Items like this old pulley can be found at antique malls all over the country for $5 and the fact that we sold this one for $40 was only because we took the time and effort to put it on the internet at someone's fingertips. Sometimes we only get a certain price for a given item is because we have a store and a system to sell things and the cost of being in business is huge!
Our biggest sale of the month so far, this old tea set was so ugly that I knew it must be special. Seriously, I suspected it would go for a high price, but this was one auction that exceeded expectations for a change. With so much old pottery and glassware flooding the market, only the best brands and rarest pieces have a chance of selling these days.
Old clocks typically have some appeal although the market is not what it used to be. This piece surprised me a bit as it didn't work and still brought a very nice price. Oftentimes the cost to repair some types of items exceeds the value so as a dealer we have to know when to hold, when to fold, and when to run.
Most people know that items made of gold or silver will have value based on the metal alone. When we sell things on eBay, our hope is that collectors looking for certain patterns or brands will pay above and beyond the scrap price. In cases like this, where the item is monogrammed with an initial, the sale price will usually be around the melt value. Sure enough, this sale was point blank scrap - I could have saved the 13% in transaction fees if I had just called my dealer. Oh well - if we don't take the chance, we might miss out.
Today an older woman visited our store and wanted to buy just the glass shade from a lamp we had. The lamp wouldn't have been much good to us without the shade so I instead asked her if she had looked on eBay. She said she didn't have a computer so I offered to find one for her. After just a few minutes of searching, we found the exact one she needed and ordered it on the spot.
Here's a piece I thought was really cool and might be worth a fortune but after it sat on my shelf for six months waiting to sell, my best offer was only $100. I've learned the hard way that just because I like something doesn't mean it's worth what I had hoped it would be. And usually your first offer is your best offer so don't look a gift horse in the mouth!
Over the past few years we've learned that most antique furniture pieces just aren't very desirable anymore and the values have dropped across the board. Using the reach of the Internet, we still manage to sell the better pieces we come across in a timely manner. This old cabinet sold for what I thought was a respectable price and is on its way to New Jersey - it only took about a month to find it a good home! Many antique stores are no longer in business because their owners failed to use technology to market their finds...
We got this old fold-up map from a box of stuff slated for the trash and recognized it needed to be saved. On the cover it says 'Automobile map' and was dated 1909. In 1909, cars didn't even have four windows yet - just Google 1909 Ford! So being a road map, this was really a piece of transportation history from 100 years ago and anything transportation related sells! While $50 isn't a lot of money, this map probably sold for a nickel way back when which makes it a great item to blog about! We even found Damascus on the map!
Old mercantile pieces are getting hard to find and can sometimes be hard to describe when selling. One of the most critical aspects of getting things sold is trying to use the perfect words to help collectors find the items they are looking for. While there are many collector books you can read, this is not something you can just lean overnight and is one of the most valuable things we do for our consignments.
This was an award given to surviving Civil War veterans at the turn of the century. We know anything old pertaining to military conflict has value and this was a piece that I thought would generate a little more interest than it did. When selling things on eBay, some types of items we auction, starting them at a fair opening bid and letting the public carry the price higher if warranted. In this case, I might have done better 'fishing' for a high price and taking offers.
One of my own staff members, an experienced eBay seller herself, asked me to represent this piece from her private collection. There were no comprehensive values to be found and she knew that I had a better chance of getting a good price for it. When it comes to premium items, we definitely earn our commission. Give us great items and we'll get you great results!
During the great American depression, money was tight and many women may have only owned one or two pairs of shoes! In order to dress up those shoes for church or date night, fashion accessories like these clip inserts could be attached to add a little 'bling'. Can you imagine only owning one pair of shoes?!
When I did some research, I was excited to see that one of these same watches (also in new condition and being 30 years old) had recently sold for $300! I had a whole case of them and I was thinking I'd finally be able to replace one of our iMac computers with all the money I'd make! I had new batteries put in and listed one but then, a stream of collectors told me how ridiculous my price was. While someone, somewhere, at sometime may have paid that much for one, much to my chagrin it seemed I would not be getting the same price for mine.
We've learned that MOST makes of art glass have gone way down in value over recent years. Occasionally we still find a gem but condition is everything. This piece had a small chip which in unacceptable for a serious collector. Considering the damage, we still got a fair price for it but as a professional seller, handling items with condition issues usually isn't very rewarding.
When selling things, timing can be everything. Posting a $10 item on eBay is hardly worth the effort but we just happen to have a box of these patches and capitalized on them. Trends and pop culture contribute heavily to what things are worth and something that is valuable today may be worthless tomorrow. If you have a collection of things that you suspect may be going stale, give us a call and see what we know!
After five years of serving the community, we at Curiosity Consignment wanted to have a celebration but we realized that we needed something to celebrate that was above and beyond simply being in business. This is why we have partnered with Nathan’s Ridge to support those on the road to recovery right in our very own neighborhood. Join us at the store (9870 Main St Damascus MD) for a night of networking with this worthy cause to bring us together! Live music by G.M. Trio (featuring cover songs from The Beatles) – Catering by Smokehill BBQ - Door Prizes - and more.
We know that old comic books and toys have value but pretty much anything vintage super-hero related is also in demand. Sometimes things that are less obvious and somewhat obscure can be the best sellers. These cards came from a storage unit we bought and had been sitting on our shelf for months as none of us really thought to take a closer look until last week. Do you have $800 lying around?