Monday, July 8, 2013

Simple Economics

Last Saturday I went out to some local neighborhood sales and there wasn't much to be found.  I did, however, find an old treadle sewing machine that was on it's last legs.  It wasn't worth refinishing and really all I wanted was the drawers.
Then I looked at it a little closer.  The seller was asking $20 for the whole thing.  I thought the bottom metal was interesting and it had some nice detailed trim on it as well.  I also figured in the shape it was in, I could easily take it apart.  Here it is on the back of my truck bed.  It took me about an hour to unscrew everything, and I only had to discard about four of the wood pieces.
Here is the net effect of my find.  There were six drawers which I can sell for approximately $20 each.  People like to purchase the drawers.  The bottom metal part with the pedal will be turned into a coffee table or a bench.  Not sure which, but I can price that at at least $90.  I can sell the wheel for another $25, the carved pieces for probably $20 for all three of the pieces.  I also have three pieces of wood for sign painting and the very top with the opening for the machine will become a chalkboard with some hooks and some decorative molding applied which I will price around $49.  This makes this a fabulous interesting find.
A couple of months ago I found a stripped box spring with about 50 springs for $10.  That was more challenging to dismantle, but I have sold at least 10 of the individual springs for $5 each.  It did take a lot of elbow grease to dismantle that, but the end result was well worth it, and I still have plenty of springs left to sell.  Next time you come across some interesting pieces like these, think about what the parts can yield.  If you are a dealer like myself, people like the repurposed items.  I love them too.

Thanks for visiting.
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10 comments:

Rosemary@villabarnes said...

Oh, yes. I love parts. I've sold many over the years, as-is, and reconfigured. You have some nice pieces here, and great ideas for them.

Vickie @ Ranger 911 said...

Who knew an old rickety sewing machine was worth so much in parts?! I hauled mine to the dump years ago and only saved the actual sewing machine.

Lynda Bergman Decorative Artisan said...

Maggie, good find. The drawers are beautiful. Lynda

Kirby Dunton Carespodi said...

I love those old sewing machines--I actually kept one and use it for my sewing machine.

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

That worked out great, Maggie! Love the drawers. You really got a lot out of this one piece.

Betsy@My Salvaged Treasures said...

Score! I found an old sewing machine a few years ago that was falling apart. My mom kept the machine and I pieced the rest of it out...a good investment and we saved it from the trash. So many possibilities with all those vintage goodies.

NanaDiana said...

Great idea, Maggie. You are one smart cookie- xo Diana

The Polka Dot Closet said...

Maggie, great save! So many great pieces. I just found a sewing cabinet and it was in awful shape, but I salvaged the drawers and a few other pieces too, people love those drawers. Your drawers are a lot cuter than mine!!!

Carol

Bliss said...

Yes I always forget to look at stuff in the context of it being disassembled.
Blss

Danni Baird @ Silo Hill Farm said...

What a score! My aunt used the base of an old sewing machine like that for a plant stand outdoors. I think she had a piece of limestone cut for the top. It's beautiful!