Sunday, March 7, 2010

Here's The Deal

I've been replacing and adding kitchen utensils and appliances for the past year. Many of my things are just worn out or simply don't work. After 30 years of marriage it was time to replace. The majority of items we have purchased new but I wanted to add a few classic things from the past just for fun! Hence I have also picked up a few items that I thought others might be interested in as well. Garage sales are great for this type of item but in the winter months garage sales are scarce. Kitchen items are in great abundance at the Salvation Army stores, Goodwill and many church related thrift stores. Last week I was able to find a few little items for my kitchen at the Salvation Army store and the best part is that many Salvation Army stores go half price after noon. But hey the prices are so reasonable it doesn't really matter when you go.

Yesterday the sun was shining and we decided to go on an antique mall journey to new and unexplored territories: Markel, IN, Decatur, IN and Van Wert, OH. The mall in Markel was very well kept with a variety of items and pricing. They did not have much in the Eames era but I was able to find a dynamite olive green oven proof casserole dish. The prices for the items I bought were reasonable. We drove on to Decatur and found a flea market in the Armory. I didn't find much in kitchen items but I would suggest it to anyone headed that way. The antique mall in Decatur was neat but pricing was fairly high. There was another antique mall in Decatur but they closed at 2:00 pm. We moved on th Van Wert and found two antique malls. I purchased the cool little red hand mixer by W.T. Grant circa 1973 at the first antique mall. The owners were extremely helpful and the pricing fair. The second mall in Van Wert was filled from top to bottom with stuff. We were greeted by a guitar strumming man who was very welcoming. The mall was dusty and most items were overpriced. But if you like looking through lots and lots of stuff they had it. It was packed!!! I found a couple of items in the basement, a world globe with a Danish Modern base and a a few other items. Unfortunately the globe wasn't priced so I sent my husband upstairs with the globe to get one. The guitar playing man happily tried to call the dealer but was unable to reach her and would not sell it. I understood it wasn't the guitar playing man's fault, he tried.

People like going with me when I'm on a antiquing trip for one reason, prices. Most antique malls have a standard mark down policy but only if you ask. I ask. Actually all new furniture stores have the same policy. The standard is 10% off for anything priced $20.00 or more but in the winter you might be able to get more discounted for all priced items. It doesn't cost anything to ask. How you phrase your question can make all the difference. First be courteous, compliment the proprietor on their business. Second, ask right away which dealers have sales. Third, if you find something ask for a better price. In general I offer a better price at 20-25% off. The hand mixer above was $25.00, instead of asking for a better price I offered $20.00. They said "yes" and now it's mine. When I find a proprietor who has the authority to make decisions to discount for items at 20% I return and I purchase other items at full price. It's a win for me and a win for the dealer. I appreciate a consumer positive shop. :)

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