Tuesday, December 30, 2014

New Years Eve - Then and Now

How fast it goes!! 
If you had asked me 30 years ago what I would be doing on New Years Eve in 2015...I never would have thought that a quiet night at home would be what I looked forward to.  But as with all things, people change and times change.  After years of working on New Years Eve, there is nothing more wonderful to me than watching the ball drop from the comfort of my home.  
A little champagne, a nice meal, good music and the craziness of Times Square on TV is all I need to appreciate another year gone by!

Love this pic from Times Square in 1964

( Photo courtesy of Herman Yung and www.doobybrain.com )

New Years Eve in Times Square - 2014

Happy New Year Everyone!!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

War and Our Children

As a mother who's just letting go of her son to boot camp....I'm starting to understand a few things.
One....letting go is never easy
Two...letting go is necessary

This picture of 1940's WW11 soldiers is courtesy of http://www.warrelics.eu/forum/eastern-bloc-excluding-brd-ddr/old-family-photo-hungary-1940s-military-any-information-please-251998/

The Korean War
Picture courtesy of http://www.army.mil/article/84173/DOD_to_mark_anniversary_of_Korean_War_armistice/

The Vietnam War Courtesy of 


Courtesy of http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2208155/Jack-Straw-I-stopped-going-war-Iraq-This-I-didnt.html
I have an amazing son who could have had a million choices for his future.  Much to my surprise, he chose the military.
He's young and doesn't quite understand his mother's right wing ideals...we all start out as democrats but end up being somewhere in between.  If you're not crazy right wing, it's a tight rope and in these days of heavy to the right...it's difficult to explain to a teenager.

So his decision to join the navy, came as quite a surprise.  I'm behind him 100%.  He will find his way...but how do we let go?  Letting go is as important as holding on, you just have to know when to do it.  I raised a man and a man he will be...as a mother, you let go of the wheel and know that you've done a good job.
This has been a lesson in knowing and a lesson in growing.
Good Luck My Dear Son and I Hope That I've Equipped You With All That You Need

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Flea Markets, Estate Sales, Online Retailers, TV Shows, Antique Shows and Technology

A recent blog post from John George Campbell
"Lessons Learned from Market Warriors" can be found on his blog by clicking the link above.

This well written and oh so true post on the difficulty of the show's regulars, to come away from the well known Brimfield Flea Market/Antique Show in MA, with any items that they could actually turn a profit on...was quite the eye opener for some, for me...I felt it coming.

NJ is the land of flea markets, estate sales, antique shows and auctions.  When I started in this business 7 years ago, it was literally a different world.  There were no smart phones to speak of (at least in that world) and you couldn't Google an item while out treasure hunting, to find out it's worth.  There also weren't 5 million picking, hunting, appraising TV's shows bringing top dollar pricing into everyone's livingroom.

Since the smartphone has become an accessory (I refuse to bring mine, as I like to test myself:)).  Every seller and buyer at these locations is loaded up with Google searchability.  
The result...

What used to be a great business for those of us at all levels, the auction house, the flea market seller, the online seller, the B&M antique shop owner and the estate sale companies...has now become one level pricing.

In my opinion, this hurts us all.  When you have so many types of businesses involved in the selling of vintage & antiques, you can't expect the pricing to be the same.  Our overhead varies from business to business, as does our level of interaction with the customer.

As an online seller, I have research, photography and writing listings, hours of promoting, the cost of an online shop, packaging, shipping, advertising and most of all making sure that my customers are happy with their purchases when they arrive, whether it's going to another part of the state, across the country or other parts of the world.

Pre-technology, we were all able to make a small profit and still offer our customers comfortable pricing but if the people that I buy from are charging the going rate online...how is that possible?...and yet, everywhere I go from flea market to estate sale, I hear complaints from the sellers there (amongst themselves), that nothing is selling...Hmmm, I wonder why?

Hopefully TV Shows like Market Warriors and posts like John's above, will enlighten the selling community to take it down a notch, so that we can all get back to the business that we love to do and still make a small profit.

I am very thankful for the people that I buy from regularly but unfortunately I can't comprise my entire shop inventory of only those items.

...and that folks is the Catch-22 of antiques and technology.  What gave us our businesses in the first place is the very same thing that is now making it difficult to run them.

Thanks so much for reading!

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