Sunday, September 5, 2010

Flea Market Finds


I don't think I could have been anymore excited a few weeks back when I dropped in on a garage sale. The owners had just tied up their balloons around their makeshift sign and were heading back up their driveway to start the sale. I thought I was a bit too early but decided to quietly make my way up to their garage hoping they were happy for some early birds. I almost turned around to go home when I saw all the power tools at the entrance. I'd made a very rash judgement that there wouldn't be anything of my liking.

And then I saw them.

My heart literally skipped a beat and recognising that I could blow my cover completely as a "naive garage sale hack", I gathered myself and began to ask a couple of questions with the best carefree approach I could muster....

"These look interesting. My kids would love to use these to show off their shell collections. What are they?"

Daughter and Father then replied "Oh, those. Well, we've been debating on how much we should sell them for. You see, they are very special actually. They are vintage and sought after."

I added a few umms and ahh's in the right places, reassured them that they'd go to a good home and oh my lordy, they sold both of them to me for $20.

I've been wanting to buy these for such a long time and I knew how expensive they were. Recently I saw them priced at $120 each at the Mill Market and they weren't in anywhere near as good condition as these ones.

They are of course antique wooden printer drawer trays.


Back when printing was done with good old metal type, printers would keep the letters, numbers and symbols nestled into each compartment within this drawer. Nowadays, they are used to display miniature collections. For me, we will showcase the shells we find on the beach and the wonderful little knicky knacks my children salvage at the local Op shop. 

For more Flea Market Finds, be sure to head over to Sophie's place.

15 comments:

sue said...

What a fantastic buy! I too love these and have just one, which is quite restrained of me I think. They will be great fun to fill yp.

Susan L (lily40au) said...

they are fantastic ... good on your for turning up so early. it's always the way.
My Flea Market Find

Thea said...

I wouldn't have known what they were. I love knowing the history of things so thanks for the lesson. Lucky you!

Erica Louise said...

Well done for finding something you've been on the look out for so long, and getting them for a bargain price!

Leah Grace said...

Wow! What a fantastic find!

♥ w o o l f ♥ said...

bl.... h***. :)))
you lucky so and so.
but so very welcome to a thing you've been looking after for so long.
i love your little story going with it too. i know the feeling. exactly.
bravo!

marianedwardsdreamweaver said...

WHAT?? OMG!! oh i LOVE your 'naive' style, just PERFECT!! well done you!!! i won't say i'm green with envy [well perhaps a tinge] i happen to have two which cost just a little more than yours..actually a LOT more!!

CurlyPops said...

OMG that is the biggest bargain of the century!!!!!!

Nantucket Mermaid said...

I wish I could have gone to more sales this summer, but I was too busy at the shop. Maybe there will be a bunch this fall....I'm not as busy and can poke out of the shop for a quick look!Love your finds...I had one of those drawers for all of my wee things! :)-----<

Little Ted Canvas said...

They're fantastic what a brilliant find & perfect for your treasures..

zigsma said...

Well done! Excellent work!

Baa-Me Kniits said...

I hope those people don't read your Blog....they will kick themselves!! LOL

Completely Coastal + Daily Vitamin Sea said...

Printer trays are so perfect for displaying shells!!

I thought I include this link where you can see a couple of them...

Stunning Shadow Display Boxes

La Dolfina said...

Awesome score!!!
It pays to be an early bird :)
Can't wait to see the treasures that will be displayed. I did one a few months ago and was thrilled with how it turned out. I'm always looking for more typesetter trays as I'm always collecting shells and small treasures!!!
xo

Catherine said...

These are going to look great filled with treasures collected. A great find.