Vintage for sale!

We’ve been in the business of selling vintage items for over fifteen years now and over that time we have regularly evaluated the selling outlets we use. It’s interesting observing fellow dealers weaving a similar path but what works for one business may not work for another and so the quest for the ultimate location continues.

Vintage fairs – meeting your customers vs. ALOT of hard work!

Vintage fairs can be rewarding but the key is choosing quality events where the organiser does plenty of promotion and gets the right people through the doors. It’s great to chat with customers and find out about the types of items they are looking for. Vintage fairs are useful for networking with fellow dealers, spotting up-and-coming trends and of course, making the odd purchase. Also, creating an eye-catching display of objects which can be handled in the flesh gives you the best chance of securing some decent sales.

All this being said, vintage fairs are very hard work and the sheer amount of effort and energy which goes into the preparation and day itself cannot be under estimated.

Online selling – global reach vs. high selling fees

There are very few serious players in the online selling world for vintage and these platforms all have their restrictions and frustrations. However, selling online gives great flexibility, you can work the hours you choose, from home and you can reach customers around the world with ease. We had sold to countries all around the world and sometimes the most bizarre items!

Of course, what is sold online generally needs parcelling up and posting, this is time consuming and the cost of materials and time have to be considered. The fees for selling online are rising but remain affordable for us at present.

Trade fairs – volume sales vs. lower price point

The antique and vintage trade fairs are not what they were, that’s a fact but they do still attract a decent volume of trade buyers both from the uk and overseas. If you are sensible with your pricing, allowing a mark-up for buyers to sell on, trade is usually brisk. Of course, it’s like any fair, you need to prepare, load, unload and then you need the weather to be favourable!

Social media – reaching the right demographic vs. It’s addictive!

Social media has exploded over the last few years and for all kinds of businesses this has provided opportunities to promote, network and sell. Achieving a good balance between keeping your followers interested rather than bombarding them with the hard sell is important. It is quite possible to lose hours and hours of time in a social media vortex, but it’s what you get out of it in the end that’s decides whether it is worth it or not. However, we have got to know some lovely people via social media and meeting up in person is even better!

There is much more to say about the other ways of selling which I haven’t mentioned but that’s for another day. Would love to know your thoughts…. Until next time. 😀


A few days in Berlin

A window of opportunity presented itself just after New Year for a few days away and a change of scenery. Tempting bargain flights from Liverpool and a host of recommendations from friends saw us Berlin bound at the beginning of January. I’m not a great lover of public transport but we had pre-booked the Berlin Welcome Card which included all public transport during our stay and this was so convenient. All the methods of getting around the city were so easy and efficient. The u-bahn also had very mid-century inspired upholstery which made me happy!

We did an excellent ‘pay what you want’ walking tour on our first full day in the city. As well as leading us around all the main sights, our guide gave personal recommendations for things to do and encouraged us to visit the DDR Museum. It’s a compact museum examining the life of everyday people living in the former East Germany. There’s lots of interactive exhibits and a fantastic recreation of a tower block flat complete with dodgy lift!

Like lots of major cities, street art is a highly visible interesting distraction from the typical city scenes. Berlin is no different. We particularly loved the East Side Gallery which is a long section of the Berlin Wall which is still intact. It features paintings from artists from around the world, some beautiful, some scary and some downright bizarre! The themes were varied but many focussed on freedom and the changing world.

We never visit a new location without checking out the local flea markets and vintage shops. This is where the holiday turns into a full-on buying trip! Luckily we had some inside information which gave us some excellent starting points for our treasure hunting. We visited several markets during the weekend we were there and managed to fill our spare case quite easily! Prices were generally sensible, communication was easy (finally got to use that GCSE in German!) and it was refreshing to see some different items. The only downside was the temptation of larger items, we did have an option for this but it still would have been quite tricky.

Here’s a little selection of the items we brought back with us, these will be coming up for sale in the next few weeks and some will be coming with us to the Vintage Home Shows in the spring.

We had a brilliant time in Berlin but I couldn’t finish this without a mention for the fabulous food! Every cuisine, every budget catered for. Our favourite evening was spent at the Markethalle Neun in the trendy Kreuzberg suburb. All kinds of top quality street food and craft beers, it was amazing. Berlin, we loved you. We’ll be back (and we’re bringing the van next time!)