Friday, August 22, 2008

Yard Sale and Flea Market Vintage Sherman Rhinestone Jewelry



We've all heard about that "amazing find" at yard sales and flea markets but my mom has to be the champion when it comes to finding Sherman Jewelry at ridiculously low prices.

Early one Saturday, she and my dad were heading to their cottage which is about a 45-minute drive from their home.  About a mile down the road, they happened upon a yard sale where two neighbors were busy unpacking boxes and setting up yard sale tables along their driveways.

Sometimes it pays to be chatty and my mom is always very friendly when she meets people whether on the street or at a social event. She was chatting with the ladies and during the conversation asked if either of them had any jewelry for sale. One lady mentioned she had some in the house that she wouldn't mind getting rid of.  She then went inside and came out only a minute or two later with a small box and lifted the lid to show mom a rhinestone pin and earrings. My mom glanced at it and asked how much. The lady thought for a few seconds and said she would like to get at least $3 for it. My mom took the box, put the lid back on and quickly handed her $3. She then slipped the box into her purse (after showing the other lady who had become curious). She then left without inspecting the pin or earrings. She knows very well not to draw attention to jewelry at yard sales in her area, everyone is "gunning" for it, some so urgently that they will actually go to houses that have advertised yard sales the night before and ask for it in advance.  

They went to a few more yard sales and a little while later stopped at one where mom noticed a known jewelry dealer leaving.  She didn't expect to find any jewelry at this one but thought should would take a look anyway. As she was leaving that yard sale, she noticed that the children had set up their own table of items for sale; Barbie dolls, books and other toys. She took a walk by that table and noticed a large rhinestone pin that was missing one stone with a 10 cent sticker.  Thinking the stones would be good to have on hand, she decided to purchase it. She paid the 10 cents and slipped that pin in to her purse and left.

About half way to the cottage, they were at yet another yard sale where my dad was talking to the man there about an item he had for sale. Since mom was waiting for him in the car, she decided to take a closer look at the jewelry she had purchased earlier that day. To her utter amazement, both brooches were clearly marked "Sherman".

The gorgeous champagne brooch and earrings pictured were $3 while the large fuchsia wreath-style brooch was purchased for 10 cents. It had originally been missing one of the large round rhinestones but luckily a jewelry dealer I know was able to repair it (for free!) having the exact match to that stone in her inventory. To this day, mom and I can't be certain which stone was replaced so this pin is now perfectly restored. The rhodium and gold plate on the brooches is mint which is amazing considering the fuchsia brooch found its way into the hands and toy box of a child.

The earrings pictured with the champagne brooch and purchased with it are not marked but are in excellent condition and compliment it nicely. The box still has the old-fashioned Christmas tag tucked inside having originally been a gift to a favorite aunt.

The Sherman earrings that are pictured with the fuchsia brooch were purchased separately at a flea market in my area for $5. Being a great companion to the brooch, they are now in my mother's collection.

Both of these brooches were incredible finds and only my mom could be such a "Sherman magnet" to have found two in the same day. For those vintage jewelry collectors who don't think that it's worth the bother to go to yard sales looking for jewelry, take a lesson from my mom and get out there and see what's around. Like my mom, don't be afraid to chat with the sellers and don't ignore the children's tables.... You may be pleasantly surprised!!!



2 comments:

CRUISEROO said...

Boy Deb. I'd love to have your mom's luck. I've spent weekend after weekend hoping to come across some Sherman whose owner didn't know its value but I never had any luck. The best luck I had was visiting a flea market downtown one morning and noticing a set in the guy's display. He said it was a Sherman so I decided to take a closer look. It was gorgeous and such a unique style. I asked if he had any more. He had some brooches. So I took it all for $100!! I sold it later for 3 times that. Mind you, he's wise to me now. Whenever I show up he tells me he doesn't have any. I don't believe him LOL!

Deb said...

Hi Viga, Good for you! A profit of 3 x your expense isn't that bad although unfortunate he is now on to you!! My brother-in-law who knows I collect just picked up one of the large Sherman metal jewelry cases for me for 25 cents at a yard sale here in the Maritimes. I've seem smaller ones go as high as $30 to $40 on eBay and don't forget, they have to pay about $10 shipping on top of that! Bargains are out there but you have to be persistent and it doesn't hurt to have family members looking for you too, especially someone as lucky as my mom!!