Monday, June 24, 2013

A sneak preview

Believe it or not, these are salt and pepper shakers. That wind up. And roll. Totally amazing.

Believe it or not, this is a vase. It holds flowers and is a fish. Also it's amazing. LOOK at how delightfully tacky it is. Don't you just love it?

More info on these pieces, plus some Ebay listings and more yard sale finds, later this week. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A new camera for a new adventure

I was just thinking as I set up my Ebay account that I'm going to need a new camera. My old camera, a lovely little Canon EOS Rebel XT, is still in working condition but is a little difficult to use for product photography. The digital display on the back is very small and I can't use it to see what I'm trying to shoot, forcing me to use the VIEWFINDER like a COMMON CHUMP. What is this, the Middle Ages?

So I decided to check out, as I do every day, and happened to find a suitable replacement that can be used not only for product photography, but also for point-and-shoot fun and ease while I'm out and about at yard sales and family gatherings. I've always been a Canon girl, but I do have a vintage 35mm Nikon I use when I'm feel the urge to do film photography without all the automatic frills and it serves me quite well. I think the COOLPIX will work nicely for me, and I'm excited to use it when it arrives this Friday so I can post photos of my spoils!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Making extra cash while simultaneously increasing my pizzazz levels

My parents have been buying and selling everything from graniteware tea pots to antique children's toys to vintage barn door tracks for as long as I can remember - and they're very good at it. Good enough that my mom has made more money selling on Ebay, stocking her antique booths, and selling to flea market vendors than she ever did working a 9-5.

Many of my Spring and Summer Saturdays over the past 10 years have been spent going to yard sales with her. It begins Friday evening, looking through the Bangor Daily News classifieds for any sales that look good, skipping over sales that began Friday because they will have already been picked-over, and make a list of the sales that fit the bill. Once the list has been put in re-ordered for optimal time-saving, we're ready to go.

The back seats of my mom's trailblazer are tucked down, we throw some empty boxes and rolls of bubble wrap in the back to protect breakables we acquire throughout the day, and we're off by 7:30. Most yard sales start at about 8am.

On a good day, we arrive home 8 or 9 hours later, and the trailblazer is meticulously packed like an intricate 3-d tetris puzzle. Knick-knacks wrapped and tucked into boxes, boxes tucked between the legs of upside-down side tables, framed paintings and mirrors tucked between legs and boxes, vases bubble-wrapped and placed inside plastic bins, books slid neatly into any available nook and cranny, jewelry delicately placed inside plastic bags and tucked inside purses so the tiny, valuable pieces don't get lost in the shuffle.

Over a decade of picking and haggling, I've learned a lot about how to supplement an income by buying and selling. The most important thing I've learned is that there is always so much more to learn. It's a process run equally by knowledge and gut - you pick up things you know will be worth something, and you take chances on things you think might be worth something.

Last week I made the decision that I would open my own Ebay account and start selling on my own. I'm used to picking for my mom — it will be a challenge to choose items for myself, knowing the money that's lost or made is my own.

But it's also really exciting! Blogging about it should be fun, too.

My general rule (which might change the further I get into this) is that if it's bizarre, kind of funky, something I've never seen before, and most importantly something that's well made, I'm going to buy it. Also, to begin with, I like to choose stuff that I'd be happy to keep for myself if they don't turn out to be worth anything.

The first two items I've purchased - a vase and a set of salt and pepper shakers - fit all of these criteria. They'll be up on the blog (and on Ebay!) later this week.

So follow me, see all the cool stuff I find, and maybe even snag some of it for a decent price. I guarantee that everything I sell will be supremely neat and straight from the streets. See what I did there? I rhymed, and it's a call-back to the tagline of the blog. SO clever!