Saturday December 21, 2013
Hi everyone. After having little to no sales on Black Friday, the holiday shopping season heated up a bit for us. We've seen this in general over the past two years. It's an interesting phenomenon - basically people tend not to concentrate on vintage on Thanksgiving weekend as much. They're buying electronics and newer things, trying to get the most out of the crazy sales that brick and mortar retailers and online merchants are having. But a little closer to Christmas, you get more people looking for "that special vintage gift".
In any case, it's time to pack orders today - but we'll run through a few thrifting finds first:
This is the second Lasisepat Finland cactus vase I've come across. Still haven't seen a definitive ID on it, or maybe I've just missed it while looking. Some people say it might be from Ravenhead instead.
I have to admit I'm not the biggest fan of the Henning Norway troll carvings, so I hadn't picked up any ever. This one was the right price, so it came home for the shop.
At last week's flea market, there was someone selling a bunch of Dorothy Thorpe silver and crystal pieces. I ended up negotiating for the whole thing. I hadn't seen this elongated tray before.
I've had the small bowl from the chip and dip before, but not the actual chip plate.
There were two of these square trays, but I only listed one as the other seems to have quite a bit of wear. Difficult to tell sometimes what's wear on these pieces, due to how they're produced.
I picked up this Heath Ceramics standard white 4-notch ashtray at a nearby thrift store that has really gone down the tubes in terms of vintage goodies. We used to find amazing things there and I used to visit 2-3 times a week, but somehow they lost their mojo. Not sure what happened, but hoping that this Heath is the start of a turnaround for them.
I think this is the 5th time we've come across this Jaru form before, and I don't believe I've ever found one with a sticker. There are at least 2 other forms of vases related to this one, but this one is the one we continually seem to find.
This set of Russian nesting dolls is already on its way to a new home. They were actually Linda's, from the late 80s.
Lastly, I think we posted about finding this Cathrineholm fondue previously - but we finally decided to list it up. The reason is, we have another identical one like it - and we didn't want to be accused of hoarding all the CH ;)
That's it for this roundup - happy thrifting!
Saturday December 21, 2013
Hi everyone. We're going to take a little blog break, so this'll be the last roundup until the new year. We had quite a few different things going on with the shops this year, the most significant being the opening of our brick and mortar antique mall booth this past summer. It has been doing well lately, but we'll still have to do a gut-check at our six month milepost in February to see if we want to continue.
I was going to do a really long "The Year in Vintage Reselling" type post, but I think I'll wait awhile. But in brief, for us it's been: Trying different ways to buy and sell inventory, selling more items but sometimes for less money, and dealing with the disturbing trend of vintage getting pushed aside or completely out of online venues. I had to bold that last one - it's been a serious concern among our fellow vintage shop friends.
I admit I got on the holiday train a little too late with ornaments like this Swedish girl on sled. Every year, I think I'll get them listed up early enough but it never happens.. ah well, it will go in the "Holiday" inventory box along with its friends until next November...
I was going to say the same about this Swedish tomte santa, but it's already on its way to a friend ;)
Likewise this, blue dala horse was a speed sale - sold the same day it was listed up. We still pick up dalas whenever we can, as even with the market glutted they seem to eventually go.
I picked up this cute porcelain figurine of a baby girl from Denmark - don't know the maker, but it's probably not Royal Copenhagen or a big name. The way the eyes are painted makes it look kinda creepy when you view it from the front...
Heller Vignelli plastic is a slow but consistent seller for us. It surprises me that there's still market for it, but I guess because there's so many colors, there's enough collectors looking to complete their sets.
This tiny kokeshi and lamp decorative piece is really fun - it actually came out of some of my grandmother's old things. We've been slowly putting up a few of the kokeshi things that were found in some of the old boxes. The kokeshi heads move independently - this one has already gone to a new home as well.
This is the second Kalmar teak CD storage cabinet I've found. I have to say that I've kept one in the office for so long because it's really well constructed, with a clever mechanism for ejecting the CDs.
I have a hard time pasing up the Dansk Flamestone pieces like this open baker. It actually might've had a lid, but it was in good condition and had the old ducks mark so I grabbed it for the shop.
Last up - I've known about these Isabel Bloom pieces for a long time now. They're not super valuable, but sometimes worth picking up and it just surprised me. But I never really mentioned it in blog posts. You see, it's a quandary that vintage sellers face all the time - of course we want to be open and share information. It's more fun to talk about all the cool things we've come across that turned out to have value. This is how we learn about what things to look for as well - and yet, sometimes putting all this information out there all the time feels sort of like showing all of our cards.
I used to think that it didn't matter much, because vintage sellers are spread out all over the country (and world). So as far as finding these things is concerned, we would overlap SOME but there'd still be enough for everyone. This is true to some respect, but the other side of the coin is that if everyone is finding the same valuable thing and putting it up for sale globally online, it starts to glut the market. We've seen this first hand - things start to sell less quickly, in a surprisingly short amount of time.
This was starting to trouble me for awhile, and as a consequence I've thought about holding off on posting certain things. But I've come to realize that there is no way to stop it - I mean if other resellers really wanted to figure out what things we'd "discovered" were valuable, all you had to do was monitor our shop(s). And eventually, the word will get out about items on it's own - whether or not it's from you.
The only thing to do as a vintage seller is to constantly learn and investigate different types of items, do your own research AND participate with researching fellow sellers' items. It's hard to get out of your comfort zone, but unless you're one of the big fish who specialize, it's starting to be necessary. Maybe you don't have to stay on the bleeding edge of the curve, but it helps to learn about as many things as you can - and then take advantage of the demand while it's there.
LOL - i just had to throw in my 2 cents about this before the end of the year. Hope everyone has a great holiday, and see you in the new thrift year!
Saturday December 21, 2013
Hi everyone. We were supposed to have a roundup in middle of week, but got behind with all the Thanksgiving stuff going on. Making some progress on the backlog of inventory to list, and hope to get most of it out there in a few weeks. It might be too early to tell, but so far it seems to be worth it to do product-focused blog posts this way. Pinterest also seems to have helped out with exposure. We're seeing increased page views and possibly sales directly from our posts, though it's difficult to tell ... since 'tis also the holiday shopping season!
This Madeline Originals vase is not really a thrift find, but one that we've had in our main shop for awhile now. I've slowly begun moving all the items over to either Ebay, Etsy or our antique booth. I decided to start including these in our posts, because the majority of readers won't have seen them before.
I'd hesitated on this little Howard Pierce goose figurine awhile back (it had some wear), but finally decided to pick it up on a return trip. Glad I did, as it's already flown to a new home!
I'm not sure why I keep picking up so many of these small Otagiri Japan vases - they don't do as well for us in the shops, but I can't seem to help grabbing them.
On that theme - I have a weakness for kitschy "one-use" older items like this "Swiss musical door chimes". I can't imagine this would last longer than a week in a busy kitchen where the door keeps opening.
Nice little Desert Sands (I'm assuming it is) vase. These were made by the Evans family, in various places including Nevada and California. Similar look to Niloak Mission.
The Wilmot pieces continue to turn up every so often in thrifts for us. I hadn't seen this bird shape before.
I picked up this "desk loupe" at an estate - was almost thinking of keeping it at first because it seems kind of handy.
We pick up a lot of California pottery from different companies - this is the first time I've run across Pas Cal. I've seen it in the books, but those weren't crackle glazed like this horse. I actually thought it might be a La Mirada piece at first glance.
I saw these Taylor and Ng mugs in a thrift a few weeks back, and I was like GIMME. While the market has gotten a bit glutted with T&N mugs, the French mugs do well for us - they've sold already.
I had a lone Blenko ice cube pillar like this that had languished in the shop before, and then I happened to find two more the other day. Listed them up, and they went quickly. I guess people like them in pairs better.
I was still trying to figure out the maker of this teak fish trivet. I thought at first it might be newer, but other sources seem to say vintage. Whatever, never mind - it already went!
Lastly, we found these 5 Libbey fish glasses in the Mediterranean pattern at the flea market. I'd just put these up, when we ended up finding a TON of the same pattern glasses but in a different shape. In fact, we found 23 of them! Already started listing them up, but still deciding whether to keep some - not that we need any more glasses.
That's it for this roundup - happy thrifting!