Saturday, April 17, 2010

Yard Sale Treasures

I hope all of you are having a wonderful weekend so far. I wanted to stay true to my promise of sharing my yard sale finds with you all. As soon as I stepped in the door I unloaded my goodies and got started snapping some photos. I've also added some items from my previous yard sale trips, like the one I did back in March and some flea market finds too.

What a morning! I woke up before my alarm at 6:45am (to the sound of our neighbor's dogs barking) and started entering addresses into my GPS to I could get super organized. Although today's sale was a community sale in a pristine little area called Baldwin Park, there was still quite a distance between each stop. I got ready and headed to the bank at 7:30 am. I had taken out some cash yesterday but knowing the sale would be quite large, I didn't want to get caught short if I found something spectacular.

I set my budget today for $30 but brought $100 just in case. I'm always willing to bring extra because I can often refinish an item or sell it for more money, but it has to truly be an investment. It is rare that I bend my budget and today I ended up spending just $24 and I'm really happy with what I found and even picked up a box of  freebies along the way! Check it out....


This book retails for $45 US and I picked it up for just $1. It was in excellent condition both inside and out. I really enjoy photography and this book is filled with beautiful details and also chronicles the weddings of many celebrities. I thought this would make a great coffee table book. It now lives on the built-in shelf under our coffee table with two others.

If I ever want a cleaner look or the jacket becomes worn,  this is what it looks like without the cover.
I love white hard cover books.

This is just one of the amazing dresses I picked up  at last month's sale. It is from Banana Republic, it's a very light weight cotton and I don't even think it was ever worn! I visited a home with three ladies that all had designer and expensive clothing for sale and everything was just $1, jeans were $2. Although I didn't try it on, it fits perfect. I wore it to church and then afterwards to a friend's potluck on Easter Sunday. I only buy quality, brand new with tags clothing or very gently worn and wash everything before wearing it. I was able to buy 5 tops and 3 dresses at this sale. I won't bore you by showcasing all of my new clothing finds but I am so happy with all of them. Why the front door pic you ask? I was looking for an interesting, white background for the photo. ;)

I came across these vintage keys about a year ago at a flea market in Mt. Dora. I thought I'd display them for you on my desk as they do not have the perfect home just yet.While I don't own a ton of vintage items, I really like interesting and unique accessories as accents in my home. I happen to like keys because to me they symbolize unlocking the door to your future and success. I picked up all 5 for just $1.50 after negotiating and including a few other items from the same seller. I  hope to go back again soon!

I picked up this tray for just 50 cents and it currently has a time-worn look. I hope to give it a light sanding, paint it white and add a fun letter or number in the center with some black paint. I actually got the idea from Layla of A Lettered Cottage. Click HERE to see her spring mantle project including a similar tray. Hopefully I can share a transformation with you in the coming weeks.

This is my new drum shade. It was listed for $3 and I picked it up for just $2. It is brand new, the material is so soft and airy and it would be perfect in the corner of my office/guest bedroom as a floor lamp, I just need to find the right base for it that I have in mind.

This handbag from Nordstrom's is super cute and perfect for summer and it was just $3. I think the little cream and red bow finishes off this bag. the handles are a dark leather and the interior has a zippered pocket and is lined with the same fabric as the bow. I can't wait to use it!

I got this little black glass urn for just 50 cents. I wasn't exactly sure where I wanted to put it or what I wanted to put in it, or if anything would go in it at all. Until I decide its future purpose, right now it's holding some ivy clippings from the large urns we have outside our front door. I wanted to encourage some new growth for the outdoor planters so I clipped three pieces and now it adds a little color in our kitchen.

A few months ago I found this brand new (in plastic) Gaiam extra long yoga mat at a yard sale, the lady bought it and never used it. I was so thrilled because not only was it such a steal at just $5 (these run for about $22) but it was in one of my most favorite prints-Damask. I had another yoga mat before this one but even after wiping it down after I first bought it, I still kept sliding while doing my poses which is an injury waiting to happen. This one on the other hand had a lot of grip and is exactly what I wanted.


At my big March yard sale I came across this yoga mat bag. What are the odds? Really? It matches my yoga mat identically! When it's meant to be, it's meant to be. It was never used, and very clean and was just $3. It has little zippered pockets for your keys, gym card, etc. I have been wanting a mat bag for a while, I had just been toting mine around under my arm until then, not very practical.

Since dumbbells typically run about $1 per pound, I was thrilled to pick up this pair of 5-lb weights for just $1. They have been scrubbed down with soap and a little disinfectant and are a great addition to my other workout tools. I hope to find a 10-lb pair next!

While out with my husband last weekend at a downtown park festival, I spotted a vendor with orchids for sale. In Florida I can typically get them for a great price to start with, an orchid like this would normally run you about $10. They were selling 2 for $10. It took me less than a second to decide I was going to buy them. I love white orchids, they are so classic, timeless and elegant. I love that they'll last so much longer than any freshly cut flowers. This one actually lives on the little tray now on our coffee table and the second one is in my office.

I was able to snag this little acorn decor item for just 10 cents! While the color right now certainly works, I was thinking of painting it white, we shall see. I'm planning on using it on a shelf in our bookcase.

If you've been following my posts for a while, you may remember this little crab from my Tray Chic post which featured a tray makeover. I thought I'd share this for those that haven't seen it. This Potterybarn crab retailed for about $28 a couple of years ago and I picked it up for only $1. He now lives on a small stack of books on that sits atop the tray on our coffee table.

A funny thing happened a few months ago at another community yard sale. I liked the two drum shades a lady was carrying along a sidewalk and I simply asked her where she got them. I thought perhaps the seller might have more or that they might have some other stylish decor items. The woman carrying them was the sister of one of the sellers, the shades were hers. She told I could have them for free!! I asked her if she was sure and told her that I'd be willing to give here some money for them but she said no. Above is one of the two that I paired with this lamp base from Target, these are in our living room.

I stopped by a huge house with an equally huge sale of items but everything was really overpriced for a yard sale. As I was leaving, I spotted a box marked 'Free Glassware'. The box was taped up and I asked if it I could take a peek. She gave me some scissors but everything was wrapped in newspaper and inside a large bag and was hard to access. I grabbed it anyway knowing I could always drop it off at Goodwill if it wasn't my taste. Inside were 2 vases and a set of 10 champagne glasses which I'll be keeping. I already own two identical vases but I know they will get used so I'm keeping everything. :)

So, what unexpected items do I buy at yard sales? Baby girl clothing. No, I'm not pregnant and I didn't buy this for a friend. If you read my 'Getting Personal' post last year, you know how much I dream of  having a little girl. I have already prayed her into my life and envisioned what she will look like, even though she is not here just yet. We already know what her name would be (but it's a secret) and we're hoping she'll arrive sometime next year which means we had better get a move on if she is ever to make her appearance!

 As with the women's clothing I seek out, I only buy brand new, like new and those which are in excellent condition. I have quite the growing collection of little dresses, outfits and shoes. All of the items are washed and stored in the hope chest that my grandparents gave me when I was just 14. I have a few super cute boys items also, but my focus in on girls clothing. I think it would be wonderful to experience being a mother to both. With all this baby talk I'm sure you can tell that my little clock has been ticking a little louder than normal lately. lol.

My hubby smiles when I show him the new outfits I've picked up as he too would really like to have a little girl. I now have enough of the various baby sizes that I won't be buying anything else until we are truly in the expecting stage sometime  in the future. A couple of my girlfriends have done the same thing and have commented on how smart they think it is to pick up quality, designer baby clothes for 50 cents and $1 per piece vs. $10-20 each.

One girlfriend I know paid full price on all of her baby's clothes and insisted on designer as it was her first child. In reflection she told me she wished she'd thought about this idea as kids grow so fast. I don't typically buy onesies or cheaper items, I strive for outfits, sweaters, bathrobes and sets. There, it's out- that's my dirty little secret. Hopefully you don't all think I'm crazy! The dress above was one that I found today for 50 cents-I love the ruffles and polka dots!

My favorite find of the day was two full alphabet sets of these vintage-looking letters painted on metal. My mind was racing with all of the wonderful things I could do with them. They each have little holes at the top so you can also feed ribbon through and hang them as art on the wall. They were listed at 50 cents per letter or $20 for the whole collection. I was originally going to pick up just a few to spell out a word or use for mine and Paul's first and last initials but I just couldn't decide so I bought them all. The seller was nice enough to throw in the pair of Starbucks mugs below for free when I asked.


These were originally marked for 25 cents each and all I had were $20 bills so they just threw them in with the letters. These mugs typically retail for about $5+ each so it was certainly a steal, they are in perfect condition. 

Here is a close-up look of one of the letters. You can see the brush marks from the paint which I like and these could easily become further weathered by sanding the edges. I am planning to use a few of them for personal use in our home and then the rest I'm going to make available for sale online to those interested in lettered decor.

The image at the top of this post is of  2 painted cast iron hooks that I purchased at the Mt. Dora flea market. I paid just $7 for the pair. I love them and they are going up as soon as the guestroom is painted.

So, which were your favorite finds? Were there any that you could see yourself buying? Maybe you have a special yard sale treasure that has become a favorite in your home. Leave a comment or link to it, I'd love to hear about it.


  1. Wow Karla! You did very well today and in the last few weeks. I was out today, I wish I had known about Baldwin Park. My sister just moved there a few weeks ago and didn't even tell me. I think we are on the same page with buying clothes. I'm very picky and only buy good brands. I do well at the Community Thrift in Pine Castle. I even find Anthropologie(my favorite place). Maybe I'll see out and about one Saturday.
    Enjoy our weather!

  2. I'd say you did quite well!
    I love the letters and would have picked them up, too. Yard sales are always an adventure and not knowing what you might find is the fun part of the hunt!

  3. Wow! You are my yard sale inspiration. Fantastic finds. Yesterday, I too went out scouting yard sales and found some fantastic books and vintage jewelery, but truly, you discovered some lovely treasures. There are so much fun, aren't they? Until next weekend! =)

  4. OK, I am super jealous! You found some treasures!! Oh my, the dress (after I was already drooling over the yoga mat & the crab!!!). Just remember that little baby boys are so awesome, too. and of course I love that letter M!!

  5. Thanks ladies for leaving me a comment, it lets me know you stopped by. :)

    It's true-the most fun part of it is the anticipation of not knowing what you'll find. Lately I've been finding some fun things at Goodwill too. There is a huge GW that I have yet to visit, can't wait to check it out!

    Cathy-Yes, it's true little boys are pretty adorable too. :) I was fortunate that my mom gave birth to my brother when I was 11 so I remember everything about him as a baby and his life growing up. I was his second mother for many years as my parents worked long hours. I think it's sweet how much they love their 'mom'. Boy or girl, babies are such a wonderful blessing!

    Karen Sue-Baldwin does a 'porch' sale twice per year. They have 3 large common areas that they list as 'flea markets' full of sellers. I have o admit, the fall sale was a lot bigger.

    I'm definitely enjoying this amazing weather!

  6. you did really well! I can't get over the awesome yoga mat and bag from two different sales!

  7. Totally dreamy finds! I'm so impressed!
    I think my favorite is the crab; I was in William-Sonoma Home earlier today and they have very similar beachy things for around $30-50 !!

  8. My friend is desperately seeking the Pottery Barn crab as she saw it in my kitchen and is a cancer. Any chance you'd sell it to me?

  9. Dear: Anonymous,

    Thank you for your offer regarding my Pottery Barn crab, but we're pretty fond of him ourselves. ;) I'm sure you've probably already tried but my best recommendation is eBay.


  10. Wow! What a fabulous blog - thank you for sharing. I have been reading so many of your posts, and you are an inspiration (and fellow Canadian)! I too love a great yard sale - I don't have one favorite find, but rather an almost full closet of clothes when I lost 75 pounds, going from a 16 to a size 4. Unpaid support issues made it difficult at best to dress nicely, and going from stay at home Mom to carrer woman again added to the need. Enter garage sales, and I am best dressed on a budget!

  11. @Wendy and Jon-Thank you so much for stopping by and for your sweet comments. Yay, I love meeting new people via blogging, and I always enjoy meeting another fellow Canadian! :) Wow, congratulations on the weight loss. I'm so glad that you found an affordable way to re-fill your closet with new clothes! :)



Thanks for stopping by, your comments make my day! I read every single one and will answer any questions you have. I hope you'll visit again soon! :)


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