It was supposed to be a nasty, rainy day all day yesterday, which is not a great thing for yard sales. But I am devoted. You want to know how devoted? Well, I’ll tell you.
When I lived in Boone, the Methodist church there had a really awesome yard sale every September. I worked early shift at the restaurant every weekend, so I did not do a lot of yard saling while I lived there. But I always made sure to get off work so I could go to this sale. They held the sale on Friday and Saturday. The last year that I lived there, I was going to go on Friday before my first class in the morning. But there was some hurricane or something and Boone flooded. They cancelled classes, which is a rarity at ASU, a college that could have been founded by mailmen, what with the through-wind-hail-sleet-snow mentality there. So I braved the rain and went to the yard sale. There were about five other people there, but it was open, and it was awesome. Usually that sale is packed with people, like Wal-Mart on Christmas Eve. I could peruse at my leisure without worrying that someone else was snapping up all the good stuff. And all because I braved a flood.
So I set out yesterday morning with that mentality. I had marked down a few church sales, because big events like that are unlikely to be postponed due to weather. People who put their crap in the front yard can just keep their junk in their house for another week, but there’s quite a bit of planning involved in a church sale, so they have to just take the weather as it comes.
The church sales were a little disappointing to be honest. I can never tell if all the good stuff is gone or if there just never was any good stuff to begin with. Or maybe I’ve been yard saling so long that I don’t want anything anymore. No, that’s not it, and I’ll give you proof.
We’ll start with these shelves. Now, they're pretty nice, and I'm sure the lady paid a decent amount for them. They seem to be solid wood except for the back panel. There were two, marked $8 apiece, and I was considering whether I could get her down to $10 for both. Sometimes I am wary of negotiating when it seems like the people are just going to get mad. I was trying to gauge her mood, when she just offered that price. It's so nice when people are desperate to get rid of their stuff. As you can see, the back is plain white. I'm considering getting rid of the back piece altogether, or maybe covering it with some pretty paper, as seen here
A short digression: If you go to that link, you'll see that the lady makes book covers for her books so that they match. Or something, I'm not sure why. I like that woman's blog, because she does a lot of neat things with thrift store finds, but I suspect that she does not understand about how books work. Books are not decorations, they do not have to match anything. And if you cover up your favorite book, how exactly are you supposed to find it again so that you can press it into the hands of your dear friend who really would love it? What really breaks my heart is she demonstrates the process of making book covers using A Confederacy of Dunces, an amazing book. Lady, you obviously have some good literature, so why are you covering it up? Okay, sorry, rant is done.
As you can see from the picture of the shelf, I bought books. Nice ones. They were a little pricey for a yard sale, to be honest. The Little House set was $5, and they look like they've never even been cracked open. I read all these books when I was little, when my sister-in-law loaned me her old set. I confess that I'm not even sure that I gave her books back to her, in which case, she can have these. Or I'll keep them. Josh did not even know that "Little House" came from a series of books, which just goes to show that he was never a little girl.
I also got the newest David Sedaris book, a pop History book, and some more Lemony Snicket. I got all these books for $10. If I had gone by the prices the lady marked, it would have cost me twice that. But I just ignored the marked prices and took advantage of the fact that most people out there in this country have never negotiated for anything in their lives. I offered her $10 for the lot, she looked confused and a little scared, then agreed.
It was a big day for storage. I found this cart for a buck. It's pretty cheapy, but the wheels roll very well. I am considering putting crafty supplies inside. I’m not particularly crafty, but I do have supplies. It would be nice if they were organized, even if they’re never used.
Also picked up this old peach crate, which will be used to store Josh's records. See, it's classier than the plastic crates he's using now, because it's vintage. Also, it reminds me of my nephew Lincoln. He tells blonde jokes, except that the butt of his jokes are always people from South Carolina. He's eight, and when he tells the joke, he wants to make sure that you get the crux of it, which is that everyone is in agreement that people from South Carolina are just not that intelligent, for all their other good qualities. So he'll interrupt himself in the middle of the joke to say, "And we think that South Carolinans aren't that smart." This crate reminds me of those poor, stupid South Carolinans, bless their hearts. It was fifty cents.
This table was another fifty cents, which is a pretty good buy, even though I didn't initially realize that the top is not glass, but thick plastic. However, the base is iron, so I still think it was worth it. I do not yet have plans for this little table.
I picked up some used purses, which I do an awful lot. I have a lot of purses. I'm a little embarrassed to say that, since I used to make fun of my friend Amy for having a lot of purses. I used to tell her that she switched purses as often as she switched boyfriends. Amy must have had low self-esteem or she would have started hanging out with nicer people. But I guess Amy won in the end, because she's happily married now and probably only has a couple of purses, while I have a lot of purses and am considering how many cats I could possibly live with in this house of mine.
Anyway, purses. I buy them frequently at yard sales and thrift stores, and I get rid of half of them after one use. I find that purses are the kind of thing you have to use for a while to know if they're for you. Or maybe I’ve only determined that because I buy them on a whim, because they’re so cheap. It’s like an experiment. Can I pull this off this look? Sometimes the answer is no, but I’m only out a dollar or so, and now I know that I do not look good with a knitted old lady purse. You can buy knowledge at yard sales.
I bought this one yesterday for $.50. It may or may not be leather. If it is leather, it could use some TLC. If it's not leather, it's not worth the TLC. In terms of practicality, it's big enough and has pockets. I carried it yesterday, and I think it might be a winner. The shape is slightly reminiscent of a giant pair of lips, which I find distracting. The zipper does not help.
This, friends, is called a bermuda bag. I know that because the internet told me so. This one that I picked up yesterday has a thick plastic handle. I already own one, with a wooden handle. I got this purse at a huge church yard sale that was winding down. It was marked $5, because it was considered a "boutique" item, and you know how the French language makes normal things expensive. The best thing about Bermuda bags is that you can switch out the bag part, so that you really have several different purses for the price of one. This one came with seven different bag parts, and only one of them was ugly. A few of them were reversible, which meant that you get two patterns in one. Two of them were corduroy, and I have a weakness for corduroy, ever since my mom read me that book about the bear with the lost button (or since seventh grade when all the cool kids had corduroy pants except for me). I thought long and hard about paying $2.50 for a purse. Yard saling will do that to you. It will make you think long and hard about $2.50.
I also picked up a wine rack for my mom, and I already gave it to her, so I can tell you about it without spoiling any surprises. I have several wine racks myself, all of them completely empty right now. See, since I bought the house, I've been cutting back, which includes wine. Apparently, it does not included purses. When I first saw the wine rack at the yard sale, I was torn, because I did want it, and yet I really had no good reason to buy it. Then I realized that my mom would find it adorable. So I got to find a good deal, which is one kind of rush, and then I got to give someone a present they would love for no reason at all, which is another rush. It was a heady day.
The woman wanted $2, but I got it for $1. I can't find an exact copy online, though there are several versions out there, ranging from $40 - $140. The picture on the left will help you get the idea, although the one I got holds more bottles. My mom loved it and thinks I'm a great daughter. She doesn't know how I used to her to make myself feel good.
So clearly, I still have no trouble finding stuff I don’t need yet want to buy. I guess that’s comforting.