Nuts to You Goodwill!

I went to my neighborhood thrift store the other morning and I found two things, though I wasn’t thrilled with them. (No happy dance in the aisle.) They were okay. Just okay and a bit pricy, in my opinion.

The watercolor painting by L. Gordon (?) was beautifully triple-matted but of a rather generic beach scene. It was $14, which for an original piece of art is not bad, but how much profit was left in it?? Could I sell it for at least $50? And how long would it take to sell?

My second item was a leather purse by Ora Delphine similar to this red one, but in light gray for $26.

Photographer unknown.

It was a nice, usable purse, but they typically resell for $30 – $70, so paying $26 wasn’t ideal. Plus purses aren’t fast sellers for me. They linger.

Still I was up for buying both these items and I stood in line waiting for a cashier to show up. I kept looking around trying to flag down an employee to no avail. Finally after waiting five minutes to pay, I set the items off to the side and walked out! I just walked out. It felt rude and I’ve never done that before, but I had a “This is nuts” moment.

In retrospect I think was for the best. I would have spent $40 on two items that had dubious profit margin and were likely very long tail.

Back home, empty handed, I decided to look for personal items I could sell and hit the motherlode when I opened my scarf drawer.

Here’s the thing…I love, love, LOVE scarves but rarely wear them because I forget I own them. This was a perfect drawer to downsize. I haven’t gone through all of them yet but I have made some decisions. To be fair, I won’t make a profit on most of these as they were personal purchases, but it will be nice to recoup a bit of the $$.


This lovely long hand-printed silk scarf (by Christina, India) is in my kind of colors, but I think I wore it once.

This printed wool challis scarf was a fun piece that sold within five minutes of me listing it!! Literally.

SOLD for $30.

This silk scarf was made in Turkey for Ustunler. I bought this for myself at a consignment store and wore it twice. (It has one tiny mark but is otherwise perfect and gorgeous.) It’s bit of wrench listing this one.

SOLD the next day for $35.

On the Fence

This fabulous, big Intiwara Bolivian wrap is made of alpaca and silk. It is so soft and warm. I have worn it a few times over a coat while taking a winter walk. It’s also a perfect wrap at night when the house is a bit chilly. Hmmm…keep or not??


This silk and rayon scarf/wrap is a Metropolitan Museum of Art purchase I made years ago. It was expensive and is so gorgeous that I’ve been afraid to use it!! Silly, right?!! But I really do want to enjoy it. I’m giving myself another year to use it.

This sheer linen and lace scarf was a gift from my eldest daughter. She bought it for me in Russia (or Finland) whilst on a college semester aboard. I do use this one!


This silky polyester scarf has great graphic appeal, rather a Piet Mondrian look, but also has one light stain and machine-stitched hems (as opposed to the higher quality rolled and hand-stitched hems). So while it is still usable, it’s not worth enough for me to resell.

That’s as far as I got with them! More to come.

Closing Thoughts

I do feel bad about abandoning my Goodwill items by the checkout, but honestly I wish they paid closer attention to folks who want to buy things. Couldn’t they rig up a bell or light that customers could push to alert staff that they are ready to checkout? Because this happens a lot…waiting for someone to man the cash register. Yesterday I was done with it! I had no patience.

Still, despite my “This is nuts” stance I do recognize that some of my recent sales were Goodwill finds.

Recent sales
  • vintage Rocky Bend glass ashtray (paid $3.19, sold for $24 plus shipping)
  • Italian printed scarf (paid $5-ish, sold for $18, lowered the price for a repeat customer)
  • linocut purple print (paid $4.94, sold for $45 plus shipping, the customer got it already and left me a nice review)
  • large brass candlesticks (paid $20-ish, sold for $80)

Still the prices at my local Goodwill keep going up…and up. I see some of the same items on the shelves week after week because they’ve priced them too high. Which is too bad. I’m not worried because I do have plenty of other sourcing venues, it’s just this one is the closest and was my honey hole for years. Not any more.

Wishing you happy hunting,



  1. Possibly a lucky escape?…Thinking that you probably would have had that unattractive bag for a long time, and that rather underwhelming looking water color, as well.


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