Well! We made it to Monday. How was everyone's weekend? I was pleased to find a couple of vintage skirts/blazers/dresses at a sale in Hillwood on Friday before hitting the sales in earnest on Saturday with my dad (more on those finds later!). You fellow estate sale addicts might have noticed that the trail has grown cold along with the season-- as fall and winter are legitimately upon us (in spite of pogo'ing temperatures here in the South), estate sales seem to be fewer and farther between. Which is why I was overjoyed to see three listings all within throwing distance of one another in Hendersonville. Two turned out to be B-U-S-T busts, but the third, in the affluent Bluegrass subdivision on the outskirts of town, before Gallatin, was pretty crazy! I stole some photos from the expired Estatesales.net listing so you could see what I saw when I went in the half-MILLION dollar house in which the sale took place. ((cue my dad and I rolling up in this neighborhood with the requisite "GAW-LEE." expressions on our tender little faces))
The listing reads:
A 350 piece+ Shawnee collection, many rare pieces all moderately priced to move. A 150+ milk bottle collection from early 1900's to the 60's, some fascinating items!
Now, the way I work estate sales is usually to choose the sales that appeal to me, print out the first page of each Estatesales.net listing, sans pictures/descriptions/etc, just the part with the address and times, and then staple that to a Google Maps plotted course of the most direct routes between sale and sale. Yes, this is what we people without smartphones do in lo, the year of our Lord 2013, when juggling the map and traffic and coffee is just more than one's nerves can take. Thus, a lot of the time I have no idea which sale we're exactly going to, as presented in the preview photos-- I just know that when I looked at it earlier in the week, it looked good, and I added it to the pile. Folks, I walked into this house like "why did I add this to my list? No rabbit's warren of early-fifties' bedrooms piled high with hats and newspapers? No stinky basement with original sixties' furniture wrapped in cellophane? No raggedy swing clothes hanging in a closet, moth-eaten but still sequined? What was I thinking? This is NOT my style". Some very nice contemporary furniture, a pair of six thousand dollar vases....pass, please. Then I got to the main living room, and table, upon table, UPON TABLE full of Shawnee, McCoy, and various unmarked ceramics.
I mean, LOOK!
I am rarely taken aback by the goods at an estate sale, but this was ridiculous. Ridic...ulously....AWESOME. By the time I arrived on Saturday morning, the sale had already been running all day Friday, and there were maybe half as many tchotchkes as you see here (a lot of the really spectacular ones had already sold, sadly). However! There were still so many individual items I would have flipped over at a less hysterically overstocked sale, that I didn't quite know where to focus my attentions. I kept walking back and forth between two rooms like, is this happening? Is this one of those dreams where I buy a ton of stuff I like and then wake up empty handed?
Any one of these little guys, at a regular sale, would have been enough to turn your head, but what do you when confronted with 300 pieces! The woman who lived in the house was moving, and one of the people working the sale mentioned that said homeowner had lived at that address for eight years, and never unpacked a single one of these from the initial move. She said the collector was surprised, unwrapping vase after planter after salt shaker after pitcher, at just how many pieces she had! I can imagine! A lot of the time, when I think, "Hm, how many vintage nightgowns and slips do I have?" or "How many thirties' dishes do I have?", there's such a naked lust for these items in my heart that it's rare I can pass any up if the price is right. And so the chifferobe gets stuffed, and there's more dishes in storage in the attic than I even know I have! Sometimes I think about how much worse of a hoarder I would be if the prices for these collectibles were pennies on the dollar, as they used to be in the pre-internet days when the world was plentiful with things-I-like-at-prices-I-would-love.
All these salt shakers except the square looking chefs with the hats were gone when I got there. Would that the lobster claw ones were still unpurchased, I would have taken them home in a heartbeat! I wish I'd pulled the trigger on that little Bostie planter in the upper middle of the photo, but I couldn't decide and ended up leaving it. Boooo.
That skunk! That bison! The green square vase with the deer on it! Ugh, I would have probably paid full price for any of those. Still, as my heartbeat moved back to normal, I had to make some sober decisions about what pieces I WOULD take home with me. Everything was half off the marked sticker price, which made this process even more arduous. I have low impulse control, folks! I paced the room once or twice more.
Now, I DID end up buying two little ceramics (act like I was going to leave the place empty handed). Can you guess which of this assemblage of pieces from my house are the two newest members of my collection?
Time's up! While the white Scottie had a twin at the Hendersonville house, he's from a Hermitage estate sale a year or two ago. All the rest are from my baker's rack in the kitchen; I like how cheery the colors are against the aluminum wire of their pedestals. Saturday, I bought these:
Aaah! I love them even more looking at them. The glow-in-the-dark looking Bambi planter was so strange I couldn't decide if I needed it or not. When I got it home and set it in the middle of the table on top of this psychedelic looking straw trivet, I knew I'd made the right choice! The Antelope on the left looks like something that should be part of a larger piece and made into a tv lamp. How pretty are the colors? As it was half off day, I got both pieces for I think $17. SCORE. My only regret is that I didn't buy more!
So! What do you think? Spy any pieces you would have just died to see in person? Do you collect ceramics from the midcentury? What kinds? Have you been to a sale lately where someone had a straight up addiction to a certain kind of collectible? What's your worst estate sale vice? Let's talk!
That's all for today, but more treasures from the hunt tomorrow. Have a great Monday! Til then.