I apologize for not posting last week as I said I would. The hubby’s very distant cousin and her baseball loving boyfriend came up to see a Brave’s game and stayed the weekend with us, which meant I had to get the house “company ready.” We had a great weekend and even tried a new Thai restaurant in Virginia Highlands, called Panita Thai Kitchen. Food was alright but atmosphere got an A+ in my book. With such a plethora of restaurants in Atlanta, it’s difficult to get to them all, although I do try. ;)
Anyway, as promised, here is my secret #2 and a few repurposing ideas to ponder.
TIP #2: WHEN TO GO? – Once you have your list in place, deciding when to go is key. As they say, “the early bird gets the worm.” However, you have to decide what you’re willing to pay for that worm.
Day #1 - If you have specific items in mind, especially if they are larger items such as furniture or high demand pieces, you should plan to be there on the first day of the sale, the earlier the better. The first day of the sale, most estate sales will hand out numbers to those waiting before the doors open. This way, when they do open for business, they will call you in by number. Once those numbers have been called, and for the remainder of the sale, you are free to come and go as you wish, meaning, there is no longer a need for the number system. As you may have guessed, the more demand for the item, the more you have to be willing to spend. The first day of the sale, prices are usually as marked. There’s not a lot of room for negotiating Day #1 so you should expect to pay full price or close to.
Let’s say you don’t have anything specific in mind when shopping, or you have a few smaller items on your list but are looking for the perfect deal before being able to justify your purchase. If that’s the case, you may want to consider waiting until the second or last day of the sale.
Day #2 – usually means markdowns of 20% and sometimes up to 50%, with some room for negotiating.
Day #3 – or the last day is the best day to go if you are more of a browser or just getting into estate sale shopping. This is the best day for markdowns, usually at least 50% or more, unless otherwise noted, and your best bet for price negotiation. Obviously, you take your chances here. Because you’ve waited until the last minute, you may end up with little to no selection.
One Day Sale – If you’re going to a one day sale, divide the hours of the sale into 3 and think of the three sections as those listed above. The first part of the day is the best for scoring that much sought after piece but at full price, mid day is good for finding those great pieces with some room to negotiate and the last final hours of the sale are best for swooping in and negotiating the remaining pieces, and the best time for a “deal.”
Again, figure out what you need and what you’re willing to spend for those items. Knowing that should help you determine when is best to go.
TRASH TO TREASURE:
Another item I commonly find at estate sales is old pictures, letters and postcards. Here are a few fun ways to repurpose these items.
The most basic way to reuse these vintage images is to use them as vintage artwork, like this wall of old photos found at Country Living, the enlarged and framed postcard from Southern Living, or the one just below, of the baby, found at The Orchard.
Although these are vintage flash cards, WhisperWood Cottage came up with a fantastic way of displaying these finds.
Or, how about this cute photo garland idea from Vintage Scraps?
Another easy repurposing idea for these historical relics? Create your own custom greeting cards. You’ve seen those basic white cards with the black and white vintage images on front and the cute/funny sayings once opened right? Why not make your own? Think about all of the possibilities? Baby announcements, congratulatory cards, lady’s luncheon invites, funny greeting cards, etc., etc.
These types of images are also great to have on hand for the scrapbooker or the mixed media artist. Use just the sections of the images you need to create your own work of art or scrapbook page, like Gerushia’s New World did here for her “Rabbit’s Curios Day” piece.
And speaking of mixed media art, how about this repurposing idea using vintage auto parts, like Robert Pace Kidd has done?
Food for thought: Ok, so maybe you don’t want a whole bunch of car parts hanging on your walls. How about using an old tin can lid as the “frame” and adding an old photo using magnets to the front? Or, sometimes you might run across old metal advertising signs or concession stand signs, how about recycling those as wall art, and displaying your precious photos on front? I found these images online as examples. You could hang pictures of you and your friends having a good time on the left one, or maybe a picture of your kids baking in the kitchen on the right one.
Now, if you’re the more adventurous type and want to take this one step further, you could even use any of these images to transfer onto another piece of fabric, then hand stitch it to the front of a pillow case like Flax and Spindle did below with the vintage postcard, or like Vintage Weave did with the children’s storybook images.
Although I couldn’t seem to find a good example, how cute would it be to transfer an old black and white image of a woman in the kitchen onto a piece of white cloth, then hand stitch it to a vintage apron like these from Sissy Maid Closet?
For image transfer tips, I found this online tutorial, with lots of great info.
And finally, if jewelry making is your thing, how about repurposing these vintage images into your collection, as Classy and Sassy Charms has done here or like these wedding photo earrings from Salamander House?
Have any other ideas for vintage/old photos, letters and postcards? I would love to hear from you!
Enjoy until next time,