It’s June and it suddenly dawned on me that 2016 is half over. Good grief. How did the days pass so quickly?! Sometimes I wish I had more exciting things to write about, but I am grateful for my simple life. For family and friends. For a house and garden. And without a doubt, for the fun I’ve had hunting for vintage things and finding them new homes! This little biz is always a delicious roller-coaster ride of ups and downs. Here’s my ride so far this month…
My first sale this month was for a reduced-price 1940s crocheted purse. Well, at least I sold it, but then, unfortunately, I had grossly underestimated its shipping costs. (Such a newbie mistake!) In the end my profit was so small I might have done better just donating the piece! (Though the buyer did include a lovely note how she thought this purse would be a great backdrop for some of her Aunt’s wacky vintage pins. That made me smile.)
And the last week or so I’ve dealt with a more-than-usual amount of time-consuming emails…emails with questions about an item (most of which are already answered in the item’s description) and those with low-ball offers or “would you accept less?” I answer every email, though typically none lead to sales. (Surprisingly some people contact me multiple times and try to wear me down on a price.)
A “good” but costly problem…my business has grown enough where I finally had to buy some shipping boxes this month. So far I’ve been lucky that the influx of boxes into our house has been adequate for my shipping needs. Not any more.
I bought a couple of old watches from an eBay seller at a nice price. They are charming Swiss pieces that still have “meat on the bone.” One is a lovely Gruen Guild piece, circa 1920-1930, that is likely 14k gold filled, but could be all gold! I’m going to have it checked out. The other is a Precimax lapel watch with a lovely sterling silver and marcasite setting. And it works!
And the other day at Goodwill I found a brass and cloisonne lidded jar. Not a super exciting pattern–little green leaves and red berries on a black background–but it is heavy and looks like it has a little bit of age. Possibly 1930s-1960s. Likely Chinese as the “counter enamel” is blue. Probably used for cigarettes, tobacco or tea.
But my best find was a unique ceramic apothecary jar. It was on a cart of goods that hadn’t been put on shelves yet and didn’t have a price, but the black and red pattern with “Chininum” on the front intrigued me.
Turns out it’s a 1960s-era Italian piece made by Alvino Bagni studio for Raymor. (Chininum is the plant that quinine is made from.) Right now there are a couple Bagni Chininum lamps for sale, but no lidded apothecary jars. Here’s one of the lamps for sale on eBay…
My jar has a couple of small chips on the lid, but is otherwise in good condition. Not sure what I’m going to price it for…but it’s a fun problem to ponder!!
But the best “up” right now is having my youngest daughter home from college for a few weeks. She heads back for summer school but it is such a joy having her home!
Looking forward to the second half of 2016. How about you?