I'm a diehard thrifter and garage sale addict! I love the thrill of the hunt! And I love making CASH from trash so I also resell on eBay and Etsy. I share my successes to inspire you ... and my failures so you learn from my mistakes. Please join me on this wild and crazy ride of making cash from trash!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Cash for Trash: November Winners

Vintage Antique Wooden Thorens Music Box Hummel Picture Plays Edelweiss

When I first saw this music box at the GW, I thought it was just a regular trinket box.  Thinking it was not worth much, I walked by it a couple of times.  However, the little guy on the top finally got my attention so I picked it up.  Imagine my surprise when I discovered it was a music box.  I was not at all familiar with the brand, but at $2.69 I decided to bring it home.  I did some research and was happy to see that some of these music boxes can bring in some big bucks.  This one sold for $40 to a buyer in Florida.  Net margin = 64%

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PYREX Gooseberry Yellow Cinderella Mixing Bowls 442 443 444 Vintage Set of 3

Illustration of a fourth place ribbon
I picked up this set of Pyrex bowls at a garage sale.  The owners were downsizing and had already sold their home so their prices were pretty reasonable.  As much as I say I am not a big fan of shipping large breakables, I keep buying these items.  At $3 for the set, I just couldn’t pass it up.  I originally planned to sell the bowls individually; but after doing some research, I decided I’d be better off selling the set.  Sold it for $46.99 to a buyer in Arizona.  Net margin = 55%

I thought packing and shipping the set of bowls would be problem, but I wrapped each bowl with bubble wrap then taped the bowls together.  I then wrapped the stack in cardboard FOMO-style which I then put into a box and added peanuts. I know the bowls have been delivered and I haven’t heard from the buyer, so am assuming they arrived safe and sound.

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Christmas Black Sweater Holiday Editions Womens XL Santa Reindeer Beads NEW

Illustration of a third place ribbonSo far, these are the only two Christmas sweaters I’ve sold this year.  I bought the men’s moose sweater at the SA for $3.  I didn’t even notice at the time that it had a little music box attached to it.  It sold for $49.94.

I found the black Christmas sweater with two others at the GW.  They were brand new with tags so I was surprised they were only $5.39 each.  I sold this one for $31.98.  Total paid for both sweaters was $8.59 and total sales was $81.92.  Net margin = 61%

Right now I have 3 Christmas sweaters in my store; and these 2 sales make five total I bought for the year.  Last year I bought and sold 10 times as many.  Are Ugly Christmas sweaters still good sellers for you?

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Tommy Bahama Silk Shirt Men's Large Summer of 1999 Island Jazz Music Embroidered

I was doing a happy dance when I found this Tommy Bahama shirt at a garage sale in a large pile of clothes dumped in the driveway.  I ask the seller how much and he says $3.  Then he says there are more and wanted to know if I’d seen them.  Holy moly, I went through that pile of clothes like gangbusters.  In total I found 5 embroidered and 2 plain TB shirts – all at $3 each.  Score!  I sold this one for $49.99 to a buyer in Florida.  Net margin = 67%

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Vintage 1998 Laurel Burch Tall Latte Mug Cup Jungle Cat Group Lion Leopard Tiger

first_placeBe sure to add Laurel Burch to your BOLO list.  I first wrote about Laurel Burch in 2010 in this post.  She was a popular artist and designer who passed away in 2007.  Pretty much anything made by her is a good seller but vintage items made prior to her death bring in the highest bucks.  I paid $1.79 for this mug from the GW and sold it for $74.99 to a buyer in Minnesota.  Net margin = 74%

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Lego Sports Basketball 3433 The Ultimate NBA Arena Complete Unopened Bags UNUSED

Grand prize award goes to this Lego basketball set.  I found this at a garage sale that had already been going on for a couple of hours.  There were quite a few people looking around but no one was paying attention to this Lego set.  I saw that the pieces were brand new, still sealed, and I had to mask my surprise when the seller asked $5 for it!  I ended up selling it to a buyer in New Jersey for $245.00! Ka-ching!

There’s a little side story to this item.  It first sold to a buyer from Italy; and I noticed I had mistakenly set international shipping at $14.00 for first class shipping.  Yikes! Had he paid for the item, I would have sent it to him.  Good thing he didn’t …

He first sent me a message asking if I could give him a better price, and then asked me to fib about the price on the customs form.  Red flags!  At this point, I was anxious to have him go away so I sent a message telling him shipping was $55 and perhaps it’d be best if I cancelled the transaction – which I did.  Unfortunately, he denied the request.

So I waited for his payment … and waited …. and waited.  To make matters worse, I could not open a UPI case because my request to cancel the transaction was denied!  So I called eBay and was told to send him another message and to wait another few days.  I got tired of waiting so I relisted the item and it sold within days.  I finally did get my FV fees after contacting eBay again, but it should have been easier. Lesson learned:  I required immediate payment when I relisted it.

Now that’s cash for trash!


  1. I love how you show the net margin profit. I also need to check into requiring immediate payment--have never done that! Do you think I need to sell my items for MORE MONEY? Duh!

  2. Ugly Christmas sweaters didn't sell as well as they did last year for me either. I've sold about 12 but I've had to lower the price from last year. I sold about 19 last year at a higher price. I think that there are less ugly Christmas sweater parties going on this year maybe? Anyway, LOVE your blog and your thrifty adventures. Have a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful new year. :)

  3. We've had that same Tommy Bahama Island Jazz shirt in black. I think I would have been doing back flips at the sale with those shirts. Great find.

  4. The Legos, still sealed were a great find. I usually find them used and sell them in bulk, but not for that kind of money :) Love those Pyrex bowls.

  5. Wow! What great sales! Loved reading about them! ~~Pam

  6. Love that Lego score-new BOLO on my list for sure!


  7. Great post! Been reading a lot about selling my stuff like this. Thanks for the info here!