Buying Things on “My List”

Many of us in the biz have a list–those categories we keep an eye out for and love to buy. I’m sure you do too! It just makes sense. My list may be different from your list. For example, I am not big on glass. I don’t know my Fenton from my Hazel Atlas and don’t care to. And vintage Tupperware and Pyrex leave me cold. Is there money to be made in reselling these? You betcha, but if I see them on the shelf I leave them for someone else to nab. But here are a few things on my list…

Vintage Barware

With the popularity of the Mad-Men era bar cart and cocktails I’m always looking for vintage barware items. One of my favorite thrift store scores was a set of four MCM brass Danish bar tools a few years ago.

Bought for $8, sold for $100.

Recent Find: So the other day when I spotted this vintage Silvestri rolling golf bag with six golf club stirrers/swizzle sticks I was happy to put them in my basket. And bonus the wheels move!

Artisan Pottery Items

I adore artisan pottery. I appreciate the craftsmanship, beauty and utility of the pieces. But they tend to be long tail sales, at least for me. That quirky basket below took three years to sell. (We happily used it in our bedroom till it did.) Over the years I’m guessing I’ve sold over 100 unique pieces.

Recent Find: I was happy when I saw this small crystalline-glazed pot on the shelves. It’s more stunning in person seeing the flash in the crystal parts. It’s signed, but I haven’t found a match in my research yet.

Will price this at $48.

Religious Items

Items with religious imagery and purpose strike a chord in many people–from crosses and icons of saints to menorahs and figurines–these are increasingly on my radar. Here are a few things I’ve sold over the years.

Recent Find: I was on the fence about this plastic, made-in-Italy Father Joseph, especially as he was over $8! Still I took a gamble and bought it. Turns out I should have left it on the shelf as he is not selling for much! (I should have listened to my gut…or looked him up in the store.)

Native American & Southwestern-Style Pots

I’m fond of small Native American and Southwestern weed pots and vases and they sell for me. Most that I find sell in the $30 to $50 range. Hoping to find some that are more valuable. Here’s a selection I’ve sold over the years.

Recent Find: This small Navajo pot is signed “Little.” It’s extensively carved all the way round. I may add this to a lot.

High-End Designer Brands

There are certain brands I keep an eye out for: Waterford, Mottahedeh, Arabia Finland, Jonathan Adler to name a few. They retain their value in the resale market and tend to be sought after!

These Mottahedeh pieces did well for me. I bought the brass beehive biscuit tin for $6+ and sold it for $75 plus shipping. I bought two of the ceramic flower frog bricks for $15 and sold them for $100 with free shipping.

Recent Find: The other day I spotted these MacKenzie-Childs metal enamelware pieces. MacKenzie-Childs makes whimsical and zany items that sell from $$ to $$$$…and folks like them! These two children’s bowls are the first I’ve found “in the wild.” Not particularly valuable, but I thought worth buying.

So just a few “bread and butter” finds from my list. Feel free to share yours in the comments.

Happy hunting,


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