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Charity Shop Treasures

January 11, 2011

Look at what I found in a charity shop recently! I couldn’t believe it when I saw an old sewing box and opened it to see it stuffed full of vintage sewing and knitting equipment, and all for just £10. That’s the kind of bargain I cannot walk away from. The haul includes far too many items to list, but some of the things I was most excited about included:

  • 20 wooden spools of thread in a variety of beautiful colours, some never even used
  • Over 50 ‘Oriental’ pearl buttons, still attached to their original card packaging, which is beautiful in itself
  • 20 pairs of metal knitting needles of varying sizes, some in lovely pearlescent colours
  • A huge collection of assorted buttons (photograph to follow)
  • A selection of bias binding, elastic and ribbon
  • Over 100 poppers, both silver and black, most still on the original card packaging
  • Lots of embroidery thread, still wrapped around the original card
  • Loads and loads of crochet hooks
  • Wool
  • More pins and safety pins than I know what to do with

I was so excited as I cycled home from Mill Road through the cemetery, with my treasures swinging from the handlebars, and for some reason I also felt a little bit like I had just got away with something I shouldn’t have, probably because it was such a bargain.

I love going to charity shops and hunting down bargains and treasures. It’s amazing what some people will give away to charity shops and how a little bit of cleaning and care can turn someone else’s rejected items into beautiful, practical and useful things.

There is quite a good selection of charity shops here in Cambridge, including a few off the beaten track that are a haven for treasures just waiting to be discovered.

Luckily for me my son likes charity shop trawling too, so we often spend a lazy weekend morning hunting through them all and have found some amazing bargains over the years.

I picked up this lovely big jar at a charity shop for 50p, it’s perfect for storing all those vintage buttons and embroidery threads I found.

What bargains have you found in charity shops? I would love to know.

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. January 13, 2011 4:45 pm

    Hi there! Just stumbled upon your blog & I love it. I’ve found some great things at charity shops like vintage buttons & fabric.

  2. donnabright permalink
    January 13, 2011 6:13 pm

    I am such a bargain hunter I could not list them all but here goes:
    silk pants which can be turned into wonderful neck warmers (idea is in a book about fat quarters),
    a ultra small sewing kit with all the essentials to go with me whenver wherever, a handmade knitting
    bag (average patchwork but the goodies inside – needles and such – fantastic!), deniums of any
    kind, vintage checked materials, yarns and string, “one” earring (I use them to make stitch markers
    for my knitting and crochet), lots of nice clothing and plenty of knitting and crochet needles. I have
    even found items which can be regifted with some work: yarn made into scarves, a good piece of
    wool used as a wall hanging, etc. etc. I look forward to the 109 left!

  3. January 13, 2011 10:17 pm

    That is quite a haul donnabright, sounds like you are an experienced charity shop bargain hunter! Love the sound of the silk pant neck warmers, genius!

    Lynn, nothing beats vintage buttons and fabric!

  4. January 14, 2011 12:55 am

    This is not very crafty (sorry) but the best thing I ever found in a charity shop was a mint hardback copy of Shakespeare’s sonnets, all done in the most beautiful calligraphy.

    Does the fact that I was working in said charity shop at the time mean I was cheating? 🙂

    I’ve found a lot of other really neat stuff, too… a variety of nice clothes, cheap books, glass ‘potion’ bottles, little trinkets. I know there’s a stigma surrounding charity shops, but they really are like treasure troves!

    I must admit though, your box of sewing materials was truly the motherload.

  5. January 14, 2011 3:59 pm

    What a deal!! Love it when that happens!

  6. Andrea permalink
    January 15, 2011 1:35 pm

    Fabulous finds!
    You’ve got to remember to get a huge ancient Quality Street tin for your random buttons!
    😀

  7. January 18, 2011 12:14 pm

    I would have fainted at the bargainaciousness of your find – if you bought that on ebay you’d pay a fortune esp the reels. Well done! My sister lives in Cambridge and I agree you have superiour ch-shops. My best buy was a load of tea cups, saucers, milk jugs etc I got over a few weeks for pennies – I used them to have a big tea party for my birthday.

    • January 18, 2011 4:19 pm

      Ooh I love the idea of collecting lovely tea cups and saucers from charity shops and then throwing a big tea party!

      • January 21, 2011 7:17 pm

        I highly recommend it – lots of cake too of course!

  8. Kate permalink
    February 17, 2011 12:54 am

    This was a steal! I always feel so great after finding a deal that great. I especially love the buttons. I’m always on the lookout for buttons.
    I really miss the UK charity shops.

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