Bye-Bye to Grandma’s Stuff, Part II: 6 Tips to Recycle Your Old Stuff

Donna and I first became close friends at work and later grew closer as antique buddies. We learned proficiency on the computer by eBaying on breaks and lunch. Donna often sent me late night emails to share new finds and of course, I was up shopping, too. Our boss called us “The eBabes.”

We also combed antique stores in several nearby counties on the weekends. Both smitten with art pottery and more, our collections grew. And grew. Until we both have come to that point where one either culls those collections…or opens an antique store.

We considered it. But happily retired, neither of us wants to run a store of any kind. These days, we are both doing the hard thing & letting go of collectibles we once prized. The beginning of the journey, especially Donna’s part, is highlighted in yesterday’s blog, Bye-Bye to Grandma’s Stuff, Part I: 6 Tips From an Amateur Decorator.  In it, I share six ways to RE-feather your nest, with less.

This brings us to the next step. Now…what to do with all those old “antique-friends”  painstakingly released to…well…where? Donna & I came up with these ideas for recycling collectables:

  1. Check with family first. I still have memories of several things my folks put in a yard sale without checking with us kids.
    • QUESTION: How long does one carry a torch for an exquisite mantel clock from the old Hotel in Sisters, Oregon?
    • ANSWER: A long time, apparently.
  2. See if one of your collector friends is interested. I now have a cool Wheatley vase that Donna fell out-of-love with…but that’s another article.

    FSR.Wheatley Vase

    Lovely 1880s Wheatley pottery vase, a gift from Donna. Pray that I don’t start a collection.

  3. Sell stuff on eBay or Etsy. Years back, I put a special antique find up for bid on eBay and the profit paid for a fourth of my daughter’s wedding. Oh, yeah.
  4. Rent a space in an antique shop & display your items for sale. You may have to work one or two days a month as part of your rent agreement. Still, it could be enjoyable, if you don’t do too much shopping. (Wink)
  5. Offer to trade some of your out-of-favor things for something you actually WANT in an antique store. No money exchanged. I know someone who does this regularly. She usually offers more than the desired item is worth, thus sweetening the deal and getting rid of more items. And dealers benefit from having new stock to lure buyers.
  6. Donate items to a local auction to benefit a good cause. This is my favorite choice because it is a heart offering. I don’t even care what I paid for a piece. Much more important – the sum it will earn to help someone in need. To make your collectible more enticing to bidders, type out its history and description on a card to accompany the item.

I’m proud of my friend’s progress, ridding her home of collectibles that overstayed their welcome. After our visit today, I carried away the aforementioned Wheatley vase, a pink-slag-serving dish, a stout Weller vase (why didn’t Donna want that?), and a cool glass-topped jar. She’s doing so great.

But I think I’m regressing.

Bags of Collectibles

A couple bags of goodies from Donna…oh-oh.

 

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Bye-Bye to Grandma’s Stuff, Part II: 6 Tips to Recycle Your Old Stuff

  1. I love your voice, Cathy. That last image felt like the beginning of a new book. I love your characters. Although this was you, I want to read a book about what happens next!

  2. Niki Chambers

    Cath – please come to my house and help me to re-gift some of these things I’ve ended up with that I doubt my family of girls will want!! haha

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