I see dead people’s things

I’ve never really been good at getting up early to go to garage sales. That and I already had a house full of stuff and didn’t really need more clutter. But I always liked the idea of it.

But with a blank canvas apartment to furnish and make homely, they are dynamite. It also helps that most garage or yard sales here start at the respectable time of 9am, so there’s no rush to get out there to pick over the cream of the crop.

Today we visited three sales. One apartment sale where there wasn’t anything that caught our fancy, and then two estate sales. I’ve decided that estate sales are the best. Estate sales are where the whole contents of the house is up for grabs and most likely a deceased estate. It makes for great shopping.

Roof racks are essential estate shopping tools

The first one we went to in the Hollywood Hills sounded like it was going to be a bit out of our price range, given the location and the heavy accent on antiques and brand names I didn’t know. So we were delighted to find an old wooden writing desk that is perfect for our office space and even more delighted to find that they accepted a price of $50 including some old movie books and Cagney & Lacey poster (down from $65 for the desk alone). We also picked up some wine and champagne glasses so there are plenty of drinking vessels for parties at ours.

The second one was even better in terms of price and range. It was nearby to our place and was a lifelong collection of things. We got there towards the end of the sale when everything miraculously became half price. So we ended up with:

  • a deco style white sofa bed, pretty clean and comfy for $37.50
  • a heavy wooden framed mirror $17.50
  • a print of a Kentucky garden scene in a lovely frame $5
  • a round print in wooden frame $5
  • three cushions $5
  • a vase and wooden spoons $1.50
  • crystal bowl and metal serving dishes $4.50
  • a desk chair $10
  • a clothes hamper $5
  • a chest of drawers – free

Our total spend for the day was $160 and we got some great new furnishings for our apartment. It is such a nice feeling to start from scratch and build things up around you (although we are grateful that our landlord left us a few key pieces of furniture to start off with).

I can’t wait for the next estate sale!


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