Today’s Op Shop Finds At Brunswick Savers

carved wooden pig

Today the family had their own stuff to do and I was tasked with going to Savers to start working out Halloween costumes. That was the official excuse but really, I haven’t been op shopping in ages and it’s kiiiiling meeee.

Savers was pretty busy and their Halloween stuff (not secondhand) is everywhere. Lots of people buying up but we’re having none of that this year. This year is all about piecing together costumes from entirely secondhand sources.

I had so much time to kill before Husband picked me up so I took my time looking around the little trinkets. I couldn’t resist that little wooden pig up there!

I had to take photos in a huge rush, they didn’t turn out as well as I’d like but I don’t want to miss posting this today!

A recent obsession is vintage Pyrex. We had loads growing up and my aunt was the Pyrex queen. My mum always had the kind of muted autumn colours, never the pink or turquoise that I now see being sold for megabucks on Etsy and eBay. So I was pretty pleased to see this, even though it has a few small chips and baked on stuff. I’ll give it a thorough wash but it will make a great bowl for some fruit. I’m always running out of places to store fruit:

vintage retro turquoise blue Pyrex casserole dish

Then I saw this gorgeous little yellow Pyrex bowl. It’s the perfect size for dips. I don’t have any proper ‘dip’ size bowls. They’re either too small or too big, so this is fab:

vintage retro yellow Pyrex shallow dish

Me and my pineapples. No idea what I’ll do with this dish, but hey, it’s a pineapple. Maybe I could use it to serve… pineapple:

vintage retro German made pineapple fruit serving dish

More yellow! My mum had the bright green Tupperware containers identical to this yellow one below. Savers also had an olive coloured one in good condition but I’m going more for the brighter, cheery colours:

vintage retro yellow Tupperware storage container

I’ve been looking for a bathroom liquid soap dispenser in op shops without much luck. Then I saw this. Sure, it’s for the kitchen and I’m not going to be washing my hands with mustard but hey, it has retro yellow and retro vegan food:

vintage retro Pyrex yellow mustard dispenser

DeeW likes bits and bobs for her sewing kit and I never seem to have a particular colour thread when I need it. Hopefully this solves that problem:

bag of vintage cotton thread

Something for a fancy tea. Now I need to start having fancy tea:

vintage cake dessert tongs server

After being out of op shopping action for what seems like forever, this was a bit of a splurge. I did exercise some discipline though and put a few things back, seeing as I’ve been decluttering lately and don’t want to bring more stuff in to the house. I did find some clothes that can be used for Halloween costumes (and hopefully worn again after that!) but I’ll leave those for a Halloween post. In the meantime, I’m trying to drum up enthusiasm for all things Halloween. I think my costume will be a tired frazzled hag…

Here’s a pic of a building I love on Sydney Road. Who doesn’t love a bit of TARDIS blue!

Sydney Road blue terrace


I am sending this post to Woman In Real Life‘s Vintage Bliss Tuesday. Joann has awesome thrifty finds and it’s always a blast for me seeing people on the other side of the world with the exact same vintage stuff I have!



National Op Shop Week: Past Kids Clothes Bargains From Savers

National Op Shop Week has officially started! I’m planning on hitting the op shops on weekdays to avoid, well, people I guess.

Because it’s the second day of Op Shop Week and I am yet to visit an op shop, I thought I’d put up this blog post about some past buys from Savers. Arthur and DeeW are forever growing and I really don’t want to be spending a lot of money on their shoes and clothing, only to have them outgrow it too soon. DeeW had a fabulous pair of maryjane shoes that were too big for her in November, when the weather was still cooler enough for her to wear them. Over the summer she wears sandals and when autumn arrived, the shoes were way too small. That’s just how it is around here.

I refuse to buy kids clothes from stores now. I’m an op shop/Savers convert and if I can pick up brand new looking clothes for as little as 20cents in an op shop, or 75 cents on a Savers sale day, wellll I’m not going to a department store, you know?

So here’s a blog post to show you the bargains I’ve scored in Savers. If you like labels, I’ve found Leona Edmiston, Seed, Alannah Hill, Laura Ashley, Friends of Couture and others for a few bucks, in adult and kids clothing.

Right. So. Here’s DeeW in head-to-toe I-found-it-at-Savers. I suspect DeeW has been sneakily reading fashion blogs. Note the fashion blogger ingenue overdone pigeon toe pose. Maybe she saw that episode of Diff’rent Strokes where Kimberley got a job as a model? Remember that? And the zipper got stuck and she knocked over the pedestal thing. Compelling viewing. Anyway, DeeW’s top and boots are by Target (the boots cost about $3, barely worn). Red cardigan is by Esprit and the leggings are Country Road. Everything looked completely unworn– I check every little bit for signs of wear.

savers girls clothing

Two Miss Leona dresses by Leona Edmiston, bought for about $6 each. I consider these splurges. Miss Leona dresses (secondhand) go for around $40 on eBay:

girls leona edmiston dresses

Dresses by Seed, for a couple bucks each. Muuuuch more brand new. After this photo was taken I dusted that picture rail! I swear these photos were taken right after finishing installing new built in wardrobes so I hadn’t finished all the cleaning up:

girls seed dresses

The cardigans and tops in this (blurry) pic were no more than $2 each:

savers girls cardigans

More unworn stuff. I love the colourful dress. It’s homemade and one of my favourite finds for $1. The grey top with the blue bow print on the left had original tags attached saying $16, I paid $1.50. The purple Esprit dress was $2:

savers girls dresses

DeeW is a leggings girl. Labels include Gap, Old Navy, Country Road, Esprit:

savers girls leggings

She’s a skirts with leggings girl too. These were all under $2:

savers girls skirts

Long sleeved tops can be pricey in the shops. I found these for under $2. Bossini Kids, Target, Pumpkin Patch, Kenzo:

savers girls tops

savers girls tops

The Lego Friends top was $1.20. Much more in the shops! The first column of tops plus the red one with penguins are Gymboree and about $1.50 each:

savers girls tops

Love these two home made dresses, they were right there next to eachother on the rack. About $2 each and beautifully made:

savers handmade vintage dresses

More dirt-cheap leggings and slouchy wear. The purple top and matching leggings on the right are Gymboree. Totally unworn and I found them in separate aisles. Together they cost under $4:

savers kids outfits

The most expensive pair of shoes here were, I think, the lace up boots on the left for $5. All non-leather, no idea if leather shoes are priced higher but I never look for them:

savers kids shoes

I love finding vintage dresses for myself but more so for DeeW. When I was saw that green I POUNCED. From about three metres away, it was a wizard move:

savers vintage girls dresses

I might have broken out the same moves for the dress on the left. ZOMG THAT COLLAR!!! Somebody call Starsky and Hutch and arrest me for coolness:

savers vintage girls dresses

I have a supersized head and finding comfortable hats that don’t decapitate me at forehead level is hard. So while DeeW has a little head I’m enjoying plonking these on her. Fortunately, she’s a hats girl. The vintage hat on the top left was from an op shop and a bit of a splurge at $6. The second red hat is from Savers, about $2. Ditto for the green Tyrolean hat, it even has a Made in Austria label inside. Eeeeee! She wears it at home. The pink pompom hat was $1.50.

vintage secondhand hats

Separate paragraph now for the sparkly beret on the bottom left. I paid a few bucks for it. But it had the original tags attached: by Mimco, with a RRP of $150!


I’ve been to the Savers sales and bought a big garbage bag worth of stuff for myself and the kids for under $100– clothes that can last the kids a few years. I’ve bought a full length kids ski suit for $8 and barely worn parkas for $3 each.
So there you go! Bargains galore. Sure I can find cheaper clothes in op shops but in my experience the dirt cheap clothes, like the ones sold at 10c or 20c each are dirt cheap because they’re dirty, holey and blergh. I admit to being very fussy with the clothes I buy second hand, they have to look unworn or if they’re spoiled in some way, they can be repaired or upcycled.

When it comes to buying clothing, I don’t particularly care about labels or if they’re designer. I go for what I think my kids will like, a good bargain price and clean as-close-to-unworn as possible. When Arthur and DeeW outgrow the clothes (and by then, the condition is still mostly pretty good) they’re donated or gifted to others.  I keep bargain shopping in mind– if you buy stuff you don’t need, it’s not really a bargain! When I open DeeW’s wardrobe I often think she has way too much stuff, but as she’s growing heaps lately I find I am getting rid of clothing that suddenly can’t fit over her head. I buy in sizes that are larger than her current size so she gets more wear out of them and we always have clothes stored at my mum’s for sleepovers, spare clothes in the car and so on. Plus DeeW loves to change her outfits a lot and jump in puddles, so having a collection of shoes and leggings has come in very handy!


The Best Garage Sale Ever: More Awesome Vintage Finds

vintage German teaset

You guys. YOUSE GUYZZZZZZZZZZ. You thrifting, op shopping hat wearing guyzzzzzzzz. Hold on to those hats because I am going to present you with the best garage sale in the history of, well, me. But not just any garage sale. Oh no. This is a BEAUTY SHOPPE.

Vintage Business Card Beaaty Shoppe

That’s right! A real deal beauty shoppe. Driving home last week I saw ‘garage sale!’ (a garage sale is a yard sale) signs on a shop front that has never been an actual store in all the years I’ve driven past. Someone was living in the attached house, but the shop front has always been locked up with drawn, tattered curtains. I always wondered what lay behind that curtain. I finally got the chance to find out and oh my goodness. THE AWESOMENESS.

It turns out that it was a beauty salon back in the 1950s, possibly the 40s as well. Honestly, if all I had seen was the above business card (and there were quite a few of them) I would have been happy. I love stuff like this. The style of phone number you see up there (with the FW) was in use until the early 1960s. I found this little handwritten gift tag in a box of stuff I bought. I’m going to frame it together with the business card:

vintage gifttag 1940s

Who was Mel? The ‘M’ on the Miss M Morton on the business card? It appears so!

vintage gifttag 1940s

The former shoppe was crowded with antiques and more modern things. And heaps of dust. Some elderly relatives had passed away and the family decided all this stuff had to go. There was the original salon chair, which I didn’t snap a photo of as people were always around it. One of the family members at the sale told me the salon was running in the 1940s.

There were quite a few pieces of furniture like a 1950s kitchen dresser, desk, wardrobes, bedside tables, chest of drawers.There were a few old mirrors, but I picked up the best one for $5. It will go in DeeW’s room when we redecorate it (clearly, I need to wipe it down again):

vintage mirror

I also got DeeW an old knitting nancy:

knitting nancy vintage

These little figurines were in a basket of assorted toys. The little mouse is in a walnut shell:

vintage figurines

This guy’s face just cracks me up. I couldn’t leave him at the bottom of that basket. It was only after I took this photo that I noticed that red grumpy mouth is actually his nose, and underneath he has a smiley mouth. I prefer the grumpy interpretation:

vintage plastic toy figurine

The small photo of this dog has a 1949 date pencilled on the back and some handwriting I can’t make out. I think it’s the dog’s name:

old photo in frame

I pounced on this, thinking it was an old bathing cap I could give to a friend, but it’s a tissue box cover. Now I have to go and buy those smaller boxes of tissues:

tissue box cover

An old tin, complete with old tea (yes I threw it away!), for a few bucks:

old tea tin

A bunch of old hats were $1 each, though they were in dirty condition with lots of holes and stains. These two were the best of the lot (the others were more modern style but there was a 70s kids bucket hat with the built in green plastic visor! Unfortunately cracked and filthy). My friend is a super milliner and would be able to work her magic! The black hat is plain and could do with a little bedazzling:

vintage hats

I bought this box of sewing supplies. Dusty with crumbly bits sewing supplies. Of course, I am now paranoid I have breathed in asbestos:

vintage sewing supplies

vintage sewing supplies

Attached to the box was a page from a 1951 issue of Woman’s Day:

1951 Womans Day Magazine

Fashion advice. Before the days of blogs:

1951 Womans Day Magazine

Lampshade advice:

1951 Womans Day Magazine

1951 Womans Day Magazine

This table piece/runner  was on a coffee table, underneath boxes of stuff for sale. I asked if it was for sale and was told fifty cents. GIMME:

vintage embroidered cloth vintage embroidered cloth

I was told these were used in ‘the olden days’ as shoe storage, which doesn’t seem right to me. Mainly because I can’t fit a shoe in the pockets. And why have a row of three across for pairs of shoes? To me it’s a jewellery storage sorter or perhaps it was used for gloves or intimates. These (like the table piece, above) are pretty dirty and in need of a good hand wash. I picked them up for $5. Even the hangers are old!

vintage sorter

This note was in one of the pockets:

vintage sorter vintage sorter

You know how on The Six Million Dollar Man there was this ttccchh-ttccch-ttccch sound effect when Steve would run? That was me when I spotted this tea set from a distance:

vintage German teaset

They sold it to me for $15. There’s no maker’s mark on the bottoms, just ‘Germany’:

vintage German teaset

All up, I think I parted with $40. I would have bought the kitchen dresser if I had a place to put it but unfortunately it was about 10cm too wide.

So as you can see, I’m training hard for National Op Shop Week  😉


Vinnies Op Shop, Sunshine

retro apple jug apron

Today’s op shop: Vinnies (St Vincent de Paul) at 56 Station Place, Sunshine

St Vinnies Sunshine

I haven’t been to Vinnies in Sunshine for a long time. I’ve picked up some fab tops and games in the past and was happy to see the place is still large and well spread out. There’s a big selection of games and puzzles for kids but I didn’t get pics. I also resisted the temptation of the wooden pineapple napkin holder for $2 with a “Greetings from Surfers Paradise” sticker (which would have been removed STAT) but I’m regretting not buying it. Because, you know, retro wooden pineapple thing.

I had to do a super quick browse (family were in the car, I’d told them I was just dropping stuff off, but you know how it is with op shops…)

St Vinnies Sunshine

St Vinnies Sunshine

St Vinnies Sunshine

St Vinnies Sunshine

St Vinnies Sunshine

St Vinnies Sunshine

Spot the wooden pineapple napkin holder below:


St Vinnies Sunshine

There are those moments when you know your time is limited so your senses are on super high alert. Which is how I was instantly able to find this jug for $4:

vintage apple jug

I found this apron in my sister’s team colours. She was the lucky recipient of that jug too:

retro style apron

I only got one thing for myself (I KNOW, right?). Actually I got two things: this apron and an unused looking retro dishcloth for 50c. I love this apron. I’d call it my Carol Brady apron… except she never wore one:

retro apron

retro apron


Okay, off to focus on my training for the upcoming National Op Shop Week.


Vintage Finds at Dorothy Impey Op Shop, Coburg North

vintage doll ladle pot holder

Today’s op shop is the Dorothy Impey, or Dot’s Op Shop located at 238 Sussex Street in Coburg North:

Dorothy Impey Op Shop

What’s better than going to an op shop? Going to an op shop and seeing HALF PRICE SALE SIGNS ON THE WINDOW. And how can one resist a shop named Dot’s?

As soon as I walked in, I had a feeling I’d find something good.  Problem was I didn’t have much time to look around so I skipped over the clothes (don’t need any more of those!) and got the camera out to take some quick snaps:

Dorothy Impey Op Shop

I did a really quick browse through the dresses (ha, SEE? “Last thing I need…” but I still look anyway. And would have bought something):

Dorothy Impey Op Shop

The book section is quite a decent size. I saw a copy of the Sharp Carousel Microwave Cookbook which is what most people seemed to have when microwaves were all the rage.  Aaaand most people, like my family, probably never actually made anything successfully following those hideous recipes:

Dorothy Impey Op Shop

Dorothy Impey Op Shop

Dot’s Op Shop even has its own bunting decorating the shelves. Eeeeeeee!

Dorothy Impey Op Shop

Fortunately for my storage space, there was nothing for me in these sections (though I did linger over those two old glasses with the yellow bands that you see. 25 cents each):

Dorothy Impey Op Shop

Okay, so this is what I bought for the grand sum of one dollar. This old doll with an amazing hairdo was at the bottom of an assorted toys and dolls basket.  A pity she doesn’t come with a wiggle dress:

vintage doll

vintage doll

This cross stitch thingy for all the cross stitch I do.  Can you guess how much cross stitch I do by my reference to this as a ‘thingy’? Yeah, ZERO. But I figure it will come in handy one day.  Like when Costco opened here and a tv news reporter was interviewing some shopper about all these doormats he’d bought. And this shopper says “I don’t really need them but at that price I couldn’t resist, THEY’LL COME IN HANDY ONE DAY”.  I also found this half size ladle.  Perfect size for pancake batter, I get sick of using my bigass size ladle and trying to get the amount of batter the same:

vintage ladel aida cloth

My favourite find of the trip: this vintage patchworky pot holder slash pot rest! Love love love it:

vintage pot holder rest

I’m a bit late posting this because the half price sale was for all of July. The lemons were 10 cents each and I felt scummy taking more. I’m loving that doll though and thinking of naming her Donna Draper  😉