Saturday, 31 March 2012

I am Asa-Marie, Op Shop Junkie.

Ever the battle between "need" and "want".  Ah it is one that I will struggle with for years to come, I am very well able to justify all sorts of things to myself...

"No, don't get the very useful and extremely practical pack of six tupperware containers for $2 - instead get that gorgeous scarf on the rack which you can wear on the weekend, it's so much more worth it as you've been looking for one like that for ages"...Doh! I fell for it.  Really could have used those containers for all the pesky little food leftovers too.

But I am rather glad I fell for one of my famous justifications when it only cost $1 for the scarf. Could have got both but I was waiting for a bus and I only had coins on me.  Anyway here is the scarf, beyond is my newish weekend Colorado handbag that I got for $4 from Ferntree Gully Salvo's which cheered me up immensley while poking around after having had dental work done and feeling rather like a bulldog as for the anesthesia.

I did do a little better with my self control at the Epilepsy Op Shop in Blackburn and successfully purchased a much needed very smart black blazor jacket for upcoming job interviews, (amongst other things) as there was a 50% sale on ALL clothing on Friday! Well, I couldn't pass that up could I ? So, alongside the black blazor I also bought a green cardigan and the two scarves pictured above, with a brown waistcoast to adorn this fabulous little blue lacey blouse which I purchased just the other day from Blackburn Salvo's.  In the end the blazor,waistcoat, 2 scarves and green cardigan cost all but $8.50 - Geeze you gotta love an op shop sale!!

Well I am afraid I did give in to temptation quite recently.  Infact I have photogrpahic evidence which proves the fact.  Oh dear I have been troublesome haven't I.  BUT why feel the same amount of guilt for something that costs under $5 as you would for something that costs hundreds?! These are a few things I definitely did NOT need but had to have of course. 
       The above is a fairly old purchase when one considers my frequency of shopping.  I didn't know the game and yet recognised it's shape immediately and was so drawn to it I asked the volunteer at the Epilepsy shop in Blackburn to take it out of the display case. It was $2 - so I got it.
       Recently I have had the delight of my father staying with me while he is out from England.  Upon seeing the game, my Dad declared to the room that many years ago he had indeed designed a computer program that solves the game! Would you believe it?!?  Of course I had to investigate after purchase and had already found that it is Peg Solitaire and now I can rather proudly get it down to four pegs.

Well what girl can resist a lolly tin with terribly cute bunnies on I ask you?  "Is this a test?",  I asked my self as I walked up to this tin temptation....Well, I thought "I do "need" something to put lollies in that is a little more accessible than what I have"..... And there it is people.  The need justification.  Seriously, when was the last time anyone "needed" a lolly? It cost fifty cents. Right then was when I decided I needed Licquorice Allsorts. 

Well now this one I do feel a bit of guilt about, but only a little (it's so pretty!!). I think it might even be my most expensive op shop purchase on a single item to date.  And I op shop A LOT.  I do feel naughty about this one, like a caught out school kid!

But isn't she a beauty?!!  They want $30.00 at the Salvo's in Forest Hill and actually I don't have it yet - am very eager to pick it up on Monday after work.  Truth be told I am VERY excited about it and can hardly contain myself!  I have never bought anything like this before, but it will just look so darn good in my living room! With my polished wooden floors she's gonna stand out real nice.  This of course is a serious case of the "beauty justification" when one finds themselves completely and helplessly enamoured of an item.  Also I really don't think anything like this will come up again either.  Really though, how could this have been given away in the first place?

Well, after all and in retrospect I ask you,  is it not interesting that however guilty one feels after a splurge or one single thirty dollar purchase that it can all just melt away because now you have the item. It's yours. You own it.  It displays your sense of taste and style and more than likely portrays a part of your personality.  And what a comfort that provides.

Frazzled at Lions, Victorious at Rotary

Woke up at the crack of dawn this morning (7.30 am, close enough) with the thought "gotta get to the Lions Trash & Treasure in Vermont before the good stuff goes" blaring through my brain. So off I trundled to the Scout Hall - parking was a breeze - and dove in. There was a good amount of STUFF in the hall - lots of kitchenware, bags, clothes, books, heaps and heaps of knickknacks, kids toys, lots of kids bikes, and general "man" stuff (tools, hardware, other blokey stuff). The hall was buzzing by the time I got there (about 8.30), and some people (I assume traders) were in a frenzy, buying up bags of stuff. Some of them were too pushy for my liking, almost snatching things away from others. Grrrr. I started to feel a bit frazzled, so didn't rummage around as thoroughly as I would in an op shop. I saw a number of items that I was sorely tempted by but in the end I left empty-handed.

All was not lost, as on the way home I stopped at a garage sale and picked up this new Esprit purse for $4. Was very happy as I'd been looking for a replacement purse for the past few weeks and this one fit the bill perfectly.

I also decided to poke around the Rotary Rummage shop in Doncaster East and was rewarded with 2 pairs of pants for $2 each, 1 brown pair and 1 black pair. (Eeek - bad photo, sorry.)

The brown pair are Hard Yakka brand, unworn (still had the tag attached), and are the uniform pants from the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games!

I found the text on the reverse side of the tag amusing: "As a valuable member of TEAM2006, we trust you will wear this garment with pride. This uniform is more than just a great look. It unifies us as a team and brings us together as ambassadors of the XVIII Commonwealth Games. Worn with a great smile, determination and a "can-do" attitude, this uniform will forever be associated with a friendly, helpful and highly valued Workforce."

The pants are marked "long length" and boy, they weren't lying! They're unhemmed and extend about 15 cm down past the end of my toes. I was actually quite thrilled about this because I'm tall and often I either have to buy special long-length pants or else put up with buying pants that are slightly too short. These pants are too tight a squeeze at present, so it's yet another item of clothing to go into my "clothes to wear after defatification" bag. If (or when) I can fit into them, I'll cajole my Mum into hemming them for me.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Doncare Nth Blackburn & BSL Eltham

I feel I've been a bit of a blog hog lately, so I apologise to anyone who's sick of seeing my posts!

This morning I hustled into Doncare op shop in North Blackburn with a singular purpose:- to buy the 3 mugs I'd spotted there on Monday but hadn't bought. When I saw them on Monday I dithered about whether to buy them or not, and decided I'd take a pass as they were $2 a pop. (I know, chicken feed in the scheme of things, but it's funny how we get hung up on how things "should" cost based on the pricing at other op shops!) While in the Dandenongs yesterday I saw the EXACT same mugs displayed (new) in the front window of a homewares shop. Would have taken a goosey gander to see how much they sell for new, but the shop was closed at the time. Drats. Nevertheless, I took this as a sign from the op shop gods that I was MEANT to buy those mugs (yes, it was fate, folks), so I was pleased to find that all 3 mugs were still at Doncare this morning, and I snaffled them up.

This arvo I visited the shop where Gina volunteers on Fridays, Brotherhood of St Laurence in Eltham. It's tucked away in a little arcade but I managed to find it without too much trouble. I bought a pretty queen size doona cover & matching pillowslips for $14. It's a little more than I would normally pay for a second hand doona cover, but I really liked the pattern of cream coloured leaves at the bottom changing to darker leaves up top so I bit the bullet and forked over the money. (Also, I would have felt I was letting Gina down if I'd visited her shop and left empty-handed!) Sorry - photo came out a bit dark.

I was bemused to see this op shop selling old horseshoes for $5 each; when I was a kid I roamed around Caulfield racecourse and the stables (all empty at the time, and accessible by a gate that used to be permanently open from the tennis court next door), and used to collect stacks of old horseshoes. Now, seeing how much they sell for, I wish I'd kept them all instead of throwing them away when I was a teenager!

While in Eltham I paid a visit to Gina to drop off some fabric and take her up on the offer of a cuppa. It was lovely to meet Gina in person and see some of her op shop treasures, plus some of her crafty bits & bobs. She is mega talented in all things involving thread, needles or fabric and has more energy than most people a quarter of her age. Thanks for the tour, Gina!

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

50c bargains in Emerald

While out traipsing around the Dandenongs with my folks today I stopped off at the Uniting Church op shop in Emerald. My eyes went boi-oing when I spotted the prices for the clothing - 50c each! This included the more substantial items of clothing such as jeans and jackets. Not sure if these are the regular prices or special sale prices, but I suspect the latter... (Surely they couldn't be so cheap ALL the time?). I scoured the racks but unfortunately didn't walk away with the motherload of clothing I was hoping for, as I couldn't find too many things that I liked or were in the right size. Did manage to snaffle these goodies though, for the princely sum of $2 in total. Yay me!

Purpley Wombat top
Polka-dotted skivvy

Olive green pants - these looked brand new!

Toiletry bag

Monday, 26 March 2012

Murrumbeena & Blackburn

I had a dental appointment with my lovely dentist in Murrumbeena today. The Oakleigh Lions op shop was only 3 doors down, so of course I had to pop in and have a look around. Only found one thing of interest, a South African cookbook for $3.

I stopped off at the two Blackburn op shops on my way home, with the specific intent of looking for some warm winter clothing - this cold weather has reminded me that winter's on its way and I don't have much in the way of   warm clothes. I was only partly successful - found this merino icebreaker for $2.50 (half price) at the Salvos in Blackburn, to wear as a first layer underneath something else. The fabric isn't as thin as the photo might suggest; I think the flash showed up the hanger underneath the top.

I also had a roam around the Epilepsy op shop in Blackburn and found these 2 items. The necklace was $1. I think I'll wrap it around my wrist and wear it as a bracelet. The skirt is pure wool and was $6 but I'll need to lose some pudge before I can fit into it. Hmmmm, I think my supply of clothes that I'll fit into "some day" is starting to exceed the clothes that I can fit into now!

Salvo's Abbotsford & BSL Moonee Ponds

Loving these Flour and Sugar tins which came from the Salvo's Abbotsford Store - They were $4 each and are going to look fabulous in the pantry....  

This Wicker Basket came from BSL Moonee Ponds and was also $4...

A lovely Salvo's store manager let me know that all Salvo's Stores are currently running a facebook check in special - if you check in on facebook on a smart phone they are offering a 20% discount... Great advertising for the Salvo's - its on till the end of March....

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Friday's Finds at Eltham BSL.

No more explanations or excuses - just photos and descriptions! If I haven't yet convinced you that our little opshop is worth visiting, I never will succeed!
Two ties for 75 cents each.
Length of batting for quilting projects - $1.20
Glass soap dish, 50 cents.
Lightweight nylon jacket $5. I'd had my eye on this for a few weeks, and in the end I couldn't resist those gorgeous colours!
Pair of shoes or slippers - stretchy nylon, $4. I've had this style of slipper before, and they are soooo comfortable.
Brooch $2.50. I used this to keep my scarf in place while I was working at the shop, and liked it so much by closing time, I simply paid for it and left it on.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Uggies and Underwear.

This week I had some great 'new' op shop finds.
I found these brand new, still with tags ugg boots for $5! They're actually for my mother-in-law as I already own a pair that I bought new for around $90 :-(  and she has wanted a pair for some time now.
BOSL - Brunswick 

and NEW bras!
Christ Church opshop in Brunswick sometimes get donations from companies of brand new stock (I think it's clearance and sample stock). They currently have HEAPS of sample stock bras for $3 each. Brands include Fine Lines, Kayser, Hot Options, and some other samples that didn't have labels. The ones I purchased still had all the tags attached and were originally $50 each! So today instead of spending $200, I spent $12 :o) 
I was boring and went with the everyday basic colours, but there were heaps of colours and styles to choose from. Unfortunately, they're only open on Saturday mornings. 

Wednesday, 21 March 2012


Two exciting purchases in the last two weeks. The first was from the Save the Children on the Cnr of Glenferrie and Riversdale in Hawthorn. I wandered in with no particular purpose 10 minutes to closing time and saw this wonderful Paul Frank bag straight away and raced over to it! I could not believe my good luck.

A total of $4! It's so cute and I have not stopped using it. It's got a a neat little 'spare change pocket' and a sexy one for your sunglasses.

 Then last week at the Epic Shop in Broadway Reservoir I stumbled, actually I kicked the box, on a punch bowl for the pricely sum of $8. I've never thought about buying a punch bowl before but how could I resist? It all seems to be here. There are 10 cups and a big beautiful bowl all decorated with leaves and grapes and apples and pears. Not a chip to be seen. I guess I'll be serving punch sometime soon.

I haven't included the photos but I also scored a David Lawrnece top and a KMart skirt for an equally ridiculous price of $5. Wore them both to work today and got comments - mostly good!

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Ballarat Lifeline

There are two Lifeline op-shops in the Ballarat CBD, but the best one is by far the shop closest to the railway station on Lydiard Street. As you come out of the station and turn left, it's the first shop you will see.

It's small, but there is a good selection of clothes, shoes and books. With it being so close to the station, they have a well-stocked bookshelf for commuters!

They have also recently started a "Vintage" rack which had some interesting pieces. Unfortunately I didn't have enough time to browse and only had enough spare change for these two necklaces. The black necklace was $2 and the amber-coloured one was $4- my mum loved it!

Ballarat Lifeline is open Monday to Friday from about 10.30 to 4ish, so it's a great first stop if you are coming up to Ballarat for the day!

Rotary Rummage Shop, Doncaster East

I think I've created a monster - myself. Honestly, I'm not normally this frenetically compulsive an op-shopper, but I've had a bit of time on my hands for the past few weeks and thoughts inevitably turn to... "Hmmmm, what can I do today? I know, I'll nip down to XYZ op shop; haven't been there in a while." I'm going to try and curtail my op shop visits for the next few weeks to try and curtail my spending!

OK, so today's purchases of shame totalled $28, from the Rotary Rummage shop in Doncaster East. I haven't listed individual prices as I have no idea what I was charged for what - according to the price tags I should have paid $33 in total, so I think the lady at the counter lost track of what she was charging! 

2012 calendar. (Was tired of looking at my ugly free calendar that I printed from the 'net.) The pictures in this are much cheerier, even if we're nearly a third through the year.

T-shirt in the colour my Mum calls 'Menopausal Mauve'

Stripey top, stripey cardi & tunic. (I think I've developed a stripe addiction - I have about 10 striped tops now. This must end!... and for goodness sake, why did I buy a grey striped cardi when I bought something similar the previous week?)

Cute face cups.

2 x framed prints of  Rome. I bought these really for the prints. I'm not sold on the frames and will donate them back to the op-shop if I can find some nicer frames in my stash.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Eltham B.S.L. last Friday.

I went into our shop on Friday morning, determined that there was absolutely nothing I needed to buy. But WANTED to buy..well that's another story. This little dip bowl with matching server thingy had chooks all over it. $2.

Whenever I give guests tea and coffee, I throw a few spoons on the table so they can help themselves to sugar. As soon as I saw this Spoons mug for $1, it was mine! No more untidy spoons!

This doiley needs pressing (obviously) but it is clean, and the stitching is very neat. Just needs someone to crochet the edge. $2.

Animal skin print long skirt $3.50. Label says Morgan De Toi,made in Morocco. The nightie is 'Oriental Village silk' - I bought it because of the peacock. $1.50.

Three lengths of Batik - huge pieces of fabric! They are supposed to be make into Sarees(Saris?) but I'll use them for patchwork of some kind - maybe runners, placements, wall hangings, even a quilt top...