Good Grief…It’s July!

Edinburgh. Almost made it this year!

Is it just me or is anyone else surprised that it’s July? July!!

Of course almost nothing about this year has gone to plan or expectation…for anyone. I am trying to keep my mind off what’s not happening…from the big things like a long-awaited trip to Scotland to the small things like going to flea markets, church, summer concerts and lunches with girlfriends. I’ve also been trying to plan my trip to visit my dad and cousins back in New York State, but coming from California I would have to self-quarantine for 14 days…which is not doable. I’m realizing that it’s quite possible I won’t be able to see my 89-year-old dad this year. 😔

On the plus side, the extra time with my husband and youngest daughter during this sheltering in place has been lovely. We are eating more meals together and at night playing cards (where said daughter has been unexpectedly trouncing us) and watching movies. A few nights ago we watched “The Good Liar” with Helen Mirren. Quite intriguing. But in the spirit of transparency I will say that we have (occasionally) gotten on each other’s nerves and my husband misses going into the office. I miss him going to the office!

My vintage business has been doing surprisingly well considering all that’s going on in the world. I suppose buying things is one way to experience a bit of normalcy. I’ve sold a good mix of items–some that have been in my store for a long time to things I’ve just added and from the inexpensive to the pricier.

What’s Been Selling

The vintage Ingber foldover purse was a fun thrift store find from Pacific Grove, CA, but I made the mistake of not researching it in the store and paid too much and didn’t make much profit. Not smart. The small Paris painting was bought on Shopgoodwill for $23 and sold to the great, great granddaughter of the artist for $75. Isn’t that neat?!

The asparagus tureen sold about two weeks after I listed it (paid $7, sold for $45 plus shipping), but the English horse brasses languished for 18 months or so. Still they sold which feels like a miracle because there are over 1300 listed on Etsy alone. I had listed the Byers’ Choice collectible caroler (not my favorite type of item) in November 2019 and thought she would sell in December, but she sold in June. I guess you never know with Christmas stuff.

But I’m hearing crickets in July. It looks like my good sales run is coming to an end and it’s back to the normal summer slowdown. Well pooh!

What I’m Buying

Right now my two sourcing venues are my neighborhood thrift store and other online sellers. I haven’t attempted going to an estate sale yet, yard sales are thin on the ground and flea markets aren’t open. Still as my daughter reminds me, “Mom, you’ve got plenty of stuff.” And she’s right. I still have unlisted older purchases to deal with. But it is fun to source a little too.

Large Italian Florentine Tray

I may kick myself for buying this which, at 19″ wide, will be a challenge to ship, but I thought someone might like this exuberant fall-toned gilded tray with the decoupage fruit.

Large Wrought Iron and Copper Grater

I was attracted to this handsome piece, though I see it more as a decorative item–perhaps in the same vein as the vintage jelly molds I recently bought. Wonder if they were all donated by the same person?

Small 18th Century Meerschaum Crucifix

I used some eBay bucks to help offset the cost of this purchase which will be coming from France. It has such beautiful patina. I hope they package it well because meerschaum is fairly fragile.

Photo from listing.

These Victorian meerschaum crosses were normally framed behind bubble glass and sell for $100 to $200 with more elaborate ones going higher.

I actually prefer the cross without the frame and glass. It seems less fussy. More poignant.

Moving Forward

I’m going to keep on cherry picking a few things here and there. And listing.

Hope you summer has some lovely moments and fabulous finds,



  1. I love reading your posts. Among my numerous email inbox inundations, yours are always the ones I immediately open and read. Thank you for continuing to post amidst all the unexpected weirdness of our world right now. I’m so glad that your business continues to putter along, and that your family is enjoying more togetherness (despite the rough patches here and there). I think that you have a great eye for the beautiful, the quirky, the unexpected, and that’s why your vintage business has continued successfully. I know that’s one of the reasons why I always open your emails the moment they appear in my inbox – I can’t wait to see what you’ve found this time!

    As far as this strange moment in history goes – I retired from my extremely demanding job on Dec. 31, 2019, and was looking forward to some overseas travel and all kinds of fun stuff. Instead I’ve spent the past 5 months carefully at home alone, incredibly grateful for the Internet, without which I would be truly isolated. Your posts are one of the things that always cheer me up. Thank you!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Many thanks for your kind words!! It means a lot to me to have your faithful readership and internet friendship. Sometimes I do get tired of aspects of this business, but I never tire of hunting for fabulous things.

    I’m glad you were able to retire, but what a disappointment not to be able to start traveling. Hopefully by 2021 things will open up again. Where do you plan to head first??

    Stay well, Karen

    P.S. I, too, feel incredibly thankful for the internet. I think it’s helped preserve a bit of sanity for many of us!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I actually had planned on travelling to rural Japan this fall with a group of fellow Kokeshi enthusiasts. Alas, Japan will not be welcoming visitors from the United States for the forseeable future, to my very great sorrow. Maybe next year – I will continue to hope so, anyway. In the meantime, I’ll keep trying to learn at least a smidgen of Japanese in preparation. I was delighted to spend a few weeks in France many years ago, and my experience was that the lovely people of France appreciated even a halting attempt at speaking their language. Well worth the effort!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m sorry that you’re having difficulties visiting your elder Dad. Hopefully the situation will get better and you will able to meet in person this year.
    Well done for keeping up and continuing to list your old stock 🙂
    I still have plenty of items to pass on from my collections, but not enough time and energy to do much 😉 Oh well…..
    Stay safe

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Gabriella. Hoping things get better and I can visit Dad this fall.

      I wish I was fully caught up with my old stock, but I still have 4 bins to deal with. Maybe by the end of this year…

      All the best, Karen


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