Vintage Christmas, Puppets and Barbies

Estate sales are the only sourcing opportunity for me lately. Last week there was only one near me but I think it was a good one. It opened at ten and when I drove by at 10:15 there was no parking and a line out the door. I decided to go to the thrift stores and come back later. I was hoping there would still be things to find. The funny thing about this sale was that it was like a mirror of my life. This family liked everything that I do including puppets, dolls and dollhouses. It looks like the husband also did a little magic and that is the same for my husband. I paid $33 for the items I’m sharing below.

One room was toy/puppet/doll central. There was a bin of old puppets. From there I bought a vintage Eeyore puppet which was an early Gund Swedlin toy. I found the same Steiff black poodle that I found in November at a different sale. That one sold recently for $19.99. I would have gotten more if it had its Steiff ear button. I also picked up a Gizmo puppet which needs a sewing repair. Which means it probably not get listed until the spring. The last puppet was a Santa Claus with a wooden head from East Germany.

I noticed a box on the very top of a bookshelf and when I pulled it town I found three vintage Barbies inside. There were two Francie dolls and one PJ doll. One of the Francie dolls was wearing a vintage Barbie dress which I decided to sell with her.

I also bought a stuffed animal from that room which is Sandy from Little Orphan Annie. I didn’t know what it was at first. I thought its was a toy that just lost the color in the eyes but then I realized who it was. His fur was quite dirty and took a while to clean.

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The find of the day was this Bradford Celestial Star spinning light Christmas tree topper. In good condition these can sell for a few hundred dollars. I found this in the basement with some other old Christmas stuff. I believe it is from the 1950s.

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So the dirt, grime and musty smells were worth it! Still – it does make me miss the tag sales of spring!

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Grimy Estate Sale and a Trip to the Bins

I went to an estate sale that mentioned in the ad they didn’t have time to clean or organize and they weren’t kidding! They had stuff laid out on tables, on top of dressers and beds and lots still in cabinets. All complete with original dust. I saw some vintage items in the photos so I went even though I couldn’t get there until 2 hours after it opened. I think I found some interesting items and paid $20 for all.

I found the bottom half of a Holt Howard Pixieware Russian Dressing jar. There is supposed to be an adorable face stopper at the top but that is missing. Complete, these can go for between $50 and $70. I am hoping someone might need a replacement bottom.

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The next item is a tin box with 6 smaller tin boxes inside. It is called a metal home budget bank and I believe it is from the 30s or 40s. I think what you would do would be to divide your money into each of the smaller boxes for groceries, electric bill, entertainment, etc. It really evokes images of a simpler time. I love the turquoise and yellow colors. These seem to be pretty common and may only sell for about $15 but I couldn’t leave it behind.

Inside one cabinet of knick knacks I found some vintage figures. The first is a pair of snowmen dressed like candy and holding a peppermint. They have loops on their hats so I assume they are ornaments. There were two satin ball chicks marked Japan and one ceramic chick. The satin chicks have some condition issues. I’m hoping someone might like them for an Easter display.

There were a few boxes filled with small toys. Out of those I pulled a small Godzilla figure from 1985 and an empty Game Boy Pocket box. There was no Game Boy in it but sometimes collectors will purchase empty boxes.

The last item I will mention from that sale is this cute wooden mid century modern cat pencil holder. When you put a pencil in the hole it the back, it angles out to look like a tail. Unfortunately the cat is missing one of his puffy checks.

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After this estate sale I realized that I might be close to the location of the goodwill bin store in Connecticut. When I punched the address into the GPS it turned out to be only 10 minutes away! So that was my next stop. I found four plush items there and paid a total of $6 since it is pay by the pound.

The first thing I picked up was this Hush Puppy puppet from Shari Lewis. She is more famous for the puppet Lamb Chop.

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I picked up this cute avocado plush toy. There is a Japanese word, Kawaii, for things that are cute. This style of putting cute faces on all sorts of things is becoming very popular.

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I picked up this sweet rabbit because the tag said “Swedish Design”. The brand is Bukowski.

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The last thing I picked up was this white whale shaped pillow. It still needs a bit of cleaning but it might appeal to someone who is decorating in a nautical style.

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So that was my Thursday shopping haul. So far the winter has been very mild here, which has been good for getting around and scavenging!!

Best Plush Sales of 2018

As the year draws to a close and I am grateful for another fun year of finding and reselling toys, dolls and many other unique and interesting items. The following are my top ten plush sales of this year from the least expensive to the more valuable items.

This plush was bought for about $1 at a church rummage sale that I arrived late to. I am mentioning that because sometimes, even if you aren’t the first one in the door, you can still find good items. This is a plush of the character MO from the Disney Pixar film Walle. The minor characters from movies can be more rare and sought after than the main characters. He sold within a few weeks for $19.99.

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This Donkey Kong plush was a thrift store find. He took longer to sell than I thought he would. I had found another one of these a while ago but realized after I got that one home that his arm had a large hole in it and was coming off his body. I had to toss that one so I was happy to find this one that was in good condition. I paid about $4 for him. He sold after several months for $32.99.

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At the same sale where I found MO I picked up another Disney character that I didn’t recognize at all. With the help of a facebook group I was able to identify him as a character from a Pixar short movie. This character is called La Luna Bambino. He was pretty rare and sold for $39.99.

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I get very excited when I see a plush pile at a sale. I attended one church sale where they had a kiddie pool full of plush! Searching through that pool I pulled out this small vintage Steiff cat. She sold for $39.99.

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This vintage Gund bear came out of another plush pile that was fill a bag for $1! He appears fairly plain looking but his 1980s date and the Gund name gave him some value. He sold for $49.99.

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Also from the thrift store was this plush Copper from the Disney movie The Fox and the Hound. I paid about $4.00 for him. I think he’s super cute! He was a larger size at about 12″ tall and sold for $49.99.

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While I was fishing through another box of plush under a table at a tag sale I saw a little paw sticking out and I recognized it right away as a Steiff hand puppet. I had this one when I was a child and was able to sell it for $49.99. There was also a black cat puppet there but I decided to keep it for my collection.

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This next plush was a find from a nursery school sale where all the plush was 50 cents. The year before the plush was free but that’s a price increase that I can live with! This one was purchased on a gut feeling that it might be something good. You can take chances when you are paying 50 cents for an item. I thought that it looked vintage and the outfit looked cute. Only after I got it home did I find the tag which said it was a Le Mutt dog from France. He sold within a month for $55.99.

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This next item was certainly unusual looking. He was a large stuffed robot call the Iron Giant. Even though he had a hole in his foot, he sold for $99.99.

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This last plush really cheered up my January. He was a thrift store purchase. I had just seen a video about a man that sold a giant plush Mufasa from the Lion King for $600. I had that in my brain when I saw this large Simba plush at the thrift store for $7. When I got home I realized that this one was the same brand as the Mufasa. Although not quite as valuable, I was thrilled to be able to sell him for $300.

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Those are my top ten plush finds! Stay tuned for more top ten lists!!

Knick Knacks, Plush and Vintage Signs

As the weather becomes colder the sales in the northeast start to dwindle. There were two sales this past weekend. At the first sale I spent $5 and bought a group of small items.  My father used to hate knick knacks. He called them Tsotchkes and he thought they were things to spend money on and dust around. I loved them and I still do! The lady I bought these from must have collected cats. The first item was a wooden puzzle box/pen holder cat. The black cat was marked Aarikka from Finland. It is not very old but has a Danish modern look to it. The ceramic cat is a “gum parker” from the 1950s I believe. The one non-cat item I bought was this small pair of Japanese Kokeshi dolls with bobbling heads.

The next sale was a church sale that was on its second day. They were doing fill a bag for $10. I bought some plush called Worry Eaters. I think that you write your worries down on paper and then feed them to the creatures. They looked kind of unusual and similar to a toy I picked up last winter that eats feelings which doesn’t really make as much sense to me. I sold that one for $19. I might be able to get $10 each for these. I also bought a Gruffalo which is a character from a children’s book.

I stuffed this dog print into my bag. It’s by the artist Marc Tetro. I once wanted a purse with his artwork on it when I was in Manhattan and I remember that I didn’t get it because it was $60. I thought maybe this would have some value and have it up for $18.

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I had an interesting find at the thrift store last week. They have one area where they sell signs. Many of them are reproduction metal signs of old advertising like for Coke or Texaco. I saw this bread sign and it was marked $4 like most of the other signs but I don’t think that this one is a reproduction. I have it up for auction.

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Me and my husband used to collect these signs and had our basement decorated with them but I think we have enough. If it doesn’t sell we’ll probably keep it.

Hopefully there will be some Christmas Bazaars with White Elephant areas coming up! Happy Halloween everyone!!

Sometimes It’s The Little Things

I attended two sales this weekend. The first was a children’s sale where many of the toys were priced at $5 – $8 and not good for resale but this sale had a few boxes of small items that were 4 for $1. I found 6 Calico Critter figures in one and a train in another. I’m hoping to get $20 for the Calico Critters and $10 for the train.

They had boxes of plush that were 50 cents each so guess what the rest of the stuff I bought there was? This dog is called Le Mutt and is from 1980. Prices seem to run between $30 and $50 on these. I found a newer Steiff monkey. I was excited when I saw the button and yellow tag. He’s not super valuable but I hoping to get $15 for him.

I found this dog that is from the book “Harry the Dirty Dog” which I remember from childhood. I also got a Big Bad Wolf puppet that I am hoping to get $10 for.

Sometimes I find an item that I can add to an existing listing to help it sell. I found the blue and gray Pokemon and the Squirtle plush in one of the boxes and added them to a lot of 3 Pokemon that I already had. I raised the price a bit and hopefully this lot will sell soon.

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I found a unicorn Pusheen plush and added it to a Pusheen that I had listed but wasn’t selling. I love Pusheen. She likes to nap and eat sweets just like me.

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I found one doll this weekend at an elementary school sale. She is a Corolle doll in her complete outfit so I’m hoping that will help her to sell.

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I am focusing on toys lately to hopefully help my holiday sales. Twelve out of my last twenty sales were toys. That is all for now. It is getting harder to find sales this time of year!

A Pile of Plush, A Toy Tent and Fill A Bag!

I went to a sale that had all my favorite things mentioned in the title of this blog. It was pouring rain so some of the plush in the pile were wet even though it was under a tent. I pulled three toys out of the pile which was “fill a bag” for $1. I pulled out this old Disney Bear named Bongo. I never heard of him before. He is from a film produced by Disney in 1947. He is also a very early Gund toy. I don’t know what he is worth. Maybe a million dollars!  The second item I bought is a Gund bear from 1981. He may bring $20. Finally I got a purple Lumpy elephant from Winnie the Pooh.

Besides the plush pile there were also other toys. I picked up this old doll. She is a Dy-dee doll by Effanbee. I’ve never seen these before. Her rubber body was cracked and damaged in some areas but she still sold quickly for $40. She has a sweet face and I really like her bonnet.

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In another tent were tables of household items and decor. There was a stack of coasters and I picked them up because they were unusual looking and made in Italy. They were marked Fornasetti Milano which turns out to be fairly collectible.

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I found several mid century figurines which I put together in a lot because each is worth no more that 4 or 5 dollars on it’s own. My favorite is the angel cat. I believe that the chimney sweep is by Goebel although it is unmarked. The brown dog is a Lefton piece. I don’t understand the meaning of the monkey climbing out of the piano.

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In the same tent I picked up a wall plaque featuring two sailing ships in scrimshaw, a small jewelry box shaped like a sewing box, an old copper pot and a green Catherineholm pot.  Nautical items have been selling well which is why I picked up the ship picture.

That’s about it for this weekend. There was a large variety and items I have never seen before which is always fun and helps me learn about new, wonderful things!

Vintage Toys, China and More!

Recently I have visited a few tag sales and a rummage sale at a synagogue. I picked up some vintage dolls including two Barbies from the 70’s. I believe these are Malibu Barbie and Malibu Francie. They are not very valuable but I am hoping to get $20 for the pair. At the same sale I also picked up a Mego Action Jackson. They recently came out with a 2018 repro of this doll but I believe that this is a vintage version. I am also hoping for $20 on him.

At the same sale I picked up two Sasha doll catalogs. There is a big market for the Sasha dolls so I’m hoping that someone will be interested in this pair for $10? At another tag sale I picked up a pair of Orchids of Hawaii Tiki mugs. I haven’t made big money but so far every Tiki mug I have picked up has sold for at least a $15 profit.

At the synagogue sale I picked up some plush toys including Tutter the mouse from the show Bear in the Big Blue House which my kids used to watch. He has sold already for $14. I also found 3 Pokemon plush which I am trying to sell together for $24.

Two other toys I found there are this vintage Cooky Cucumber – friend of Mr. Potato Head set, and a new package of Codename Kids Next Door figures. I believe the Mr. Potato head set is from the 1960s because it is similar to what me and my brother had when we were young.

I also found some pretty china at the sale including this trinket box by Royal Worcester. It has an interesting scalloped texture and painted flowers. I found a very similar one listed as “Victorian.” That one sold for $23. I paid $1 for this one.

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The tea cups were $3 each and I picked up this green Aynsley set because of the pretty green color and the corseted shape. I also picked up this MA Hadley mug for $1 even though I already have a set of 4 MA Hadley mugs in my store that haven’t sold yet.

Those are my finds for last week! Hope it’s going well for the teachers and kids who are going back to school!!