April 10, 2013

It's Back! RVA Picking Season

We mentioned over the weekend how we got a chance to get out early Saturday morning and hit up a few sales. We love when the weather warms up here in Richmond and we can venture out on a treasure hunt. This weekend we stumbled across a hidden gem of a garage sale, a church sale and a pretty epic estate sale — all right here near the Fan.

Here's some of the haul we brought back home. After scouring the garage sale section of Craigslist early Saturday morning while I was making coffee, we came across this super simple ad that caught our attention in a major way:

The words "grandmother passed away and house is being sold everything must go" were all we needed. You might recall a similar sale Mary helped out with over the summer after her grandmother passed away and they were preparing to sell the house — in our experience, grandmothers always have the most unique treasures. I poured the coffee into a couple travel mugs and we hit the road.

We pulled up right after 8am when the sale started and walked into the small, endearing home and fell in love with so many of the items. We both felt like the woman who lived there was a lady we would have loved to have met. We ended up with the most finds from this stop — all really unique in their own way.

As you can see, we came back with quite the variety. There were glass dishes, beaded purses, some interesting folk art wall hangings, a set of knives from the UK and a faux deer antler handled knife:

You can funny things at garage sales, for example, that cracked wall plate above was still on the wall and actually had the security code for the home written on the back of it — too funny. We had a good laugh with the granddaughters running the sale since it was a new discovery for them as well.

We both loved this crazy awesome green and gold vintage atomic boomerang ashtray (we don't smoke but appreciate the lines and thought it would be fun for the vintage Etsy shop):

Mary wanted these vintage glass candy dishes, thinking they might be good for flowers at the wedding reception:

My favorites from this stop were this sportsman flashlight and masonic screwdriver keyring — both made in the usa and the flashlight still works:

Mary's favorites from this pick were the swan dish and the praying hands salt & pepper shakers:

On the way to the first garage sale, we saw signs for a neighborhood church sale here in the Fan, so we made a mental note to check it out on the way back home. This was such a fun sale to walk through — it was super organized with color coded stickers all indicating price. We ended up leaving with the following two vintage finds:

A vintage blue juice squeezer and a Wagner Ware aluminum soup pot. I just thought the juicer looked cool and might be a fun addition to my vintage Etsy shop, but the soup pot is a whole different story:

It turned out to be the exact match for the giant 12 quart dutch oven of my great grandmother's. In my family, we've affectionately referred to that pot as "Big Mama's Pot." You might remember the pic of Big Mama's pot when we used it to make the Hungarian Stuffed Cabbage recipe with my parents a few weekends back. So, all of this is background to explain how my heart skipped a beat when I laid eyes on this matching aluminum soup pot — and how it skipped a second beat when I flipped it over to see the classic "Wagner Ware" insignia on it:

Needless to say, the soup pot is staying in the family as part of our permanent collection. This is such a great example of why "picking" is so fun for us — we just never know what we might come across and the meaning it might have.

On the way home from the church sale we passed signs for an estate sale on Monument Avenue. For those that don't live in Richmond, Monument Avenue is one of the most historic streets in the country, featuring some of the most beautiful and mammoth historic homes you'll find. So you can imagine, when we saw the estate sale sign, we jumped at the chance to simply walk through one of these famous homes (sale or no sale) — and it didn't disappoint. The homes in this area are just filled with so much character:

While we didn't walk away with anything from this sale, we did see some pretty unique finds we called back on the next day (when everything goes down to 50% off), but they weren't available any longer.

So as you can see, we had a fun time together — it had been a while since we'd really gone on a picking adventure around town. We're looking forward to keeping and using some of our finds and look out for others making their way into my vintage Etsy shops soon here and here!

Do you shop at garage or estate sales? Made any great finds lately?


  1. What a great spread! One of our favorite things to do after an afternoon of antiques stores and flea markets is to set up our goods for a viewing too! It's such a great wrap up to the day and review all of our fab finds. This was our recent trip around Frederick, MD and the DC Big Flea.

  2. That soup pot is beautiful! What a great find! I picked up a few really nice glass vases for 50 cents each at a garage sale, and a beautiful giant wicker basket with a lid ($2) for outside to house all my garden accessories (like extra pots, shovels).

    What a good idea to look for garage sales on Craigslist Saturday morning - usually I forget until Saturday evening, and then everything's closed!


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