need to do more research but I should be able to list this between $125-175. I’ll also try to sell the sugar and creamer and the two candlesticks though they are not worth much.

Not sure yet what to do about the coffee and tea pot. They could actually be repurposed as vases or even planters…which could be kinda cute.

Afterwards I popped into a boutique thrift store the next town over that was having a 25% off St. Patrick’s Day sale. My first find was this charming little antique china sugar bowl. (No maker’s marks.) It appears to be hand painted.

Isn’t it sweet? But nuts wouldn’t you know after I get home, I found a tiny chip?!

I’ll touch this up with a gold-leaf pen and likely keep it for myself to use for rings and such.

And I confess I bought this artisan-made ceramic vase for myself. These kind of pieces are kryptonite to me!

I got excited when I saw this Asian brass dragon bud vase. It had age and was quite heavy. (No markings on the bottom.)

There is a nickel-sized spot of corrosion on the back (as well as a tiny bit on the front) and I’m debating whether to work away at the spots or sell as is. Likely I’ll just leave it as is because I don’t want to ruin the overall patina. I found a similar vase for sale at $70. The seller described it as “antique Japanese bronze,” but I’ll need to do more research. I paid $9 so I’ll do okay with this.

So not a huge haul, but I found a few treasures and it was fun to be out and about on a sunny, spring-like day. After visiting the second store I stopped into a Le Boulanger Bakery and bought a sourdough baguette that I carried back to my car under my arm. For a few seconds I felt like a sophisticated Parisian. It was a good morning. 🙂

Next morning

Apparently, my itch wasn’t satisfied so I stopped into the thrift store again on my way to church. Was glad I did.

I found this Gironacci Italian tote in soft taupe leather. It looks like it was never used. Brand new these start at $400 and up. It’s just a fabulous, quality purse.

Paid $20.

And I spotted this picture frame. Not my personal taste, though I do think it’s stunning and so looked like a Jay Strongwater frame with the intricate enameling and crystals.

Jay Strongwater picture frames sell from $75 to $6,000. The back on mine however is not a fancy metal Jay Strongwater back with the logo, but appears to be a speciality back made by a couple (Aditi and Pooneet), perhaps as wedding gifts.

So is this a Strongwater frame or just a pretty frame? The closest Strongwater frame I’ve found is this model.

Similar but not identical, so I’m going to keep hunting and see if I can find who made my frame. Knowing will make all the difference in how I can price it, but I hope the search doesn’t drive me crazy!

Monday I’m going to get busy listing! Hope your weekend was good too.

As always, happy hunting,



  1. Really fantastic finds! Love that frame, holy cow, the intricate detail in it is amazing! Those adorable coffee and tea pots would make great kitchen/garden/craft tool holders too!

    Liked by 1 person

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