What’s Selling in Vintage & Antiques [March 2020]

Hi there! What’s selling in vintage & antiques in your neck of the woods? I hope your month outpaced mine: March was not kind to me. The first two weeks looked great, but then everything shut down on March 15th. I might have made up the difference if I’d had time to list more on eBay and Etsy, but I decided to run my Ebay Seller Challenge instead. 

I thought the time was right, given that many with an interest in eBay would have time on their hands, and I suspected that some could really use the extra cash that selling on eBay could bring. It seemed like a small way that I could help. 

I have to admit that the Challenge kind of wiped me out–emotionally and physically, but boy was it a lot of fun! It’s been exciting to watch participants listing their merchandise and start selling. 

Several readers who missed out on this first round have asked if I’ll run it again. And the answer is yes, I do plan on running it again. I just need to (1) recover and (2) set things up so they run automatically.  Though I’ll be inside the private Facebook group for the challenge to cheer everyone on and to answer questions.

But enough about the Challenge, let’s take a look at what actually did sell before things took a turn…

What's selling in vintage and antiques [March 2020]

What’s Selling in Vintage & Antiques from My Antique Booth

Total sold = $243

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: oil painting of a cabin in the woodsAn oil painting of a cabin in the woods sold for $35 (cost: $3). I love art. Have I ever told you that when my children were small, and I needed to get out of the house doing something I enjoyed, I taught art to a home school group? Later on I was the art teacher for one day/week at my kid’s small parochial school.

And of course, I love making things, as you probably know. You can find all of my vintage and antique projects here.

But I frequently get asked what to look for in a painting or other piece of art; how do I know if something is “good” or not? Understanding certain basic art concepts regarding balance, perspective, color, and emotion certainly helps. 

Ask yourself questions like, “Are the elements of the “scene” balanced or are they out of whack? Are the elements pleasing to the eye, especially color? Is the perspective correct or is it off?” (Note that folk art perspective is often off but that may not affect its “value.”)

Other questions to ask: “Could you conceive of a situation where you (or a friend) would hang the piece in your own home? Is the theme appealing?”

I found the theme of this painting–a secluded cabin in the woods–definitely appealing, and I could imagine it hanging in my cabin (if I owned one, LOL). The elements are well-balanced, i.e., no element is too large or too dark and there’s a correct amount of white/open space.

The colors work well together and the perspective is decent. I am not in love with the frame, but decided to leave it on. Had I found one to my liking, I probably would have raised the price. You can see some of the art in my personal collection here.

I hope, if you lacked confidence with regard to art, that this helps you understand some things to look for and consider when buying art for resale 🙂

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: ceramic bust of a man with a mustacheOkay, I can hear you laughing all the way over here. Laugh about this though: I sold this mustachioed man for $20 (cost: $1). Crazy, right? As soon as I saw him (and the price), I knew he’d be mine. I even thought about keeping him, I mean, what a great conversation piece–the googly eyes, pink skin, bald head, and THAT mustache!

So this piece I’d put into the “folk art” category. Clearly someone with just a bit of art know-how and a lot of natural ability made this piece. It has a good sense of proportion and the facial features are correctly, if comically, located. It speaks to the viewer on a visceral level.

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: royal blue stoolI painted this stool antique white and sold it to a dealer friend for $20, down from $25 (cost: $2).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: black cast iron string holderA reproduction cast iron string holder sold for $10 (cost: $1). If you’re interested in cast iron, I’ve got a post on cast iron trivets that you might be interested in.

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: vintage leather marking toolsThe leather tool on the bottom sold for $8 (cost: $1). It makes even marks on leather so you can tell where to place stitches when sewing two pieces together.

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: strawberry-shaped cutting boardI sell quite a lot of cutting boards some in interesting shapes like this strawberry, but many farmhouse-style vintage and antique versions that were lovingly used and maintained for kneading dough and rolling pie crusts. This one sold to a fellow dealer at a discounted price of $8 (cost: $1).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: Pyrex lemonade jug with yellow topA Pyrex carafe sold at a discount to the same dealer friend for $10 (cost: $1). Did you see last week’s post? I took a deep dive into vintage Pyrex and it’s filled with lots of colorful photos. I think you’ll enjoy it 🙂

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: pair of red toy ironsWhen I was a little girl, my father went on a business trip once and brought me back an electric [toy] iron that I just loved. As a result, I have a “thing” for them now. Mine was aqua, but I love these red ones, too. One of them sold for $5 (cost: $1).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: Nancy drew bookIt’s a day filled with nostalgia–I adored Nancy Drew as a kid. I asked for and received several volumes each birthday and Christmas. I save very little from my childhood, except my Nancy Drews! What a blessing it was for me to introduce them to my sweet daughter.

First we read the newer editions written for 8-year-olds, and then we graduated to the real deals. She has saved her collection, which includes all of mine plus those we added over the years.

Whenever I come across a duplicate, though, I sell it. Those with the yellow covers like this one, The Secret of Mirror Bay, sell faithfully for $6 each (cost: $1).

A sweet friend from church just gifted me a whole bag of them, and I can’t wait to see which titles she’s given that I can add to our collection. Thank you Linda!

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: copper pin-type flower frogFlower frogs are very good sellers for me. While they don’t always sell quickly, they do sell eventually, so they’re worth picking up, especially if priced right. This copper-colored one sold for $6 (cost: .50).

When you SUBSCRIBE to my blog, you’ll get access to my Member Library, which contains a Flower Frog Price Guide.

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: pair of celluloid pill boxesOne of these dainty little celluloid containers sold for $7 (cost: .50). An early form of plastic, celluloid is also referred to as “French Ivory” because of its resemblance to ivory. It frequently bears fine lines, which you can see on the lids of these pieces.

Though this ivory color is most common, celluloid can also be found in many other colors. Vintage Celluloid Collectibles is a great site to gather more info about celluloid.

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: clear glass measuring flaskThis early measuring flask sold for $10 (cost: $1).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: set of three vintage suitcasesIf you follow me on Instagram, you may remember I posted this set of three vintage suitcases not too long ago. I glimpsed them sitting on the curb as my sweet husband and I drove through the city of Troy on the way to my booth at the Gristmill Antique Center. They caught my eye as we sped past and so [of course] we turned around to check them out.

I knocked on the door (as I always do) and asked the woman who answered the door if she had left them out on purpose, just for me(!!). She said yes and declared her happiness that someone who appreciated them had stopped by. They were quickly whisked into the trunk and off we flew to the shop.

The smaller case on the far left sold for $15 this month after a bit of a clean-up (cost: free). I’ll bring the green one up next and meanwhile try to figure out what to do for a handle on the third. You can learn how to clean vintage luggage in this post.

No photos available:
Pair of skis sold for $20 (cost: Free).
Horse shoe cuff links sold for $8 (cost: $2).
(2) Costume rings sold for $3 each (cost: .50 each).
(2) Red-covered books from The Foundations Library sold for $5 each (cost: .50 each).
Merlot paintedchalkboard sold for $12, marked down from $25 (cost: $2).
Ironstone platter marked Collingwood sold for $10 (cost: $1).
Vintage linen sold for $5 (cost: .50)
The History of the Hudson River Valley © 2004 sold for $10 (cost: $1).

What’s Selling in Vintage & Antiques on Facebook Marketplace

Total sold = $20

small cube refrigeratorOh my good golly–I’m de-junkifying and it feels SO good! Except I’m running out of places to store the banana boxes I’m filling up. I’m thinking about calling a church thrift store because they might still be collecting?? Not sure about that, but anyway…I sold this fridge that I bought at a garage sale ten years ago for $20 (cost: $5). 

It was in our finished basement so the kids could have drinks while they were downstairs watching TV and/or playing games. Now to remove and sell the ping pong table(!). You can learn more about selling on Facebook Marketplace in this blog post.

What’s Selling in Vintage & Antiques on eBay

* This post contains affiliate links for research materials related to this blog post. This is both for your convenience as well as to support my blog, as I receive a small compensation whenever you click on such a link and make any sort of a purchase, for which I thank you.

Total sold = $45

Beekkman 1802 Toiletry SetA friend received this Beekman 1802 set as a gift, but she can’t use scented products, so she passed it on to me. It ended up that I wasn’t in love with the scent myself, so I sold it on eBay for $45 (cost: free). I love their goat’s milk Fresh Air products.

My sweet husband and I have gone to a couple of the Beekman Boys’ events in nearby Sharon Springs; both the events and their shop are delightful: Farm Tour & Garden Party and a Victorian Christmas.

What’s Selling in Vintage & Antiques on Etsy

Total Etsy sales = $123.95

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: Indian head metal buttonsA set of 12 vintage Indian Head buttons sold for $10.99 (cost: $2).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: Pale blue celluloid earring boxA blue celluloid earring box sold for $21.99 (cost: $5).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: Ivory celluloid ring boxA celluloid ring presentation box sold for $22.99 (cost: $5).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: Double pink heart ring boxAnd a pink double-ring, heart-shaped presentation box sold for $34.99 (cost: $5).

what's selling in vintage & antiques [March 2020]: Large Lucite cocktail ringThis large, mod Lucite cocktail ring sold for $32.99 (cost: $5) to someone in Australia. Vintage Lucite jewelry definitely has a market, so keep your eye out for interesting pieces like this one.

Expert Insights into What’s Selling in Vintage & Antiques

  • I know I say it every month, but presentation boxes sell incredibly well on Etsy!
  • Curbside “shopping” as I did for the three pieces of vintage luggage, is thoroughly satisfying. Don’t just whiz by those enticing piles of junk on the side of the road. Turn around and go back–it’s often worth a closer look!
  • Buy art. It doesn’t have to look like something that you’d see in a museum. It just needs to be attractive, or in the case of my mustachioed man, funny. Very funny.
  • Lucite jewelry is very collectible. You can check out the cat pin I sold a couple of years ago and have your mind blown over how much it sold for. Really. Go check it out. (Scroll down to near the end.)
  • Now is a good time for two things: getting rid of junk around the house and trying out Facebook Marketplace (FBM). Sell your junk on FBM! And then tell me all about it, cuz I want to know 🙂

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You may be interested in these eBooks:
What to Sell on Ebay
25 Vintage Items Often Overlooked & Undervalued at Garage Sales
Other Digital Products on Vintage Topics

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small photos of various vintage items with text: what you need to know about what's selling in vintage & antiques (March 2020

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  1. I love selling on FBM. You can also set up your own shop on FBM, then share your items with the various groups near you. In the past month alone, I have sold over $500 on FBM. Because of the distance and the shutdown, most of these sales were shipped. People who live in hard to get to areas are willing to pay shipping without a complaint.

  2. Loved seeing your sales as usual. I think you will eventually find a leather belt that you can rivet onto that suitcase for a handle. You made need a second hand to hold a flat plate in plate to hammer rivet together! Your man with the mustache looks like a high school art project to me–and I had to smile! Loved the presentation boxes, especially the pink one! My two places where I have my booths are, of course, closed, but at least not charging any rent, God bless them! I am still busy crafting; should be cleaning out a closet or something constructive! Every wall/door surface in my small front hall has a flower arrangement on it!

  3. Well, I do really miss the estate sales and thrift stores not being open. So I’m selling off lots of past inventory I still have on hand. I list everything I can think of & have been having a lot of sales on Etsy & a few on Ebay.
    I go to FBM to find things for my booth, but I find it to be super competitive. If you don’t immediately jump, it’s gone. In my neck of the woods, everyone wants matching nightstands & matching end tables.
    I wish my booth owner would forgive the rent, but she’s still selling for us…online that is.
    You had some good sales Diana. At first glance, I thought the funny man was a dog, LOL.

  4. I also thought the pink blob was some sort of animal! hahaha! So, not much sold last month, but any sale is still a sale! woohoo! I thought with more people home, they would be on ebay and etsy looking for goodies. But then again, if they have lost their jobs, or worried about finances, perhaps that is why there haven’t been as many sales. It’s a tough world out there right now, all around.

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