What is a monkeybox?

When I was a little girl, we had a pet monkey named Amanda. My Dad worked in the produce business, so each night he brought home that days culls in a big box - spotty cucumbers, pithy apples, limp celery, moldy oranges and the like. We called it a monkeybox. It was really just trash, but my Mom would take each piece of fruit and trim it, pare it and cut it up to make a beautiful fruit platter for Amanda. Even though it was deemed trash by one, it still had life left in it and was good for the purpose we needed it. That's how I live my life - thrifting, yard saling, looking for another's trash to be my treasure.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Making Things to Sell

In order to be ready for the Barn Sale, I have set a few deadlines in my head.  August 15th is the last day that I can MAKE things for the sale.  Since that deadline is rapidly approaching, I find myself cranking things out at warp speed.  I made almost fifty necklaces in the last two days!  Making them takes some time, but packaging them up, pricing them and organizing them is a whole 'nuther ball of wax.  
I've made lots and lots of Feedsack pendants.  I think they are different and original, but I don't know if everyone will.  I need to make a sign that explains what they are made of and how maybe if you look close you might see a piece of your Grandmother's apron or a part of a quilt you once slept under.  I wear one almost every day and I usually get some compliments on it.  There are a few bottle cap Arkansas map pendants in there too.
The Feedsack pendants get packaged up on cards and sealed in little plastic bags.  I think they look semi-professional that way.  I also think they look like something you could pick up as a gift for someone and give it to them they way it is in the package.  (Pardon the glare - I took these in a hurry last night before I relegated it all to the storage area).

Today I ransacked the vintage game piece drawer and make necklaces.  I have been hoarding old game pieces for so very long.  It was hard to decide to part some of them out.  Especially the gorgeous Bakelite dominoes.  But, I did it.  
Red Bakelite Domino pendants.

Butterscotch Bakelite Domino Pendants.

Vintage Dragon Dominoes.  I made some sideways so the Dragon is flat and others long-wise so the Dragon sort of looks like an "S".  

Vintage Checkers.  Some of them have a star on them, others have a planet with stars.  Some are wooden and some are clay.  The clay ones have a really neat "clink" to them.  

Here they are on my craft cabinet waiting to be sold.  I don't want to package up the game piece necklaces.  I think I will display them as they are so people can feel them and see what they really are - old game pieces.  They have a nice feel to them and fun patina.  

Last week I dug out the huge thimble collection I bought a couple summers ago.  I added a small bouquet of vintage millinery flowers to each one and made them into little brooches.  
All sorts of colors and different types and styles of thimbles.  I also make a bunch of mini bottle brush trees in thimbles, but I haven't added pinbacks to them yet.  I made one thimble bouquet necklace that turned out SO stinking cute, but I don't think I have time to find more flowers by the 15th to crank any of them out.  (But, it is so darn cute....)

 This weekend I reconstructed a bunch of vintage horse ribbons.
Razorback themed ribbons.  I hate making Razorback stuff, but it sells, darn it.  If I could find and legally use some vintage Razorback artwork, it would be a bit more appealing to me.  

I also made JUNK QUEEN ribbons.  I only made pink, white and purple, but I think I might make a few other colors.  I like subtle colors like pink and white, but other people might like something a bit more "loud" like red, blue, green or yellow.  I have plenty of ribbons, so I need to do that while I still have time.

Each ribbon is a vintage horse ribbon with added ribbon and edging.  I used a paper poker chip in the center with the JUNK QUEEN on top.  On the back there is an old milk cap with the pinback added.  

I like the purple one too.  What else can I say other than JUNK QUEEN?  I may make some that say  JUNKER and FLEA MARKET QUEEN.

I also have a bunch of birthday ribbons made up, but I didn't photograph them.  This is the one I wear on my birthday.  I LOVE birthday's but I[m not sure other people really think ahead to them.  So, I don't know if they will speak to people or not.
Here's the one I'll be wearing at the Barn Sale.  If I remember.  
(Remind me Lara, okay?)

I found an offer for 100 free photos, so I had my blogheader photo printed off 100 times.  I'm using those for all my packaging along with the business card above I got for free from VistaPrint.  I hope my use of that photo and the color pink isn't too overwhelming.  But, I really want a cohesive look to everything.  Kind of my "brand".  

I also have a fleeting desire to make BRIDE TO BE ribbons and maybe even BABY ribbons in pink and blue to wear at showers.  But, I don't know if I will have the time or if anyone will even want one.  Actually, I have no idea if I will even sell one single thing that I have made.  This is a Farm Fresh Vintage Market which leans more towards rusty and crusty.  I'm not even sure if this is the right marketplace for what I am making.  But, I've already MADE it all, now haven't I?  So, I guess it's kind of late to be second guessing myself.  If I don't sell a thing, I guess I will have a ready made Etsy Shop, now won't I?

I still have to price everything, and that is really, really REALLY hard for me to do.  I am a pretty low spender.  But, other people seem to have deeper pockets than I do.  So, pricing is just really hard!!!!!  Any ideas would be appreciated.  I have "ideas" but I'm not really 100% certain.  

I promise all this Barn Sale talk will be over one of these days soon!  


  1. OH! It all Looks Wonderful! Fresh! Exciting!
    You are going to be a Hit!!!

  2. I think you will do well also I love the necklaces you have been busy.

  3. I am loving the necklaces! I hope you sell tons of stuff!

  4. I have that same struggle with pricing and will be stopping back to see what the others say. I am a low spender so I tend to price things where I would be willing to pay for them and just think everyone thinks the same way but you are right, some people have much deeper pockets.

  5. Wow!!! Very impressive!!. YOU have been a busy little Shara.I love the necklaces and pins. Pricing can be tough. I know you don't want to "give" them away. Maybe try a single price and a 2 for ____. price as these would look cute worn two or three together. Sure wish I could attend the BARN sale but that's along way from Middle Georgia.

  6. Wow!!! Very impressive!!. YOU have been a busy little Shara.I love the necklaces and pins. Pricing can be tough. I know you don't want to "give" them away. Maybe try a single price and a 2 for ____. price as these would look cute worn two or three together. Sure wish I could attend the BARN sale but that's along way from Middle Georgia.

  7. Let e know if you're ever interested in doing a small wholesale order of the feedback necklaces/thimble brooches. Always looking for vintage upcycled creations to carry in my booths and bring to shows. Best of luck!

  8. Busy, busy, busy girl. I hate the pricing thing too...you just never know exactly what your audience will be until you do a show and see who comes and buys.So wish I could come and check it out in person!

  9. Well, haven't you been a busy bee? Love it all! I would definitely buy a couple of those adorable thimble pins. Have you ever thought selling them on etsy? I think you would do great!


  10. You have amazing taste and a great eye! I would see all of those pretty pieces and think; what the heck can I make out of any of this? You have made some gorgeous necklaces and ribbons and pins! I love the thimble pins the best! You are going to be the hit of the barn sale!!

  11. Love everything you've made. I wish I lived close enough to come! I can't wait for the pictures and your report on what happened and how you did!!

  12. Please do list what you don't sell at the Barn Sale so your national audience can buy it! I like all the jewelry.

  13. OMG I AM RETHINKING HAVING THE BOOTH NEXT TO YOURS. This stuff is INCREDIBLE, Shara! I am so impressed! I love all of it. And the packaging...I think you're so right about packaging it as professionally as possible so that people can give as gifts. Brilliant. And if everyone else is rusty/crusty, then your stuff will stand out even more!!!

  14. You have been so busy! It's all adorable, and I'm sure you'll do great! Remember to price your things high enough so that it was worth all of your time!
    Erica :)

  15. Hi Shara. Yes, we have the same birthday, August 15th. I love our birthday and I am really glad to know we share it! I am very jealous of your special birthday ribbon. I might have to try to make one for myself! Happy birthday coming soon. Your necklaces are great, I especially like the dominoes. Love Tina (Gold Country Girls)

  16. Hi Shara,
    I love everything you have made and I am sending best wishes for a successful barn sale. If I was closer I would come to say hi but Jersey is a long way away. I know you will do great and please take pictures as we all want to see the booth in all its glory!

  17. Love the vintage dominoes necklaces. I'm glad you are going to let people touch them. I wish I were closer so I could go. Love the vintage thimbles too. Price them right so you can get paid for all of your hard work and creativity.
    Be sure and take the 15th off and treat yourself to some down time...you deserve it!!

  18. Everything looks great! The feed sack necklaces are really cute. I packed up my scrabble tile necklaces in the same way and they do look nice. We did find that a lot of people liked digging through the bowl of pendants we put out looking for the perfect one over flipping through the cards (but I liked the look of the carded ones best.) I'm loving the red domino necklaces, too!

    Maybe do your prices on signs instead of individual items and you can start higher and maybe have a sale later in the day?

  19. It all looks great Shara! I think you could do a lot of different things on those ribbons. "Happy Birthday" or "It's My Birthday" ribbons are fun nd a "Bride-to-Be" ribbon would be great. What about "BBQ King" or "Grill Master" for the guys?

  20. I thought you were talking about the hosiery box when you said they were making shadow boxes out of them, but it is the clocks. I don't think I could make myself tear one apart (unless it was really destroyed) as I think old clocks are cute, I have several!

  21. Hi Shara,

    Love all the things you've bought and the things you've made. Hope you do well at the show. See you on YARDSALEQUEEN.COM


  22. I love everything you made! You are so talented! Good luck at the sale!


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