Tag Archives: frugality

Loonies & Toonies

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Bag-o-vision

I went for a walk last weekend, not to find garbage but to get out of the house. Junk has a habit of finding me, however, so while I left home with no bags I ended carrying home five.

I kicked this bag and heard the jingle of coins, but unfortunately they were only pennies. More importantly they had been sullied by food waste, and I didn’t feel like getting my hands dirty for maybe 25c. To the dump they likely went, to join the millions of pennies already there.

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I had better luck later on my walk. Yup, those are toonies. When you throw those out, maybe it means you have too much money.

All in all I found three toonies, six loonies, at least three Euros, and lots of other coins. I also found a £10 British pound bank note, and a fiver in one of the many purses that you’ll see later on. This all adds up to something close to 40$, making it my best cash haul in quite some time! British pounds, American dollars, and Euros are the best foreign currencies to find as they’re easily exchanged.

I found no gold here, but I did some pieces from a sterling vanity set (at right). I’ve never seen a hook like that before, so I’d appreciate it if someone could enlighten me! The animal charm bracelet looks vintage and cute, while the necklace is a quality Monet piece.

I usually don’t peddle in stuffed animals, but this time there was a whole garbage bag full and they all looked to be in pretty good condition. Plus, I’m more likely to take a chance on stuff when it comes from a household that throws out toonies.

These toys should find a new home at my next yard sale. This Fisher Price dog is especially fun, if you click on the picture it should show you a short video of it walking.

I also enjoyed this squirrel puppet (there’s a video of this one too). Perhaps my cat will appreciate it.

This spot was perhaps most notable for its large collection of barely used bags. The Herschel duffel at the top right was a nice find, they retail for around 100$ new. The Lole bag still has tags and seems to retail for around 140$. There’s a couple of vegan bags, one by Urban Expressions and one by Rachel F, a local designer. The WESC backpack also a lot of life left in it.

The little green purse is signed Christian Louboutin, and if it’s not fake it could be worth good money. I tried to do some research online, but most of the info out there is about fake shoes, not fake bags. It does look well-made.

I found lots of shoes as well. The two at top right are Repetto ballet / dancing shoes, which seem to sell for good money online. The black ones look barely used. The APC heels are also nice.

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Here we have some Star Wars toys, an unopened box of Q-tips, and some plastic ties.

I also found some teas (I drank some already, they’re great) and an unopened jar of maple butter. As you may know, I love maple and am always excited to find it in the trash. I expect it was at least 8$ new.

There was another big pile here last night, but it was mostly unexciting garage / under the sink kinda stuff. I saved some useful cleaning products, but nothing too exciting. I’ll keep an eye on the situation, but at least I did very well here this one day.

Otherwise, I found a cool “Man and his world” (post Expo 67) vanity plate at that spot in Villeray I blogged about recently. I’m trying to figure out whether I should sell it or put it on my car.

I found a collection of slides in Outremont, all of which contain pages from two old comics.

One was À quand notre tour?, an anti-communist comic book first published in 1947. For this shot I used a little plastic slide viewer I found a while back, it did a pretty good job!

It definitely provides an interesting look at Cold War era politics.

The other was Cidopey, a trippy looking comic by well-known illustrator Richard Corben. Cidopey first appeared in an underground comic in 1971, but since these are in French they’re likely from the first issue of Métal hurlant, which is the French version of Heavy Metal magazine. I’m not sure why these comics would be in slide form – if you have any ideas, let me know. Regardless, these might be of interest to a collector.

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Next to the slides was an old society sash. It was made to be reversible, with green fabric and red / gold illuminations on one side, and red fabric with green / gold illuminations on the other. I’m not sure what society this comes from, and I’d appreciate any input you might have!

I happened upon a bag in Villeray that contained a bunch of old stocking, and also a little ring box. Underneath the little ring holder part were two 10k gold Catholic pendants with chains. Maybe the previous owner didn’t notice them, but it was pretty obvious that something was inside the box.

There were many other bags around, but all of them were filled with actually gross garbage. This jewelry made getting my hands dirty worthwhile, however, as the scrap value of 8.5 grams of 10k gold is about 185 CAD$. If anyone wants these, I would sell them for a bit above scrap.

I found a ruined Victrola cabinet in St Michel. It wasn’t worth saving, but I did remove the top (which I thought could be repurposed) as well as this old badge. It’s worth around 15-20$, but I might just keep it myself.

My friend and I happened upon some great stuff from an eviction in Westmount the other day. It’ll take a while to process all that, but I’m excited to get it figured out. In the meantime, I have other recent finds I can share with you.

The weather is looking good for this weekend, so expect my real last yard sale to happen on Saturday or Sunday. I’m considering doing both as well, with Sunday being a kind of “pay what you can” kind of thing. I really don’t want to store a bunch of stuff over the winter, and I hope that by the end of it I’ll only be storing a bunch of empty suitcases. I’ll keep you posted and let you know by mid-week.

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to garbagefinds.com
6. Follow me on Instagram

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

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Fine folding furniture

I had a productive run out in Cote St-Luc about a month back. This pile provided most of my finds.

My guess is that the garbage was divorce-related, given the presence of a few different wedding photos. The frames were pretty nice, so I removed the photos and sold them at one of my recent yard sales. The little trinket box and frame at top right were made of Alpaca (basically faux silver) in Mexico. There’s some other nice stuff here as well, including a silver ring (bottom right) that I sold to my mom. I also found a couple American postage stamps. I have no use for them, so I’ll give to the next American reader who buys something!

Here’s some more quality yard sale stuff. I particularly like that little brass box which looks to be pretty old. If I remember right that bracelet on the bottom right is sterling silver, and the eyeglasses are Dolce & Gabbana.

That Montreal Canadiens picture frame sold for 5$ at one of my recent sales. The Star of David pendant is marked 10k gold. There’s also a pair of Chanel costume jewelry earrings, though I can’t be sure if they’re legit.

The stamp box in the foreground had a sticker on it claiming to be an antique, with a price of 65$. I don’t think it was an antique however, it’s more likely that it was made in the 70s or 80s and made to look antique. The main giveaway were the screws and patina, neither of which looked particularly old. Regardless, all these items sold at the yard sale for a modest profit.

I also saved a few larger items. The lamp is nice, made in Norway by I forget which company. Mind the dust, I haven’t had time to give the garage a good clean yet!

I checked that spot the two weeks after but found nothing, so I guess it’ll go down as a one-hit wonder.

That same night I found a great folding table set just down the road. It had been attacked by some kind of white mildew or mold, but none of the pieces showed signs of permanent damage – I was able to clean it off using soap and water.

The pieces were made by Hourd in London Ontario. All were well made, but the folding table, which also extended to comfortably fit the four chairs, was probably the nicest folding piece I’ve ever seen. I sold the set to a friend for 100$, which I think is a good price.

Otherwise, I was hoping someone could help me figure out this little sewing machine I found. The thing that confuses me is that it’s about half the size (maybe 1′ long) of any other old, heavy sewing machine I’ve seen previously. It’s of the hand crank variety, so I expect the machine is close to 100 years old.

It has a few numbers on it, but unfortunately I saw no signs of branding. Here’s the throat plate area if that helps. If you’ve seen something like this before, let me know in the comments!

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to garbagefinds.com
6. Follow me on Instagram

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

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Mousely Crew / Garage

I forgot to mention in my last post this box of dolls, figurines, and other miniatures I found in Westmount. I was pretty busy at the time and I only got around to looking at the things inside this week. I knew the box held some very cute figurines, but as it turned out it contained some minor treasures as well.

As you can see, many of the figurines were wrapped in toilet paper. The box looked like it had been tossed without much of a thought.

There were lots of mice, but also plenty of other animals.

A lot of the fabric figures are kind of dirty but maybe someone could clean them. I think a bunch of them are supposed to be Christmas tree decorations, they have green string coming out of their backs. It’s a shame that both those rabbits in the back right are missing a part of their ear – fortunately, they still look nice viewed from their profile. I found a similar rabbit a while ago, I forget who designed them but I remember that they are collectible in good condition.

Otherwise, there’s a Wade cat figurine, a few other vintage cat figurines, and a stone mouse marked as being made in Italy.

My favourites are the extra small pieces. I wish the photo turned out better, but you can still get a better look by clicking on the picture and zooming in. The dragon-like creatures on the left might be made by the same company that did the rabbits above, the glaze is quite similar. Otherwise, there’s lots of other animals here, and many of them are vintage as well.

I did some research on the little metal mouse at bottom, second from the right, which had Austria stamped on the bottom. As it turns out it was designed by Walter Bosse, a noted mid-century craftsman. 1stDibs has one for sale at 250$. The prices at 1stDibs are super marked up (it’s a website for interior designers and the super rich) but I still think I can get at least 50$ for it.

If you know anything about any of the other figurines let me know! I’m not really an expert on the topic.

There was also a tiny Windsor Star newspaper, made around the time of Pope John Paul I’s death in 1978. I’ve never seen anything quite like it before.

Inside the box were several bracelets. None are wildly spectacular, but the two on top are made from sterling silver.

My favourite find might be this thimble, which is made from 10k gold. This is the first time I’ve found one! It’s worth close to 100$ in scrap, but I should be able to sell it for a bit more than that.

Otherwise, I mentioned in my last post that I was looking for a garage. Well, I finally found one. It’s not too far away either, in the Plateau near Laurier Park. I’m still going to use my other storage place, but this one has a few features the other doesn’t, like electricity, running water, and lights. It’ll be a lot easier to take photos of my finds which should lead to more garbage making the blog! I also like that I can easily test my electric finds and clean some of the dirty ones, making for better and more organized yard sales.

The rent is 200$ a month, but I’ll be sharing it with my friend who wants to repair and bring new life to largely dumpster dived furniture, some of which I’ve found or we’ve found together. Once she repairs a few pieces I’ll post some before and afters so that you can see the transformation!

It’s going to be a bit of work cleaning it up and getting it set up, but I’m excited to have a space like this at my disposal.

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to garbagefinds.com

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

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