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November 12, 2010



I sold a first edition copy of Elsa Schiaparelli's book "Shocking Life" along with a circa 1960, hand-written letter from her I found tucked inside the pages. One day I was feeling regret about selling it so I googled the book to find another copy and found the blog of a girl who was gushing about receiving this same book and letter as a gift from her mother (my Ebay auction winner). The blogger is a fashion designer in Italy so I guess it went to someone who will appreciate it more than I ever would.


No, never.


I loved that movie, too. Bummer about the chair but you will find another one some day.

Deb @ Retreat

Colleen, my dear, I had two of those chairs... got them from a neighbor for a song. I sold them in our former booth at Faded Elegance three years ago - and have regretted it every.day.since. {I did make a pretty penny, though - they went for $150 each.}

BTW, now I feel like a bandaid has been ripped off... thanks SO MUCH for reminding me of my stupidity in selling them! ;0) LOL

Frenchee le Trip

When I first saw the post title, I immediately went to clothes. I don't sell them professionally but I do love the clothes resale places in California. I have plenty of regrets about clothes, but nothing comes to mind about selling my professional stuff!

Great question because I suspect that we vintage sellers are hoarders at heart, at least somewhat.

That chair is beautiful, and I now feel like a regular on your blog bc I remember what Gray Gardens is.

Interesting story and I can so relate. Some research is learned hard in the biz!


Beautiful chair... I was sick inside when I read that you sold it.

So funny that you mentioned Grey Gardens. I love the Grey Gardens documentary. In fact, I just watched it again last weekend. I found myself virtual vintage hunting as I watched it. Saw some really great things, but oh, the kitty poop... yikes.


I think I have hoarder in my genes. My ex did not. We fought about my stuff and my lack of the cleaning gene. We had a garage sale and I sold a wooden Moxie case, complete with bottles, a huge amount of pint, blue glass, wire closing Ball jars and a sweet rocking chair with acorn finials. He was always after me to get rid of my "junk". When we moved, I left my red,1950's cowboy themed toy box in the barn and when I moved from college, I left a Persian rug that I had on the floor. I had bought the rug from a friend and it had belonged to her grandparents. Eventually, I realized I needed to get rid of HIM. Now, he doesn't nag me but I either have to begin selling my stuff or stop hunting.

Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co.

I've regretted selling a few things. Never because the were valuable, only because I loved them! But if I kept everything I loved, my house would be overflowing with stuff! So, have no regrets, just look forward to the next great find!


Hearing those stories of people selling some long-lost treasure at a yard sale for $2, only to find out they end up at an auction at Christie's, is perhaps one of my greatest fears. Thus, the reason I don't list found treasures if I can't find any information on them. Sometimes I hold onto stuff for years, sporadically researching them on Ebay and Google, in the hopes that this time, I'll find that nugget of valuable info. I feel your pain.......:) Maria

Moriah B.

Off Topic - I have been reading your blog for a couple of years now and love it. Thrifting is in my blood and I'm having fun teaching my little ones the thrill of the hunt. :)

Anyway, a quick question for you - this past weekend I picked up a huge box of vintage fabric at a sale for $3. At the bottom of the box were several quilt toppers. One is in near perfect condition, but the others are in need of some repair. They all have a bit of "smell" to them...musty. Do you have any tips on how to clean or rinse these? Should I risk it?



All the time, girl. All the time. I had a really unique typewriter, kinda crustier than usual, but priced it as usual. A guy came in my booth, took a photo of it for a "collector friend," and it was gone the next day. Turns out it was more valuable than I thought. But, hell. I still made my money ($50+ profit) and now maybe he'll come shop my booth again. We junkers find stuff all the time, so you can't get too attached, right? Right?


Pretty regularly I regret selling something I've found that I adore...but as a full-time antique buyer I know I will find something I love just as much if not more next time out...

Oh - to musty quilt topper lady - a good way to get musty smells out of fabric is to steam the item with distilled white vinegar - if the piece is safe for an iron you can use vinegar instead of water and steam-iron the items. If they piece is too delicate to iron try putting it in an airtight container (those rubbermaid storage containers work well) add a bucket of boiling water with 1/4 C of Vinegar to the container and let it sit overnight (don't pour the bucket of water into the container - keep the boiling water and vinegar in the bucket while it sits). You don't want to get the quilt topper wet unless you think it can handle the acidity of the vinegar. You could also do the same thing with vinegar in the bath tub and hanging the quilt topper up - but that will make your bathroom and surrounding areas smell very vinegary for a while.


I regret when I put something up for sale in my co-op and then it's gone...not sold but stolen! This happened to me twice. Two of my finds that I loved and should've kept walked out the door without even a profit to be made. Double the pain!


I try not to regret it. I's dangerous for me otherwise I'd hold on to too much.

Instead I try to think of it differently. If it were me with the chair I'd probably think about how I made a good profit and made the day for someone who really loves and appreciates what I sold them.

There's too much stuff out there to love.

Cherry Ripe

As a newlywed 40 yrs ago I bought from a Lifeline shop, 6 old dining chairs which featured a pretty carved design on the backs. I paid $50 for the set, which was NOT a bargain. About 10 yrs later we replaced them with chairs from a modern dining setting and the chairs (which, by that time, I'd learned were oak) were relegated to the garage. A stranger walking by saw them and asked if I'd sell. I sold them to her for $40 for the set, thinking I'd had a good 10 years use from them. She called me a month later to come by her house and look at them - they were stripped back and stained beautifully to show the grain of the oak, and she had covered them in an expensive fabric. I began to pine for them, especially when our modern new chairs began to fall apart after just 2 years use.

Cherry Ripe

P.S. I also loved "Grey Gardens"; what a revealing and fascinating documentary that was.


Hi I'm looking for some of the pinwheel chairs too, if anyone knows of any, real interested buyer, motivated, if you know what I mean!


That chair was designed by Francoise Carre in 1866 and used at Rick's Cafe Americain in the iconic movie Casablanca in 1942. A set of these Carre chairs resides in the Smithsonian in Washington and the prices canusually vary from $375. to $650. each! Many of the ones available are from the 1930's and 40's.

chris virden

I just came into possession of 2 pinwheel settees. Are these hard to find?

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