400 Families

Every time they run this sale they up the number of families that they say are participating. When it started out it was the Ultimate Yard Sale with 200 families participating. Now they say it is 400 families. To me it looks like it is at least 50% antique dealers or resellers. When I go to this semi annual sale I try to find the people who are really selling as if it were a yard sale at their house. This is what I found this time.

The three plush items I picked up were a Molly doll from The Big Comfy Couch, a learn to ┬ádress Caillou doll and a Muppet from the Whatnot Workshop. I love the Muppets like this and have one that I designed from FAO Schwarz in NYC. This one is very funny with her long curly blond hair, fancy princess dress and glasses. I have sold these before and can usually get between $40 and $60 for them. I paid $7 for this one. I’m hoping to get $40 for the Molly doll. She is a rarer vinyl version. Caillou won’t bring much – maybe $14 but I only paid $1 for him.

Two other items I picked up were this vintage big eyed girl print from the 1960s. I paid $2 and am hoping to get $24 for her. I paid $5 for this Lego set of the Eiffel Tower which turned out to be new in the box.

I also picked up one of these little flocked animals from West Germany. The brand is Kunstlerschutz. I used to collect these as a child. The frog seems to be fairly rare and I am hoping to get $40 for him.

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I hit one good church sale last weekend with great prices. Everything I bought there cost $10. I was excited to find this Wham-o sand art toy. These are pretty valuable now. I found one once at a thrift store but the sand was hard and didn’t flow anymore. This one is in great condition. I paid $1 for it at the sale and am hoping to get $50 for it.

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These ceramic pixie elf figures dressed up as devils were among an entire table of salt and pepper shakers. The little Christmas elves like this are popular but if you can find unusual ones, in pink or green, or devils like these, they will be more valuable. I’m hoping to get $40 for the pair. They are small at only 3″ tall. All the salt and pepper sets were $1 and that’s what they charged me for these.

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At this same sale I picked up two handbags and a wooden inlay picture of a bee and a hummingbird which I have not photographed yet.

I also want to mention two finds from a tag sale. I believe the blue vase is a Rookwood pottery piece. I paid $10 for the Oswald figure which is high. I am hoping to get $40 for him. The vase was only $1. I have it up for auction starting at $99.

That’s all for this week. We are having a heat wave here in the northeast but prefer it to the snow!!

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Thrifty Finds and a Tag Sale Haul

Often I leave the thrift store with nothing but last week I found a few good items. I always check the bags on the wall of little toys in bags. I saw a bag with what looked like old Barbie clothes but I was able to see one of the tags and it said “Tammy”. Tammy was a doll that was similar to Barbie. I bought two bags and they turned out to have quite a few pieces of Tammy clothing, some Tutti clothes, some Chris clothes and some Ken clothes. I sorted it all out and came up with four different lots to sell.

The best piece in the group was the blue dress with the characters on it. I was able to sell that group of Tammy clothes for $99.99. Woohoo!

I picked up this vintage Donkey Kong plush from the 1980’s. He was $4 and I have him up for $37.

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On Saturday I went to a few church and yard sales. The first sale I went to didn’t seem to have too much. At first I bought this Vera Bradley handbag because it appeared to be new with tags. Vera Bradley doesn’t sell as well as it used to but because this bag is new I’m hoping it will sell. On my second pass around this church I spotted a big box that said “My Twinn”. I was super excited to find this doll in like new condition, with an extra pajama outfit included marked at $3!

Later on I attended another church sale that had started the day before. I wasn’t expecting to find too much because of this, but I picked up several items. I bought this Japanese doll in a silk kimono. She has some condition issues but I think she is pretty cute and hope to get at least $20 for her. I was all “Tammy dolled up” after my experience earlier in the week with the Tammy clothes so when I saw this set of two dolls from the Tammy family I impusively overpaid $20 for them. After I got them home I realized that the Tammy doll has drawn on eyebrows and has other condition issues. The smaller doll is called Penny Brite. I’ll be lucky to break even on these dolls.

I also picked up some anti aging beauty products for $2 each, a Dimensions crewel kit of a beach scene from 1977, an Arabia Moomin mug and a ceramic pin from Denmark. The character on the mug I believe is a hippo. There is a whole series of character mugs by Arabia and some of them sell very well.

The weather is heating up and so are the sales! I hope you are having fun wherever you are!!

A tree fell on my house but I’m still shopping!

On May 14 tornadoes hit my small Connecticut town bringing a giant tree down on top of my house. The consensus is that the house has to be rebuilt. In a matter of days we had to move what we needed into an apartment. Everything else will be stored until we can move back into the house. I had hours to cut my Ebay inventory down and eliminated many lower priced items. I was left with about 90 items in 8 storage bins that could go to the apartment. It’s been an adventure and I’m over the sad part. Since that event I have resumed shopping but I’m trying to purchase small items. That part isn’t really going very well but I have been hitting some good sales.

Last weekend I attended a sale at a Jewish center. The first item I saw was this pretty covered dish with a colorful graphic design. When I flipped it over I saw that it was an Arabia of Finland piece. I think it’s lovely and I will enjoy it on my dresser until it sells. This piece was marked $3 and I am hoping to get $70 for it.

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On a nearby table, for $3 I saw this pretty brush and mirror set. The turquoise color caught my eye and I’ve learned that the pattern is called Guilloche. I’m hoping to get $30 for the set.

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This unusual pin was only $1. It is marked Sterling Boris. I have not been able to find out much about it but it looks mid century modern to me. The turquoise is unusual with all that black in it.

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I picked up two mugs at this sale. One is a Taylor and Ng mug called Doggie Do Good. The other is by an artist named Emma Bridgewater from England. The Bridgewater mugs can sell very well although I don’t really see the appeal. I like the Taylor and Ng mug better but it is worth much less – maybe $15.

My gamble of the day was a set of dishes that caught my eye because of their lovely blue color and pattern. They are by Mottahedeh which is a brand I have sold before. The set included 8 dinner plates, 4 cups, 4 saucers, and 4 salad plates. It was $10 for all of it. The first lot I put up for sale is for four dinner plates. I have it up for $80 which may be high. I’ll be nervous to ship these. Did I say I was going to pick up only small items? Oops.

At another sale near this one I picked up a signed print by the artist Stephen Huneck called Greetings. It pictures a dog greeting another dog by sniffing his bottom. Dogs are gross. I have cats. Anyway, it was $10 and I’m hoping to get $50 for it.

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Those were the first sales I attended after the tornado storm and it really cheered me up. I had some good finds from this weekend too that I will share in a few days.

Dolls, Calico Critters and Steiff

This was a big weekend for dolls. I was at a large sale with loads of stuff piled everywhere. I was looking under a table and saw a clear bag marked “baby dolls $4” but when I looked at it I saw that they were American Girl dolls. I put them into my bag and they were half sticking out. Another lady saw them and said to her friend “Oh look – she got them.” I don’t know what that was about. Were these dolls meant for her with “baby dolls” written on it as a decoy? Maybe next time don’t put them in a clear bag.

The other doll I found this weekend was at a community tag sale where it was pouring rain. There was one man who had a little tent. He had a box of Barbie’s and said I could have the box for $5. There was only one I wanted but I didn’t want to just ask for the one so I took the whole box. The Barbie I wanted was a bubble cut Barbie with a 1958 date. She is in pretty good condition but there is a defect on her chin. She sold quickly for $24. She also came in a cute vintage outfit.

Again from the first sale, for $4, I got a box of Calico Critter figures and furniture. From another area I also picked up a green car which I have sold before. I am separating these items into lots and hope to get between $15 and $20 for each group. Here are some of them.

Some other odds and ends that I picked up include a pair of ceramic Japanese Emperor and Empress figures, a stone/fossil pyramid paperweight, a lucky charms charm bracelet and a Pokemon game in the style of Hungry Hungry Hippos.

I haven’t been finding much at the thrift store lately. I wonder if people have yard sales instead of just donating things, now that the weather is nice. I did pick up this giant tiger stuffed animal that I believe is a Steiff. Unfortunately he is missing one eye which has been replaced by a button. He was only $7 so I think I can still get a good profit from him but I have to figure out what the cost of shipping him will be first. He’s very heavy!

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That was a fun, busy weekend! Hopefully the abundance of good weather and sales will continue!

A Variety of Rummage and Estate Sale Finds

I went to a few large sales this weekend and two estate sales. I found some toys and some unique vintage items. I’ll start with the toys.

I picked up this Mega Bloks Halo figure set because it was pop culture related and only $1. I also picked up a Minecraft figure set. After I looked them up it seems the Mega Bloks set was worth between $40 and $50 but the Minecraft set was not worth anything.

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I picked up a Lego set called Elves which I never heard of before but seems to sell fairly well. I am hoping this set is complete but I don’t want to put it together. Wish my son still lived at home. I picked up these compact style Mighty Max play sets which I never heard of before either. I got them because they were all together in a bag marked $3 and they are made by Bluebird, the same company that makes Polly Pocket. I am selling them all together and hoping to get $40 out of it. They are not as popular as Polly Pockets.

In the dolls and plush category I found a Polish rag doll with a cloth face, a Lolly Dolly rattle doll by Fisher Price, an old teddy bear and a Kitty Kitty Kittens plush. I think I will be able to sell all these except for the teddy bear.

Among the vintage items I bought is this picture of a child eating a piece of fruit. It reminds me of a children’s book illustration. It actually pops out of the frame in a 3D effect. I picked up a vintage coffee grinder, a 1950’s style purse with a croc pattern and a battle horse made in India. None of these are home runs but I am hoping for at least $15 to $20 on each of them.

Here are two of my favorite finds from this week. This trinket box is illustrated with vintage scenes of women playing golf. It is marked Staffordshire Enamels. I have sold similar boxes before. They often fly under the radar and you can often purchase them for a good price. I was charged $2 for this one and I’m hoping to get $50 for it. The other favorite is this pair of Native American baby moccasins. They are very worn but I like them anyway. I paid up for them at $6 and I don’t know how much I can sell them for.

Probably the best pick up of the week were these game pieces because they were in a free box at an estate sale and I believe that they are bakelite. Always check the free box!

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So glad that garage sale season is back even though the weather here in the northeast is still not good. We had two nice days with 70 degree weather and today we are back to pouring rain and 40 degrees. Glad to have sales to think about and look forward to! Hope the weather is better wherever you are!!

Vintage Christmas, Dolls and Ponies

There were no exciting sales for me this weekend so off to the thrift store I went and found a few good items. I bought two dolls. First I saw this doll laying in the toy area. She looked older to me because her clothes had metal snaps but her face looked more modern. She had no markings on her. I walked around with her for a while and decided I should buy her since she was only 4 dollars and in fairly good condition. It took me a long time to figure out that she is a Betsy McCall 20″ ballerina doll from the 1960’s. I don’t know her price so I am starting high and will see what happens! She is the kind of doll I would have loved when I was a child. That’s probably why I couldn’t leave her at the store.

The other doll I bought is a Licca doll by Tomy. It is an anime style doll which I believe is like the Japanese version of Barbie. I have sold a few of this type of doll in the past for about $20.

The next thing I spotted was on the wall of toy bags. It was two My Little Pony figures. I have only been able to sell the G-1 figures from the 1980’s and that’s what these two turned out to be. The bag was $4. These are not rare ones which can go for a lot of money. I’ll be happy to get $10 for each one.

With so many people opening jewelry jars and talking about jewelry on Youtube I’ve started looking at the jewelry counter more closely. This blue egg locket caught my eye. It just really charmed me and I bought it even though it was $10. It opens and has an adorable little apple inside. This is something that I wouldn’t mind keeping.

I forgot to mention this item which I bought at a tag sale last weekend. It is an old box of bubble lights. There were 6 lights inside but I really love the look of the box.

Not too much to report today. That’s what happens when it’s almost winter and the tag sales run out. Hope you are all having fun and looking forward to the holidays!!

The Last Hurrah Before Winter

For about the past five years the sales I go to on the first weekend of December are the last good sales of the year for me. There is usually a church sale in a town near me and a school sale where I have pretty good luck and it was no different this year. I went to the church sale first. It started at 10:00 and the lady had us waiting in the lobby. At about 9:59 sirens started going off and I thought – oh great. The fire alarm. Now we have to go outside but it was only Santa. Then she had to talk for 5 minutes about Santa and the sale and the charities it was all going to and I was getting antsy. It’s hard when you’ve already been waiting and then you are waiting some more when you’re supposed to be going in.

I went to the toy area first which was a little smaller than usual but I found two vintage puppets from Germany. I love puppets so I was excited to find these even though my son found them so creepy he told me to burn them.

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After that I went into the part of the church where they sell everything else. I was walking around when I spotted this black Catherineholm pot high up on a shelf. It was marked $4. I love these mid century modern pots from Norway and they sell well. I also have a small collection in my dining room. The colors I collect are yellow, orange and red. The funny thing was that earlier in the week I found a yellow pan at the thrift store which I decided to keep. I haven’t found many Catherineholm pieces in all my years of thrifting so I was surprised to find two in one week!

I found a zip lock bag for $1 with six charming angels playing instruments. They reminded me of Erzebirge figures from Germany. After researching I discovered that they are by an Italian company called Sevi. The learning never stops!

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After this sale I went to a craft sale at a school where they also have a tag sale room. It appeared as though there were a lot of toys before I got there but you can only get to one sale first. I still picked up a few items including a Sesame Street play set and a blue Dansk teapot.

At another small sale I went to I picked up a few vintage toys including a Betty Boop cloth doll and a prize from Coney Island which is a dog that looks a lot like Snoopy except in red.

Finally I found a few pop culture items including a sealed figure from the Cartoon Network show Adventure time, and a figure from the show South Park.

As the days grow shorter the sales in the northeast become scarce. Time to start getting ready for the holidays and focusing on thrift store shopping instead!