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Tiki Central Forums Collecting Tiki Garage Sales, Thrift Stores, Antique Malls. THEY NOW KNOW WHAT THEY HAVE!
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Garage Sales, Thrift Stores, Antique Malls. THEY NOW KNOW WHAT THEY HAVE!
Hiphipahula
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: May 27, 2006
Posts: 2426
From: The Valley! Female, leo,fav color pink.
Posted: 2006-07-30 01:22 am   Permalink

Garage Sales, Thrift Stores, Antique Malls. THEY NOW KNOW WHAT THEY HAVE!

The days of finding bargains are dwindling. At least here in greater L.A. I can hardly find a garage sale in my neighborhood! They are all trying to sell on ebay for top dollar instead of nickles. Thrift stores? they are plucked clean of the good stuff too. Do you know why??? Those folks who gave it away to thrift stores are selling on ebay as well! What about the antique stores? They know what they are sitting more than anyone! I didn't have a computer until last mo.(went w/o for 2 years) I could pick up a "Big Shot" glass for maybe $10.00 NOT NOW! they want $25.00- $35.00 too. BECAUSE they know ebay pricing & they are not going to give it away. So for now anyway, if you really want it? ebay is most likely the way. Doesn't mean you have to get stupid or caught up in it. If its a frankoma mug for $500.00 just wait for the next one, keep shopping. One will go out for $177.00 (& it did)& in 6 mo.? who knows, maybe tiki mugs will cool off with pop culture a bit & leave us true blues here with our $36.00 Frankoma mug. Remember those goof balls that went out & bought beanie babies for hundreds! now worth a dime. YOU WILL LOVE TIKI OR HAWAIIANA REGARDLESS IF YOU PAID 5 BUCKS OR 500!


 
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tedtiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 06, 2004
Posts: 304
From: Sunny Springfield Illinois
Posted: 2006-07-30 07:26 am   Permalink

I agree completely. Although I live in Illinois where the pickings are much slimmer than Ca. I found a set of Trader Vics salt/pepper shakers yesterday in an antique mall for $25. I'm pretty sure I can get them on ebay cheaper. We used to find at least one item whenever we'd go looking but there's less and less out there these days.

 
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Kenike
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 24, 2003
Posts: 1205
From: McKinney, TX
Posted: 2006-07-30 07:49 am   Permalink

I found a blue Tepco bowl at an antique store a couple of years ago marked $75.00! It's still there so I offered the owner $30.00 (which is still kinda high). No dice, not even a counter offer. The same thing happened with a Brainiff Leilani mug marked $39.00...won't come down a cent! Also found a skull mug marked $125.00! I didn't even bother making an offer. These people are insane.

 
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twitch
Grand Member (7 years)  

Joined: May 12, 2006
Posts: 425
From: Vacant lot where T. Vic's, Van. was
Posted: 2006-07-30 10:10 am   Permalink

It's the Pickers!
They arrive @ the thrifts before opening, head to the known areas and pick it clean for that day's eBay postings. Quite often a friend will be working as a staff member & let them know beforehand.
Also, I worked at a Salvation Army warehouse for 1 1/2 years, and here's the secret:
They have 'brokers' come in from somewhere (ours was from Toronto)with detailed color-copied sheets of desired retro-fashionable items that are then handed out to the different sorting departments so the sorters can lay aside the hot-sellers.
The brokers know what's hot and where it's hot (Japan, etc.), pay the S.A. a 'finding fee' & ship the goods to their destinations.
Local S.A. businesses try to keep a finger on what's hip, but are usually a little bit behind.
At least a few years ago. I was so disgusted with the Army's culmination of bad practices that I haven't been in one of their stores for about 8 years!
If you happen to find tiki idol/mask at your local Sally Ann, could be someone is slacking; items of that sort are considered 'occult/evil' (ouija boards and buddha statues, anything of a differring religion, etc.)and are thrown in the garbage without a blink.
(Oh I could go on and on...)


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Tom Slick
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 26, 2005
Posts: 1092
From: The Beaches of South Bay, SoCal
Posted: 2006-07-30 12:52 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2006-07-30 10:10, twitch wrote:
It's the Pickers!
They arrive @ the thrifts before opening, head to the known areas and pick it clean for that day's eBay postings.


I agree with this as well. 5 years ago(even less) everything revolving around tiki merch was much more affordable. Now because of the popularity of ebay, and the power of research on the internet,fulltime ebayers and part time sellers as well now have alot more knowledge about what they are selling. Just recently, there was a post about those resin desktop tikis being sold at "Dollar Tree" stores, and I personally went to 5 stores that were completly picked over! Now I know not everyone living in these areas are into tiki-ism, so what happened? Reality is that its most of OUR faults for posting information about "rare" mugs, paintings,etc...etc...Because it eventually comes back and bites us in the arse! It also doesn't help when there are really good deals, and certain people get the "greedy bug" in them and wind up buying everything on the shelf, leaving the broke or damaged items behind. I am a casual collector, buying only what I like for my personal collection, and not intending to resell items. I see others buying lots of the items and marking the price up via ebay. Sad to see society going this direction, but such is progress of life i suppose. I worked for a retail store recently and use to see the same vultures come in to pick through the HotWheels die cast cars looking for treasure hunts(rarer-limited hotwheel cars) and store exclusive hotwheels not found anywhere else. Mind you, these same people came in everyday and stay long enough to see if we had what they wanted. If we had cel phones on sale they wanted 50 phones, if there were 10 treasure hunts on the pegs, they would buy all 10 identical cars, just to resell on ebay. Now maybe its just me, but I see this as an Immoral act, and a total disrespect towards others who may have needed/wanted the item. What happened to peoples conscience's.....you know, the little "voice" inside the head that is supposed to tell you what is right and what is wrong!??????


 
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Thortiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2006
Posts: 264
From: Maryland (Land of Pleasant Tiki Living)
Posted: 2006-07-30 4:44 pm   Permalink

The so called Antique (sic) Malls are getting clobbered by Ebay. These places where jerk dealers sit on their same stale inventory year after year with "NO" price movement or negotiation get what they deserve "Zero Sales". The heck with them!!!

Thortiki


 
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TabooDan
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 18, 2004
Posts: 641
From: BC, Canada
Posted: 2006-07-30 6:22 pm   Permalink

I agree with what you all are saying! I hate antique shops that have something you want and are asking a huge price. But, they are in business to make money not suppliment collectors who really dont want to pay too much for anything.
The pickers are horrible as they dont care about the items or the history, they just want them all to flip. There is nothing better than walking into a thrift store or value village and seeing that cool, rare or not, tiki mug on the shelf. I just found a OMC skull mug at value village for only $6.00! The deals are out there to be had you just have to keep hunting. That is the whole deal anyway. You just never know what you could find out there.

When I first started collecting I would buy everything Hawaiian or Tiki that I saw. I would buy everything! I then started looking at my collection and really started to choose to collect specifics within the culture. I learned the history of the items I was searching for and considered my purchases before I just jump on anything that I thought I wanted. About 4 years ago I started to sell off all the stuff that I didn't connect with and all my doubles and just picked up what I specifically wanted.
Now I leave everything behind (unless I don't have it)hoping to turn on new collectors to Tiki and Hawaiian items. I have even found myself walking around the store with something that I have found and then putting it back after thinking about it. Of course, alot of stuff can make good trades if it is not too common an item or maybe a sale if you can get it cheap enough.
I'll tell you one thing, the last time I walked by an Orchids of Hawaii Bikini Girl and a Coco Joe ashtray, one of the usual pickers quickly grabbed them up and literally threw them in her cart. Now whats better, someone like her getting it who doesn't give a damn or me who appreciates finding something in the wild, picking it up and offering it on ebay for a fare price or trading it with someone else who also appreciates it? I guess it all boils down to the thrill of the hunt!
Get out there and go to your usual hunting grounds and keep looking. It seems kind of pointless to sit around and complain about the prices. If you really want it, you will get it one day. Isn't it better that the prices of the items we all collect go up anyway? Makes for better stories when you talk about that very rare bowl that sells for about $300.00 and you paid two bucks for!!
Happy hunting all!!


 
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CondorTiki
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Feb 28, 2005
Posts: 45
From: Kenosha Wi.
Posted: 2006-07-30 6:28 pm   Permalink

What I've seen that's even worse, is what I call 'Teams', One person handles and describes the merch, while the other looks it up on their Internet Cell Phone, to see if it's 'ebay worthy'. If it isn't, then it gets thrown back, and I DO mean Thrown! These people are Banshees! Consciousless Wraithes! And I can't help noticing that they ALL climb into $60K S.U.V.'s! I thought 'Thrift' stores were supposed to be for us lower income people. Guess I was wrong.

 
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ookoo lady
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 24, 2004
Posts: 779
Posted: 2006-07-30 7:44 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2006-07-30 18:28, CondorTiki wrote:
What I've seen that's even worse, is what I call 'Teams', One person handles and describes the merch, while the other looks it up on their Internet Cell Phone, to see if it's 'ebay worthy'. If it isn't, then it gets thrown back, and I DO mean Thrown! These people are Banshees! Consciousless Wraithes! And I can't help noticing that they ALL climb into $60K S.U.V.'s! I thought 'Thrift' stores were supposed to be for us lower income people. Guess I was wrong.



Hey, it's not like they're hoarding food from starving people, or buying up all the water during a drought! We're talking about cheaply-made mass-produced items that people took home as souvenirs, and then discarded many years later.

I mean, I love this stuff, and I've spent waaaay too much money for it on e-bay, and I've been ecstaticly happy to find a good bargain at the flea market.

But I also know that people have to make a living, and buying stuff to re-sell on e-bay is lot of work without a guaranteed return. And they're not all driving $60,000 SUV's.


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tikipedia
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 25, 2004
Posts: 490
From: San Diego
Posted: 2006-07-30 8:27 pm   Permalink

Quote:

Hey, it's not like they're hoarding food from starving people, or buying up all the water during a drought! We're talking about cheaply-made mass-produced items that people took home as souvenirs, and then discarded many years later.

But I also know that people have to make a living, and buying stuff to re-sell on e-bay is lot of work without a guaranteed return. And they're not all driving $60,000 SUV's.



Well said Ookoo Lady. It is important to keep in mind that tiki mugs and such are not Caravaggios. And the apparent mania of some collectors to shell out huge bucks for a mug (we know who these people are) boggles the mind. Hell, there are people dying in the world from a lack of food and medicine, yet handing over $400 for a ceramic Kahiki bowl doesn't seem to faze some collectors. It is important to keep in mind that this is just a hobby, and the artifacts we collect are by no means priceless. TIKI IS SUPPOSED TO BE FUN.

But that being said, I can understand the frustration that Condor is expressing. Since most of us have jobs, it is frustrating to go to a productive thrift a couple of times a week, only to see guys who spend the entire day there, picking over all of the good stuff. But the pressure is not on just Tiki. Mid-century items are now around 50 years old, so it is inevitable that the trend to snatch these things up will continue to grow. Anything deemed as vintage is prime for these dealers.

So what can we do? If we start paying a lot of money for mugs, that only contributes to the skyrocketing prices. But if we insist on looking only at thrifts stores, our collections will grow at a glacial pace, if at all. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. I love Tiki, but I find it hard to justify spending so much money on such innocuous objects. Let me see... buy a Ren Clark Headhunter mug or put that $1,000 in the bank to help pay for my kid's tuition to CalTech.

So I will continue to enjoy the hunt, even if that means being skunked 90% of the time and have my mug collection filled with Tiki Leilanis. To paraphrase an old saying: "Don't let the bastards take wear down the fun of Tiki."
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Hula Cat
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 14, 2006
Posts: 171
From: Bellows Falls Vermont
Posted: 2006-07-30 11:43 pm   Permalink

Well gang..here is a thread that stokes me up...I've been buying and selling since 1972..for a living of sorts. While I've always loved the things of history and pop/tiki culture, it's been the fear of having to work for someone else (not that they'd hire an A.D.D. poster child!) that's kept me looking for more stuff. At first it was "real" antiques but after years of learning what was supposedly good... the PRICE guides came out!...Heck, because some "experts" in East Oshgoosh said it was so some folks believed it AND stuck to that price. I always had an eye for the fun/weird stuff that regular dealers shunned....like Tiki! now we have EBAY..., a real marketplace where we can see what someone might pay for something at any given time. But there's SO Much Stuff! mass produced Fads and past trends (but TIKI Is BACK!)...The dealers (and there's so many more than ever) don't bring as much Tiki to the fleas any more and when they do it's often overpriced. But believe me it's harder to find stuff for everyone. I still find a little something with a limited budget every time, an Orchid's "surfer" in a co-op, a coco Joe tiki at a Salvation Army(even thou it's not as "thrifty" they do some good things) or a black velvet Hawaiiana painting some "real " antique shop undervalues. There is usually some booth or box under a table with a mechanical hula doll or Martin Denny record...Cheap! Face it , something's "worth" whatever someone's willing to pay when you have or want to sell it. I like it best when I've made a bit for finding the stuff and connect with a buyer so they feel great about the sale...And there's the joy of the hunt!!...I keep/rescue too many things..love to party..and live off my own wits..Some pickers just want the $$ but for me it's the STUFF (besides I'm lazy and get up too late) ..but it is only stuff...luckly I'm in a place where that's okay...try finding Tiki in a rural state like Vt. !...after 34 years I realize if I don't LOVE it I don't buy it for myself ..something else will always turn up...(I have broken this code way too many times) .....spendaholic !!..hoarder!!.....(easy now ,you'll be okay )....Ookoo lady has it right, a lot of us are just making a living {I drive a1986 GMC diesel truck)...what drives me nuts are the shops where almost anything is labeled "vintage" (and broken or not is overpriced!). Oh yeah, those dollar store tikis, I bought a bunch to give to my "normal "friends and there's still a bunch left in that store after 2 months, but now i wonder..... if I shouldn't have given them away....I could drive up demand for TIKI ! !.. At least we can still All make a great Mai Tai and drink to life no matter how much our mug costs ! Yum !
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Hiphipahula
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: May 27, 2006
Posts: 2426
From: The Valley! Female, leo,fav color pink.
Posted: 2006-07-31 11:20 pm   Permalink

exactly Hula cat! well said.... shhhh don't tell, I actually bought a chipped crappy mug in the thrift shop last week cause it was only $.79 cents AND on Tues you get 20% off on top of that!! ummm... what will I do with it now... another plant pot.............

 
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Tom Slick
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 26, 2005
Posts: 1092
From: The Beaches of South Bay, SoCal
Posted: 2006-08-01 05:11 am   Permalink

Some of the points here are valid, and then some are obsurd! I'm sorry, but I dont think that walking into biglots or salvation army and buying up a shelf of stuff, then reselling it on ebay(price inflated) is a job? Isn't that the point of the retailer itself? This is my last post to this topic, as I know some people make livings this way and I'm not belittling anyone here, but buying mugs for 79 cents (for example)and trying to sell it to me for $20 or so isn't doing me any favors, and I don't see this behavior as being moral. Now if someone has a whole seller/importer connection/warehouse liquidator, I am ok with that. I guess I just don't agree with ebayers/small business "clearing" the shelves in public retail market places, just so they can make extra bucks at my expense.
My Last example:
It's like one of you standing behind me in Ralphs market, and you really need 1 pack of bacon(like anyone "needs" bacon..haha), but I see you standing there trying to look over my shoulder. So I buy the last 9 packs of bacon they have, and then try to sell you a pack in the parking lot for much more than what it cost me.


 
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Tipsy McStagger
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 21, 2004
Posts: 3520
From: HELL
Posted: 2006-08-01 10:03 am   Permalink

tiki is a victim of it's own success....we start out collecting things, others join in because they too are drawn to it and the whole thing spirals out of control, demand drives prices upward and soon it's attracting those out to make a buck..it's the inevitable cycle of any trend..eventually it will peak and cycle downward for a few years, disappearing from retail chains first, followed by smaller shops and such before being renewed by a whole new generation of curious enthusiasts and the whole thing will start up again....so sell your tiki stuff now or you'll be sitting on it for the next 10 years before prices go up again!!...LOL

 
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teaKEY
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 09, 2004
Posts: 3664
From: The thumb !
Posted: 2006-08-01 10:09 am   Permalink

Yesterday I went to the thrift store and found three mugs for a dollar each. That was a first, hell yeah

 
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