When They Can’t Take It With Them – Garage Sales


I found a carton of 100 bars of black pumice soap for 2.00 at a recent sale. Last night, I rubbed a bar on the dried milk paint on my blue jeans and the paint came out. The pumice is very fine.  It even smells great. I have a mind frame that anything made in America before 1970 is better than anything  for sale in the stores today.

Aqua Shelf Unit

Everything in this picture was found at a rummage or garage sale and all but the crocks and the chair sold the first weekend I had them in the shop. These Victorian folding rocking chairs are only suitable for displaying a doll as the original upholstery probably wouldn’t hold up for to many more years. There are a zillion of these in the marketplace because they were popular during the Victorian era. But, most don’t have their original wool tapestry fabric. A woman could take one of these out on the porch on hot summer evenings, easily move it near the bed to read to a child or pull it in close to the stove in winter.




I found these windows at farm moving sale that my friend Janet talked me into attending with her. She said we would be gone for an hour and we got back six hours later. The windows were up in the rafters of a garage. Black with decades of dirt and in the dark recesses of the high ceiling, I almost didn’t notice them. The windows in the middle picture are truly that vivid. What a once in a lifetime find and all because Janet stopped over for coffee on the way to a sale. This is the first summer I ever went to garage sales. I fill my thermos with coffee, pack a couple of sandwiches and head out towards farm country. My GPS is the most fabulous invention of the last three decades as far as I’m concerned.  I rarely have any idea of where I am but I never get lost. What a marvelous bit of technology.

I meet the friendliest people and have wonderful conversations. I never try to bargain people down from their asking price. If I think the price is too high, I just don’t buy it. The prices are usually so low that it would be an insult. I heard this conversation yesterday. A woman was selling a new attractive, fine quality set of dinnerware. It was blue and white in a floral design. This wasn’t Walmart china. It was good, hard-fired porcelain. The seller, probably in her early 80s was selling the set for 10.00 which she explained to an interested woman was 10 cents a piece. I heard the customer say to the seller, “Would you take 8 cents?”  The owner said, “No, I wouldn’t.” and the customer drove off. One hundred pieces of fine china for 10.00 was not a good enough deal for that garage sale shopper. It makes me crazy. Well, it makes me crazier.