Saturday, April 30, 2011

ReSelling: April Update/May Goals

It's time for our monthly ReSelling Update hosted by: Apron Thrift Girl. If you want some moral support in your ReSelling adventures, check out her blog.

Completed April Goals:

Inventory: I have a system in place, now I need to get caught up.
Legal business is done. I am registered in CT as a Sole Proprietor!
I am checking in on my consignments and dropping off more items on May 1!
I finished the pillows made of recycled wool I intend to sell on Etsy!

April Leftovers:

eBay listings: I didn't get nearly as far as I had hoped, but I have all my genreral copy written and am in the process of compareing Inkfrog and Auctiva. (Which is not Activia-that's a whole different thing.) I also need to check out selling on Amazon as I think that may be a better  process for bookselling.
Inventory: I now have a system and I just need to sit down, use it, and get caught up.
Craft Projects: I still have the 2nd Etsy project I need to finish.

Summer Goals:

Life in Ivy League academia is great. I have job security, free healthcare, a semi-flexible schedule, and amazing co-workers. What I don't have, is a year round job. I'm lucky and I have two summer jobs I have been workingfor the last several years. Job #1 pays well and is not so fun. Job #2 is very fun, but the pay is not great. Between the two and savings, I do OK. What I'd really like to do is use ReSelling to supplement my  lost income. I want to be making the same amount of money each month I make at my regular job.
 I sat down with the calculator and figured out two numbers for each month. The amount I need to live and the amount I want to make. As long as the number I make ReSelling falls between the two I will consider the monthly monetary goal accomplished. (I'm not going to name specific numbers, because salaries in my world are a touchy subject.)

Specific May Goals:

Get caught up on inventory.
Finish my Etsy craft project from April. Continue with creating more pillows and quilts.
Continue with Ebay/Amazon listings.
Open my Etsy shop, list pillows and small easy to ship merchandise.
Consignments-check in at the end of the month and drop off 10-15 new items.
Revamp my workspace. It's hit a place of stagnancy and I need to change it up!
Not get bogged down in "my process." I'm a girl who likes to take time to save time. (Like basting in a zipper, otherwise I'm re-sewing it like, three times.) However I have a tendancy to over-do it and I should just jump in and let things be a messy pain in my ass sometimes. (Perfectionist, much?)

Fortunately, I will be between said jobs for most of May so progress Will Be Made! I am also taking a long weekend trip to Boston with the Vinyl Whores to recharge. Does any one have any thrifting recommendations for the Boston/Cape Cod area?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Thats Vera Neumann (Not Wang) To You

I'll admit I'd never even heard of Vera Neumann until I started looking in earnest at vintage textiles last year. After my first few Wert discoveries I found this Vera napkin at Savers for a couple bucks. I was intrigued by the bold lines and colors and it was cheap. So I brought it home and promptly looked up this Vera on the interwebs.

I was pleasantly surprised to see her work was amazing. I  started picking up others to ReSell or craft with. And of course, there are always things you need to keep for yourself. Like this stunner of a scarf. It was $2 at Savers and is very well used. It's not falling apart or anything, but can you blame someone for wearing this thin?  I wore it as a head band last month and got several compliments. 

I bought Vera, The Art and Life of an Icon on Amazon for research. It is a stunning coffee table book of her work and her life as an artist. It traces her journey from silk screening placemats in her dining room to becoming a household name in fashion and housewares. (Then those other Vera's, Bradley and Wang, came along and stole her thunder.) Personally, I am drawn to her abstract work more than the florals or the butterflies. Though I do like the vegetable napkins I found at Helping Hands. Part of me wants to sell them, and part of me wants to keep them forever!

My dream Vera items? These 1964 World's Fair scarves.

The chances of finding them are slim. But I can hope, and in the mean time I'll take whatever I can get at the thrifts. Especially the long skinny scarves I can wear in my hair.  For more information on new Vera to purchase, check out The Vera Company Blog.  Today they posted an umbrella you can buy at The Met Store.   (Which I want! is on the way!)

New Vera is also available at The Vera Company website, and they have links to online and local retailers in your area.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Thrift Share Monday

With it being Easter and all, I was lucky I managed to get to the Stop and Shop before it closed. Forget thrifting! With gas being $4+ a gallon, I'm not particularly keen to drive anywhere anyway. I've been spending all the time between work and my monthly ReSelling challenge re-watching episodes of Sex and the City. All the SATC seasons were $10 each at Target last week so I picked up the seasons I didn't have already. Inspired by Carrie's fabulous wardrobe, let me share with you the fabulous vintage skirts I picked up a couple weeks ago at an Estate Sale for $4 each.

All of them appear to be home made creations. Most of them appear to have been taken in and out over time and have whack-a-doo closure situations. But the fabrics are to die for. I love the abstract print on this one.

This is one of those classic classical inspired Mid-Century prints, I wish this one fit me.

This one is an odd length, but it has a super huge mega hem.

This print on this yellow skirt is really sweet.

It's lady like to carry a handkerchief in your stylish hand bag. If you don't have allergies or sinus problems. But let's face it, I am more Liz Lemon than Carrie Bradshaw and I need to haul around like, eight Kleenex purse packs. However, if hankies were my thing I'd favor the printed kind. Like these beauties.

I got the Faith Austin citrus print for $1 at Savers:

The Tammis Keefe hankie I found on the floor at an Estate Sale, I think I paid $1.

I'm linking up with Apron Thrift Girl for Thrift Share Monday. Hop on over and join the fun!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thursday Tray Update

Nerds, it has been soooo long since we've had a Thursday Tray Update! I finally found some trays out at the thrifts.  I found an honest to goodness hand painted Nashco tray at Savers for $2.99. 

It's in rough shape.

Here you can see where someone tried to repair the damage.

Other than that badly done reapir, the hand painted florals are still in good shape.

But it might be at the point where "rough shape" is surpassed by "chippy chic."  When does an object achieve that anyway?

As for State trays, I now have Georgia. It was waiting for me at Helping Hands for $.99. 

I plan to make some time this weekend to put up some more trays in the kitchen. I will need to continue around to the wall with the windows. Creating a valance of sorts made of trays. 

I'm going to have to expand to another room. Maybe the bathroom? Crazy as that sounds, I at least have available wall space in there and the ones in good shape would do well in the moisture. 

Monday, April 18, 2011

Thrift Share Monday

As I mentioned last week over on the Book of the Face, I went to a couple of Estate Sales last weekend. They were kind of meh. I wasn't expecting too much as it was late afternoon on Sunday. It was just really nice to get out of New Haven for a few hours.

After the first Estate Sale, which was kind of a bust, I stopped at the Clinton Goodwill. I find they have a great clothing selection due to their close proximity to two outlet malls. I got myself a pair of jeans and found this vintage wool stadium blanket. I paid $6, which is totally fair as it's in great condition.

Apparently Faribault Woolen Mills is similar to my beloved Pendletons. American made from an American mill. Faribault opened in 1865 and since the tag is celebrating the company's centennial that puts this blankets production at 1965. It appears Faribault closed due to bankruptcy in 2009.  So sad, but I'm glad to have this bit of American wool history.  Are there any Faribault lovers out there?

I headed over to Essex for another Estate Sale. I'd like to give a shout out to the nice lady at the Cumberland Farms Gas Station who directed me to the Shell Station to find a public restroom. The folks at the Shell were really nice too. I found the Estate Sale and there wasn't much to be had. I bought some forks for my office for $ .75. (They keep disappearing.) 

And I found these in a jewelry box with a bunch of janky jewelry.  What are they, you ask?

Collar studs. Back in the day collars and shirts were two separate items of clothing.  You attached your collar to your shirt with 2 collar studs. One in the front and one in the back, the flat side went against your neck. We still use them in costumes and they are not the easiest thing to find. (Mainly because few people know what they are.) I'm happy to have a couple for my personal collection. As you can guess they have a tendency to get lost because they are so small, so you can never have too many. I love the mother of pear inlay and the "Peerless 10 cents" engraved them.

I'm linking up with Apron Thrift Girl's Thrift Share Monday! Later, Nerds.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Land of 10,000 Hits

According to my Blogger stats, Vintage Spinster has officially hit 10,000 page views! 


A special shout out to my top 5 independent traffic sources for helping to make this possible. They are all fabulous blogs in their own right. You should read them.

Thanks to all my Readers, Followers, Facebook Fans, Lurkers. and Commenters.
I raise a glass to you.

You guys rock my world.

April Reselling Update

Here is where I am with Apron Thrift Girl's ReSellers Challenge for April:

  • I finished getting my Excel file together and have started entering inventory.
  • I've checked out the CT Licensing Info Center and waded through the legal mumbo jumbo. I now just need to fill out some forms and pay some fees. At least I now have a list of what those are. Big thanks to A La Modern's blog series on How to Start a Reselling Business for advice on where to begin.
  • I've photo shopped the photos I have of stuff to resell. By "Photo shopping" I mean adjusting the color balance and cropping here and there. I found a great tutorial on the web at Man Made via Thrift Core.
  • I've finished building the wool pillows I intend to sell on Etsy. They are similar to the Pendleton Quilt I made a few months ago.
Not bad. My productivity is infinitely better than it was two weeks ago. It's amazing what time and a little nice weather can do.

Here are some pillow photos to keep you engaged.

The Goals I have left are:
  • List 25 books on eBay
  • List 25 scarves, ties, or other accessories on eBay
  • List 10 clothing items on eBay
  • The English Market: Check in with Carol during the last week in April. Take in 10-15 more items to sell and check on progress of items from last month.
  • Finish the last set of craft projects for Etsy
The organizing is done, now it's time for listing action.  The current show I am in tech for will be up and running mid week and I will have real weekends again soon. It's also time to start limiting the trips to the thrifts. Gas prices are out of control again and I'm going to have to cut back to running errands once a week.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

And Even More Cookbooks...

We're not done with my vintage cookbook collection just yet. 

We got this Sunseet Microwave Cook Book in the mid-80's when my parents purchsed their first Microwave. It got lost or donated at some point and it became one of my thrifting grail items. Wierd, right?  I have a microwave but rarely use it. So why would I want this cookbook?

 Because of the candy section. These recipes are an easy, quick and cheap way to bust out some Christmas gifts. I finally found the book last year at the Value Village in Vancouver, WA.

Like the book says all you need is a glass measure and something to stir with. Though Mom and I recommend one of the large 8 cup Pyrex measures if you've got one. (It's not vintage but damn, it's useful.) Armed with those, a ton of sugar and chocolate, all of these homemade candies can be yours to gift.

Want to be the hostess with the mostest? Consult the Good Housekeeping Party Book. It's chock full of information on how to host a good party and recipies for sucess.

 I love the kitschy illustrations.

Again with the Teens!  Yes breakfast parties are usually sponteneous. Usually beacause the party guests from the barbecue you had earlier are drunk, and it's 3am, and everyone decides they need eggs.

While the illustrations are charming the photographs are hideous and not appealing. I mean, that bean salad looks revolting. It looks like someone put dry peans in a bowl and stuck a piece of wilted cabbage on top.

And these Creepy Christmas Children.  Yikes!

 Here's a close up.

Remind you of someone else? I guess little girls with bad hair cuts need to be consoled somehow...

And for the thrifty hostess how to make your own Cake Wreck Wedding Cake.

It should be pointed out I don't use the vintage cook books very often. I mainly stick with Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything. Maybe once my CSA starts up again in June I will try some of the vintage recipes out a couple times a month and let you know how it goes via the blog. Perhaps I will start with the Betty Crocker Cooking Calendar.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

More Cookbooks...

I have many more vintage cookbooks than the ones I showed you yesterday. I am always fascinated by the recipes and the graphics. I almost bought another copy of this first book when I was buying last weeks haul. But at the last minute I remembered: "Hey, I already have this, with a dust jacket." Of course it is the staple of every vintage loving single working girl's kitchen. "Cooking for One" This book is helpful for making smaller proportions of basic recipes but it does have some odd quirks.

Because all single girls love to have variations on Aspic for dinner. We don't eat Cherrio's out of the box with a side of marshmallow Peeps, no sir. We like a cold gelatin with protein.

The idea of soup with a sandwich or salad or some variation thereof is not news, but thanks for playing Elinor.

The Betty Crocker Cooky book is one of my personal favorites. It was the cornerstone of our baking when I was growing up. Somehow we ended up with two copies. I took this one and Mom has the hardback version.

For the life of us we cannot figure out the coffee/chocolate drop cookie recipe that my Grandmother used to bake. Mom and I have slowly realized over the years that my Grandmother made variations on printed recipes and kept those improvements in her head.

This was always one of my favorite pictures as a kid. Now I shudder at the thought of all that food coloring.

I picked this one up at the Goodwill a few years ago figuring it was going to be similar to the Betty Crocker.

I love how the book markets recipes to different age groups. Like Teens. Teens love these cookies. They love no other. You want your kids to stick around the house? Bake them these.

Kids on the other hand, like wierd cookie faces on sticks. They like to feed them to giant bunny pinatas at tea parties. I'm not sure if this is an Easter thing, or an Alice In Wonderland thing. Whatever it is, it's freakin creepy.

More to come later in the week. I'm saving the best for last!