I went to an auction on Saturday that was in a closeout store that was going out of business. It was all new stuff - pallets and pallets of new stuff. Lots of tools, registers, shopping carts, pallets of industrial toilet paper and paper towels, security systems, a scissor lift, pallet jacks, ladders, extension cords (SO many extension cords!) and on and on. As I did a quick run through I spotted two vintage items in the whole place - an old metal milk crate (which had been on my wishlist) and a handmade tool cubby shelf. I decided that they would be mine. (Insert maniacal laughter here).
After about an hour and a half they got to the pallet with the cubby on it. It was hidden in the center of a pallet and not very noticeable. The auctioneer had been doing "choice" on each pallet, so I assumed that is how it would go. But, Noooooooo. The helper guy plucked that cubby right out of the middle and twirled it above his head - "Let's auction this beauty off!" he said. Ugh.
As it turned out, it was a different mindset of bidders and no one wanted the old stuff. There was one older man standing right beside me interested in it. But, he and I were the only bidders. My stomach was in knots. I bid $5, he bid $7.50, $10 to me, $15 to him, $20 to me and then he stalled and dropped out at $25, so I got it for $20.00. There was a 10% Buyer's Premium (I hate those kind of auctions), so I paid $22.00. More than I like to pay since I am CHEAP, but still a good deal. It will go in the booth eventually full of doodads, trinkets and tchotchkes.
It has adjustable inserts so I can make them whatever size I need. I know it looks like there is no bottom, but that's just the color of the bottom. It was chock full of stuff when I bought it - saw blades, wood putty, screws, nails, WD40, utility knives, lamp parts, bolts, screwdrivers, tape and all sorts of stuff. Most of it was new which was a bonus. Lots of odds and ends will go to Goodwill and Lara is getting a big jar full of weird screws. nails and findings for her projects.
I was able to get "choice" on the next pallet for $5.00, so I got the metal milk crate too. It had three nice vintage wire bail canning jars in it (priced $6.00 each for the booth), a bunch of brand new rubber jar rings (listed on ebay) and fifteen brand new packages of click pens that The Breadman uses at work. So, $5.00 was a deal for all!
I made a rookie mistake and thought I was bidding on one thing, but I was really bidding on something else. I ended up with a teak waste basket, a flower pot you put a patio umbrella in and a small metal stool for a total of $2.00. At least it was a cheap mistake!
The little stool had a vinyl top with some bleach spots on it so I thought it was a goner. But I manged to take the top off and recover it with some groovy vintage fabric I thrifted not long ago. Sadly, that justifies my theory of buying things and hoarding them "in case I need it." :) My $2.00 mistake turned out pretty good. It's headed to the college booth along with the other two items.
I spent $28.00 after the Buyer's Premium was added. (Luckily I had cash because there was a 5% credit card fee too. If you spent $1,000 (Which people were doing easily) you would pay a lot more after both of those fees.) If I sell everything at what I have it priced, I will sell it for $104.00 (minus the $28.00) for a profit of $76.00 and I will still have the cubby and the milk crate to keep which is all I wanted in the first place! I guess I did pretty good after all.
So, where's the next auction? Here's a hint......a 7,000 square foot mansion!
I bet I don't buy anything there, but it will be fun to see!