Friday, June 25, 2021

Today is my birthday

Me at two years old
June 25, 1961

Woah! Another page view spike yesterday. Wherever you are finding me, I welcome one and all! It is this gal's birthday. I am pretty happy with my life; living in a rural area, working for the state as a paralegal, and pursuing an online art history degree at Sacramento City College. 

Time to catch everyone up on little stuff. Here is an example of a book and the fabric I used for wrapping eBay orders. So proud, I am hovering over 1,000 listings. Averaging $400 a month now. It is DEF worth the effort I put into it. 

I have been organizing the house, my office, and the She Shed.

Quilt books listed in crates, needle kits listed in the lined baskets,
and sewing patterns to be listed in the tub

Sewing patterns listed and some of the listed books

Needlekits and CDs to be listed

The week will be devoted to either listing or giving away fabric-related projects. The Mr. has advised the I have crossed the Hoarder Border Line. I have to remember that I have purchased nearly everything secondhand mainly benefiting the hospices. It won't hurt to let some of this stuff GO. The first few PIZB (projects in Ziploc bags) in view are keepers and have bumped everything else. 

One of my all-time best thrift shop finds was this Walking Company Traveler (not a paid promo). I use it nearly every day. 

The battle with the deer and other critters over my grapevines has nearly been won. Just waiting for them to ripen. 

Not a whole lot planned, maybe a skosh of thrifting, a nice dinner, and a some fine wine.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Dancing and Editing Sessions

I have around 800 albums ripped to my laptop that I play on shuffle. My photo editing technique is to stand, alternating hands to touchscreen crop and save the image. All the while, I pause to dance exercise to some of my music. Might as well make it a fun activity. 

When I buy patterns, I usually find them in groups. The latest group was from a Vogue pattern collector. I usually don't look at my inventory until it is listed. This freekin adorable pattern came up and I am sure it will sell quickly.

I have also changed up my gloves holding the product. One reason I do that is I can place when that group was listed, and I have to wear compression gloves the majority of the day.

I have commented on eBay's algorithms before. Every time I list in a certain category, I have sales specifically in that category. For example, I have been listing books. What usually sells? Sewing patterns. What is selling now? Books. 

I have developed some seller's superstitions. I had a book returned and wasn't able to contact the buyer so I refunded the money. Good thing I had wrapped the book in fabric because the packaging was torn through, down to the fabric. I was able to relist the book because of the fabric + bubble wrapping. But back to my superstition, I will not wrap any other orders in the returned order fabric. That would be bad juju. 

Leaving you with one of the danceable tunes on this Father's Day. I LOVED Soul Train, wouldn't that be a great show to bring back? I didn't really appreciate the 70s at the time. It was that damned polyester fabric. 

Friday, June 18, 2021

Hunkering down in the heat

Dresden block quilt is completed! A space-themed fabric was used for the binding. Backing included a large scale floral and a kitty in a teacup print. 

Now that all Californians have been released from their COVID prison homes, it will be interesting to see what trends on resale. My items relate to stay-at-home activities (reading, quilting, sewing, listening to music). My eBay sales totaled around the same as last year - around $5,000.  

My reselling monies go towards travel and education. Our state is encouraging people to travel in state. I bet the campgrounds are either booked up or will be soon. 

My product will be moving back into the house and out of the trailer. Trailers are a hot commodity right now and we want to get rid of the She Shed one. I am looking for the the right-priced 5 tier rolling wire rack. I am further culling listing of the non-starters like cassettes, clothing, and children's toys. 

Little pats on the back - Both my daughter and I earned As in our respective college courses. American Art is queued up for me in October. 

The U.S. is experiencing a heat wave. At 8:00a.m., it was already 80 degrees. Just trying to keep the plants and animals alive. 

Plans for my day include photographing more books for sale. I have also listed other craft-related titles like jewelry making. We will see if they will move quickly. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Getting Books on the Board and More Blocks for the Birthday Girl

Even though I want to be listing sewing patterns for sale, I am getting books on the board. This is one of the gems I picked up in my thrift shop wanderings.

Books are my least favorite of the listings because they take up so much room. They are also heavy to tote around. On the flip side, I make a larger profit on them. The quilting books I look through like a magazine, then sell them. 

Here is my death pile of books. The larger group are the ones to be listed, the smaller heading for the boards this week. Books do intimidate me though, there are just so many of them. WHAT WAS I THINKING? Well, I have to deal with them now list, thrift, or keep. The goal is to have them ALL moved into the She Shed Trailer by the end of the month. 

I organized my personal collection of books, specialty ones I kept related to folk art, growing orchids, flower arranging, and those from estate sales that I want to read in retirement. 

Segueing to quilting: Yet another group of star quilt blocks have headed my way for my birthday month. I met the pricer at the thrift shop where I scored my last group of star blocks. She directed me to these a group of 20 she priced at $5. I told her I wanted to hug her. 

I saw one of my old posts come up, the-traveling-yellow-skirt. It was a voluminous off-colored yellow maxi skirt that was sent from blogger to blogger that would embellish it, blog about it, and then send it on. I still have the Insane Clown Posse belt from that event that is just begging to be highlighted again. 

Monday, June 14, 2021

The Crate of Goodness and the Girl with the Gloves

At first, I thought to myself, WHY did I buy more quilt blocks? But after I got this packet of Indigo Stars Quilt Block-of-the-Month from Patchworks from mystery quilter, I was thrilled! There are 12 finished blocks - more than enough for a quilt, and cut pieces to make more, if need be, all for $5.99. This one may bump up in the queue after I finish my binding projects.  

My reseller's organization consists of thrifted lined crates and boxes. This light gray one lined with burlap is not only functional but also cute. It was a little more expensive than usual priced $12.99 at thrift. 

Contained within my sourcing crate is costume patterns, a vintage sewing book, the quilt pieces, some quilting books, and a pack of greeting cards. 

I am making progress binding one of my quilts by limiting myself to sewing one side of it, then putting it aside for the next day. My Christmas quilt is up next to bind, that finished one won't make an appearance until my Countdown to Christmas. 

On to my post title - the Girl with the Gloves. I didn't realize how many different types of gloves I wear to protect my hands. My latest posts reflect the compression gloves that are now a part of my every day life. Here is a list of the other gloves I wear:

    White opera length gloves to photograph products for sale    
   Dishwashing gloves
    Vinyl examination gloves for messy food prep 
    Gardening gloves
    Quilting gloves to aid in gripping the quilt
    Cotton gloves for nighttime treatment, if needed

I am indeed the Girl with the Gloves!

Friday, June 11, 2021

Coming to Terms and Has Your Health Taken a Hit?

Without revealing my personal health information, in the past few months I have received two health diagnoses. I had attributed it to my age but got to thinking that maybe these problems were an outcropping of remote work and pandemic stress. 

Has your health deteriorated or have you put off medical attention? 

On a lighter note, let's talk reselling. Looking back, I see that I only have 40 patterns left of my original vintage sewing pattern collection of 200+.  Never would I have imagined them to be so popular.

All death pile sewing patterns should be in by the end of next week. Then, I have to turn my attention to books. I have them hidden under the bed, secreted away in corners of the house, and catch heck when the Mr. discovers them. 😁 They need to live in the She Shed trailer (that means they are listed on eBay). 

In my personal library, I have an entire shelf of craft books - Flower fabrication and arranging, Ikebana, painting, needlework, jewelry making, and quilting (stacks of the latter). I have to get real, they all need to go. I will be doing none of those activities. I can tolerate a small amount of sewing for short periods of time. Books on art, poetry, cooking, sewing, and a few select quilting, will stay in the library.  

This diminutive watercolor by wildlife artist Brenda Musgrave Doss has joined my permanent art collection. It was photographed at an angle because it is under glass. 

Beautifully framed and well-matted, a sticker on the back of the piece gave a provenance of being sold through the Sandcastle Studios in Paradise, California. I am unsure if they are still in existence, but odds are they are not. The unfortunate town of Paradise burned to the ground two years ago. 

This pattern dropped a present when I opened the packet, new on card Elan lavendar buttons.

I keep hoping to find money tucked into one of the thrifted books, but that hasn't happened yet. 

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Checking Off All of the Boxes

My quest for June was to find a piece of original art as a birthday present to myself. This $4.99 thrifted still life acrylic on canvas fit the bill. I love obtaining Other People's Artwork (OPA).

At my same hospice thrift location I found a real Burberry bag. I couldn't believe my eyes, priced at $9.99, that came home with me too along with 2 bags from a mystery quilter. 

Mystery bags of fabric were priced at $3.99 each. The best of Mystery Bag #1 were these cross-stitched days of the week and a few other usable pieces. 

The best of Mystery Bag #2 were these appliqued quilt blocks.

Sadly, there was only one of these retro Dresden partially completed blocks. 

While worth the money spent, 80% of the bags were unusable. Either ugly fabric (I give it away), or pathetic patchwork. It is a well kept secret among quilters that sometimes other's creations are downright ugly. Here is evidence of that in orphan blocks in odd colorways. 

I took the opportunity to clean out all of my marginal quilt blocks I had collected over the years. Unable to fit them into past projects, it was time they were released back into the wild. 

I know part of my good fortune lies in persistence. I visit my local hospice thrift at least 3 days a week. 

Reseller's update: The Vogue sewing patterns are all listed and I am shooting for back to 1,000 active (50 listings to go). Those babies will help pay for the extra expense of air conditioning during these blasting hot summers. 

Sunday, June 6, 2021

Do you know what condition my compression is in?

A slight play on words to a great Kenny Rogers song. Compression gloves have made a huge difference in my life. These fingerless ones I wear all day, with the exception of eating and preparing food, and take them off at bedtime. 

Another compression benefit are the knee high socks. I wear those a couple of hours in the evening and take those off at bedtime. My mother, now 93, is frail and has lost the use of her legs. She was always active and walked daily up until her late 80s. 

Will these changes benefit me in 30 years if I live into my 90s?

Thrifting update: I continue to find sewing patterns, fabric and quilt books. Book finds in general have slowed, but I did pick up 3 Red Plaid cookbooks at Goodwill in Washington. My newest eye candy quilt book is 1989 Clues in the Calico, a guide to identifying and dating antique quilts. This will join the keeper collection. 

Reseller update: A book on the Soviet Navy from the Naval Historian's estate sold for $50! I have more than made back my original investment and I have a few possible high dollar collectible ones I need to have valued. 

I have posted this one before, here it is again! One of my favorite songs and one of my favorite versions. It is my birth month, so who knows what else will show up on these posts in celebration of another year. 

Oops, I did it again, applied for an invitation to appear on Antiques Roadshow. The location is on the East Coast. My entry made it in the day before it closed!

Friday, June 4, 2021

There Is A Work Around

In an attempt to limit my hand-use activities, I have installed the Microsoft free dictation app and have ordered a pair of fingerless compression gloves. I will be using my hands for work and then resting them off hours.  

It means sewing and patchwork piecing will take the hit. I have kits and PIGS (projects in grocery sacks) *even though mine are in zippered clear plastic* and orphan blocks. I will winnow down all of that stuff. 

I have added enough to my death pile to make it through another pandemic. I've tended toward listing the sewing patterns because they are so easy to scan in and don't require special photographing. They also are very popular and tend the sell quickly. I am thanking the Thrift Gods for the gift of 20 uncut Vogue patterns from a collectors estate. Mystery collector must have loved Vogue (who doesn't?). My current round of listings of those amazing patterns will total $250-$300 in value.

This is not a paid promotion - I am so happy with the Amazon hub locker. We had a rash of mail theft in our area and I lost $100 worth of ordered product. I opted for the Amazon locker and it is great! I entered my code and a little door popped open with my stuff inside. Delightful! It reminds me of the show Laugh In, where there were different sized doors and a person would open a window and tell a joke. 

I have hit a new benchmark in page views over 1,000 in one day. Yowza~! Where are you guys finding me? 

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Giving It All Up

My avocation as a writer may have come to an end. I have recently been diagnosed with another medical condition, this one affecting everything that I do with my hands. 

Those things coming to an end, unless I can convert to voice dictation, are my work, my reselling, my college courses, gardening, and sewing. It is a huge blow. I dearly love reselling and perhaps I could hire a person to create the listings. idk

Those things I can still do, walk, talk, read, watch, maybe even podcast. I will figure it out. I mourned the loss of my non-remote job a long time ago. 

On a lighter note, these 1969 wedding and bridesmaids sewing patterns were in the lot of 25 I purchased recently.  One is McCall's, the other Simplicity, both feature empire waistlines, a classic late 60s look.