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Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Online Auction

Antiques, Auctions, and Unexpected Adventures: Embrace the Surprises at Pick-Up!

Bidding on antiques in online auctions is an exhilarating adventure filled with excitement, anticipation, and the thrill of discovering hidden treasures.  however, the journey doesn't end when you successfully win an item.  In fact, the real adventure begins at pick-up, where you must expect the unexpected.  In this fun-filled post, we'll dive into the world of online auctions, highlighting the unexpected surprises that can occur during the pick-up process.  So buckle up, fellow antique enthusiasts, and get ready for a delightful ride!

I thought taking a break from recipes this week and sharing a road trip and online auction where I will share our adventures would be a nice change up this week.  I will let you be the judge of that decision.  

Last week my husband was excited to share an online auction with me.  He indicated there was a lot of antique glassware that he thought I would like, plus he was interested in a few pieces himself.  It's not often that he shares his interest in pieces at auction.  It is mostly me who has the problem, er, umm... I mean the one who likes to search unique items out.

This particular auction had a pick up destination approximately two hours from where we live.  I will say, it is not uncommon for us to drive to locations to pick up those cherished pieces we seem to accumulate around here.  We like to look at it as an adventure, and that is exactly what we got.

Winning the Bid: A Moment of Triumph!

My husband can keep track of multiple bids and where each piece is at on the list.  Me?  I like to bid on my laptop where I can have 20 or so pages open all at once in the order in which each auction will expire.  There is a method to my madness afterall. 

After I meticulously bid on my wares, competing against fellow collectors, and finally see the time limit on the auction run out, declaring me the winner, I feel a rush of triumph as I celebrate the win and move on to the next cherished, must have piece while awaiting the pick-up phase.  

The Pick-Up Adventure Begins:
  • Treasure Hunt: Arriving at the designated pick-up location... no two pick-ups are the same.  We have had to enter the home, and locate our items, pack up, and load in our car, there have been pick-ups at the auctioneer's warehouse, and sometimes they have everything tagged and in one location for you to load in your car to get in and out as quickly as possible.  We have even experienced movers fetching our wins from the home and loading into our vehicle for us (how nice!).    

My favorite used to be picking up at the warehouse since I did not have to go into the homes.  Then I decided I kind of like to know where my items are coming from.  I haven't gone in for a pick up in a long time, but I still like to see the homes at pick up. 

  • Friendly Encounters: You can engage with fellow antique enthusiasts during pick-up and exchange stories.  
Last week, there was a gentleman from New York picking up items from this particular auction.  When my husband relayed the information, I was floored someone would drive that far!  The auctioneer explained recently there was another collector who had come from Minnesota.  You can expect to meet new folks near and far during the pick-up process and perhaps make a new friend or two.  

Expecting the Unexpected:
  • Unique Challenges: Pick up can present unexpected challenges, such as the sheer size and weight of certain items.  Prepare yourself for an impromptu workout or enlist the help of friends and family to tackle the more substantial pieces.  

We once had to drive two hours back and forth twice because we were not prepared for our dining room table when we went to pick it up.  No where did it state that the legs were actually welded as one large metal piece that the table rested on.  It was a mess, but in the end everything worked out, and we have one very unique table.

  • Quirks and Flaws: As with any second hand items, imperfections and quirks are part of their charm.  During pick up you may come across surprising details.

When I was an inexperienced bidder, I once bid on navy leather wingback chairs.  I was so darn excited to pick them up myself.  When I arrived at the warehouse, I was lucky enough to have a gentleman help me load them into my car since hubby was still at work.  Right away I could smell cigarette smoke on the chairs and was so disappointed!  

I went home to go over the listing, and low and behold, it was stated on the auction the home was a smoke friendly home.  Shame on me for not taking a closer look.  It took me forever to get the smell of smoke from those chairs, but they look nice in our spare bedroom now.  

Embracing the Adventure:
  • Flexibility and Patience: As with any adventure, a flexible mindset and patience are key.  Delays, last minute changes, or minor hiccups may occur during pick-up.  Embrace them as part of the journey and remain adaptable.

Homes can be in interesting locations and you need to be prepared for anything that may come up.

We had a new experience on this adventure, one we had not encountered before.  The home was located back a one lane drive half a mile off the road.  We drove down this dirt road, praying another car would not be coming from the other direction.  There was not a way to allow two cars down the lane since the trees were growing right along the side of the road as you can see below.   

  • Cherishing the Story:  Each unexpected twist and turn during the pick-up process adds to the story behind your purchases.  These quirks and surprises become cherished memories, making your collection even more special and unique.  

My oh my... online auctions can be so much fun, even the pick up process can be included as part of your adventure and story for the pieces you accumulate in your home.  We have many stories of bidding and picking up items from auction, but the dining room table really did make me want to cry.  Our French Provincial chest of drawers was an entirely different story, but memorable none the less. 

I do not usually take pics of the places we visit when purchasing online, but this adventure seemed like a good example of expecting the unexpected. 

Of course, if you are anything like me, you may be wondering what treasures can be found in this lean-to barn?  I know I was curious!  If you would have seen this auction's contents, you would understand my curiosity.  We were able to score 100 year old glassware, along with a few rare pieces I have never seen before.

We look at each pick up as an adventure since you really need to be prepared for whatever may come up.  Be sure to take packing materials if you purchase breakables.  We take totes and plenty of towels to wrap around items.  At this particular auction, we took two 18 gallon totes and several beach towels so we were sure to keep items from touching on the way home.  

You would have to know Bentley was invited to join in the fun as well.  We always pack treats, his traveling water dish, water, and a few toys to play with in the backseat for him.  Surprisingly, he behaved and only barked at one person when we were leaving the home.  He enjoyed getting out for a walk about once we had the car loaded up and was heading home.  We always plan a place to stop for him to take a break since he likes to get out and explore too.

I will be sharing our treasures as I display them in our home, but wanted to give a sneak peek of some of our finds.  

This flour, sugar, and tea canister set will be used in our kitchen when we finally get our rehab project completed.  I do plan on putting our flour in it, along with sugar, and as you can see, I already placed tea packets inside the tea canister.  

This bottle has Juice printed on one side, and Water on the other.  There are no makers marks on it, so if anyone has any information, please share.  We thought it was unique and decided to take a chance on it.

We were able to pick up a few Sneath sugar canisters.  Sneath Glass initially started in Tiffin, Ohio in the 1890's which I found interesting.  My own hometown is known for it's glassmaking.  

We also plan to use these canisters in our kitchen and pantry.  I love vintage and antique finds, but I also like to use them instead of just sitting them on a shelf and staring at them.  What fun is that?

We thought this Water bottle was a unique find.  When my mother visited, she indicated my great grandmother had one just like it in clear glass.  That's all for now, stay tuned for more glassware that we plan to display in our home.  It has been a lot of fun searching for information on a few of these pieces, and creating new vignettes.

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Would you like to comment?

  1. Definitely fun and you can find some interesting things, an adventure until it turns into hoarding...Yes, I know. Had to put a stop to hubby going to auctions and estate sales.

    1. We found some amazing pieces from this auction, not to mention the adventure and story that added to the experience. My husband loves the bidding part, but I just enjoy picking up the items and seeing them in person and then in our home.

  2. Cara,
    The only thing I can tell you about the Juice green bottle is that I have it in my Kitchen in the display on the Hutch desk!! It was my late neighbor Elly's who collected all types of vintage and antique items. Her sons asked us to clean out her home when she passed as they both lived away in other states. They said I was welcome to take what ever I wanted so most of her collections are now mine...Thanks so much for stopping by and for your kind comment!! I do love decorating for different Holidays as it does keep me from becoming bored with how the house looks... I hope you have a great weekend!!

    1. Thank you for letting me know about your juice/water bottle Debbie. I could not find any markings on it and the auctioneer did not have any knowledge about it either. I have been stumped. That was so nice of the sons to let you go through and take her collections! Wow, I would be in awe... I absolutely cannot say no to vintage finds. I went from having bare walls and rooms to being stuffed with all sorts of treasures. We do not hit the auctions quite like we used to, but when something grabs our attention, we are all in! So glad you were able to snag her collection, it has sentimental meaning for you too. I love those sorts of pieces, they are my favorite!

  3. I just found both the juice jar and water jug online at Etsy and eBay. Such pretty colors.

    1. Thanks Dee, I will have to check out eBay and see what I can find.

  4. Such a fun post Cara! I have never looked into an online antique auction before! Now my curiosity is peaked! Sounds like you've had some quite interesting adventures!!

    1. We have had so many adventures with online auctions, each with unique twists and turns. We love the things from yesteryear so auctions are the way to go where we live. Now if only we could find a vintage kitchen, we would be in business. I keep looking, and hoping... I hope you take a look at online auctions too Donna, I think you would love them!

  5. Love the set on the stands! Never seen them with the stands before. What a find.

    1. So glad you liked them! The flour canister was a rare find, I could not locate more of them online for sale. We loved all of the glass pieces we found at this auction. Auctions can be so much fun!

  6. You can find the old Sneath canisters online. I just looked at some and they are pricey!! I found them in clear, peacock blue, and some that were uranium glass!!

    1. We had the opportunity to purchase the cobalt blue one you were referencing on eBay, but I do not have a blue kitchen so we went with the clear glass since it would match everything. I love it! All of the pieces including the one on eBay came from the same home, they held several auctions over the course of a couple weeks. There were even folks coming from New York to purchase items. They had quite the collection! I have never seen so many items in one collection before, but I was quite happy with the pieces we were able to snag! I haven't had time to work on styling all of it yet.

  7. I've never seen a cobalt blue Sneath piece but I do love cobalt blue glass, it is soooo pretty!! We've sold lots of pieces and some of it I would have rather kept but you can't keep all of it that you come across. I also love Murano and crystal. I have kept a few pieces of Murano and a heavy crystal perfume bottle that I just can't part with! There's many more online places to shop and sell other than eBay (ex Etsy, Ruby Lane, Bonanza, 1st Dibs, Replacements, Poshmark, Mercari, etc) as well as multiple online live auction houses. Hubby prefers local antique malls, auctions, and estate sales, that's how we obtained all of the items we've sold thru the years.

    1. I cannot say we enjoy estate sales in our area. We have gone to a few, and there is a local gentleman who shops for his store and he seems to butt in and take things right from under your nose. We just did not have much luck with them. We enjoy some live auctions in person, depending on who is hosting. We have a few favorite auctioneers since we used to attend frequently. We also enjoy perusing the antique malls, but online auctions seem to be our favorite. No more wasting time in person in case you do not get the one thing you are there for. We have shopped the other places you have mentioned, but I have never heard of Ruby Lane, or Bonanza. I will have to check them out. We are always on the hunt for unique pieces.

  8. I forgot to mention eCrater. I also have some Fenton pieces my grandmother gave me. They were on display at her house since I was a young child back in the 60s. Estate sales that are held at homes depress me. I see all this stuff from the lives of these people and now they're gone and all is left is their belongings.

    1. I agree, it is the reason for the longest time I would not go to auctions. Then I decided I needed a different perspective because auctions were going to happen whether I went to them or not, and I would rescue items cherished by others and hold them dear in our home. I love when books are signed or notes are made in the margins. I often times wonder about the folks who previously had those items. I began a Fenton milk glass collection years ago, but then decided if I was not going to use the items I needed to stop. They have many pretty pieces. My husband's aunt was an avid collector of everything, she had so many beautiful pieces of Fenton, and gifted a plum piece to us for our wedding. It is the only colored piece I have, the rest are all milk glass.