Join the Bitchfest >>

It's Worth HOW MUCH?

When I cleaned out my parents house after they died, there were hardly any disagreements among the family over the contents. For the most part because my parents were modest, frugal people. They could be very generous, but they were not accumulators of things. Most of the household stuff, while clean and in no way junk, ended up being donated.

One of the things I did take was a Pyrex casserole dish with glass lid, around 2 quart size. I think it was a gift to my Mom sometime in the 1950s and I remember that she used it frequently when she made a casserole. It was not something she saved "for company", but it was used at the family dinner table.

Just recently I decided I wanted to find a similar size dish as this one is just the right size for what I need and I could use a second.

I looked for similar items on etsy.com and ebay.

I was amazed to find the exact same item as my Mom's for sale. The lowest price I saw was around $70.00 and the highest price was over $100.00!!!

Have any of you had a similar experience? Acquiring a household item from your parents home after their death and finding that its current value surpassed any price you imagined?

--Anonymous
replies 33Dec 5, 2017 6:07 PM +00:00

Just the opposite, OP. I flip houses. We purchase "time capsule" homes in "as is" condition from the heirs of estates---often with all the contents left behind. Relatives take what they want (usually very little) and we get stuck with the daunting job of disposing of what remains. Seriously, no one wants that old shit. China, antiques......a life time of "stuff". We hire a junk company to remove it and it costs thousands. I'm sure most of it ends up in a land fill. It's a shame because everything is cyclical and one day people will regret that they discarded all that old, as they say, "Grandma" furniture, china and collectables.

--Flipping Frau
replies 1Dec 5, 2017 6:54 PM +00:00

How often do you get out of the house?

--Anonymous
replies 2Dec 5, 2017 7:03 PM +00:00

R1, I was truly surprised at the price. I have seen a lot of Corning ware and Pyrex stuff for sale on these sites, but never expected the item I have would be worth so much. The write ups for the items seem to imply that some people collect them and do not really use them.

--OP
replies 3Dec 5, 2017 7:08 PM +00:00

I collect boring stories.

--I love yours. I’m keeping it.
replies 4Dec 5, 2017 7:47 PM +00:00

Was your mom's name Patty?

--Anonymous
replies 5Dec 5, 2017 7:50 PM +00:00

R2, made me laugh.

R1, you should take that crap to the Salvation Army or a local church that has a "white elephant" sale. The old ladies love buying that stuff (for very little, of course). Or maybe, alert the church group when you have a house full of stuff and let them come and take it.

--Anonymous
replies 6Dec 5, 2017 7:53 PM +00:00

I see great potential in this thread.

--Anonymous
replies 7Dec 5, 2017 7:54 PM +00:00

Tell us about the dryer-sized cardboard box labeled "Christmas Decorations #1", OP!

--Anonymous
replies 8Dec 5, 2017 8:00 PM +00:00

R6, I could get very caught up in keeping some of that stuff myself. A lot of it is in great shape. But my own home would soon become a hoarder house if I did. The junk crews we hire do sell the stuff that's worth selling, and their bids reflect that value. Flipping is a time sensitive business. We have to move quickly: buy, demo, rehab, sell. There is no time to fuck around with tag sales and church ladies.

--Anonymous
replies 9Dec 5, 2017 8:18 PM +00:00

R9, okay--got it. Well, it's nice that at least they save the stuff. You'd hate to think that something rare was just being chucked in the trash heap. (By the way, if you think you're time sensitive, you should see a church lady at a white elephant sale spot something she wants from across the sunday school hall: those bitches will claw an eye out for chipped Limoges.

--Anonymous
replies 10Dec 5, 2017 8:24 PM +00:00

OP how does this rank in the scheme of your lifetime revelations?

--Anonymous
replies 11Dec 5, 2017 9:19 PM +00:00

I would love a bit of Pyrex magic to cook up my microwaveable Apricot Chicken!

--Anonymous
replies 12Dec 5, 2017 9:20 PM +00:00

Wait until you see how much you get for the Jell-O molds.

--Anonymous
replies 13Dec 6, 2017 2:36 AM +00:00

My mother’s house is full of shit she thinks is “going to be worth something someday!” I think it’s Depression-era mentality. She really clings to her old things because they’re made better (true) and slightly more interesting than their modern counterparts. But her avocado colored hand mixer from the early 1960s isn’t going to really excite anyone except a few kooky mid century collectors or another old lady who wants to pick one up for a dollar. My siblings and I are going to have a ton of work to do when the time comes. It will be sad though because some of the stuff is SO my mother. I’m sure we’ll be taking some of the worthless stuff just for the nostalgia it will bring. Once we get it home and the object has lost its context we’ll probably wind up tossing it. That happened to me once, she gave me a copper jello mold in the shape of a rooster from the 1950s, in her kitchen it looked charming and right. In my own home it was like it was a foreign object and the campy magic of it was gone. I think I later gave it away as a white elephant Christmas gift to the fraus at work.

--Anonymous
replies 14Dec 6, 2017 3:01 AM +00:00

Thanks to those of you who replied with good humor.

As an added bit if information: the Pyrex casserole dish I have is not clear glass, but white on the inside and a solid color with a small design on the outside.

Looking at the online "vintage" sales of similar items, it seems that the same item, but with a different color on the outside from the one I have, sells for less. So, it's not just the shape and function of the item. Apparently, certain colors of the item are more collectible than others.

Who knew?

--OP
replies 15Dec 6, 2017 1:02 PM +00:00

It's gotta be nostalgic boomers and Gen Xers buying this stuff. Or Mad Men fans, who knows. I like a lot of 60s and 70s kitsch, but can't bring myself to pay upwards of $100 for some plastic Syroco shit. There are some fraus on Pinterest with huge displays of totally pedestrian but now pricey stuff like Fire King and sour cream glasses. I like all these things but displaying them unused like fine china as noted above seems ridiculous.

--Anonymous
replies 16Dec 6, 2017 1:11 PM +00:00

Whatever floats your bost, I guess...

1. Scalloped Pyrex 2. Hobnail 3. Baking Dishes 4. Honey Bee 5. Mix and Match 6. So Much Color 7. Feminine 8. Collections 9. Flowers and Polka Dots 10. One of Ea
Pinterest
--Anonymous
replies 17Dec 6, 2017 1:14 PM +00:00

There is a reason for the high price of Pyrex on those sites. About 15-20 years ago, they changed the process for making Pyrex and ever since then, it is not as durable. Do a quick google search on "exploding pyrex" and you will get lots of hits. Pyrex is no longer made of borosilicate (lab-grade) glass, and so is at least somewhat more prone to shattering when undergoing temperature changes. I recently bought some French-made Arcuisine glass pans because Pyrex literally isn't what is used to be.

--Anonymous
replies 18Dec 6, 2017 1:40 PM +00:00

R17

Thanks for that link.

Sure enough, I saw my casserole dish in several of those pictures!

And even a "Know Your Pyrex" informational display (Click to enlarge to readable size.)

i.pinimg.com
--Anonymous
replies 19Dec 6, 2017 2:20 PM +00:00

I recently bought a wool blanket for $3 at the local thrift store. It was made by a company that had gone out of business in the 80's. I was checking online to see if the blanket was really 100% wool and saw a bunch listings on ebay and Etsy for this company's blanket ranging from $20 to $130. Mine is in good shape and without holes--somehow escaping the moths over the decades. Thankfully it didn't smell of mothballs.

--Anonymous
replies 20Dec 6, 2017 2:36 PM +00:00

Ok r19, get to it. You obviously seem to want to talk about Pyrex. Which do you got? Gooseberry, Butterprint, Spring Daisy? Golden Acorn? Just tell us and get it over with.

--Anonymous
replies 21Dec 6, 2017 4:24 PM +00:00

I was surprised how much my mother's china was. It was used for special occasions and holidays. Really simple pretty pattern. She bought it when my father was stationed in Germany back in the days of the draft. Probably mid '50s. No one else wanted it but I loved it. One day I decided to go online to see if it was worth anything. Not really expecting it to be. It wasn't worth a lot as a set. It was worth a lot as a piece by piece sale. People paying to replace pieces that were lost or broken from their collection. The coffee cups were the most expensive. People were willing to pay $150.00 for a cup. $100.00 for a plate. Three hundred for the large serving dish etc etc etc. I wouldn't sell any of it in a million years. It's the one thing I have from my parents that really means something to me. My mom's rosaries are the other.

--Anonymous
replies 22Dec 6, 2017 5:14 PM +00:00

R21, LOL.

--Anonymous
replies 23Dec 6, 2017 5:37 PM +00:00

Whoop-de-fucking-do. You have a dish that’s 100 bucks. You think you’re rich now or something? Quality kitchenware costs at least that much. You sound like you’re used to bringing out the good Chinette for company.

--M. Stewart
replies 24Dec 6, 2017 6:18 PM +00:00

Still mad at those tin trays you had to eat off of in prison Martha?

--Anonymous
replies 25Dec 6, 2017 6:25 PM +00:00

OP, you're cute.

I haven't acquired anything surprisingly expensive from the parents yet - I do wish they'd ship over their fine china from storage though (it's stored in another country). I remember it was very well made and delicate, and had a full tea set, which you don't really see in the wild these days.

--Anonymous
replies 26Dec 6, 2017 6:27 PM +00:00

Actually, Martha Stewart has always bought from tag sales.

--Anonymous
replies 27Dec 6, 2017 6:27 PM +00:00

This reminds me of a recent eBay thread.

--Anonymous
replies 28Dec 6, 2017 6:28 PM +00:00

R28, that one was slightly different: people selling their cheap shit on ebay kvetching about not getting top dollar.

--Anonymous
replies 29Dec 6, 2017 7:28 PM +00:00

When my parents got married, they didn’t have much money. My mom found a brand new complete yellow and white Mikasa dinner set for eight, including tea cups and saucers and tea pot, at a clearance sale and bought it on impulse. Then she hid it from my dad for an entire year till money was better and he wouldn’t blow a gasket. It cost all of $60. Anyway, this was the “good” china for much of our childhood. By the time we were in our teens, the pattern had started looking very 60ish, and it became the regular set for every meal. We kids loved that set. By this time, my parents had plenty of money and several expensive, but very forgettable, dinner sets had been purchased for parties. Anyway, my mom gave the mikasa to me when I got my first apartment, but by then it was down to three dinner plates, 4 salad bowls, and all the teacups and saucers. The tea pot had mysteriously disappeared. I used it for a year, and then packed it away. A few years ago, I decided to see if I could complete the set and give it to my sister for Christmas, since she had been waxing nostalgic about it. Imagine my surprise to see it was not only a collectible, but each dinner plate cost $350, and salad bowls were $250 apiece. I just gave my sister the remaining pieces I had, and she’s got them displayed in her china cabinet. Each year I buy her one new piece for Christmas. Last year, my cousins held a estate sale when their mom (my mom’s cousin) died, and my sister and I went to it. The missing teapot was the first thing we spotted. We bought it immediately, but how and why it got to my mom’s cousin’s house, no one knows.

--Anonymous
replies 30Dec 7, 2017 5:57 PM +00:00

R30, um...there are THIEVES in your family.

Nice story. Thanks for sharing with us.

--Anonymous
replies 31Dec 7, 2017 6:01 PM +00:00

I've tasked with liquidating what's left of my mother in law's valuables.

She has dozens and dozens of these little hand painted wooden German Christmas figurines. I'm finding that they are going for as much as $50 apiece on eBay right now.

It's truly a pain in the ass to list so many of them, and package them up in bubble wrap and send them along but, damn, I guess some kinds of old lady tchotchkes are still big sellers. Who knew?

--Anonymous
replies 32Dec 7, 2017 6:17 PM +00:00

R32, well, you get a little cash out of it, and the weirdos who are buying them are super excited. Win-win.

--Anonymous
replies 33Dec 7, 2017 7:01 PM +00:00