Why 'My Mink Betty'?

Why 'My Mink Betty'?
I'm not your common, everyday twenty-something year old and when I graduated from High School I got an equally uncommon gift. My parents found for me a beautiful 1940's mink stole at a garage sale. It had belonged to the woman's Great Aunt Betty who had married late in life to a man with money and had only allowed him to buy her this one luxury. The unusually styled stole has the name, Betty L. Jones, embroidered in the satin lining so that's what I call her. They never had children of their own and the mink was passed to Aunt Betty's niece and on to her daughter. Until it got to me, no one since Aunt Betty had worn it. Now Betty the mink and I go to the theater together on special occasions and I hope that someday I can take her to the Symphony or the Ballet. Although Betty hadn't been worn or loved for many years she was waiting for someone to love her again as are most other things I look for when thrifting.

Friday, July 31, 2015

The Week in Thrifting: May 11-17, Part 2

As I said in Part 1, the second rummage sale we went to was a HUGE affair.  I wish I had gotten pictures of the venue and the number of people who were there.  Apparently the church hosting the sale (only about a 5 minute drive from the house we have lived in for several years) has this same sale every year and we hadn't heard about it!

The church itself is on a huge compound-like piece of property with a school, a meeting hall, the actual church, a large metal barn and the parsonage.  The sale was being held in the large barn and the grounds outside it.  They had so much stuff they must take donations all year and store things just for this sale!  There were couches and dressers and bedside tables; a dozen hanging lamps, entertainment centers, and TVs.  There were refrigerators, washing machines, tables, chairs and even more furniture.  It was incredible and their prices were great!

They had sections each for toys, housewares, books, valuable/collectible items, sewing and crafts, outdoors and fishing, office, and probably a few more areas I'm not remembering.  We actually went there two days in a row and bought some things for full price and some for half price.


I found a 6 Qt West Bend Lazy Day Slow Cooker for $2.50.  I know it's 40 years old, because my parents got one for a wedding present.  It's missing it's cord, but if you are a regular reader, you may remember that my Dad found one back in February.  I've just started looking for monkeypod items, and this bowl was 75c.  The Pyrex restaurant mug was 25c.

They had a large box full of Corelle dinnerware in the Spring Blossom pattern, which I collect.  Someone else was going through the box and took most of it, but she discarded the only thing I wanted: the salt and pepper shakers.  Score!  They are a little scuffed, but I have been looking for them for years, so am thrilled to have them for 50c.

This very nice set of Pyrex bowls in the Homestead pattern was marked $25.00.  That's a very reasonable price, but it's not a pattern I like.  When they were still there the next day, Mom couldn't resist the $12.50 price.  They will probably be given to someone as a wedding present.


They had a special room for the jewelry. silver plate and art glass.  They had about 30 pieces of silver flatware, and I wanted to buy them all, but wasn't sure about the price, so I only bought two forks for $1 each.  I am, of course, regretting that decision.  After I got home I found out that was a great price, so I hope they have some again next year.  The Beatrix Potter buttons were $1.00.


I bought the jewelry on the 2nd day for $4.75.


I especially like this Boulder High School graduation charm.


We found two board games.


The white crocheted baby blanket was $1.00.
I will stitch some colorful flowers on it and give it to one of my friends who is expecting.


This flower-filled calendar tea towel was only 50c.

I hope I can get the stains out.


This souvenir bandana was also 50c.

My Dad surprised me by buying a sewing machine.  I don't mean he bought me one as a surprise.  I mean I was surprised that he bought one for himself!  He wanted a heavy-duty one for sewing leather, canvas and denim.  They had a number of machines for sale, and he picked out a Singer Fashion Mate 237 for $35.00..

I don't have a picture of his, but here's a picture of one from an old ebay sale.  It was made in Italy in the 1960s and is an excellent machine.  He went back on the last day and got a table that fit his new machine for $10.00.

I also got another Rolykit, some knitting supplies, flashcards, two Beatrix Potter tins for craft storage and some lovely bookplates, all for $6.00.

When we went back on the last day we picked up quite a few things for 25c-50c each:  a framed cross stitch piece for someone with a blue room (not us), a steel jell-o mold for a friend, and a Singer buttonholer, because Dad likes the box...


...a bunch of magazines and booklets for crafting...

and a stack of books for cutting...


a couple of hymnals...

...a Newberry award winning children's book.
(This is the one that famously beat out Charlotte's Web in 1953 and has been largely forgotten since.)

This book will likely end up as cards and/or envelopes.

I love the cover art for this book and think it will make a great journal.


This is an interesting book for the graphics alone.  Here's the paper jacket... 

the cover...

and the facing pages.  I especially like these.

The book is signed by the author, a local man who wrote a number of books about the history of the Pacific Northwest.

I don't know anything about this book, other than it appears to be a children's book from the U.K.  But for 25c I liked the book jacket art.

We also picked up a set of encyclopedias for crafting and some Tupperware lids from the free box.  It was a very productive sale.

On the way home, we stopped at another yard sale.  The people holding it had a booth at one of the local antique malls and were liquidating some of their stock, so I spent a few dollars.  

The Archie comic is for a friend who collects them.  The Osterizer blender recipe book is from 1953.  The Sewing book has some fun illustrations and may prove useful to me, and the chalkware fish from 1969 has a few chips, but I love her.

Isn't she darling?  I've been wanting chalkware fish and mermaids for several years now and she's a great first find.

Look how cute her original companion was!
(Picture courtesy of PassionateKitsch on Etsy)

But the best thing we found at the second sale was a working treadle sewing machine for $35.00.  The day before we found it I had been reading about turning a treadle sewing machine into a spinning wheel, and wondering where I could get an affordable machine.

This is the Indian Head Spinning Wheel.
 Now I can have one of my own.
Imagine my delight and surprise when the unplanned sale that we just saw a sign for turned up something I didn't expect to be able to find in my price range for a long time.

The treadle table and machine went into the garage for storage before I could take photos of it but it is a National SMCO table and machine that moves freely, no rust visible on the base or machine and it appeared to have all of the original accessories and even an instruction manual when I perused the drawers of the table.

It's taken a while to make this post but these two sales have some of my favorite things I've thrifted so far this year.  Has anyone else ever had such a serendipitous find as that treadle table? What do you think is the best find here?

Thank you all for reading.

I'm linking up to these parties.  Please stop by and join the fun:
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Friday, July 17, 2015

What the Frickety-Frack? Friday #3

Welcome to another edition of "What the Frickety-Frack Friday," where I share the weird, unusual, creepy, puzzling, or even downright terrifying things I've seen offered for sale or just around town.  The things that make me say, "What the Frickety-Frack?"

Yesterday Mom and I spent the day wishing we could go to estate sales.  There is a really great website available in our area for the advertisement of estate sales.  Estate Sale companies or home owners holding sales can list addresses, details, times and post photos of the homes so that you can get an idea of which sales you may want to visit.

While browsing around a dozen sales we noticed some pretty awkward photos.


Ok, everybody, sing along with me,  "How much is that creeper in the corner?..."

Although this guy's not really a creeper; he's kind of cute.  
But not as cute as that adorable cow figurine just below the mirror.  
I'm sorry I don't have a better picture of it.

And back to creepy.... poor, creepy glass-eyed Santa.  The one on the right's not too bad, he's just got a lazy eye, but the guy on the left looks like his eye just popped out. 

And then there's just plain weird. 

Why show this picture, (or the other five just like it)?  OH, yeah, I'm all excited about buying a box of trash.  And I don't even have to fill up the box myself.  They've done the hard part for me.  I'm definitely going to this sale! 

I hope they throw in a voucher for the city dump.

Not everything was creepy or weird, though.  I did see this gem.  I would love to be able to decorate a child's bedroom in 1950s style old west theme with plenty of cowboys.  Why did no one ever tell me that this light cover existed?  The cowboy boot lamp is also pretty adorable.  Wouldn't it look good with a landscape drum lampshade on it?

PS:  Pretty sweet red princess phone, too.

I hope you all are able to get out and explore some great sales and have a wonderful weekend.

I'm linking up to these parties, please stop by and join the fun:
Roses of Inspiration

Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Week in Thrifting: May 11-17, Part 1

This post has been a long time coming as I haven't been able to blog much with my mother's medical issues.  There was a surgery and there have been lots of appointments and need for assistance from me.  I began this post soon after the trip was taken but haven't had time to finish it until now.  I apologize for the delay

This last week (May 11-17) my mother found ads on Craigslist for not one but TWO church rummage sales! Church rummage sales are the best.  Everything is donated so prices tend to stay low when there isn't a lot of sentimental value for the person marking the prices and they're usually raising money for something I can support like missions trips and Children's Ministry.

The first sale we went to was empty, almost no one there to shop and great prices.  Lots of things were unmarked but the prices quoted to us were around $0.25-$1.00.  We got everything pictured above from this first sale for under $13.00!

The entire box of ribbon was $1 and if I only ever use two rolls up I've still gotten a deal on them as many rolls are brand new.  The Tupperware measuring spoons were actually FREE because they were "dirty".  I can't believe that.


Do you see the smudge on the smallest one?  that was the only thing off about it.  The small assorted things like the "Hawaii" cocktail works, the rosette irons and the melon baller cost less than $1 total.  I am very excited to try and turn the rosette irons into fun Christmas ornaments as they are a bell and a fir tree.  Purple Kukui Nuts are for my bead stash as I already use some black ones with hibiscus flowers on them as focal beads for row counter bracelets.  The plastic measuring scoops are one of the things I had told my mother about wanting only days before this sale and then there they were!  Those scoops are wonderful for flour and sugar especially. 

Mom and I had been toying with the idea of making mini bath bombs for soaking feet or hands so when we found these decorative ice cube trays we just had to have them!  I haven't had time to try my hand at bath bombs but I'm certainly going to share my adventures when I do.

We did pay a whole $1 each for these Reader's Digest Condensed Books which is usually above our price for hardback books but the covers were just too good to pass up.

Don't you think those will make beautiful notebooks?  I am hoping to do a craft night with some ladies at my church to make bound journals with my Bind-It-All machine and these should be perfect for that.  My personal favorite is the one on the far left from Autumn of 1962 as I love the wallpaper-like pattern. What's yours?

Mom has an exasperating habit of insisting on reading EVERY book that enters the house, so who knows when I'll get to work on them...

MOM:  "Hey!  There are 5-6 books in each one of those.  That's 15 books, and they're usually best sellers.  And I can't even leave the house except to go to the doctor.
And there's nothing good on TV.
And I have nobody to play with.
All the other Moms get to read books.
You never let me do anything fun.
You don't love me anymore.
ME:  Ok, Mom, you can stop using all my old arguments. You convinced me, lol.

This is the thing we paid the most money for at a whopping $3.  A Rolykit is an old As Seen on TV product designed to hold sewing notions, craft supplies, beads, fishing tackle - whatever someone might need stored in the same place but separate compartments. 

The container unrolls to be several feet long (That table is about 4'6" across I think) and will roll back together, securely locking your small supplies in place.  I think I will start to use this for beads as it should work better than the train case I am currently using.  Mom was very excited to find this as she thought it would be perfect for beads for me; isn't she wonderful?

The mini muffin pan is also to be used for mini bath bombs, it just didn't get into the photos with it's plastic brethren.  The bed sheets pictured here were $1 each and we bought them to hopefully use the fabric for a future project; aren't they just lovely?  I love vintage floral print sheets!

This women's devotional set will go to my Women's Ministry leader for a door prize as she likes to do a small drawing at every social event we have and it is very nearly brand new - I only paid $1.50!

These shoes were probably the best find of the sale (not my photo obviously) I got a pair of these same Sofft Mary Jane style low heeled shoes in black leather and they are lovely and so comfortable.  I have admired Sofft shoes at consignment shops for years and used they often run around $20 which is just more than I can justify for used shoes.  These were $2!

The second rummage sale we went to was a HUGE affair, and I don't have time to show you everything we found in this post, but I'll be sharing them with you soon.

I'm linking up to these parties.  Please stop by and join the fun:
Show and Share
Roses of Inspiration
Vintage Bliss Tuesdays
Vintage Inspiration Party
Treasure Hunt Thursday
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