Monday, January 17, 2022

Vintage Shopping Finds: Design on a Dime

Sharing vintage shopping finds and antique mall booth displays is really the reason why I started this blog. One of my Panoply sisters lives out of state but is still very active in buying and selling with my other Panoply sister and me. So, the main purpose of blogging was to share vintage finds and collective booth displays for her to see. I know it's something many of my readers enjoy too, so this post is an attempt to catch up in sharing the finds that I was drawn to buy in the second half of 2021. 
Pearson sofa (with ivory pillows only) - estate sale Nov 2021

What's different about this post, though, is that these finds ended up being ones that are currently being used in my new home, not for sale.....yet! My recent vintage shopping goals have been to fluff our new nest. You may want to backtrack to see a mini tour of my home in winter, here. Otherwise, armchair shoppers, get yourself a drink, and let's go shopping! 

Mid-August was when we first looked at this house, and we were in contract by Labor Day. With the current move from condo back to a house, there was more space than furnishings (I had purged so much just three years before!). With lead times for getting new furniture as much as a year or more due to the pandemic, I scouted estate sales from August 2021 to the end of 2021 with our new home in mind. Whether these items stay forever I can't really say right now, but they're serving good purpose in the meantime. They sure beat our furnishings we had the first few weeks we were in our house, shown below. The seller left us that lounge chair, and the captains' chairs were pulled from my storage unit.
Lounge chair courtesy of seller
The leading photo of this post shows a Pearson sofa, as one example of of an item I bought at an estate sale for this house. After looking at at least three different local furniture stores without satisfaction (not to mention all the time I spent with online browsing), that sofa cost about 10% of what a new sofa cost. 
Round rug - friend's purge Sept 2021; Occasional chair - estate sale Dec 2021
The upholstered occasional chair (above, in both natural and candescent light) was another estate find which cost cents on the price of a new one. It is situated in a reading nook that is in a spare room right now. I anticipate using this room to display my purse collections at some point. Right now - after Christmas - I've enjoyed reading in this spot.

The Danish modern dining set (below) was a great estate sale find for me. It has clean lines that fits with both modern and traditional style, and is sized perfectly for our great room for casual dining. The chairs are in a traditional fabric, but would be easy to change.
Danish modern gateleg table and four chairs (two not shown) - estate sale Oct 2021
Below are the other two chairs that came with the dining set, and they are situated in a nook in the guest room with a folding card table I found at another estate sale. The head chair of the Danish modern was in a different, coordinating fabric from the other three chairs, and matched the draperies in the house from which the set came.
Folding card table - estate sale Aug 2021; Danish modern dining chairs - estate sale Oct 2021
At the same sale where I bought the card table, I also bought a pair of Ethan Allen lamps. These are being used in my dining/sitting room.
Ethan Allen lamps - estate sale Aug 2021
Also at that estate sale in August, I bought a rocker (anticipating Baby J's birth). It is currently in my bonus room.
Rocking chair - estate sale Aug 2021
The oil painting in my dining room was purchased when I bought the sofa in November 2021. The lady whose estate sale it was from painted it in 1962, when she was 36. She passed away this past year at age 94.
Magnolia oil painting dated 1962 - estate sale Dec 2021
Various estate sales in August and October 2021 led to my purchasing a petite ebony chair, a Thomasville campaign nightstand, and a Mastercraft deacon's bench (shown in top portion of collage below, from the estate sale host's pictures). All of these were placed in the guest room, as seen in the bottom portion of the collage below.
Ebony chair, Thomasville nightstand, Mastercraaft deacon bench - estate sales July and Oct 2021
I also bought a Bassett chest of drawers from an estate sale in December that is situated in the guest room, seen below. It is solid wood and super heavy.
Bassett chest of drawers - estate sale Dec 2021
With our purge in 2019 before moving into the loft, we got rid of all our yard tools, including the rack in which we stored them in the garage.  I found a better rack at an estate sale in December, and also scored two metal garden shovels and a snow shovel! The rakes, brooms, and hoses were left by the seller. 
Tool storage rack and various tools - estate sale Dec 2021 and seller negotiated.
I also bought an extra bike so my brother can hopefully ride with us in better weather.
Bicycle - estate sale Dec 2021
Last but not least, I have a neighbor who was purging some items from his ex-wife's estate in December. I scored the gateleg table below, a beautiful finish. I don't know what I'll do with it yet, but I'm keeping it. Gateleg tables are so versatile!
Gateleg table - Dec 2021 estate
Below is a recap of the items I purchased from estate sales (and one friend's purge) that I'm using in our new home now:
  1. Pearson sofa + delivery service
  2. Round rug
  3. Occasional chair
  4. Danish modern dining set: gateleg table with four chairs
  5. Folding card table
  6. Petite ebony chair
  7. Rocking chair
  8. Pair Ethan Allen lamps
  9. Magnolia oil painting
  10. Thomasville nightstand
  11. Mastercraft deacon's bench
  12. Bassett chest of drawers
  13. Tool organizer
  14. Two metal and one snow shovel
  15. Bicycle
  16. Gateleg table with spool leg
Now, here's an eye-opening fact I want to share with you. All sixteen of the above items totaled less than what I paid for a desk and rolling file cabinet I bought for Mr. P., from a local independent home furnishings store. The desk is pictured below, and the file cabinet (which tucks beneath) is on order, and likely won't be here for six months, at least. By the way, the rug you see in the photo below was negotiated from the seller with the house too. 😉
Not too shabby, am I right? Each of the upholstered items were clean, too, I might add. And, I've already used the snow shovel, as we got over ten inches of snow on January 6. 

The lesson to be learned here is that buying second-hand furniture and other accessories can really give you a bang for your buck. Think about that the next time you or a family member are in need of a certain furnishing. Comb your local newspaper or Facebook marketplace ads, or search estate sales on your Facebook page. 'Like' the business pages of estate sales hosts local to you. Visit your local ReStore, antique mall, and consignment shops. It is so worth your time. Furniture of yesterday is typically made so much better than big box store furniture of today.

I'm still buying vintage and antique items for resale, too. My Panoply sisters and I are still displaying and selling in our local antique mall, approaching our 14th year. I hope you enjoyed this armchair shopping experience today. I'd love it if you left me a comment, letting me know you were here. Thanks for your visit today!


  1. Rita, I wish you could shop for me. I've been looking for a decent couch for ages. I am not surprised you did as well as you did -- you have the drill down well! But I AM impressed with the wonderful finds and the kicker at the end about the desk and file cabinet and price comparison. Everything looks wonderful in its space. My house is an "eclectic" mix of parental hand-me-downs and second hand. I realized the other day in a talk with someone that only three bookcases, a sofa, an IKEA chair and IKEA gateleg table, along with my area rugs were purchased new. Oh, and two wicker chairs, originally bought for the porch at the cottage. A lot of this was necessity versus desire, I'll admit, but I'll also say I like what I have. But I'm ready for a change. When Omicron/Covid settle here and the weather is better, I'll be back on the hunt for a sofa. You have inspired me. Again!

  2. Good morning, Rita! We were supposed to get snow and only nine miles north of us was blanketed in snow. We only got a cold rain. I am always amazed at what you find while shopping estate sales. The Pearson sofa looks new. Not only do you find fabulous furniture and accessories, they are name brands that were so well made back in the day. So much of the newer furniture is shoddy and made to last about five years. I love everything you found and I am excited to watch you make your new home completely yours! Happy Monday and stay safe!

  3. Rita I love all your "finds; and so just like you to be so thrifty, or as the Captain likes to say "quality and value for your money"!

    I have been known to visit estate sales... and "sale barns" for that matter (in my earlier life on the ranches in New Mexico and Kansas), but alas, those were the good old days and now I get to armchair shop in your shadow.

    Thank you for sharing your journey and your beautiful new home with give me energy reading of your adventures and lovely "finds" both for your Mall booth and home.

    On another note, How about that basketball game Saturday? I always think of you when Kansas plays West Virginia...and even though we won that game, our games this year have been so inconsistent. We never know what team will show up; I guess they call that rebuilding! Yeah, we will call it that. LOL

    Have a great week my dear friend.

  4. You have been so very successful in the hunt for great things at estate sales...LOVE the Pearson sofa...fabulous find and actually love everything you have found...that painting is truly special! I am so happy that you are enjoying making your new house a home!!

  5. Great finds!! Much of our furnishings came from antique malls and thrift stores too!! Also, auction houses are great places to buy vintage yet perfectly wonderful things at a huge discount. I once got a large wool rug for $40!!

  6. Virtually everything in our home came from auctions, estate sales, thrift stores... so I loved seeing all of these new-to-you treasures. I'm a pushover for a pretty table, and yours do not disappoint! And the deacon bench is a great find. "Someday" when we enclose a section of our side porch off of the kitchen, I hope to find one to put there.

    It's a new week! I'm *trusting* it's off to a great start for you and yours!

  7. The sofa is beautiful. All your finds are fabulous. You have a good eye for great pieces. That bench is so cool. Hard to find those in great shape and the rocker is just adorable piece too. Happy New Week. Dark gloomy Monday here today. Ugh need some sunshine. xoxo Kris

  8. Rita, you are a woman after my own heart. Most of my home furnishings, kitchen ware, etc. come from estate and thrift stores. It's amazing what you can find and you scored some real treasures. I love when people are able to repurpose something older. Saving some money certainly doesn't hurt. thanks for sharing.
    Lynne, Thrifting Wonderland

  9. What amazing finds Rita! Everything you've purchased looks gorgeous in your new home. I do not do enough thrifting but I have never found such treasures like yours in Colorado. Things here seem to all have a western flair which is not at all what I'm drawn to.

    I'm always amazed at the wonderful pieces my sister has found for her home in Virginia. It's just gorgeous and her style is very similar to yours. She wanted to shop some antique stores on her last visit here and was so disappointed. If she ever changes her look and needs an old wagon wheel she will know where to look now though!

    I have a favorite place out in California that I love to visit when we get the chance. Of course it's mostly coastal things and a good mix of old and new but such a fun adventure. Part of the fun is visiting with the shop owner. She's very much an old flower child and loves to tell us about her childhood days living next door to the Lennon Sisters. Very sweet and very entertaining.

    Thanks for sharing. I'm enjoying your journey with your new home! Have a great week!

  10. Rita, You scored some wonderful finds for your new home. I actually love older furniture. Yes, it's heavy (so you don't move it around very often) but the quality is usually outstanding and it's to scale to fit your home. The newer furniture can be way too large for normal homes, especially sofas. In years past, small children didn't get trapped under their furniture because it was so heavy and would bear their weight when they climbed it. Today, not so much. We have a mix in our home too and thoroughly enjoy it. Your pieces are classics and so pretty. I would prefer that sofa over the newer ones for sure! The wood pieces are all so lovely. The painting has a beautiful backstory. I love that! Great finds and more fun finding it than going to a big box store! Enjoy your week! Clara❤️

  11. Good morning, Rita. I so enjoyed my shopping trip with you. It would never do for me to live close to you - I would be in serious trouble. Your finds are grand, especially the gate leg table, I do love them and let a beautiful one go when we moved.

    Have a great week - we have about 8 inches of snow and it is still snowing.

  12. You are such a savvy shopper Rita, and you found some beautiful things! I agree, they just don't make things like they used to anymore...I know you are enjoying decorating your pretty new home. I hope the snow event is over soon!

  13. Great finds Rita. Love the sofa and that darling Gateleg table with spool leg. It always pays to shop around. The Marketplace is a great place to find certain items. I bought a pretty china cabinet for my Granddaughter there. So happy you are fluffing your new nest.

  14. Gorgeous finds, Rita!
    My favorites are that lovely sofa, the Danish dining set and the deacons' bench--fabulous!

  15. Great advice and wonderful new additions to your abode. Plus, the hunt is part of the fun. I got out briefly on Friday afternoon to stop in on a local estate sale nearby. I was 2 hours late from opening, so much of the goods were gone. The upside is it wasn't crazy crowded and no line to enter. Checkout line was a different story! But, I came home with some nice goodies. I spent some time polishing a few silver items, and was thrilled with the outcome. I didn't need any of these pieces, but it was cheap therapy! I haven't been out and about like this for two years.
    Thanks for the tour of your new pieces. What is a Pearson sofa?

  16. Your purchases are wonderful, Rita!! What a great way to shop and you know quality for sure. I’m in love with the Windsor rocker, the deacon’s bench and the gateleg table. Your sofa is so pretty, too! Great finds! Thanks for sharing your beautiful pieces with us.

  17. Great finds, Rita! I just love estate sales and the treasures they have waiting for us. I can't wait for warmer weather when the sales will start-up again!

  18. Gosh Rita, What savings and furnishings you acquired! I don’t have any estate sell knowledge or experience, not that I need any furniture but I would love to sit next to you and watch you bid/shop. I’m a big fan of antique malls and used to frequent a great consignment store in Charlotte but it’s no longer on my beaten path. Love seeing your new home come together and have always been a fan of gateleg tables too. ♥

  19. Excellent purchases! I know about Pearson sofas and you got quite a deal! Those are extremely well made! I like the bench and the rocker a lot. You’ve done well with estate sales!

  20. You really did well! I enjoy browsing around at estate sales. Half the thrill is in the hunt - you never know what treasure you'll fine, and you've definitely found lots of treasures!

  21. You have some great finds there - I especially like the gate leg table! I would love to go thrifting with you! Hope you are enjoying your new home!

  22. Rita you are such a dedicated shopper, knowing what to buy. When I am on the hunt I'm easily distracted away from my mission and need a little nudge to get back on track. I love the blue sofa, a great find. I'm also impressed how you found the perfect spot in your lovely new home for these pieces. I'm still amazed at fast you move, literally! Love the Gateleg table, a treasure.......

  23. Wow you had a great trip hunting for pieces.

    NJ has the worst thrifting. Good estate sales aren't easy for me. Good ones are rare here too.

    Hope you love the new place

  24. Rita, what a lovely way to furnish your new home - piece by cherished piece. And thrifted to boot. Love it all!

  25. You found some amazing finds last year! I especially love the gate leg table - it's gorgeous!

    1. Thank you, Cindy. Aren't gatelegs one of the most versatile tables from the past?

  26. Love all your finds especially the Pearson Sofa. Looks great!
    Hope you didn't get as much snow as was forecast.

  27. You have been busy, and successfully so!!! I must say that I have a soft spot for Danish modern. I'd like in a Mid Century Modern House if one came on the market....we lived in one for a little while, but sold it because we got an offer we couldn't afford to refuse (and the house wasn't even on the market).

    I also love the pretty Pearson sofa! :D Your home is so pretty. I know you are having so much fun fluffing it!

  28. Rita,
    You have provided me so much entertainment with your move!! I laughed so hard at your husband in the lounge chair!! I certainly can identify with this stage of your life! Take care my friend.

  29. Thanks for sharing your lovelies at Vintage Charm--pinned!

  30. Wow Rita, you scored some great furniture finds. You're a pro so I applaud your haul. Your new home looks so beautiful and I love your traditional style, friend. The Windsor rocker and gorgeous deacon's bench are truly amazing finds. Great job!!!

  31. You certainly are a girl after my own heart! I, too, decorate with mostly thrifted and estate sale finds. You really scored big with all that lovely furniture. xo Kathleen

  32. I loved this post, Rita! Wow, what a good job you've done finding furniture! One of my sons is in the process of buying his first place, and he needs furniture. . . I wish I could bring you along furniture shopping!

    Thanks so much for joining the Grace at Home party at Imparting Grace. I'm featuring you this week!