There are many benefits to being a Treasure Broker (words used by Cari...Cash for Cari on HGTV). I like that title. It sounds exotic...but that is exactly what I do for a living now. After retiring from teaching, I took on the occupation of someone who searches for "treasure", cleans it up and presents it to others for their enjoyment.It is more fun than I ever knew.
This week I have not only found special treasures, but have met the most interesting people. Thursday a young man entered the shop and stayed quite awhile. He was quiet and unassuming but once engaged in conversation, was fascinating. He is a maker of mid-century modern furniture; he lives in an Airstream; writes fiction and has a great appreciation of all things vintage.
Then there is the "Toy Man" as I call him. He drops by the shop every week to see if we have any new toys to add to his massive collection. His dream is to find a curator and a town to house the toy collection strictly for others to enjoy. My son's old record player is now in the collection!
There is the lady who is about my age who enjoys collecting to help re-kindle "good times past". I so look forward to her visits (whether she buys anything or not!)And the younger woman who LOVES furnishing her house with as many vintage items as possible. She has a VERY understanding husband.
Due to our location, we meet people from all over the United States every day. They are so different, yet so much the same.
I have divided our customers into several groups:1. People who are on a mission. They enter, survey and either buy immediately or leave. I call them the "Tunnel Vision" folks.
2. People who are bored at home or need a break and come in just to browse and may or may not find some little something to purchase. Potentially could become Hoarders.
3. Hard Core Collectors, the purists, who put narrow constraints on themselves and don't look to the right or left...they only want what they want....period. Price isn't really important..they buy what they treasure. They want their purchases to be in v.good to excellent condition.
4. Then the group that is the most fun of all...the people who really "get vintage"... "The Visionaries". They make a round the shop once, twice, maybe three times. They "take it all in", they start bringing their finds to the counter...they ask questions, make comments, and tell stories. They may or may not be purists...but most are folks who love "the old ways"...dovetails, square nails, rusty enamel, gears, old screens...the items don't have to be perfect. As a matter of fact, they like a little chip or dent or scratch. Perfection isn't their goal...their goal is finding a treasure that will evoke fond memories for both themselves and their family.
This week I sold a wheat penny album to an older gentleman. He was delighted. We also made a gentleman's day who was looking for an old hoe with a wooden handle.
I bought a yellow push reel mower because it reminded me of a friend's daddy who mowed his lawn every week with an old mower like it. A good friend's husband picked out his birthday present...a vintage oak ice box...I've never seen him smile so broadly.