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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

What to Sell Right Now!


Do you want to make a bit of money off your belongings or finds? Some things are hotter right now than after Christmas when they are actually almost nonexistent.

Having sold antiques and shopped for them, I learned a little something about what people want to buy from now until New Year's Eve. Plus, each antique-shop friend repeated their same wants.If you sell certain things right now and until Christmas/New Year's Eve, you will have more money for Christmas gifts or food. If you want to sell the same items after the first of the year, demand will be low as will the price you can get and the effort it takes to sell the items.

People look for tables--almost any kind. They are decorating for Thanksgiving Dinner or Christmas holiday parties--sprucing up the house a bit. Small tables are more in demand than dining tables. You can sell a porch table that is shabby from outdoor use. Fine antiques are not the only thing people want. Now, people take tables that are sad and make them happy with a coat of white paint. They are not trying to camouflage with paint. They make the painted tables works of art. If the antique dealer tells you the table is in rough shape, you can gently remind them people work miracles with paint and stains. "AND, I DON'T PAINT. Stand your ground.

If the bones are good, any junky table will sell! I even curb shop and stop at the next antique or junk store to unload it for a profit. Remember--if it is free to you, anything is a profit. Don't be greedy, but don't sell something really nice for a few pennies.

If you have tools and spare lumber of any kind, make a rustic table. Primitives are always hot. Sand it well on saw cuts, maybe paint it white. People like a white table to sell for the front porch Christmas display. I have had several items of the same type for sale. You might even advertise at a venue with free ads.

I did make a $6 ad sell ten items. Let's say "tables is" the item. I advertise once and mention only one table for a set price. Then, I give people a choice of tables and use the same ad to sell multiple items without re-advertising. Do NOT put a lot of effort into these tables! If you do, get a good price.

Serving Utensils
Customers are looking for serving utensils, preferably silver. Yes, I have lots of that lying around. NOT! However, the salad forks are always popular in any material. I picked up salad hands and serving spoons at yard sales and at least doubled my money.

Serving bowls, large and small, are the one thing antique dealer friends have said they can never find enough of to satisfy customer demand. Since they knew I liked yard sales, estate sales, and junk stores. I was ordered to pick up anything I could for them. I like cut glass and pressed glass the most, although there are other bowls I have bought. I found hand-painted candy dishes at a yard sale, priced a quarter, and bought them for daughters at Christmas. Then, I decided they might not like them. Besides, I wanted them. Pressed glass or cut glass candy dishes go over big at antique shops. Even less ornate ones are a big draw. I always kept what I found and liked!

Ancient and now antique wedding gifts
I received things for my wedding showers in 1966 that just did not suit my style. About 25 years later, I got rid of those things at antique stores.  Of course, now over 20 years later, I see the identical things in antique stores and wish I had them back. Okay, not really. Yes, I do. See? I am so ambivalent about getting rid of things. It is done, so I am good with it. They still are not my style. But, I have honed my sense of style.

Your turn
Do you now have an idea of things you might be able to sell for Christmas money? Can you make tables and paint them white or red? Can you search your cupboards or closets for old but nice gifts you have received? 


  1. I sell on ebay all the time, but obviously sell more coming up to Christmas. I just sell old clothes, and the kids toys. Anything I can get my hands on really. I don't know enough about antiques to sell them, but I'd like to. I used to take it more seriously than I do now, buying stuff to sell too, but now I tend to just sell our old stuff.

  2. LL,
    I know people who do that. I just don't want to deal with eBay and all in entails. I am glad you can and have the patience and luck/skill. Selling you own old stuff is a great way to make money. With four people, there should always be stuff to sell, especially with daughters. Thanks for the comment.

  3. I once sold 12 mismatched mugs to a woman who told me she was going to fill them with wrapped candies, top with a bow and give them to her co-workers. Here in FL yard sale season starts about Oct 15th when the snowbirds start returning. Maybe I should get my pressed glass and Depression glass items out and have a yard sale in Nov.

    1. Bellen,
      What a good idea for the mugs. I have some mugs to get rid of. Maybe I will just fill them with candy and give to people. Those snowbirds know the value, so stick to your guns. Of course, you cannot get antique shop prices. They will point out how difficult it will be to get it back north in one piece in order to get it cheaply. Commiserate and show them something that is small and won't break--like a book.

      My antique store friend travels to bring stuff back to her shop. So, beware of their tales. Good luck!

      I go to a yard sale every year that has cut glass bowls for $35. Pardon me. I can go to an antique store and pay that. She has the same stuff year after year, and each year finds her putting more chipped bowls out and still charging the same. Soon, it will all be trash and worth nothing.

      I found a chipped cake plate that was worth $50 if whole. I paid $5 and put a decoration at the chip.

      I wish I were close to view your goods at your yard sale.

  4. I have two tables: my dining room table and my deck table. I need both of them. But I appreciate your tips. I have silver and glass bowls, but my mother left these items to me so I want to keep them for The Hurricane.


    1. Actually. little tables probably sell better than dining tables.

  5. Janie,
    Then, this post had nothing for you. However, there are people who might have some of these categories. I, too, have table, bowls, and other things that I am using or saving for children. You might be surprised at the things people do want to get rid or need to get rid of, so this was just a little suggestion. Congratulations on a well-ordered life. I need that some days. Thanks for the comment.

  6. You are right about selling right now vs. waiting, and the reverse is true about buying later rather than right now. During the middle of the summer I found some silver ( both plate and sterling) at a moving sale. I bought the entire lot for 60 dollars and when I got it home realized I had a sterling coffee set, many plated trays, covered silver casseroles. In all there were about 35 pieces. I have culled what I like and am getting rid of the rest. Of course,for Christmas, I am giving my friends a Brazilian spice mix I make in silver salt shakers. ( A little elbow grease , some silver polish and a bright red bow and I will have a nice gift. There were 8 shakers in the box)

  7. Forgot to mention now is also a great time to sell china, tablecloths and napkins.

    1. Anne,
      So true. I was going for top sellers. But, those are definitely in the top seller bracket. Thanks.

  8. I DO paint and I'm about to chalk paint an end table to make it look like it belongs in my newly painted room.

    1. Cherdo,
      I just don't paint for other people, not when I don't have to. I hope your table painting turns out as you wish.

  9. I'm more of a buyer not a seller. I had a garage sale once and made over $1000 but it was when I was getting rid of all of DJ's baby stuff. I normally just donate everything to Goodwill and take the tax right off.

    1. Sonya Ann,
      I am not donating cut glass or pressed glass bowls or other such goodies. Lately, I am not much of a buyer or seller!


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