Tuesday, July 14, 2015


The grass is always greener where you water it.    Author Unknown

If you've followed my blog at all you'll know that blue is my favorite color. Well, just look at my header...there you go!
So it is no surprise to see all the blue treasures that I've found. My keen eyes see blue and white the first thing... every where I go. It is going to be hard not to keep some of these favorite finds. But here they are...

Something I have been wanting to find....

                                                 This antique salt glazed pitcher 

 Two pretty blue and white plates...

Small blue and white ironstone platter...

Pot with blueberries "bumping" out. I have a pitcher with a design like this so maybe I should keep it?...

This unique "penny rug" like quilt with denim background. It's small but very nice! I'm liking it right now sitting on the back of my entry chair...

Very cute blue and white creamer...

And finally this small white pitcher...

GOLD RUSH      I will be bringing some things to Gold Rush this year. There are hundreds of vendors there and people travel from all over the U. S. to attend. It is in Rochester, Mn.

HOB NOBBER FALL SALE    Over Labor Day weekend we will have our last sale of the year. More info. coming soon!

Friday, July 3, 2015


Clutter is the physical manifestation of unmade decisions fueled by procrastination.  Christina Scalise

Ouch! That quote above stings a bit! Unmade decisions and procrastination?  I have to admit it describes me at times. I do things by habit ( unmade decisions ) and I procrastinate. And "WALA!" as my 6 year old grandson would say...the clutter happens! Am I the only one this happens to? If not, then this series is for you.
Today is the second session of the workshop to simplify your life. Read about the first session here.

In the first session, I listed the 7 steps that you would be following to achieve the simple life you desire. Today we are focusing on the first two steps.  The first two steps consist of  the process of CLARIFYING what you value and what you want your simplified life to look like. Each person will have a different idea of what that looks like. Depending on your situation, the time frame will be different as well. Some may want to move quickly. Some may want to take this simplification process in baby steps. Even small steps in the process bring a sense of calmness as you move towards a simpler life. This is the easy and dare I say "fun" part? Just the process of dreaming about and writing down what you want your life to look like will begin to bring you a sense of serenity and lightness as you think about "unloading" unnecessary parts of your life.

So let's consider your beginning steps:

1) What is important to you? What do you value? A simple lifestyle involves more than decluttering the spaces in your home. It also involves your time, activities, relationships, possessions etc. It may mean cutting out some activities that you no longer are interested in but just continue to do out of habit. It may mean considering how you spend your time and money.
       So step one is to make a list of what you consider to be important in your life, what you value. ie. more time with family, being wise with resources, etc. This will be a sort of "WHY" list as well as you come back to it to remind yourself of why you are downsizing in the first place.

2) Describe in a page what your simple dream life would look like. Visualize a day in your new streamlined life. After you have written out a description, use this as a guide to write out your  action plan. Maybe it would look something like this:

A) Sell one car and take the bus to work.

B) Declutter closets ( one a week ) and take to Good Will items not wanted.

C) Get off the board of ___________.

D) Have a garage sale and sell items not needed.

E) Take some items to Salvation Army.

F) Schedule time to allow time for "margin" in  my life.

Are you feeling better, lighter, calmer, yet? To be clear I realize that life itself can get complicated. And we are not always in control of all circumstances in our lives. And yet, there are things we can control and work at having time for those things that are most important to us. 

I'd love to hear if you are working this out in your life and how it is working for you. If you have more ideas I would love to hear them!

Until Next Time, Sandy


Wednesday, July 1, 2015


Some people look for a beautiful place. Others make a place beautiful.  Author unknown.

 This weekend I went to an Estate sale and picked up some nice things for upcoming sales. I am now shopping for three sales! We have our Fall Sale over the Labor Day weekend but this year I'm also going to take some things to Gold Rush, an antiques and flea market show that brings in people all over the U.S. I will have a vendor space there. The other Hob Nobbers will not be involved in this sale. It's just my husband and I. I am also collecting for my Etsy store which will be opening sometime this month. So I'm stocking up!

Here are a few of the little things I picked up.  But there is a lot more! Now to decide what venue to take each item to...

I always pick up any ironstone I find. I love this sweet little pitcher!

There were a lot of flower frogs at this sale. These are two that were different from the usual that I find. One is in its original box.

 Next is this set of vintage measuring cups shaped like a beehive.

I also pick up vintage children's hangers when I see them. If you can see the ticket behind the hanger it is the new "tag" I'm using. I'm actually pricing and tagging items as I get them for the first. time. ever! I usually procrastinate and have hundreds of items to mark and tag the week before our sale!

I'm not exactly sure what this little guy is. He is porcelain with two slots on either side of the bottom. He is a cook carrying a spoon in front. Does anyone know what the slots are for?

Flow blue is my favorite! Maybe I should keep this. ; )

Prisms for your "chandy", anyone? I have 15 of them!

How about this wonderful set of printing stamps? There are actually two levels to this set and it is in great condition as is the wooden case it is in!

A large primitive wood bowl! I love the coloring on this!

A pretty Nippon antique hat pin holder...

A "Mother's Poem" picture in a lovely frame. Every Mother should have one!

This cute little creamer...

And last but not least, this grouping of ephemera...

I also found some great larger pieces but I'll show those in another post. The lady who owned these items seems to have the same tastes that I have. Happily this was a "live estate" in that the lady who owned these treasures is still alive but is downsizing due to moving. 

And while I had my camera in hand, I snapped this shot of two of my husbands hats he had tossed on the post of the stair railing! Hah!

Have a wonderful day! Remember to add beauty to your home! And notice the "whimsie" in it as well!

NEW BLOG...I've started a new blog about how to live a happily balanced life. It's titled, well, "HAPPILY BALANCED". I'd love to have you follow along and share your ideas! Go here to see it.

Till Next Time...Sandy

Tuesday, June 30, 2015


                                "Change always comes bearing gifts."  Price Pritchitt

I've been going back and forth over the years in being undecided about whether I should begin another blog.  Hob Nobbers, the blog,  was started to keep our Hob Nobber friends informed about our next occasional sale. I also shared photos of items we purchased so they could see in advance what we would offer for sale. "Hob Nobbers" is what we ( Karen, Renee, and I ) call ourselves. We "hob nob" all over the country looking for vintage  treasures for you.

Because there was so much time between sales ( we have one over Memorial Day weekend and one over Labor Day weekend ), I started sharing other things I was interested in. Like personal development, simplifying, organizing, etc. So I've kind of been all over the place with this blog and feel rather disjointed at times. Yeah, I like "order". In the past I  started a couple of other blogs but discontinued them because it seemed like a lot of work trying to keep up with more than one blog. But again I've come full circle and have decided to start another blog. I'm banking on Price's quote above that says "change comes bearing gifts".

Hob Nobbers will remain about vintage and antique "finds", decorating with these treasures, and keeping everyone informed about our next event. Since I am also starting an Etsy store selling vintage treasures, Gwen and Alma's, I will keep a page designated to that shop.

Another page that will remain is "Plummer House". The Plummer House is an historic 1917 mansion that we live in and act as Resident Directors. Since we are helping to restore the home to its former 1917 grandeur, it fits in to the Hob Nobber antique and vintage themes.

There. I feel better already! I'll share more about my new blog in future posts when it's up and running! I hope you'll keep following along here to get your "antique and vintage fix". And also to see what great "finds" are coming to our next sales event!

There is one exception here: Since I have started a four week online "workshop" about Simplifying Your Life, I will finish that series on this blog. It will be posted on Fridays. I hope you'll follow along with this series. Ironically, it might seem that beginning another blog is not simplifying my life! Hah! More about that later!

Thursday, June 25, 2015


The simplification of life is one of the steps to inner peace. A persistent simplification will create an inner and outer well being that places harmony in one's life.         Peace Pilgrim

 Would you like to simplify your life? That's kind of a "buzzword" these days where we all seem to be searching for less complex lives.

Webster's dictionary defines "simplify" this way...to diminish in complexity, to reduce to basic essentials. The basic essentials to me are found in spending time with people I love and spending time in activities  that I value.

I've listed 7 ways to begin the process of simplifying your life. Because it is a process. This will continue to be a journey ( persistent simplification ) of clarifying, editing, and being intentional. Clarifying what you value, editing out what is not important, and being intentional with your relationships, activities, time, and money.

This post will begin a four week online workshop ( Every Friday ) of learning how to simplify your life. Summer may not seem like the time to do this but it will help prepare you ahead of time so when Fall begins you will be ready to begin life anew with a simplified and calmer life. Sound good? Then let's get started!

This week just read through the beginning steps to consider when simplifying your life. In the following weeks I will explain more in depth what to do in the different areas, giving out specific assignments.


1) List what is important to you and what you value. (  What relationships and activities? )

2) Describe in one page what a simplified lifestyle would look like to you. Consider your home ( do you need to downsize?); vehicles ( do you really need more than one?); do you need to declutter your home?; are you too busy with your time?; etc.  After describing your new "Simplified Life", does it bring a sense of relief in thinking about living your new simple version of life?


 3) Begin editing ( decluttering ) your "stuff ".  ( clothing, items in your home, maybe even downsizing your home, etc. )

4) Consider how you might discontinue those activities that are not on your list in #1.


5) Be intentional with new purchases, activities, etc., making sure they fit it with your new "Simplified Lifestyle".

6) Be intentional about organizing and planning. Having a place for everything helps organize your spaces. Planning the events and activities in your life helps organize your time. Both organizing and planning help simplify your life. 

7) Make a list of simple pleasures in which to engage.

If you are interested in following this workshop, I would love to know. Please leave a comment and send me an e-mail. I would love to know how it is working for you and what you have discovered. We can all work on this together!

See you next week!

The sculptor produces the beautiful statue by chipping away such parts of the marble block as are not needed...it is a process of elimination.      Elbert Hubbard



Wednesday, June 17, 2015


                  Never get so busy making a living, that you forget to make a life. Author Unknown

 If you read my post here on the top 20 vintage sellers on Etsy, you'll find that most of the top vintage sellers have some things in common. Most of the items that are selling are smaller items like jewelry, ephemera, and bits and bobs. Of course that is not all, but it surprised me to learn that while larger  decor items are big sellers in Occasional sales that I've been to, I didn't find one Etsy store in the top 20 whose main inventory was these items! Hmmmm.

The top seller list was based on number of items sold, not amount of money made. Since smaller items would cost less, that may be why they sell more of these items. Also the shipping costs may figure into that in that it costs more to ship a larger item than a smaller one so people might prefer to purchase these items in person. Of course, if they listed the top 20 shops that make the most money, maybe the list would include sellers of larger items. I'd like to see that list!

I also think that staging larger items in vignettes makes a big difference. So why not take photos of vignettes with your items for sale to enhance their look online? I think it is Country Living magazine that shows photos of decorated rooms and then breaks it down into individual pieces, listing where you can purchase them. I wonder if something like that could be done in my Etsy shop?

I've only done a little research into this but will continue to do more. So far it appears that:

1) Smaller items sell more often in Etsy shops than larger items

2) Jewelry and Ephemera are popular sellers

Since I'm just setting up my Etsy shop I'm going to keep this in mind. I'll still list larger items and see how they do, however. I also have found that  there is something for everybody and eventually even the larger pieces will sell, though maybe not quite as quickly.

So what are your top Etsy sellers? Have you found something that sells as soon as you list it so you hunt for more of the same? Have you done any research of your own? What have you found?

Monday, June 15, 2015


The power of finding beauty in the humblest things, makes home happy and life lovely.   Louisa May Alcott

 I've found the above statement to be so true as I look for creative ways to repurpose "humble" items like vintage ladders. I've gathered 10 creative ways to decorate with ladders that I found on Pinterest. Find one that makes you smile and then re-create it in your home. 

                              Enjoy books? Stack them in the corner on a ladder. I love this look!
                              Have a garden? Add potted plants in old galvanized containers.
                                       A bedside "table" with plenty of room for collectibles.
                                              On the porch for different Holiday decorating.
                               How about adding some baskets for added storage in your bath?


                                           Adding flowers to a painted ladder makes a lovely vignette.
                                         Use ladders in decorating for outdoor entertaining!
                                      Love this little ladder with a pretty bouquet of flowers!
                                       How clever is this for hanging jackets in a mudroom?
                                       And another outdoor decor vignette. The old shoes are so cute!


Inspired? Try one ( or more ) of these ideas for yourself! If you're local, I happen to have two big vintage ladders that I'm willing to sell right now...before our next sale! One is similar to the one just above and the other is painted a bright fun green! Leave a comment if you're interested!

Saturday, June 13, 2015


Love the moment, and the energy of that moment will spread beyond all boundaries.    Corita Kent



I'm setting up my Etsy shop, Gwen and Alma's, due to open in July. I thought I'd check out what other Etsy shops are offering and I came upon this list of top Etsy sellers in the Vintage category. It listed the top 100 but I decided to just list the top 20 here. The list was categorized by number of sales.

If you are a seller on Etsy it might interest you to know that the top shops sell a lot of jewelry and ephemera. That really surprised me! But good to know! Retro items were another biggie. I might have to change my "picking" strategy. I usually look for things that I like and jewelry, ephemera, and Retro are not on my list.  But, hey, I'm about giving people what they want so I'll be looking out for all of the above. I could probably check out my OWN closet for clothes from the 60's!

If you are an "Etsy Shopper" I'd love to know what other treasures you might be looking for. I love to shop on Etsy and I am often given Etsy gift certificates as gifts. I love them! I sit and shop while sipping a cup of coffee and then order what I want. When it shows up in the mail, it feels like Christmas! Actually the shopping itself fe
els like a gift of sorts! So I get two gifts in one.

So check out these shops by just clicking on the link. And come July, be sure to check out Gwen and Alma's! Let me know what you think! I would love the feedback! Now I gotta go out and find me some vintage jewelry!

1) inkpainter.etsy.com
2) ohmymilky.etsy.com
3) RogueRetro.etsy.com
4) VintagePennyLane.etsy.com
5) CoolVintage.etsy.com
6) grandmothersattic.etsy.com
7) estatesaletreasures.etsy.com
8) dirtybirdiesvintage.etsy.com
9) FOUNDLINGS.etsy.com
10) dawnandross.etsy.com
11) therpjasik.etsy.com
12) mintthreads.etsy.com
13) NKempantiques.etsy.com
14) cricketcapers.etsy.com
15) vintagewarehouse.etsy.com
16) DearGoldenVintage.etsy.com
17) bananastrudel.etsy.com
18) KnitsandPics.etsy.com
19) vintagefabulous.etsy.com
20) vintagealcove.etsy.com

These stats were taken from the site CraftCount.com on June 13th 2015.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


A few of my larger items didn't sell at the last sale. And while I sold a ton of stuff, I always know that not EVERYTHING sells. So I'm listing some things on Craigslist, Rochester, Mn under "Antiques". I am also going to show you a few of the items here. If you are local or within driving distance and would like to purchase something, you can leave a comment and I'll let you know how to contact me directly.
In addition, I'll be listing some new items in my new Etsy store, Gwen and Alma's, opening in July. I'll leave more information on how to find it on a later post. For now, here are the bigger items that are for sale! 

First of all, my favorite....This vintage rocking horse. More for decor than for a child's toy, this would be fun for horse lovers or in your vintage farmhouse. $275

Next, is this beautiful Jenny Lind Daybed...if the seat cushions are not your color, you can easily throw a coverlet over the cushions for a different look. $250

Another cute set is this very old rustic table and chair set. I set it up as a desk. I didn't paint it as the border has sweet little flowers.  ONLY $35 for the set.

 Next is this adorable antique sewing organizer. The little hinged shelf on the left sets up to set things on. It is wood around the edge with embroidered cloth. I could probably figure out how to mail this if someone outside the area is interested. It sells for $60.

This is a National Cash Register. I have hesitated to sell this because we had so much fun with it at our sale. We kept our cash in it and every time we hit a key, it "dinged", the number popped up, and the drawer opened. It is in great condition. We are selling this for $400.

Next up is this vintage red and white step ladder. It folds up to be used as a stool as well. I'm selling this for $32.

And last but not least is this fun pottery cooler, selling for $50.

If you are interested in any of these, I will send you more detailed photos and information about the piece.
Smaller pieces will be listed in my Etsy shop, Gwen and Alma's, opening soon...
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