Palm Springs: the swanky and the swan

Posted by Meghan in Field Trip, Sale Tales | 5 Comments

A few weeks ago I was vacationing in Palm Springs. A little sun break in the middle of Seattle winter and the possibility of estate sales in the mid-century modern capitol of the west coast. FUN!

I hit the Angel Thrift Mart, a large thrift store right in the middle of the Palm Springs on Indian Canyon Drive. I had blogged about this store last winter and ended up having the best luck there this year, buying a Louis Vuitton Epi Purse for $69 along with a Gucci ’70s bag and a killer pair of shoes. That store rocks!

On Saturday morning I talked Dan into driving with me to hit a few sales. He even looked some up for me on Craigslist. There really didn’t seem to be that much, but it’s also December. As we pulled out of the parking lot at the hotel I spotted an estate sale half a block away, so we re-parked and walked up to the house.

Exterior of fancy/wacky sale

The garage was full and the yard was packed with statues, shells, and even a rabbit in a suit playing a fiddle.



As we walked in I was honestly freaked out by the amount of items crammed into this house. I kept saying “OH, GOD” and Dan bumped me, whispering “stop saying God in front of a nun!” I hadn’t even noticed that the sale was being run by Orthodox Jews or Orthodox Catholics (or Orthodox somethings). I felt very uncomfortable taking photos and just snuck a few.

Fancy sale

The place was huge. I could have taken hundreds of photos. A long living room with three chandeliers, china on every surface, tapestries all over the walls along with large painting of the woman that had died. There was so much stuff! Dan was a little freaked out when he spotted a mounted kangaroo head. I was freaked out by the Christmas dolls.


Please note: I had to take two photos to try to really show how friggin’ much there was.


AND I heard later that the neighborhood association had to ask her to tone down her Christmas decor a few years back. One can only imagine after seeing the amount of stuff already on the lawn.

She did have a stuffed peacock and I found that sort of sickening, but not as bad as the stuffed swan. I am from the Midwest, been in homes filled with taxidermy as a kid. Hell, when I was growing up my home town had one of the largest taxidermy schools, but a swan?! Come on!

Taxidermied swan!

Dan was excited to hit a mobile home sale after that. I was less excited, since I know that folks that have downsized to a trailer probably don’t own very much. This was the most literal “drive-by” ever. We just drove around the Mobile Village and looked at the sales, then drove away.

Mobile Village sale

We hit a few more sales – I loved the huge palm trees at this one.

Sale by the palms

Sadly, we did miss the “wifes gone and every thing she left must go to” sale. Sounds fun, right? Maybe she wanted someone with better spelling and grammar?

5 Responses to Palm Springs: the swanky and the swan

  1. Michael says:

    OMG, I once saw an eagle made with seashells in some odd store in Chinatown. It was huge and costed something like $135.

    Apparently, it had been sitting there for years because the tag was turning brown and the eagle was dusty.

    I can’t believe some of the stuff for sale that people buy.


    PS: Your blog is hillarious. I especially liked the pillows made from old jeans that was posted in May 2009.

  2. grannyann says:

    That was definitely the best blog of the day!! Can you imagine how many people there are out there with homes and collections like that? thanks for the photos.

  3. Sarah says:

    I went to the same estate sale – Vera Gatijech, I saw all of these cars turning and had always been curious about the home with all of the tacky statues etc.. so out of place amongst the Historic Movie Colony homes.
    I must say I felt the very same way upon entering the home as you did.
    Overwhelmed by the amount of “things” this woman had collected. Afraid if I moved that I would break something. I too took photos, discretly. A women introduced herself to me when I said outloud “I wonder who went through all of this” she said that she had and said it was exhausting, she also stated that the rooms that we were in were the only rooms they they had gone through. They still had to go through multiple bedrooms.
    When I enquired as to the price of the rack of St. John Knits, the gentleman (not wearing a robe) told me I dont know they they knocked the rack down. There is a list somewhere……
    I have found that all one must do is drive around these neighborhoods on a weekend and you can find the most amazing things.
    Thanks for sharing.

  4. Meghan says:

    Yes. Vera. I was wondering who this woman is???
    I also saw the rack of St. John’s and they wanted soooo much money for them I thought that someone had been smoking something funny.
    Thanks for your comment.

  5. Tom Zarrilli says:

    Wish I could have gone there. The Christmas displays along with the mounted animals is a great combination.