New Obsession: Jorgen Jensen Pewter Necklaces
I’ll just start a new category of post here, with this one. The last time I had an obsession like this, it was my teenage girls on the phone obsession. I’m not over that obsession… it’s just on the backburner. My new obsession, after attending the Michigan Modernism Expo this past Saturday with Erin, is with 1960s Jorgen Jensen necklaces. Jorgen Jensen worked for Georg Jensen, but they are in fact not the same person. This is the necklace I found at the expo.
The woman selling it had it marked $85 and said it was a Georg Jensen piece, and went on and on about how famous he was. She said she’d sell it to me for $75 and I started debating. I put it on and Erin said I sort of looked like a rapper because the chain is a little thick and it hangs low. I’m cool with that look. But then Erin started doing a little snooping around online and discovered that a) the identical necklace was for sale on eBay for less money and b) it was Jorgen not Georg. I told the lady I’d pass and spent the next few minutes obsessively looking at others like it online. Here are a few of my faves:
I’m debating on that last one.
I also started freaking out last night because I saw a completed online auction for a whole lot of Jensen necklaces. So jealous of whoever won that!
Now it also appears that good old Jorgie had a sense of humor/goth side because he also made this necklace.
I think it’s cool but a little too creepy.
It’s also worth noting that last year, Erin did find two Jorgen Jensen necklaces at a sale for like, $2 each, and made a sweet profit on them. At the time, I liked them but wanted to let her maximize her profits and didn’t think to look on eBay for other designs, so I totally forgot about them.
Anyway, I did treat myself to one so far, please don’t judge.
I know this is a little crazy but I really love it and will feel like a true feminazi badass while wearing it.
On Saturday night, Zach and I went with my mom and dad to the Plymouth auction. The photos online looked REALLY bad, so our plan was to go to the auction, make sure there were no good items, and then go out to dinner instead. When we got to the auction, my mom, Zach, and I all breezed through pretty quickly. We were ready to abandon ship as soon as we got there.
I did like that little mini doll trunk in the photo above, but I wasn’t willing to wait around 3 hours to buy it.
Someone PLEASE fill me in on what these old punch board things are (the “Hit and Win” thing above). Sarah and I have seen these before and are so confused by them.
So anyway, the three of us are ready to leave, and I noticed Timmy over in a corner, kind of lingering, and looking around for the rest of us. I knew instantly that he found something. His excitement could not be contained, even though he tried really hard. He was looking around all paranoid-like, as though Homeland Security was watching him and the items he was looking at.
So what did he find?
This old Art Ross NHL puck in mint condition. You might remember that I found one of these pucks at an estate sale for $2, and sold it on ebay for over $200. And mine had a scratch in the orange decal!
At this point, I went and told Zach and my mom that Timmy found a treasure and now we had to stay. There were some grumbles, but we all knew that there was no leaving.
I did end up making a purchase. Zach wanted this lead Indian figure:
And it just so happened that it was bundled with an item I wanted, plus two other lead figures:
Of course, I wanted that donkey. He opens up and is a secret treasure box:
I paid $29 for the whole lot, which is fine because Zach was willing to pay $25 alone for the Indian. I almost had the bunch for $15 but then some guy jumped in and kept bidding me up by $1. We kept going back and forth and I wanted to yell to him (he was across the room) “BRING IT. LET’S GO.” I thought that would be funny, but it would most likely not be had I really yelled it.
So in addition to Timmy’s puck, there were two other items he wanted. A Gordie Howe collectors’ plate and a plastic baseball cup (I think from the 1960s). The cup had my dad’s favorite baseball player on it, whose name I now have forgotten. The auctioneer miraculously put all three items together in a lot.
And then the bidding started. I was so nervous for my dad that I was shaking. I know, so lame. I just really wanted him to win that puck! At $27 the bidding fizzled out, and Timmy was victorious. His max was $150, so I am sure he would have won no matter what, but it was AWESOME to see him get this so cheap!
I was standing in the back of the room (away from my dad) while the bidding was happening. When the lot ended at $27, this guy next to me said how my dad had just overpaid and obviously “that guy” doesn’t know the Gordie Howe plate is only worth 10 bucks. Of course, when this guy was saying this to me, he didn’t know that the winner was my dad. I said back to him, “Hmm, you know, I think they were bidding on that puck more so than the plate.” In my brain, I was smiling.
I saw this guy then go up to my dad later and ask him about the puck. Now—this is important—my dad made a cardinal sin. HE TOLD THE GUY WHAT THE PUCK WAS WORTH. Not smart. You have to keep these secrets to yourself, or next time, that puck won’t be going for a mere $27.
The last thing I will mention is that a woman brought a ferret to the auction. A LIVE FERRET.
That’s a photo of her kissing it.
Money Maker: J & E Stevens Antique Bank
So again, the Plymouth auction treated us very kindly. Remember all the way back in September when Zach bought a cast iron bank for $17? It looked like this:
Well this guy had been living on our bookshelf since then, that is, until Zach did some research on it. It turns out that this bank was made by the J & E Stevens company around 1872. J & E Stevens are best known for making some of the earliest mechanical banks, which fetch incredible prices on ebay:
These mechanical banks are also some of the most faked out there, so be careful!
J & E also made still banks though, and many looked like tiny safes. Early versions opened with a skeleton key, and later the safes had combination locks.
Zach bought our particular safe bank at the auction simply because he liked it. This is an example of one of my 2013 antique buying strategies. I’m going to buy things that I like, even if I plan to sell it. If it doesn’t sell, I have something to keep that I like. At the same time, chances are that if YOU like it, someone else out there might like it, and it will probably sell. It’s a win-win.
In this case, Zach bought something that not only he likes, but A LOT of people like. And a lot of people collect.
Here’s what the bank sold for:
Can you believe it? This was really exciting. I’m not sure what he is going to do with the money, but I hope it involves buying like 20.88 more J & E Stevens banks at $17 each. (Yes I did the math.)
And while you’re here, I’ll give you the duck decoy selling price I promised last week.
I want to double my money on everything I sell, all day err day.
So after our excursion last Friday, we decided to check out a Doug Dalton auction in Romulus. You might remember this same auction from that time Sarah bought a million dolls and I got my heart broken by some paper mache Halloween decorations.
As usual, the items at the auction looked high-end, and we were particularly excited about a mass of duck decoys they had to offer. I wanted to get to the auction early specifically to research and examine all of the ducks, considering I won the lottery last time I bought a duck decoy.
Sarah, however, had another goal in mind—washing her car.
That’s right, there are riches to be made, and Sarah wants to wash her car. Mind you, her car is filled with estate sale treasures she bought weeks ago, so cleaning her car is not a priority, JUST WASHING. So we did that. She tried to convince me to drive her car through the wash for her (she was scared) but I refused. I’ve watched enough People’s Court to know what happens when you drive your friend’s car into a car wash and accidentally destroy it.
Anyway, this hilarious sign greeted us as we exited the car wash. And also, look in that foggy mirror, there is TOTALLY a ghost child standing on the left side just below the white part. Spooky.
So on to the auction we went, and luckily we did have some time to inspect the goods. From my last duck victory, I learned that it is important for the duck to be hand carved, hand painted, and signed by the artist. The older the better also seems true. And the duck should be in good shape, unless it is super beat up and thus “primitive” looking, which some people also collect.
I ended up buying the two ducks below, as a pair, for $100.
They are signed with the name Hoffman, and a tag on them indicated that they are from the “Walter Snow School.” I have no idea what this means, but Walter Snow decoys seem to fetch high prices. I figured any connection to him would help.
At first when I won, I panicked a bit. I was caught in the moment and really should not have bid so high. My last decoy was only a $10 investment, and therefore much less risky of a buy. I started to worry that I seriously overpaid.
[Spoiler alert: I didn’t overpay! These ducks are doing swimmingly on ebay, and I will post an update with their final selling price.]
The rest of the auction looked just ok. It was mostly guns and man-stuff. Sarah visited a separate toy auction in the back of the room, so she will update you on that.
Here is a sea monster we didn’t buy.
The gun on the left looks like a dueling pistol! Zach has two replica dueling pistols, so I thought that getting him a real one would be cool. But then everything started selling for really high prices and I knew it was hopeless.
I also got excited because there were old instruments, which I also sold recently and did well with. That red Gibson guitar is apparently very collectible and Zach told me to try buying it. It was in bad shape but still ended up selling for $475. Obviously, I was not the buyer.
And if you think that is a high priced item, listen to this…we totally got to watch a saxophone at this auction sell for $4,000! It was incredible. People started cheering and clapping for the winner. The saxophone, a Selmer Mark VI, must be like the holy grail of saxophones. Look at what some recently sold for on ebay:
The other crazy part was that this saxophone probably would have gone higher than $4,000 but the auctioneer did not see a woman in the back of the room trying to bid. He closed the auction at $4,000 and the winner was some guy up front. The woman came running up and started arguing with the auctioneer. I felt bad for her though, she clearly had her hand up and was trying to bid. At that point though, there is nothing you can do, and all auctioneers have signs up saying they are not responsible for mistakes. Whomp whomp.
Update from Sarah: My car was so dirty that I could barely see through the windows. I also have an unreasonable fear of drive-thru car washes because I had a bad experience in one once: I stepped on the brake and you would have thought I set off a nuclear bomb considering how the guys at the place were yelling at me. So I really wanted to get my car washed while Erin was with me, so she could talk me through any traumatic events or scolding that might occur. My car was so clean after this wash that at the end of the auction, we walked up to my car and I thought it wasn’t my car. I actually asked Erin, “Is this my car?” True story.
This auction was so crazy packed with people. Obviously there isn’t a lot of entertainment in Romulus on Friday night.
Ok so first, I don’t know what Erin is talking about with that gun. I’m pretty sure you cannot buy a gun unless you have a permit. While I am writing this, Erin is texting me, trying to tell me that that isn’t true for guns more than “100 years old.” I told her it sounded like she was making sh*t up.
During the duck decoy auction, I bid on and won a “primitive” looking duck. I spent $50 on him which is a lot, but I figured that if he didn’t sell, he was cool enough to keep. Here he is.
He’s sort of leaning back in that picture so you can see the thing underneath—it’s made of some metal and old nails. He already has a few bids, so I think at the very least, I’ll make my money back.
The normal auction was boring me, so I went in the back room where they were auctioning off old tin toys and trains. I’m not sure why Erin didn’t come in there. I bought a few things, the most promising of which seems to be this old Western Pacific tin train, made in Japan.
It’s not getting much attention on eBay so far, but I’m still hopeful. One just like it sold for $132, so I’m not sure what all the homies are waiting for.
After the toy auction ended, we stuck around to see some of those instruments sell for a ton of money. One correction—that sax sold for $4400. I only know this because there was another guy bidding on it who actually plays them, and he was in line to pay right in front of me. He had stopped bidding at $4000 and was super pissed about not winning it, because the guy who did win it was going to resell it. I guess that’s just the way the cookie crumbles.
Cool Things & Chaos
We got a fairly late start on Friday due to the fact that I have a real job with real hours that need to be really worked in real life. There weren’t any exceptional looking sales (or even GOOD looking sales) once again, but we made it work.
The first sale we stopped at was very close to Erin’s house, and was clearly a “man sale.” But that’s ok! There were some cool things to see, along with a lot of chaos.
This guy obviously worked on cars, and possibly even planes. He had a lot of old literature on both of these things, but the space was so destroyed and crowded that it was hard to get a really good look without wondering if some structure was going to collapse on your dome. Erin decided to take a chance.
I saw a little crawl space that was filled with boxes and other nonsense. Of course, rather than sacrifice myself, I pulled Erin into the room and told her to get in there because she’s smaller than me. She obeyed and even had a mini flashlight. (Sidenote: I HATE when guys whip out their Maglite minis at sales. They’re always the SAME kind of guy—big, scruffy, and wearing dirty Hanes sweats. Do you think you’re on Storage Wars or what?)
Anyway, she pulled out a dainty keychain light (which is acceptable) and got down to business. She found a treasure of her own that I’ll let her tell you about, but she also unearthed this decent sized box of pictures and other paper.
She also found a few 8 mm and 16 mm films but the woman running the sale told me that she must have missed those—the family wanted to keep any and all movies (but apparently not still pictures?) I didn’t let her know she missed them because they were in the deep dark depths of the dirty crawlspace. But it left me wondering what was on those films—something scandalous, or just family memories?
I ended up getting the box of stuff for $10, which seems reasonable, though I haven’t looked through it yet. Erin spotted another big stack of photos in the garage, and the guy out there sold them to me for $5. All in all, an excellent deal.
One last thing that Erin considered buying:
The next sale on our list was out in Warren. We made the trek because it looked packed. Turns out, it wasn’t packed at all, and instead was primarily filled with cheap garbage. HOWEVER, I found one box of absolutely incredible items at this sale. I’ll maintain the suspense by first showing you some items that we did not buy:
Uhm. What? Wait… now that I think about it, why did I not buy this? Actually, I’ve got a new New Years Resolution: From now on, buy any and all ’70s resin figurines with sad and/or nonsensical sayings on them. We see them so often that I think it’s a sign. We need to start collecting them.
I’m not positive but I think these guys are made of cotton balls.
We were LOL-in’ about that cover and byline for a good while.
Ok, so here is the gold that I found:
Ok, so I realize that for everyone else on Earth, this looks like kindling for your fireplace. However, this box of books made me squeal with glee. I’m a librarian at a university and I manage a children’s and YA collection. Some of the books in this box are things I’ve never even heard of. I think I might feature one of them every so often on here because the summaries on the back covers alone are amazing.
It turns out these are a combination of “problem novels” and “female junior novels,” all ranging from the late ’50s through ’70s. I know this thanks to my friend Amanda who is a children’s lit professor who wrote her dissertation on NEGLECTED female junior novels. There were a few books in this lot that were things she’d never even seen in paperback!
So if you couldn’t already tell, this was really exciting for me. It’s just another example of the serendipity that sometimes happens—connecting you with a perfect item. I could tell that Erin was pretty much like “WTF” about my excitement, but she hid it well, and I applaud her for her efforts there.
The other thing I purchased at this sale was an antique 8x10 wedding portrait:
Isn’t it so cool? Also, there was a little note tucked inside that made me feel better about purchasing more old pictures of strangers.
Apparently even the previous owner had no idea who these people were.
Update from Erin: If Sarah sticks to her resolution of buying all 70s resin figurines, there are going to be a LOT more TTFYHO entries. I feel like a better 2013 resolution for Sarah is to buy NOTHING from the 70s. In fact, I was watching Market Warriors last night on PBS and the challenge this week was to buy stuff from the 70s and resell it at auction. Everyone on the show lost money…like a lot of money.
Anyway, the first sale on Friday was pretty grody. I came out of there covered in dust. Like Sarah mentioned, my trek into the crawlspace was fruitful. I found a bunch of boxes and inside one was an old Gruen automatic watch.
What is so amazing about this watch is that it sat so long without ticking (decades for sure) and the metal hands left little tarnish marks on the watch face. But because I had jostled the boxes in the crawlspace around, the watch started ticking again and was running great when I discovered it. How automatic watches are able to do this is beyond me…even more incredible than putting a man on the moon.
I paid a mere $5 for the watch, and it is blowing up ebay now.
Also, why didn’t I buy that dog portrait?! UGH. It was so great. I will kick myself over this for a long time.
The second sale was my worst nightmare. There was nothing for me to even look at while Sarah practically read each book she found cover to cover. I kept mincing around behind her like pacing animals do at the zoo when they are bored. I’m sure she appreciated it.
Our day didn’t end here though, stay tuned for a report on the auction we attended later that night.
DTT Top Ten Best Moments of the Year
Happy (almost) New Year everyone! It has been a really fun and hilarious first year of this little ol’ blog. Thank YOU for reading, and for the emails/facebooking/comments/etc. that tell us you enjoy our sass. We hope that 2013 brings even bigger and better estate sales and many more treasures.
To cap off the year, here are the top ten BEST moments of our estate sale insanity:
10. That time Erin bought a bear wearing a REAL GOLD necklace: Sometimes you find perfectly fine treasures that you are happy buying as they are—say, a Muffy Vanderbear doll. And sometimes, as an added bonus, that perfectly fine bear happens to be wearing a 14kt gold necklace. In our “Cash for Gold, Part Two” entry, Erin found out just how valuable gold is at the moment, when she cashed in a chain for $44. Who puts real gold chains around teddy bears? And who then sells that teddy bear for $12 at an estate sale? Whoever that person is, we hope they do it more often—wrap all our purchases in gold please!
9. That time DTT had a huge ass garage sale: The DTT garage sale put quite a twist on our normal routine. This time we were the sellers, trying to convince people to buy our garage sale wares. This was also a chance for us to unload all of the estate sale finds we had trouble selling on ebay, or that we fell out of love with. Let’s just say, we had a lot of stuff to sell:
Check out the entry “Cold Ones Left” to see how the garage sale went, and to hear about Sarah taking a serious spill on the sidewalk.
8. All those times we found ourselves in “interesting” houses: Hoarders? Check. Survivalists? Check. Straight-up Grey Gardens style situations? Check. We’ve seen it all, and somehow lived to tell about it. Take a peek at the entries: “Grey Gardens”, “Survival of the Fittest”, and “Hoarders. No Like Real Ones” for all the nitty gritty.
7. That time Erin interviewed Ryan Matthew Cohen of the Science Channel’s Oddities: Somehow Erin scored an interview with fan-fave Ryan Matthew, and the resulting post here on DTT (Ryan Matthew Kind of Hates Christmas, and Other Revelations) turned out to be one of our most reblogged/linked out/googled entries. In a later turn of events, Erin met Ryan in New York, where he nervously informed her that he confuses our blog with the phrase “Take that Bottle.” (That’s a phrase?)
6. All the times we made mad cash on eBay: And we are proud to say there were many! Check out our “Money Maker” entries to see just how well we did reselling our treasure finds. Our biggest jackpots can be found in the entries: “Original Goonies Movie Posters”, “Old Duck Decoy”, “Valley of the Dolls II”, and “Crazy Horse”.
5. That time a guy asked Erin for her home address: You meet all kinds of people while out treasure hunting. Erin happened to meet a guy who wanted to know where she lived…EXACTLY where she lived. Read all about it in the entry “Where I Live”.
4. That time we got in a CRAZY HUGE FIGHT with Cari Cucksey from HGTV’s Cash & Cari: We get asked about this all the time, so of course we had to include it in the countdown: our infamous quarrel with Cari, from Cash & Cari. If you remember, we started out in quite the love affair with the show, and with RePurpose estate sales. But then we mentioned ONE sale they had that was overpriced and crowded, and next thing you know, we’re public enemy number one. Find out just how loud ladies can yell in our entry “The End of an Era”.
3. That time we fell in love with auctions: Perhaps one of the biggest developments this year was our love affair with auctions. Maybe in 2013 we will change the name of this blog to YO! We Love Auctions or something like that. It all started with Erin’s fave honeyhole in Plymouth, featured in the entries: “Stand Down”, “Standing Room Only”, and “Trumpeting”. Sarah caught the auction bug in the entry “Open for Bidding”, only to have it explode into auction frenzy in the entries “Auction Crashers” and “Blacktop Surprise”.
2. That time we hunted down the person whose stuff we were buying at an estate sale and became cross-country friends with him: Despite our humor, estate sales are a really emotional thing, and we recognize that. Most sales happen because of a death in the family or because of other sad events (financial trouble, divorce, hoarding, and so on). At the time when we wrote our entries “House of Horrors Part One” and “Part Two” we had no idea that a charming California man had just lost his mother in Michigan, and it was her home we were shopping at. Our blog entry focused on the amazingly bizarre and intriguing items we found in the home, items unlike anything we had ever seen. And before long, Erin tracked down the aforementioned Cali man (entry “REAL LIFE”) and Sarah wrote a heartfelt entry all about him and his mother (entry “Be My Little Bumblebee”). You couldn’t have scripted it any better. In fact, we are all now friends, and for Sarah, even in real life!
OK, drum roll please!!! The BEST moment of the year, as you’ve probably guessed, is…
1. That time we went to the BEST SALE EVER: “Best Sale Ever”, as it is known, was, well, the best sale ever! We both still dream about this sale (literally…at night, in our dreams). Featured in the entries: “Best Sale Ever: Round One” and “Round Two”, this estate sale will forever live on as the perfect storm of all things wonderful about treasure hunting. The owner of this estate loved shopping, and the packed house showed it. Everything though was high quality, clean, and most importantly, CUTE! There was a great mix of antiques and newer items, and somehow we got the most incredible bargain bin prices on everything. Erin bought a brand new Pendleton blanket with the tags on it for basically pennies, and Sarah took home half a Hallmark store worth of books, ornaments, and Christmas decor. We visited this sale twice over two days and hauled our items out in a wagon each time.
So cheers to estate sales, and “junk”, and antiques, and to all of the people and places we encountered this year. To 2013, bring it on, we are ready for your treasures!
Happy New Year!
-Erin & Sarah
Fave Find: Antique Biscuit Box
I haven’t written a “fave find” post in awhile, but this recently-acquired biscuit box sure is cause to write one now.
Antique biscuit boxes were used at bakeries or old General Stores, and they were filled with doughy delights. The grocer would open up the box and use tongs to pull out the treats for a buyer. The box is metal with a glass front so purchasers could see the goods inside.
I found this particular box at a small auction I went to with Timmy on Thursday. It was right near my house, and all of the items looked good. Unfortunately, it ended up being really high-priced! People were bidding machines! I was getting very grumpy because neither my dad or I were winning anything, and because people were paying obscene amounts for worthless things. Common Effanbee dolls for $70?! They barely sell for $10 on ebay. It was a lot of stuff like that. [Sidenote: Zach pointed out that “Effanbee” sounds like I am saying “F’in B” which is funny.]
So I figured that the biscuit box would soar in price, and I would go home sad. It was the only item at the auction I REALLY wanted. But then it went up for bidding, and I won it for $25! I was thrilled.
As you can see from the photo, I put some old books in it and am now displaying it on our bookshelf. I think it adds a nice look to an otherwise typical shelf.
P.S. Can anyone tell me what “Not in the Trust” means on my box?!
A Tale of Two Virgins
Last Friday, we got started a little later than expected because I had some things to wrap up at work. There were only a couple of sales that looked really good. Erin and I were lamenting the fact that we haven’t come across a really awesome digger in a long time. I’m not saying we got our “awesome digger” fix… but we definitely got our “regular digger” fix.
The first sale we went to was in Taylor and it ended up being at a condo. On our way there, I started feeling really woozy which normally means a combination of two things: I’ve had too much coffee and not enough food. So I did what any person seeking nutrients would, and stopped at McDonald’s. Erin admitted that she had never had a chicken mcnugget, so I had to change that. Here is a picture of Erin losing her chicken mcnugget virginity:
Check out that horrific ring.
When we went inside the first sale, it did not look promising:
Lots of cheap figurines and such. But then, I turned the corner and looked down the basement stairs:
I was of course delighted by this view. There is nothing I love rummaging through more than paper and books. What can I say? I’m a librarian! It only got more exciting the further I got into the basement:
Erin found me down here and said, “Didn’t we already go to this sale?” because way back at the start of this blog, you may remember seeing some pictures that looked pretty similar. The basement was just filled with old magazines, books, and other paper “stuff.” There were so many pulp and romance novels. Here’s one of the best ones that Erin snagged:
It was really difficult to sort through all of the stuff down there because it was really dusty and disorganized. I still managed to sniff out some old greeting cards and cool books. Here are two pictures that Erin snapped of me in my element:
That second picture was taken upstairs, obviously. When I got out of the basement, as I was going up, Erin was on her way down. She looked at me and said sadly, “There are so many more books.” She knew I would not be quick. But because I am a good friend, I hurried it up and gathered some stuff that looked cool. But I’ll admit that I spent part of the weekend kicking myself for not going back on Saturday and spending more time sorting through some of that stuff.
The coolest thing I found was a partial set of the vintage series “Best in Children’s Books.” Some of the early volumes of this set contain illustrations by Andy Warhol, Maurice Sendak, and Ezra Jack Keats that were never published elsewhere. The main reason I was kicking myself was that I didn’t grab ALL of the volumes from this set. Anyway, whether they sell or not varies, but I haven’t decided if I’m keeping them or selling them anyway.
The next house we stopped at was the home of a Psychologist and an OB/GYN. There was some really awesome sh*t in this house, including…
Besides books, there was an old ’50s Freud couch (technical term):
Old ’50s models of the stages of embryonic growth:
and old intelligence tests!
They had this old medical stuff priced pretty high, but Erin and I both still took risks on it. I bought two different intelligence test kits—both for children. They had them priced at $75 and said they’d take $50 each. I took the risk. I haven’t listed mine yet but Erin listed hers. She can update you all on how it’s going.
We went to one final sale, and since Erin bought more than I did there, I’ll let her tell you all about it.
Update from Erin: Chicken Nuggies taste like nothing. I don’t know why people eat them. Maybe I needed some of that Sweet & Sour sauce. Anyway, the reason I had never eaten a nugget is because my sister used to get them and they looked all gray and lumpy inside. Sarah said that the new nugs aren’t like this. I think her exact words were, “Yeah, they don’t have those lumpers anymore,” which is funny because Sarah’s nickname in high school was “lumpers.”
Her other nickname in high school was “The Homicidal Virgin,” which was coincidentally the name of the book Sarah mentioned above. I bought this book and several others. I thought they would sell easily on ebay because they are all hilariously named, but also very sexy. So far no bids.
I pretty much hated this first sale because I know nothing about books, so I will just skip to the next one. The psychologist sale was great. Lots and lots of neat medical stuff to look at. The wife was an obstetrician, so there was a lot of birth related things. I bought an old “Birth Atlas” to sell. I paid 5 dollars for it, and it is listed elsewhere online for $140.
Sarah mentioned the Intelligence tests we bought. Mine is up now on ebay, and is currently bid up to $54. Completed listings show the same one selling for around $100, so hopefully mine will go up a bit.
What’s funny is that someone messaged me on ebay and asked how many puzzles there were in the set, and what the puzzles were of. I could only figure out 3 of the 4 puzzles!! There is an elephant, a man, and a head, but the last puzzle makes no sense. I don’t know if this is on purpose, or if I have now proven just how dumb I am.
Here’s something I passed on at this sale:
666? The devil be ridin’ dirty in that Holgate Toys truck. Watch out children.
The last sale we visited was a vintage Girl Scout goldmine. I was happy about this because I was a hardcore Girl Scout growing up (all the way through High School!) I loved Girl Scouts because my troop never earned badges. We just went camping and made crafts.
I bought a bunch of old GS books and some GS jewelry.
I should mention that I was a REALLY good friend to Sarah at this sale. Being a good friend is an important Girl Scout rule. Listen, a circle’s round, it has no end, that’s how long I want to be your friend. I LIVE BY THAT. Anyway, so there was this great sterling silver enamel GS ring that I found but Sarah convinced me she wanted to buy it “to wear.” She was also a Girl Scout and thought that wearing this nice ring would be a fun reminder.
I’ll have you all know that Sarah now has this ring LISTED ON EBAY FOR SALE. So let that mull around in your brain for awhile. Don’t think I won’t be invoicing her for a finder’s fee.
Alright, so there’s been a lot of auction talk around here. What can I say? We have auction fever. There are lots of reasons to love auctions, the least of all being that we’ve found some excellent resale items. Auctions let you sit on your butt and buy stuff while eating popcorn, and it satisfies natural competitive urges. If you haven’t been auctioning yet, check out auctionzip.com and find one near you!
As we’ve mentioned before, one of the best auctions we know happens every Saturday in Plymouth. Timmy is so hooked on this auction that he pretty much calls every week to ask if we are going to it. Last Saturday, he and I went alone, and ended up cleaning the place out.
We made sure to get to the auction really early, and got seats in the third row. With our game faces on, the auction started.
Tim and I had both written down several items of interest, and kept our notes out to keep track of what we wanted to bid on. This was smart because I then had a list to consult while looking up similar items on ebay. One of the items I had noted was an old trumpet by the brand CG Conn. I thought to myself, “What if is this is a super rare trumpet brand…I better look it up!” And here is what I found in ebay completed listings:
Those are some high priced trumpets!! I knew that I would be bidding on the one in this auction. I just hoped no one else had looked it up.
The trumpet did not go up on the block until the auction was nearly over. In the meantime, Tim was busy building an arsenal of purchased goods around our feet.
He bought a Tigers baseball bat, some old cricket paddles, two vintage football plaques, a pencil sharpener, a giant bag of old hockey ticket stubs, and who knows what else. I bid on some old poker chips for $7 which came with an old galvanized watering can and tiny metal oil can. We were running low on space, and I was about to bid on a giant trumpet in its case.
Luckily, the guy sitting next to us was really polite, and turned his legs out into the aisle so that we could pile stuff up in front of him too. I will say though, that I thought this man was going to try and kidnap my dad and keep him like a pet hamster or something. He talked his ear off all night about how he was the first person to sell Beanie Babies at Gibraltar Trade Center and now he is so rich, how he gets into Maple Leaf Gardens for free, how he’s played cricket and is really good at it, and on an on. I thought at some point he was going to announce how he was once President of the United States. I ignored most of these tall tales and kept my eyes locked on the trumpet.
So at one point, a bongo drum went up for sale, and no one bid on it. Not even for $5. So when this happened, the auctioneer threw in the trumpet WITH the bongo. I had let my gaze wander for a minute, and didn’t notice that the items had been bundled. Suddenly, I realized that the trumpet had been moved next to the bongo, and started to bid.
There was only one person bidding against me. And he was relentless. As we got up around $80, I started to panic that I would lose out. I didn’t want to spend over $100. At $85, the other guy bowed out, and I was victorious.
As soon as I won the trumpet, I told my dad to go grab it for me because he was closer to the aisle, and I was trapped by all of the stuff we had bought. He had been gabbing away with his new buddy and didn’t notice what item I had actually won. So Tim wanders up to the front table where the auctioneer is laying out some Harley Davidson ornaments he is about to sell. My dad then proceeds to START GRABBING AND LOADING UP the ornaments, right as they about to be auctioned off. The auctioneer looked at him and watched for a minute, totally confused at what this madman was doing. He then said to my dad, “WHAT ARE YOU DOING?”
My dad responded that his daughter had just won these items, and he was picking them up. It was so hilarious and embarrassing. I rushed up there to alert him that I did not in fact buy these Harley ornaments, but had actually won the bongo drum and trumpet to the right of him. It was really the best, and we laughed about him doing this the whole night.
Also, the guy who was bidding against me came over and said, “You must have done your homework. That is a VERY rare trumpet.” I told him, “Yes,” and then offered him the bongo as a consolation prize. He turned down the bongo, and was a good sport about the whole thing.
The trumpet is up on ebay now, and has two days left in the auction. It is already bid over the $85 I paid. And look at how many watchers there are! This is a record for me.
I hope that this trumpet just explodes with bids in the next few days! I saw on a message board that this particular trumpet in MINT condition is worth about $900. Mine is definitely not mint, but is pretty good for its age.
I was so content after winning the trumpet that everything else I bought after was just icing on the cake. I won a Limoges box for an incredible $5! I don’t think anyone looked at the bottom to see what it was. This is actually the second time I have bought a Limoges box super cheap at this Plymouth auction.
The night ended with even greater success for Tim. He had been waiting all night to bid on a game used UHL jersey. My dad used to work for the Motor City Mechanics hockey team, which was part of the UHL. I asked him how high he would go to win this jersey, and he told me $100. I speculated that it probably wouldn’t go up that high.
And I was right. The bidding started on the jersey and my dad was the ONLY person bidding. He won it for a whopping $5! He was stunned, and elated.
The Plymouth auction is truly the greatest honeyhole. No need for you all to rush out and start going to it though. Stay home on your Saturday night, or go to the club. Maybe take up crafting. Anything except going to this auction. I’m even thinking of banning Sarah from attending. Hey, I gotta protect my territory ;)
Sarah alluded to the fact that I was a “lucky b*tch” when I purchased an antique cast iron horse at the soggy-underpants-on-the-concrete auction we attended recently. Her assessment, while harsh, is true. I am indeed a lucky b*tch.
The auction was high-end, and people were bidding like crazy on everything. I figured I would go home empty handed. I did start to raise my hand for a Tiffany Lamp that I thought was selling for $25, when really it was selling for $2500, but luckily I caught myself. Finally, an item came up that I was willing to spend more on and win. It was a cast iron horse still bank/door stop. It was huge and heavy as hell.
This guy had everything going for him. There are cast iron collectors, there are still bank collectors, there are door stop collectors, AND there are horse collectors I could sell this to.
For some reason, I have been operating under the belief that I paid $65 for this guy, but I found a receipt when cleaning out my purse that said $85! What happened at this auction was that the auctioneer would speak so quickly, and people were bidding so rapidly, that you would raise your hand for one price, but be counted for the next highest bid offered. It was insanity. For days after the auction, I sulked about the fact that I had seriously overpaid for this horse. Here’s a text between Sarah and I where I complain about it, and Sarah kindly reassures me:
Well, as it turns out, I wasn’t so “dum” after all. That horse sold for some mad cash!
$300? I was so shocked. And happy.
I messaged the woman who bought the horse to ask about her motivations, and here is what she said:
Hi Erin - The horse is beautiful, in wonderful condition and is an extremely rare shape. The detail in the mane, the tail and the musculature make this iron animal very special. I collect the smaller cast iron bank horses. But this clydesdale a great surprise when I saw it and I knew I’d own it. The price I ended up paying is comparable to a cast iron boston terrier doorstop I own. And finally, I am a horse person; I ride and have loved these animals all my life. “Clyde” will be loved and will guard a prominant door in my home. Thank you for selling him. Catherine
She named him Clyde! I love that. And I love when this whole estate sale/treasure hunting/ebay thing we have going helps people to unite with items they might never have found otherwise. And when it makes us some serious cash, things are even better!