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Estate Sale Finds: Procrastination Edition

Stacked centerpiece

It’s already a month into the new year and my to-do list is as long as my arm: do our taxes, shampoo the carpets, clean out my office, and on it goes…

So of course I’ve been estate sale shopping instead.

And rather than just bring my little finds home and get down to work, I’ve decided to do a show and tell with you instead. Because taxes? Cleaning? The weather is already depressing enough.

I found these two trays on a table full of silverplate at a recent sale. Right away I loved the shape and design of the larger tray. And I knew I could put the smaller tray to work as a wine bottle coaster because the little drips of red wine on my tablecloths tell me I need one.

silver trays before

Neither tray was badly tarnished but I gave the small one a silver bath and used a little old fashioned silver polish on the larger one. They cleaned up quickly and nicely.

Silver Trays After

And I guess when you ask the universe for wine coasters, the universe delivers, because not long after I ran across this little engraved number at a different sale. I love its handsome style.

Silverplate wine coaster

Last fall I declared my love for brown transfer ware and mentioned the Friendly Village pattern specifically, so when I saw this Friendly Village plate sitting alone at an estate sale I didn’t hesitate to bring it home with me.

Friendly Village Johnson Bros Plate

I think an accidental collection has been started.

Friendly Village Transferware

And I loved this basket for it’s unusual shape, with a little indent in the middle. Perfect for a couple of flowerpots, maybe?


I recently fell in love with hemstitch linens while looking for tablecloths at Homegoods, so these off-white hemstitch napkins were another happy estate sale find.

hemstitch closeup

This small, wavy bowl matches the shape of a larger one that my mother-in-law gave me, and since I seem to never have enough small bowls for nuts or dips or lemon slices or whatever I am happy to have this one.

Clear Wavy Glass Bowl

These stainless iced tea spoons and salad tongs were new and still in the plastic.

Stainless iced tea spoons and salad serving pieces

And at a sale I stopped into earlier this week, I found a framed print of a drawing of one of Kansas City’s most famous fountains. (Did you know that Kansas City is sometimes called the City of Fountains? The word around town is that KC has more fountains than any city except for Rome. While I don’t know if that’s true, it is a fact the KC has over 200 fountains and even has a foundation dedicated to preserving them.)

Kansas City Fountain Drawings

I was contemplating buying the single, framed print, when I happened on a room in the basement that had multiple, unframed copies of these four different drawings.

Kansas City J.C. Nichols Fountain East Sculpture Group

Well, that was even more interesting to me, so I picked up one of each.

Kansas City Southwest Sculpture Cherubs Drawing

Now I’m just mulling over how to frame them and where to hang them.

Kansas City Boy and Hound Fountain Sculpture

Curious about the R. Richter who signed the drawings, I Googled him/her and discovered this. Rick Richter was a KC advertising executive who was also a talented artist. He drew many of the fountains and sculptures around Kansas City. These particular drawings were done in 1996, two years before he died.

Neptune Fountain Drawing detail

I have no idea why this particular house had multiples of these prints, but I’m so happy to have discovered them.

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  1. What a wonderful find in the fountain prints!!!!! I’m in Kansas City and I would have gone crazy over those! Can’t wait to see how you frame and hang them!

    1. Vivian, I am kicking myself for not buying more of them, in case I ran across someone else who would have liked them too. They were a unique find. They sell them on the website I linked to, but they’re a lot more than I spent.

  2. I love the KC fountain prints!! And the wine coaster too!

  3. Oh my! We are kindred spirits! I have probably seen you at one of the Estate Sales! I too live in the KC area and my BFF go every week “estate sale-ing”. Love the silver! I have to say that the BEST sales are here in KC. See you this weekend 🙂

    1. What a coincidence, Cindy. Hope to run into you at a sale sometime.

  4. Wonderful finds! I am a Friendly Village collector also, and that plate is great.

    1. Love that Friendly Village, Bev.

    1. Aren’t they fun, BettyMarie?

  5. I love to polish silver, and the scene on your plate reminds me a bit of the town where I live, so I may have to also be on the look out for pieces! Your blog is such a nice place to visit!

    1. Well I would love to visit your town then, Leslie Anne. Sounds charming!

  6. I can never pass up a pretty silver tray! And the fountain prints are so unique, have fun with them!

  7. Well you did alright with those estate sales! I can see why you liked that silver tray with the handles. I love that friendly village pattern too. I went on eBay and found them, but it will add up to a good sum buying them in bits and pieces. Those prints you bought are so cool! That was a lucky find!

  8. Hi Julie!

    It’s wonderful to “meet” you! Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment.

    I spent a loooong time looking at some of your beautiful posts! I am in love! You have a great taste and a fun personality! 🙂

    I hope to come back soon!


    Luciane at HomeBunch.com

    1. Well, that’s just the nicest comment ever. Thank you, Luciane. It’s nice to meet you too.

  9. Such a beautiful post! I enjoyed your silver bath instruction! I also enjoy the thrill of the hunt at antique and flea markets … I have yet to attend an estate sale … I must put doing so on my list! Any tips on finding estate sales?

    Thank you for your lovely comment on my blog. I see we have the commonality of a college daughter, and a senior son. So happy to ‘meet’ you my dear!

    1. Yes, I have a great tip for finding estate sales, Tamera: estatesales.net. It will notify you of sales starting the next day and you can usually look at pictures of what’s for sale to see if you want to invest the time to go.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  10. Ethel O'Neal Alderson says:

    Ordered two silver plated wine buckets from ebay after viewing your post – love the look, thanks for sharing. I also tried the cleaning solution – foil, baking soda, lots of boiling water. YOU WERE SO CORRECT! I will buy more silver plate, clean it more often, and remember your blog as I enjoy using it.

  11. Love all of your finds! You have great taste and I love your colors. Could you share your upholsterers name or business? I have a need for all my “grandparent ” chairs.
    Thanks! Maribeth

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