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  • Writer's picturetin618

secrets of a stylist: my pirate booty.

I just participated in my first online auction. I may be addicted...

Here's the back story:

I've been on the hunt for a ceramic vase for a client of mine (I'm redecorating the sound studio in her office building) and couldn't seem to find anything that spoke to me. My friend Maurine works for an estate sale company and had told me about a local sale that she was working that had really cool stuff. I hopped on to look it up and find the address. Jeff and I went there on the last day (Saturday) and didn't find anything for this project but of course we found stuff that we didn't need but wanted anyway! And all was 50% off! SCORE!

Love all the baskets and trivets. The gourd is carved with lizards on it.

Does anyone know what that pot is used for?

When I got home I decided to go back on the website to see if there were any other local sales that may have something for this client. There was this one sale with Native American art, blankets, baskets, etc. No vases that would work for her but some super cool blankets and baskets that I LOVED....I would say my home decor style is Mid Century meets BOHO with a little Mexican. :) So really, this sale was perfect for me! The sale ended Monday at 6pm and I had spent that day in Denver shopping for the perfect vase. I ended up finding her this beautiful hand made vase at Sacred Thistle.

First time I've been to this store! It is so beautiful. Quite pricey but also quite dreamy.

I hope she loves the vase!

I got home around 5pm so I thought- "Hey! I'll just quickly hop on this sale and see if anyone has bid on the things I was interested in." And so it began...

At 5:30, Jeff came over here to help me load the van for a photoshoot we had the following day. I told him about the online auction so he hopped on too and started looking through stuff. I had already bid on a few items and was so pleased with myself...I'm going to get all this stuff for NOTHING! I also accidentally bid on one lot because Zoe jumped up on my lap and bumped my hand and it made me hit the "bid now" button...oops. The auction closed at 6 and and I was about to win many lots for $10 (the minimum bid) and then ALL OF A SUDDEN all these people are bidding on MY items!!!!!

My phone was about to die. I had to plug it in the bedroom so I ran back there. My heart was racing. Adrenaline was pumping through my veins. There was NO WAY these other people were going to outbid me. And then I lost my first bid...these super cute camp chairs and a bunch of baskets to someone who outbid me by a DOLLAR! A DOLLAR!!!!! Are you kidding me??!! I didn't realize that all the lots I was bidding on were staggered in closing times. Obviously, there's a lot to learn about these online auctions.

So I was on top of it now. Very focused on my other items. At one point Jeff came back to the bedroom and said, "Hey there! We need to load the van!" and I yelled "Arrgghhh....someone outbid me again." He asked me if I was a pirate. Ha! Matey! "I'm trying to win my BOOTY!", I said. "Two more minutes! That's all that's left in this auction." I was cunning. I was crafty. I waited until the last second and hit the bid button...and to my dismay, the timer started over with an additional 2 minutes! WTF? Are you kidding me? Obviously, there's a lot to learn about these online auctions.

I had set a limit ($75) on some rugs I was bidding on and went over that by another $20 and someone won the bid at $350! Wow- that was crazy! So after it was all said and done, I won a few lots: some blankets, pillows, knick knacks, a globe, a typewriter, baskets, clay pots, and some old yard tools. You know, a bunch of stuff I don't really need! BUT I WON! #winning

So the day came to go pick it all up and we drove down there with the van. I am so excited! I'm picking up MY BOOTY! My winnings! I'm talking like a pirate, we're laughing, excited to see what I actually won in person. We walk in the house and immediately, it makes me sad. Someone had died and now all their stuff was strewn around this home. My eyes were adjusting from the sun and when I really started looking around, I was not only sad, but disgusted. There was literally piles of poop everywhere...rabbit poop. And according to the woman running the auction, there was also squirrel and rat feces. Thanks lady. I'm literally gagging. And angry. They had everyones stuff in piles ON THE FLOOR!!!! I left the pillows I had won and told her to throw them in the dumpster. Thankfully, we didn't have to be in the house long. Obviously, there's a lot to learn about these online auctions.

Then I thought about ALL the items I wanted and was outbid on. What were their reactions when they picked up their booty? $350 for rugs laying on top of poop? I was definitely thankful that someone outbid me! We got back to my house and Jeff unloaded my winnings and proceeded to clean everything. He took all the pots to his house and washed them and sprayed out the entire van with the hose. Nothing has made it into my house yet- well, one thing. The blankets are sealed up in a black trash bag until I can get them cleaned. The baskets need to air out or be put in a bag with baking soda- they smell like an old ashtray.

So here it booty.

A cool vintage ocean topography globe that lives at Jeffs house.

A framed needlepoint eagle.

A bunch of handwoven baskets and a clay bird. LOVE these!

Aerial photos of Denver.

A Smith & Corona typewriter.

Not sure what this is but I love it and I bid on the lot for it and it came with all the pots!

All the pots!

Vintage gardening tools and some cool ladders.

And last but not least...the rugs and blankets.

Can't wait to have them cleaned so I can display them!

Overall, I am very happy with my WINS (so much more exciting to call it that rather than a purchase!!) Even though I had to walk through poop to get them. I'm learning lessons along the way and will definitely look at more online auctions...but I think I'll be a bit more discerning.

stylist tip: Set a budget when you are shopping on an online auction and stick to it! You may be relived that someone actually outbids you!

stylist secret: I've always been pretty competitive. I played volleyball, basketball and swam competitively in my much younger years. I love any type of game! I once was playing the card game Pitch with my grandma (the one who is 101 now!) and I beat her at a hand and stood up and said, "In your face Grandma!" I promptly got reprimanded by my mom.

Such a great memory!

The one thing that has made it into my house? This old ceramic doll leg that I found in the yard at the auction. It's one of my favorites and I didn't pay a penny for it. #winning

Thanks for reading! Anyone have a similar experience buying something online? Please leave a comment or question below!

Until next time...cheers! xo tina

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