Vintage Finds

Thursday, March 17, 2016

As spring approaches, so does opportunities to buy really cool stuff at estate sales, antique fairs, flea markets, and all of our favorite old stuff places.  With that, we thought it would be fitting to share some of our favorite vintage finds with you from years of collecting and decorating our homes.  From furniture to kitchenware, we get uncontrollably happy at any opportunity to treasure hunt and score some new old decor.  Here we are at our most recent visit to one of our favorite vintage shops Suite Pieces where we each left with breadboxes.

Erica's Vintage Finds:

This boat print with a chippy gold frame was purchased from The Salvation Army by my mother.  We joke that it is her favorite store.  She purchased this print for $10 and had no idea what she was going to do with it, but could not pass up the deal.   She gifted me the print and it now hangs in my home office. 

This cabinet was purchased through a local vintage shop.  It was being used as a display cabinet and I asked the owner of the shop if he would sell it and he said yes!   It is now in my living room.  I love the chicken wire doors. 

The vintage window above was a find through a local FB buy and sell group.  I had to pay extra to have it delivered but it was worth it!   After a long local search,  The shutters were found on eBay.  The wreath is from Target!

I found this cool vintage soda crate through my friend Melissa's booth at Hidden Treasure's Found.  

My friend was getting rid of this TV cabinet.  She asked me if I wanted it.  I saw beyond the pine and got my Annie Sloan chalk paint out.  The picture on the right and below is the finished cabinet. Not bad for a free find!  It now hides a small tv in my bedroom. 

The new knobs are from HomeGoods.  The hinges were changed using spray paint!

The little cabinet above and birds are both from Vicki's Vintage, she is a local thrifter/painter.  She always finds the best vintage items.   The white couch is a hand-me-down from my parents.  We washed and ironed the covers.  Then we added a bit more stuffing to the pillows to give the couch a firmer look. 

This vignette is from my dinging room.  Can you tell that I love whites?  The chippy white pitcher is a garage sale find.  I learned the hard way that you cannot put water into it!  Oops, there is now a permanent water mark under that pitcher.  The little birdie is from Vicki's Vintage and the white soup terrine was my late grandmother's.   The vintage arch window was from an antique fair and the bird cage is not vintage and was purchased from Michaels. 

Shannon's Vintage Finds:

This oversized round basket is one of my newest, most favorite finds!  I purchased it at one of my all time favorite vintage shops Backstreet Antiques, formerly known as Nannyberrys.  It is now adorned on my coffee table with some mossy balls purchased from Pier 1 Imports.  I also envision some pretty dried hydrangea or perhaps some antique Christmas balls during the holidays.

I purchased this bench years ago when I first discovered antiquing.  It was from Yankee Peddler which is now called Suite Pieces.  This bench has come in handy as extra seating at the dining room table or gathering in the living room.  The only hitch has been that it isn't the sturdiest!  Warning to all of my future guests!

This is another piece from Backstreet Antiques.  I purchased this metal planter when I was hunting for decor for my new built-in that has many shelves.  I thought it might look nice with some floral pieces inside in the future.

Although I am uncertain of the name of the antique shop where I purchased this old green chest, I do know that I found it in Cape Cod.  My husband's family owns a house on the Cape and our visits have always included some stops to great antique, vintage and second hand shops.  This chest now serves as a coffee table in my sunroom.  I am thinking about sanding the green off and making it look like more of a natural wood piece.  I would love to hear some of your thoughts and ideas about this!

Twice a year, my village hosts a giant garage sale/flea market in a nearby park.  It is a fantastic opportunity to purge, however I am always tempted to walk around early to scoop up great old finds for an ever greater price!  This year, Erica beat me to it and found these great canisters.  She knows I love blue decor items and texted me a picture of these beauties.  SOLD!

Would you believe that this piece was FREE?  I first set eyes on this cabinet, or what I call my "locker," when I was at the open house for what is now my house.  To my surprise, the previous homeowners actually left it in the basement filled with old paint and tools for us to keep!  Little did they know how much I LOVED it!  I dragged the cabinet upstairs where I sanded, cleaned and lined the shelves.  I now keep all of my crafty items nice and organized in it.

Another great opportunity to buy old stuff is at estate sales.  I am on a mailing list for a local estate sale dealer who sends information on upcoming events.  This blue and white porcelain piece looks beautiful in my living room!  My daughter also enjoys this piece as she hides all of her little treasures in it.  Careful Morgan!

Old books are another great way to decorate and add character to a space.  These books are from my grandparent's house, so the price was right!  I use them as a filler on my built-in and think they look great stacked with an occasional decor piece on top.

Everyone always asks us where we get our decor items.  Facebook is one of our favorite "go to" places, especially during the winter months.  Search for local groups and request to join.  Groups may be named after your county or town and include the word "thrift," "vintage," "antique," or "virtual garage sale."  Once in these groups, you can set up an alert notification for certain keywords such as "antique" or "farm table."  

If you live on Long Island, we recommend the Vintage Chic and Suffolk County Thrift FB groups.

Search on Craigslist for upcoming garage sales and for larger items. 

Estate/Yard/Garage/Tag Sales are where you are going to get the best deals.  We are on an email mailing list for a local estate sale company where we receive an email a few days before a sale with the date, location, and items to be sold.  We also use the Yard Sale app to find local sales.

Flea Markets and Shops are reliable sources for shopping.  These are run by sellers who are expert pickers.  If you don't want to waste your time on hunting, these are great places to go, however you will most likely pay fair market value for items.  Do a google search to find shops near you.

Antique Fairs are super-exciting!  These happen maybe once or twice a year, depending on the fair.   One example is the Country Living Fair in Rhinebeck, NY.  This fair is HEAVEN-ON-EARTH!  There are amazing booths for as far as your eyes can see!   

When it comes to Family Heirlooms, there is always your grandparents' attic and we will leave it at that!

"One man's trash is another man's treasure!"  There is no better price than FREE!  Don't be afraid to drive around with an empty trunk searching for some good-old GARBAGE!  

The best tip of all for estate/yard/garage/tag sales is to GET THERE EARLY!  We like to go before sales even start and wait outside with a crowd of eager buyers.  When the doors open, look out!  Be prepared to be elbowed and jumped over.  Politeness goes out the window when people see a "hot" item. 

The way we learn about new shopping venues is by TALKING WITH SHOP OWNERS.  Many are willing to share their secret go-to places.  

Don't be afraid to NEGOTIATE!   Most shop owners are willing to go down in price and that is almost expected.  The same holds true for estate/yard/garage/tag sales and flea markets/fairs.  Offer as much as 25% less, or if you are feeling really lucky even more!  Then let the negotiations begin!

Did you know you can find estate/yard/garage/tag sales through an APP that uses your current location?   Click to check out this app below.

APPS can also help you organize your finds.  This app lets you take a photo of your find, list the price you paid for it, and where it is stored in your home.  

"Success is where preparation and opportunity meet."  Make sure you are PREPARED whenever hitting up a sale, shop, or fair.   Travel with an empty trunk, take reusable bags, bring cash, wear a cross-body bag, and dress comfortably.

We hope this posts helps you on your hunt for vintage finds!



  1. Hi Ladies! I'm also a blogger in Suffolk County. I recognized your picture above from your recent visit to Suite Pieces. I have my shop there. I liked your FB Page but wanted you to know that the link to your blog on your FB page is broken. ( I found my way here anyway and wanted to say HI) Hope to see you around :)

    1. Thank you for letting us know Susan! I just fixed it. We love Suite Pieces. Shannon just bought a huge gray shelf from there. Glad you found your way to our blog!

  2. Love seeing all of your finds! I was wondering if either of you have every used Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint (it's behind you in the first picture). I just purchased some but haven't used it yet but love the way it looks in pictures on her blog. :o)

    1. Hi Karyn, now we have not. I would love to try it. I have only used chalk paint and it is pretty easy.