An old man who appeared to me to be homeless showed up at the end of an Upscale Yard Sale we were running at Pyramic Atlantic Art Center in downtown Silver Spring, Maryland before Christmas. He didn’t beg for money. He didn’t ask for anything. Something just spoke to me and told me to help the guy somehow.
“I’m trying to get with a lady tonight,” Gregory said in a voice as gravelly as the edge of the parking lot we were working on. “I’d like to bring her a little something.”
An idea struck me as I looked around at the antiques and collectibles my girlfriend Won-ok and I make a living selling. I saw a bunch of small, inexpensive items that I was about to pack up.
“Would you like to make a little money?” I asked.
“Sure!” he said. “How?”
“Why don’t I give you some things you can sell? I can put them in a bag for you.”
The man’s dark black face lit up with excitement as I filled up a bag with figurines that I told him he should be able to sell for $3 apiece.
“Thank you,” he said.
“Can you carry more?” I asked.
“Yes. Yes I can,” Gregory said. “I’m going to catch the bus right there. I can take them on the bus. I can sell those!”
With Won-ok smiling in approval as she looked at me over the man’s shoulder, I filled three more bags. We paid little for that batch of items and wouldn’t have cared if we did. There had to be at least 100 figurines in there … all kinds of animals, princesses, flowers and fruit that people might pay him a few bucks each for to put on their desks or bookshelves.
I wished Gregory a hearty “Merry Christmas”, a good afternoon and good luck with his lady.
He thanked me heartily and disappeared into the blur of Georgia Avenue traffic as I went back to packing. We got home, wrote Pyramid Atlantic a check to thank the great nonprofit organization for renting us a little real estate for a day and headed back out. (Not for nothing, but we’ve raised more than $11,000 for Pyramid Atlantic over the course of supporting its work.)
At dinner at IHOP that night, we ran up a $26 tab with an exceptionally nice young waiter named Pedro. The kid’s positive attitude unblemished by the reality of how badly so many restaurant patron behave touched me. I waited plenty of tables in my day. The profession does not enhance one’s view of humanity. Won-ok and I glanced at each other and spoke telepathically the way we so often do. I handed him a $20 tip and told him to keep up the positive attitude even when people beat him down.
Pedro was stunned and thanked us profusely. He assured me that he would take my advice to heart.
Won-ok and I knew the $20 would do him more good than it would us, just as the bags of trinkets would do more for Gregory than us. She and I were wearing our Orion’s Attic company hoodies with our name and logo on the front and our mantra on the back. “Buy good stuff, do great things.”
We didn’t do anything rising to the level of greatness that day but we hope the little bits of good we try to do as often as we can do add up to something great before our time on earth is done.
Love beautiful art glass that is even more radiant when light strikes it? Claim our collection of 35 Boyd’s Crystal Art Glass “Teddy The Tugboat” figures. All 35 are marked on the underside with Boyd’s distinctive diamond B with an underline – indicating they were made from 1983 to 1988. Our Tugboats were actually the first 35 in the series of 74 that were produced all the way up to 2011. The whole collection goes live on our eBay page on Jan. 1, 2015 at 4 p.m. Visit OrionsAttic.com and then click on “eBay store” at the top to bid! (You’ll find a video of the boats there, too.)
All of Boyd’s pieces are now going to be harder to find as the Cambridge, Ohio company announced in December of 2014 that it sold all of its inventory and is shutting down after four generations of making glass.
Our 35 Teddy the Tugboat pieces include the wildly popular No. 25, Rubina, that by itself sells for more than $60 on eBay. See the complete list below for the official numbers and names of what we’re including. You can also can view detailed photos of all 35 Teddy The Tugboats on Facebook.
1 Milk White (hand painted); 2 Corn Silk; 3 Sunburst; 4 Mountain Haze; 5 September Swirl; 6 Mint Green; 7 Pocono; 8 Violet Slate; 9 Daffodil; 10 Olympic White Carnival; 11 Ebony; 12 Crystal; 13 Heather Bloom; 14 Peridot; 15 Cobalt; 16 Bermuda; 17 Bermuda Slag; 18 Mulberry Mist; 19 Touch of Pink; 20 Lemonade; 21 Lilac; 22 Old Lyme; 23 Caramel; 24 Indian Orange; 25 Rubina; 26 Azure; 27 Budding Pink; 28 Heliotrope; 29 Sea Foam; 30 Misty Vale; 31 Confetti; 32 Ruby; 33 Candy Land; 34 Vaseline; 35 Alexandrite
If you’re looking for an unusual way to display your new purchase, we’re also selling the neat little hanging cabinet the collector had them in. See our Orions-Attic eBay page for that piece. The cabinet wasn’t specifically made for this collection but the boats do look great in it.
Do you have antiques and collectibles to sell, need an estate sale or know someone who does? We would love to be of service. Contact us today to find out how we can help.
Testimonial from Art Reinhardt of Great Falls, Virginia. Orion’s Attic performed a two-fold service on his huge home. We conducted an estate sale to sell his vast collection of antiques, collectibles and household items and also provided a clean-out service – leaving the home broom clean. (We also took a few items that didn’t sell to retail stores where we rent space.)
Sept. 25, 2014
To: Orion’s Attic:
Facing a real dilemma of downsizing from a multi-bedroom home with a massive 36-year accumulation of “stuff”, finding your service was a godsend. You not only exceeded your professional promises (and my expectations) but carried out your services flawlessly and ahead of schedule. This relieved us of so many burdens and enabled us to make a worry free move.
Orion’s Attic are experienced professionals, trust worthy, reliable and no false promises. I highly recommend them and would be delighted to assure any prospective client to hire them; they will be well served.
Cool collectibles, advertising, coins, toys and jewelry headline Upscale Yard Sale on Dec. 13 in Silver Spring
Whether you’ve been naughty or nice, Santa would love for you to hop in your sled and head to our next Orion’s Attic “Upscale Yard Sale” on Dec. 13, 2014. You’ll find us on the corner of one of our favorite charities, Pyramid Atlantic Art Center, located at 8230 Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring, Maryland. The sale will start promptly at 9 a.m. and go until 4 p.m. and maybe longer depending on weather conditions. (No early birds, numbers handed out to early arrivers.)
We’ve spent the last few weeks rounding up a whole truckload of cool collectibles, jewelry, art, advertising, décor, toys and more. We bought out the contents of one condominium in Silver Spring, part of another in Bethesda, traversed off-the-beaten-path auctions across Maryland and pulled out some of our own favorite pieces we’ve been foster parenting at our house. We’ll even provide some free heat by the pay and jewelry counter! As usual, we’ll donate part of our revenues to Pyramid Atlantic, a fantastic nonprofit organization that connects adults and children to the book and paper arts.
But wait, there’s more. You can start your day with us and then join our friends at the Fenton Street Market for its pop up store HOLIDAZE on the second floor gallery space at Pyramid Atlantic from noon until 8 p.m. At HOLIDAZE, you’ll find a curated selection of quality, handmade and locally designed products from regular FSM vendors.
Orion’s Attic is working around the clock to sort and photograph everything we’ve rounded up for your holiday shopping pleasure so consider this list an appetizer. Return here by Tuesday night for link to tons of photos:
ADVERTISING: Group of Planters Peanut glass jars including beautiful red one plus cobalt blue salt and pepper shakers, Coca-Cola sign with flower trough, grungy spark plug tool cabinet, Valley Farms milk bottles in wood Baxter’s Dairy crate, Stewart’s Root Beer barrel with ice bucket top and drain, framed Gulf calendar, Veedol oil can, Jacob & Cos Cream Cracker box
TOYS: Collection of authentic and reproduction cast iron banks such as baseball players, man sawing log and Aunt Jemima, cast iron figures including circus wagons and delivery wagons, exceptionally rare cast iron Champion policeman on motorcycle (1930s), Specialty Mold Grandma and Grandpa ceramic dolls on bench, baby and doll carriages, Tonka vehicles such as the Mighty Tonka Black Jeep Bronco, Car Carrier No. 840 (1962), Matchbox and Hot Wheel sets in cases, a variety of die-cast metal trucks and cars by CORGI, Trust Worthy and others, tin lithograph train cars by Louis Marx and others
COLLECTIBLES: Pair of Adlake kerosene railroad lanterns, Dietz Monarch Fitzall railroad lantern, Hummels, Pickwick Series hand-painted KelsboroWare Toby Jugs
COINS: We are just beginning to look at the coins. Highlights already include a 1910-D Indian $10 gold coin and many US Mint Proof Sets from the 1990s, five Morgan silver dollars from the 1800s, commemorative coins from Tsonga. Return here for other details as we sort through them.
TOOLS: Vintage to antique tools including tool boxes, Planet Jr. No. 2 Edger, industrial metal hardware cabinet, open-top tool box, carpenter’s box, hatchet, hammer, hand saw, boring tool and bits, gate hardware, pliers, leather hole puncher, wrenches, shelf support, hand plane, combination square, chisel, draw knife, corn husking implements, breast drill, brace and bits, micro dial, hand truck.
JEWELRY: Antique and vintage jewelry, including antique Native American-made necklace with silver and green turquoise, silver and turquoise rings, gold/sterling rings with various stones, antique hand-carved ivory bracelets, Bakelite pins, locket made of butterfly wings, assortment of men’s and women’s watches, and mountains of costume jewelry including earrings, rings, bracelets, cufflinks, and more.
SPORTS MEMORABILIA: New York Yankees train platform light, Babe Ruth collage, 1940s and 1950s Sport magazines with stories on Jackie Robinson, Christy Mathewson, Roy Campanella, Babe Ruth, Bob Lemon, Ted Williams, Yogi Berra, Lou Boudreau, Joe Dimaggio, Andy Phillip, Rocky Marciano, and more; NBA jerseys representing players Scottie Pippen (Bulls) , NFL jerseys representing Ricky Williams (Saints and Dolphins), Jeremy Shockey (Giants), Brandon Jacobs (Giants), Terrell Owens (Eagles), Keyshawn Johnson (Jets) and T.J. Houshmandzadeh; Baltimore Colts pennant
FISHING RODS, REELS AND LURES: Big variety of rods and reels including Wright and McGill Spin Champ with Garcia Mitchell 308 reel, True Temper 3275 rod, Ted Williams Tough Stik with Daiwa 4000 C reel, True Temper 95-10 rod with Pen Peer wheel, Montague Blue Island BBO rod. Lures included The Reb-L, Heddon Weedless. We also have a number of other reels including some in boxes.
CHINA AND KITCHENWARE: Set of winter-themed Christmas china, antique coffee grinder, flatware, decorative utensils, brass wine cups made in Israel, Enoch Wedgwood Tunstall with Sterling Silver Party Set
DECORATIVE GLASS: Crystal, Murano glass vases.
HOME DÉCOR: Selection of pottery including Quimper, Delft and pieces made in Italy, England, America and elsewhere, steins made in Germany and Japan, pewter collection, ceramic plates, vases made in Austria, antique quilts including one from 1917, tons of sewing materials and fabrics
ART: Signed oil on canvas paintings, ink sketches, folk art country store, framed porcelain tiles, two antique family photo album books from the 1800s, Douglas airplane drawing portfolio.
FURNITURE: Antique wash stand, small spice cabinet, vintage wood wagon turned into coffee table
MISC: Vintage cast iron paper roller, vintage radios, aviation magazines from World War II era, 1950s Guns magazines, modern gun coffee table books, fishing rods, Dietz Gen drafting set; Decorative stamp booklets on subjects including trucks, pets, insects, snakes, turtles, lizards, wildlife and Alaska; Partridge Family record; Nelson Family TV show print; old Match book album;
We’ll add more good stuff to the sale than what we list here. If we can fit it on the truck, we’ll bring it!
Do you know anybody who needs an estate sale, estate liquidation and/or clean-out? Contact Chris at Orion’s Attic today!
Testimonial from Liz Buchanan, daughter of former U.S. Representative John H. Buchanan, Jr. Orion’s Attic provided a multi-faceted service for Rep. Buchanan’s home in Bethesda, Maryland. We removed and sold all the fine furnishings and collectibles and also removed all other contents from the home – leaving it broom clean and ready to be sold. We ended up generating more money in sales for the family than they paid for the removal service, meaning we essentially paid them to clean out their home!
Sept. 15, 2014
We hired Orion’s Attic when we were preparing to sell our parents’ house. We knew there were valuable housewares and a number of nice pieces of furniture that could be sold in an estate sale, but there was also a great deal of trash and many items that were only suitable for donation. Chris, Won-ok and their crew worked hard to go through the house in an expeditious and orderly way. They were able to take our nice pieces to an estate sale they were running that had extra room and quickly worked out donations and hauling of the trash. It was all done within just two or three weeks! They were very pleasant to work with and we ended up making money. Thanks to Orion’s Attic for taking over a difficult job and doing it well!
Do you need an estate sale, estate liquidation and/or junk removal service? Contact Orion’s Attic today.
UPSCALE YARD SALE MOVED FROM SATURDAY NOV. 22 TO SUNDAY NOV. 23. HOURS AND ALL OTHER DETAILS THE SAME. WE’LL RUN SALE FROM 9 TO AT LEAST THREE ON SUNDAY NOV. 23. We apologize for the inconvenience. We did not realize a Thanksgiving parade would be blocking off that part of Georgia Avenue.
Orion’s Attic is going back to our roots by throwing a humdinger of an “Upscale Yard Sale” on SUNDAY NOV. 23, 2014 from 9 a.m. until at least 3 p.m. We’ll be setting up a couple of big tents on the corner of one of our favorite charities, Pyramid Atlantic Art Center, located at 8230 Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring, Maryland. You’ll be able to gobble up some great pre-Turkey Day treasures while also helping us raise a little more money for Pyramid Atlantic as we will donate part of our revenues to the fantastic nonprofit organization.
If you weren’t with us in our early days, you haven’t seen a yard sale like this before. Forget Mom’s old socks and Dad’s rusty golf clubs. Our Upscale Yard Sales are smaller-scale estate sales filled with great stuff we’ve purchased on estate buyouts that weren’t big enough to host sales. Think more of Mom’s vintage jewelry and Dad’s old toys – with good stuff from Grandma and Grandpa, too.
You’ll be surprised by how much high-quality merch we can stuff inside some tents. We’re packing this sale with vintage toys, jewelry, sports memorabilia, china, decorative glass, art and a few pieces of furniture and much more. (View more than 400 photographs on our Facebook page and check back throughout the week to see what else we ad. Note we’ll be bringing more than we have time to photograph.)
Our Upscale Yard Sale features a ton of vintage finds including:
TOYS: Exceptionally rare cast iron Champion policeman on motorcycle (1930s), Tonka vehicles such as the Mighty Tonka Black Jeep Bronco, Car Carrier No. 840 (1962), NYLINT vehicles including Timber Transport Logging Truck, Aerial Hook and Ladder Fire Truck, Gasohol Toy Tanker Truck, NAPA Automotive Parts Delivery Truck, 1970s Matchbox and Hot Wheel sets in cases, Sun Rubber Company car, CORGI Seagrave 70th Anniversary Pumper, a variety of die-cast metal trucks and cars by CORGI, Trust Worthy and others, a slew of banks, leather cap gun belt, Star Yacht sailboat made in England, tin lithograph train cars by Louis Marx and others, United Feature Syndicate Snoopy cars (1950s), eclectic mix of dolls and stuffed animals, piles of Pez dispensers.
JEWELRY: Antique and vintage jewelry, including antique Native American-made necklace with silver and green turquoise, silver and turquoise rings, gold/sterling rings with various stones, antique hand-carved ivory bracelets, bakelite pins, locket made of butterfly wings, assortment of men’s and women’s watches, and mountains of costume jewelry including earrings, rings, bracelets, cufflinks, and more.
SPORTS MEMORABILIA: 1940s and 1950s Sport magazines with stories on Jackie Robinson, Christy Mathewson, Roy Campanella, Babe Ruth, Bob Lemon, Ted Williams, Yogi Berra, Lou Boudreau, Joe Dimaggio, Andy Phillip, Rocky Marciano, and more; NBA jerseys representing players Scottie Pippen (Bulls) and Gilbert Arenas (Wizards) , NFL jerseys representing Ricky Williams (Saints and Dolphins), Jeremy Shockey (Giants), Brandon Jacobs (Giants), Terrell Owens (Eagles), Keyshawn Johnson (Jets) and T.J. Houshmandzadeh; Baltimore Colts pennant
CHINA, DECORATIVE GLASS, BARWARE: Staffordshire Blue Transferware, Pink Depression Glass, Platinum Wheat pattern fine china made in Japan, cordial set, Murano glass vases.
HISTORY: Theodore Roosevelt signed appointment document (U.S. Navy).
HOME DÉCOR AND FURNITURE: Vintage wood wagon turned into coffee table, hand-made and signed facial figure lamp made in Haiti, antique quilts including one from 1917, two sets of Kurt Adler Fiber Optic Christmas lights new in box.
ART: Two antique family photo album books from the 1800s, Douglas airplane drawing portfolio, nude woman limited edition signed photograph, wood sculpture of woman carrying water, packs of black and white photo reprints of historic downtown Frederick, Maryland.
MISC: Vintage Dietz Gen drafting set; Decorative stamp booklets on subjects including trucks, pets, insects, snakes, turtles, lizards, wildlife and Alaska; Partridge Family record; Nelson Family TV show print; old Match book album;
We’ll add more good stuff to the sale than what we list here. If we can fit it on the truck, we’ll bring it!
Sale starts promptly at 9 p.m. Please try to avoid parking inside the Pyramid Atlantic parking lot, especially if it’s crowded. Turn on to Ripley Street beside Pyramid Atlantic and look for parking along that street. There is also plenty of metered parking in every direction. No early birds.
Do you have great stuff to sell or know someone who needs a full estate sale or estate liquidation? Contact us today!
You’ve been asking for it and now we’re giving it a shot: Here’s your chance to see and buy some great new finds before we put them on sale to the general public. We’re offering a special discount, too! All you have to do is join our e-newsletter list, which you can do from our Orion’s Attic Web site, or Follow us on Facebook.
We just got in some gorgeous vintage gold, silver and costume jewelry, two gumball machines including one with a rotary phone attached to it and a few other nifty pieces.
We are giving our loyal e-newsletter subscribers and Facebook followers a 48-hour head start on perusing and purchasing these items. We are placing all of these pieces on a special Facebook photo album. Click here to view. You will see many close-up photos of each item, along with size, weight, pricing and shipping information in the caption of the FIRST photo of each item. All you have to do to claim it first is state in that first photo of the piece that you want. We’ll contact you from Facebook to arrange payment and shipping.
This offer runs for 48 hours, starting at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday October 22 and lasting until Friday Oct. 24 at 10:30 a.m. After that, we will take any remaining items to the general public.
We’ll try to find more opportunities to provide you with advanced looks at some of the great stuff we find. Hope you like this first batch!
Won-ok and I got up early on a recent Saturday and pounded the streets in our Silver Spring, Maryland neighborhood during a community- wide yard sale. We’re always on the prowl for great stuff to buy and sell and it’s not often that we get to do so in our own back yard. The first dozen sales we visited tanked. Nothing there for us.
We hit pay dirt on the next stop, catching a former foreign correspondent for a newspaper (yes, that job used to exist) just as he was setting up. He was late to the party and it worked out perfectly for us. We had a pocket full of cash we were itching to spend. He had a bunch of stuff he brought home from around the globe that he wanted to ditch and he didn’t much care about the money. We bought a bunch of beautiful wooden masks from Central America, African spears, Central American knives and a killer lamp from Haiti in the form of a face.
Our new friend told us about his career as an old-fashioned news man and I couldn’t get enough. I was a journalist once and still miss it to this day. Then he pointed me to a stunning stone sculpture of a green bear eating a white fish while standing in a river running through a mountain. I absolutely loved it. I stood in waters exactly like that in Alaska in 1991 and wish I had been able to witness a scene like that in person. I wanted the piece.
“I picked this up in Anchorage,” the scribe said.
Oh my goodness. I no longer wanted it: I needed it.
“I paid $300 for it,” he said. I’d take $100.”
I almost sprained my fingers reaching into my pockets so hard and so fast. It was beautiful. I damn near cried. I told him I would keep it for the rest of my life. I’m still fired up. That is my kind of art – wildlife, especially items that bring back memories of critters I’ve seen and ground I’ve walked.
We took several other wildcard items on consignment – a nifty lamp made in Israel and a huge, heavy wood window with shutters from southern India. He wanted them gone and we had no idea what to pay, or if we could find the buyers.
The old-school journalist invited us into his house to see a few things he was not selling, including a limited edition print made by the handprint of none other than Nelson Mandela. Incredible. I got to see Mandela speak in Atlanta after he got out of prison. I don’t remember the context of what he said but I remember how everyone in the stadium seemed to feel: We were touched and united by the power of his humble words.
Won-ok and I were both pumped, buying and consigning authentic, funky and uncommon items. Those are what make our work rewarding. Love stuff like what we bought from our new neighborhood friend. We both also noticed how much we easily left alone — bottom feeder, boring items that we would have scooped up in our infancy. Yes we could have bought milk glass for $.50 apiece but why? It’s boring and hard to sell.
We made a few more stops in our neighborhood, handed out more business cards, returned home, added an antique Chinese desk to the fresh merchandise packed in the car and cruised toward Copper Fox Antiques in Sperryville, Virginia. We sell a lot of furniture and a ton of china there. Two-thirds of the way down the road, the delightful scent of grilled hotdogs and hamburgers wafted into the windows of our Prius. We saw that the Fauquier County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was hosting a fundraiser. Orion’s Attic is named after a shelter-rescued dog and we love to help animal charities when we can. We were also hungry! We bought a few hotdogs and some chips, handed the SPCA a $20 bill and told the volunteer to keep the $15 change because we appreciated what the organization does. I even got to give a friendly pooch of good old-fashioned belly rub.
We reached Copper Fox, took care of business there and began to make our way back home. We caught at a moving sale on our way out, bought a little sculpture and marveled at a painting of a bear standing in a nearby Shenandoah Mountains stream done by the artist homeowner. He said he priced the piece at $2,000 in a gallery but was downsizing and selling a bunch of his work at half off. I almost pulled the trigger but I knew I should not be spending $1,000 on another bear for me right now. A $100 bear, okay, but not a four-figure bear. Still, it was beautiful. I loved seeing it and talking to the creator about its origin.
We made our last stop at a local farmer’s market to pick up a freshly baked apple pie. It was the perfect way to end a “beary” good day.
Know someone who needs an estate sale or has great stuff to sell? Want to find out about our future events? Check out OrionsAttic.com today!
Be sure to get some rest so you have plenty of energy to peruse three floors of our Sept. 20-21 estate sale in a gorgeous old Great Falls, Virginia home. It is packed with great antiques from America and art from around the world. It’s also loaded with all kinds of gold and sterling silver including gorgeous silver flatware and tea/coffee sets, piles of great jewelry, neat old trunks including a pair that belonged to a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Apollo 15 crew autographs, blue Wedgwood china set, child’s saddle, 1950s school pull-down maps, collection of U.S. and world flags, pool table, doll house stuffed with fantastic furniture, a music room, vintage and antique tea and chocolate shipping crates, tons of furniture for humans, and so much more.
The sale runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Numbers handed out to early arrivers. Stay tuned here for more details this week. We’ll add the address here on Friday.
Find nearly 500 photos and counting on our Great Falls estate sale photo album on Facebook. Look for more details here later in the week, too.
Testimonial from Ann Reavey. Orion’s Attic conducted an estate sale for her father in August 2014. We sold almost all of the contents of the home, consigned a few high-end pieces remaining from the sale, transported a number of other items to charity and left the house broom clean.
Fantastic! Thank you so much!
I can’t tell you how pleased I have been with working with you and your crew. This process has been difficult logistically and emotionally, thank you for making it much easier for me on both fronts. Please know that I will enthusiastically recommend you to others!