Yard Sale Documentation Project: 4-14-12

In case you missed it, I’ve taken on the documentation of my Saturday morning adventures in yard sale-ing, since Oprah never did call (what, she’s got better things to do– like build orphanages?) and Nate Berkus has not yet returned my calls. (You can visit the first post of this yard sale season if you like by clicking here.)

Today was a pretty good day for this early in the season.  The smell of bargains rode the air as it wafted into my bedroom; that plus it being a bright, sunny morning made it pretty easy to get out of bed. By 7:55am I was in the car.

The first stop was promising: some antique-y stuff, a real nice homemade king size quilt (asking price $7), lots of brand new replacement windows that apparently had never found homes. I left with a holiday candle holder and a new set of measuring cups: total investment 75 cents. (At this point I can’t just buy something because I like it and it’s cheap; I need to be able to use it, have a place for it, and not be envisioning it at MY next yard sale.)

It happens throughout the entire yard sale season, but today I saw the effects of rookie mistakes made by some folks new to the yard sale game, people who thought this was a civilized party. Which it is, but you have to know a few rules:

1. Don’t hang out your signs 2 days in advance if you really don’t want people showing up at your door at 7:00am, no matter what time you’ve invited them to rummage through your stuff. They really don’t care about your schedule and they will hunt you down. (I am not an “early bird,” but we all have to learn how to cope with this phenomenon.)

2. Don’t put something in a sale if you’re emotionally attached to said item. You won’t get enough for it and you will dislike the person who stole it from you. This happened with the pretty lavender shawl in the photo: she (rookie) didn’t understand that the cash I offered her was not what I considered to be the worth of the item, but rather what I was willing to pay. I washed the thing as soon as I got it home just to cleanse away that bad vibe.

Anyhoo, … I’ve mentioned that the Saturday morning scene is filled with “regulars” (I am one of those).  Here’s Jack, a guy who’s out there as often as any one of us. He’s always got a smile and something nice to say to the ladies, and a bawdy joke for the men. (Unless you really want to know, don’t ask him how middle-aged men get their bald heads.) We swap stories of good finds, which of the daily sales are treasure troves and which ones are best left unattended, and generally make sure that if there’s a good deal happening that the other one knows about it. Thanks, Jack, for letting me include you in this little project!

So by the end of the day, I had a (newly-washed) lavender shawl, a holiday votive, some new measuring cups, a little purse/bag that is much cuter than it appears in the photo, a beautiful hammered metal bracelet, two kilim pillows and two bolster pillows in crushed green velour from Ikea. Total cost= $11.75.





  1. luddy83 said,

    April 14, 2012 at 6:27 PM

    I think you should increase your haul and have monthly garage sales of your own–sort of a meta-garage sale…or, you could “rent” yourself out by searching for things people want but don’t want to get out there and search for them themselves…but, then again, you’ve got plenty of projects to keep you busy!

  2. June 23, 2012 at 5:48 PM

    […] saw a lot of people I knew out there today. Jack (see linked blog from April 14th) was out and about; we saw him at just about every sale we […]

  3. July 29, 2012 at 10:11 AM

    […] summer morning, many of our usual yard sale peeps were nowhere to be seen. No Mary, not even Jack, although we did see Kathy who is now out saleing for her baby who busted out of the womb-prison in […]

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