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Tuesday, January 31, 2023

January Weird and Wacky

These two sewing patterns qualify for the weird and wacky category. Beyond big eyes, we enter into bug eyed.

Rather than save up my weird and wackies, I will launch one of these posts every couple of months or so. 

This one-armed mannequin is the watchman at Dolphin Isle Marina. 

Ending with a Facebook video that defies explanation other than "When you would do anything to get their attention."

Finally, it is my daughter's birthday today - the big 34!

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Patterns and Paperwhites

Here is one day's worth of thrifting. I purchased only uncut sewing patterns, and some fabric. The paperwhites are new to the garden and have been in bloom for a few weeks now. 

The fabric makes me think Summer, so I may whip together a quilted wall hanging. This little $6 bag of thrifted fabric now joins my project bags. 

I have started to cull the quilt books from my inventory. Some I had bought for myself, some I had bought to sell. All will be thrifted back but the higher valued, Fons and Porter, Kaffe Fasset, and Tula Pink publications. I am further refining my listings with a price point of $15 or more. 

The question comes down to - What Are You Willing to Store? I have also lost the intrigue associated with CDs. While they are small items, it is a media that is trending out and has been for quite some time. I did very well the Christmas before-last with holiday CDs. This past season I only sold a few still sealed in package.  

The way I see it now - those local mom and pop stores? They are mostly gone. There are the big corporations and then there are the thousands of resellers around the country. We store all of those odds and ends that somebody might want someday. The ease to sell and ship is a marvel in itself. 

Back to my lead-off image, you can see how easy it can be for a deep dive into out-of-control products to list for sale. Not shown are books, yarn, crochet squares, and miscellany waiting to be listed. 

Here is one of the reasons why I love selling sewing patterns - Ending with a note left by a buyer: "Thank you! I made this dress for my daughter many years ago, but no longer have the pattern. I’m excited to be buying this to make for my granddaughters! "

1993 pattern

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Who Knew Western Would Trend Back

As with all trends, they tend to circle back and Western wear is trending. I have my keeper Harley Davidson black hat and a pair of black Ariat boots. I love to line dance and haven't had the chance to do that for many years. 30 years have passed since the cowboy craze of the 1990s. 

I couldn't be happier that Fast Fashion is trending out - crappy clothes with crappy construction. 

Here are a couple of links on fashion this year.  


Glamour calls it "Cowboy Cosplay."

I find I am buying more retail clothing via online rather than secondhand. Thrift prices have gone up. I didn't mind spending a couple of dollars for a fun item (like that Mr. Bill t-shirt image above), but secondhand prices are inching closer to retail. 

Pattern of the Day was listed and sold this year. I bet more of my Western-themed patterns will start to move. 

This one was from 1992. A really fun time in my life, my kids were very young. We spent nearly every weekend at the country bars shuffling around on sawdust covered floors in Phoenix, Arizona. 

Viva la Western Wear!

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Cubicle Wall Coverings

Since I am in office three days a week and have been on that schedule for the past year, I can now show off my cubicle wall coverings to my co-workers. 

The heart-themed one came to me partially finished. I honestly don't remember at what stage but I do remember I added the borders, quilted, and bound it. 

This one was a study in shiny fabric, all my creation from start to finish and matchstick quilted. 

My last example that I display during the summer months, is a quilt guild creation in its entirety. Bought at thrift, I enjoy the other's handiwork. 

In my offsite storage, I discovered a group of needlekits I had squirreled away. My intent was to finish them someday, but it is more wishes and hopes than reality. I still have 10-15 kits in my project room. 

My offsite storage also contains the contents of my mom's room from the assisted living facility. I tackle estate in small increments of time. If I linger too long, it becomes a walk down memory lane and I miss her all the more. 

In my Christmas cleanup, I found a Ziploc bag of military patches. They joined my small death pile of miscellaneous items to list. I know CDs can be money makers, but there are two reasons why I may not list them, (1) I can't rip them to my laptop any more (doesn't work for some reason since a Windows upgrade,) and (2) there is no ability to play CDs in newer vehicles - there is no CD player. Christmas CDs did not sell as well as they did the year before. 

I am taking a hard look at that I keeping, and what I am storing. Every 6 months, I go through a closet cleanout when I shift my clothes from one season to another. Those clothes with even the slightest hip factor, go to the clothing reseller for credit. 

I have found since I began selling items on eBay, I buy less and less for myself - less tchotchkes, less clothing, less useless stuff. 

What is your thrifting style?  

Friday, January 20, 2023

Brutal about Completions

Oops, I did it again, and cleaned out my projects, this time quilt tops. One that is holiday themed will never be completed by me. It was part of my now infamous got-myself-in-blogspat, seven years ago. I was roundly chastised by another quilting blogger because I had linked my Christmas quilt with Cardinal cornerstones post in the comments. It was time for rehoming.

Quilt top no. 2 is quite pretty with hand sewn piecing in symmetrical rectangles. I have another red-themed redwork quilt in progress though, so I don't need two.

Quilt top no. 3 was a Goodwill find. I added the grey border fabric. It sold within one day of listing.

Finally turning my attention to my National Park quilt project. I had been stumped on layout but found this example. 

I will border the center panel in a companion fabric of dark grey, and then set the other fabrics on point. 

Once I get in touch with the quilter blogger, I will be joining this blog hop. 

She has a challenge to participants to find the oldest published book in their collection and share that. I am interested to see which book will be the oldest one. 

Our rain has stopped for now in Northern California. We had been inundated with wave after wave of downpour. Now our fabulous sun is shining through!

Monday, January 16, 2023

Monday Monday

It is a holiday here in the states - Martin Luther King Jr. day. Good thing it is a day off because our weather continues to storm after storm. 

My day will be spent putting away the last of Christmas, listing sewing patterns for sale, and visiting quilt shop websites through the

I decided to list the Bug Jar quilt blocks for sale. While the project is really adorable, I thought someone else could do it justice. It also satisfies one of my New Year's resolutions - to list higher priced nearly-finished sets of quilt blocks, and finished quilt tops.

Ending my sewing pattern listing sessions with the cutest one of the lot.

We are all just hunkering down in our tepees in this storm cyclone. 

Friday, January 13, 2023

And Now Weather Confinement

Pattern of the Day features one of the more unusual lines - Folk & Whimsy. Featured above is Hetty, below is primitive snowangel Hark.

This round of confinement and remote working is weather related. While part of northern California swirls around us, we pick up after the storms. The greenhouse is nearly destroyed from the winds, only the metal frame remains. 

Reseller update: After I went through a major book collection purge, I ended up putting back about 10% of them. I am focusing on the higher dollar books to sell, and thrifting the rest back.  

Now comes the hard part of my second job. I need to do a detailed inventory of all of the sewing patterns. When I edited active listings, I deleted duplicates. eBay prompted that those items were unsold, and I would list them AGAIN not realizing what I had done. 

I even had items I listed and could not find. I think every reseller bumps into that problem at one time or another. 

A friend of mine forwarded the link from The Week


While the author makes a few good points, I don't agree with title. Low income persons do not normally travel to high income areas to shop thrift. There are higher quality items in high income areas. 

If you are talking about vintage clothing, that type of thing gets snapped up quickly. I think it is great that people are turning to recycling and repurposing. I sold a 1980s LA Gear Medium sized light denim jacket for $65 ($1 at a yard sale). 

Everything for sale at thrift eventually sells. Where does it all go? Some for resale, the rest, nobody knows. 

Monday, January 9, 2023

Decluttering, Rearranging, and Detoxifying

Major room rearrangements resulted in a better way to display my crystal lamp collection. 

Rather than purchase another shelving unit for my product, I moved it down to the supply room. It was starting to look like a hot mess. There were containers of patterns on the floor and bagged crocheted blankets stuck between the tubs of sewing patterns. Now the blankets for sale are all on the top shelf of the wooden unit. 

When I first started reselling on eBay, all of my items for sale fit in a small corner of my room. The Mr. laughs at me when I tell him I envision a barn full of product for sale, with rows and rows of shelving. As a way of reference, in July 2019, I had 50 listings. It took me nearly a year to March of 2020 to double my listings. I now have 2,200 active listings. 

My latest sewing pattern session on eBay included a spate of extra cute ones.

The cute detail on the Blue Jean Buddies is their bodies are made from jean pockets.

Decluttering also meant getting rid of at least half of my book collection. I have winnowed it down to reference books, art publications, cooking, and quilting books. I will Terapeak research each one, and those books worth $10 and less will be thrifted back to the Great Thrift Shop Beyond. 

The year has started out right for me, a certain health condition meant taking my diet in a different direction. The goal was not to lose weight, but to eat healthier portions. I have slowly segued to a vegetarian cuisine. There had been much feet dragging over eliminating meat. Not that I won't eat meat, it is just easier to digest in small doses. 

What is new in your life for this New Year? 

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

It is That Time of Year

It is that time of year when cashmere sweaters begin to show up at thrift. Pretty sure people receive them as gifts and then reject them and send them to thrift. All the better for me! I picked up this coat-length camo cashmere at Goodwill for $7.99. 

Each year I battle with moths who love to chew holes in the very center of the sweaters. I store them in a cedar chest, with moth balls, and they still get to them. I gathered all of the holey sweaters in a lot and listed them as crafting cashmere. The lot sold within hours of listing.

Pattern of the Day makes me wish I knew how to crochet.

Reseller update: I made my goal of 2,100+ active eBay listings. Working my way through the sewing pattern sessions. Here is the remainder of that category's death pile. 

Next up is taxes, and I am curious to see how I will fare this year.