Janks for the memories

Posted by Meghan in Junk In My Trunk, Sale Tales | 7 Comments

Back patio yard sale

Seems like forever since we did an update? Oddly enough, we haven’t all been together on a sale day for well over a month. The rain seems to have passed, the annual neighborhood sales are getting closer — West Seattle is just two weeks away! This past weekend’s sales were pretty boring. But we had fun, as we usually do — you make your own fun in this life, right?

Our first sale looked like full on kiddie sale, but since we only had three sales to hit in Ballard — I’m going. Karl dug in his toes and said “I am staying in the car,” but about two minutes later he was digging in a box of books saying “You made me come to this sale! You forced me!”

What first looked like baby stuff only wasn’t really that bad. You just had to look a little harder. Maybe the thrill of the hunt doesn’t always include digging in toddler Oshkosh B’Gosh overalls. Karl picked up a cool poster for that silly movie The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus. We then had a conversation about how you can tell when wives make their husbands get rid of stuff against their will.

Jenny said we should leave Ballard and head across town to hit some estate sales. The first one was in some old ’60s condo, with an elevator. I point that out mainly because I think in all the times I have gone to sales I have entered an elevator maybe four times. The sales are usually bad, but that is just a side note. And this sale was sort of bad. I did hear an amazing conversation about how Pyrex has changed their formulation, since so many people who make crystal meth had been using them to “cook” in. I purchased some patterns while Jenny and Karl went to look in some garage that I never even made it into. Karl bought records while Jenny went around taking pictures of scary crap.

Owl in bag

Ancient oven cleaner

Revlon Lactol

Sometimes we give tips to sellers and buyers. In the case of this next sale, our tip for sellers is DON’T BE A DOUCHE. Just because you sell “collectibles” on ebay doesn’t make you an expert on everything old on the entire planet and if it did you wouldn’t be selling crap in your backyard. Right? Right!

Sample conversation:

“How much are these shoes?”

“Well, they’re vintage.”

“Um, no, they aren’t even old.”

“Well, yeah they are old, like at least the ’80s, or maybe the ’90s.”

“No, they’re not. And I never asked you how old they are.”

He also told Karl that he would really love Nina Simone — as if for some reason Karl had never heard her before. Okay, maybe he was trying to be cool, but it came off as total douche — Jenny called it the Mr. Vice Magazine Douchebag Sale.

Next we tried to hit an estate sale that had so many people lined up (an hour after opening) that we thought we would come back later. An hour later the line was just as long. If your estate sale has been open for over two hours and there is still a line of 20 people, you aren’t letting enough people in.

Instead we hit a sale filled with nice stuff spread out over a front patio.

Tables under tents

Outdoor estate sale

Sadly, they wanted so much money for most of the vintage clothing that items I would normally have grabbed without question made me pause. $15 for skirts, regardless of condition? Hmm … I did get a few things, but most of what I had picked up was left behind.

We stopped at a few other sales best described as “janky.” One of them had this automatic doughnut maker that they thought someone might pay ten dollars for … Um, no.


On our way back home we stopped at one last estate sale.

Gigantic sale

Inside, everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) was high-end and overpriced. 50s Mexican jewelry? $400. Chairs? $200. They had really wonderful items, but they needed to have some of that stuff taken by a professional that could have auctioned most of it off. They did have this great sign on the bathroom door.

Please use honey bucket

After I asked Jenny to take a photo of it, I heard one of the of guys running the sale raising his voice about folks taking photos. Maybe he thought that Jenny was taking photos of their artwork or something. Who knows? In any case, everyone else working the sale ignored him.

In the end, we each bought a few things, and it was nice to get back in the yard sale saddle again.

Junk In My Trunk 4-30-2011

7 Responses to Janks for the memories

  1. Vonlipi says:

    I so love to read your yard sale adventures! You seem to be living in he enchanted lad of yard sales because here in Québec we never get as much and it seems that a) they only get rid of boring 1990 stuff or b) everybody is an expert and over pricing every thing.

  2. Melissa says:

    People cooking meth in my beloved Pyrex?! NOOOOOOoooooooOOOO!!!!! (fainting)

    This only makes me more determined that ever to rescue Pyrex when I see it, before it can fall in with bad companions and wind up on a website like “Faces of Meth-Pyrex”.

  3. Meghan says:

    there is soooo much pyrex i am sure you are safe…

  4. Fnarf says:

    The Pyrex story is pure urban legend. If the stuff was rare in any way the thrift stores wouldn’t be full of it for 99 cents a piece.

  5. Amy says:

    First off, I LOVE your blog and have referred friends to it. I can so relate as my best friend and I go to garage sales together on the weekends and we have a lot of the same experiences that you do.

    Secondly, I wanted to tell you about this trend we have noticed that we call “the curse of the ATM.” When we are out at sales buying cool stuff and spending cash, we will sometimes run out of money and have to go to the ATM. As soon as we go to the ATM, the cool sales stop happening and we end up not buying another single thing! Now you know that if we didn’t take out more money, we would find lots of cool stuff but have no cash! It the curse of the ATM!

  6. sharon says:

    i have that Anais Nin book…. part of a 3 volume set of porn… er…. erotica:)

  7. Ester says:

    That pair of shoes looks stellar!