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:
Show and Share
Roses of Inspiration
Vintage Bliss Tuesdays


  1. Wow! Positively AWESOME!


  2. Wowzers, you hit the jackpot, Betty! The dishes are fabulous, the hymnals are simply lovely, and the Archie comie brought a smile to my face. Whenever I visited my grandparents they always had Archie comics lying around their house...I loved reading them :)

    Thanks for joining Roses of Inspiration, dear one. Hugs!

  3. Wow you found some really wonderful deals, like you said great prices and fun finds!

  4. Love that chalkware fish!


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