Trash & Treasure Stall, round 1!
Yesterday we tackled the best urban myth, the local trash & treasure stall. I say myth because its whispered you can make a heap of money selling all your old crap at the stall. Well, turns out my trash was NOT anyone else's treasure.
We turned up at about 6.45am on a Saturday (I know, sacrilege) to set up a table in the local community hall, sorry, School of Arts, along with my mother in law, Jennice and a couple of neighbours, Jen & Shirley. Lucky for us, Jennice brought a can of air freshener. These old halls STINK of musty gross old smells. And we were rewarded for our diligence, someone commented on the nice smell of our stall! But they still didn't buy anything.
I had appliances, shoes, cosmetics, books, and other bits & pieces. Lots of it was brand new so I thought that would be a bit of a draw card. Jennice had a pile of footy socks and old glassware (deadset dusty, watch out if you tip it over, haha) that she didn't want. Our friends tables were in the corner, and we were up on stage (a star is born? probably not). And everyone walked straight past us. Yes, thats right, no-one wanted our lovely treasures. Except for some socks, we pretty much didn't do any business.
This is now my official insiders view of the Trash & Treasure stall (after all, I have first hand experience at this).
1) If you are going to a trash & treasure, expect to see a whole pile of junk, and lots of old people. They are intrinsically linked. As is their smell.
2) There will be lots of weirdos who ask you random questions, look a bit pervy, and will stay and talk for way too long if you encourage them by smiling or nodding. Avoid this at all costs (do not at any point tell them where you live or where you work, ARGHHHH!).
3) The old people will be very territorial (we experienced this, and got the glare the whole time we were there selling nothing). They have been running their stalls for ages, and do not like newbies who turn up and take the extra space they have been creeping into while the hall managers back was turned. You can tell the experienced stall holders. They turn up wearing beanies and plenty of warm clothes (no air-conditioning or heating, can't afford it), and they bring something to do when they are sitting around selling their crappy junk to other old people who are avid hoarders.
4) Expect the other stall holders to come and poke around your things. They will sniff and mutter under their breath if they think there is any inkling of competition.
5) The hall manager is a tough gig. She will be running around very self importantly, gathering stall fee's, harassing people into buying raffle tickets (its for a load of fire wood. Don't have one? Don't worry, we will put it into a redraw. What a sales person!) and then laughing loudly with all her regulars, the peeps of the T&T.
6) Only buy a cup of coffee at your peril. They use International Roast (probably left over cans from the 70's) and the cakes that don't look too bad, homemade even, don't taste as good as they look. You're setting yourself up for disappointment.
The upside? The BBQ guys. They crack out a great bacon & egg roll fresh from the barbie, and you seriously need this at 6.45am in the morning in the freezing cold. Delish, and the highlight of the day.
Don't misunderstand me. After a net gain of $13 in sales, minus the $20 in food and drinks and $5 in purchases (I know, you're not supposed to buy from other stalls but it was a bargain!), I am determined to go back for another turn (sounds similar to when you have your kids!). My rules for next one has to be that we get more traffic so a bigger event, and we will be outdoors selling from the car. In fact, I didn't even bother unpacking, left all the junk in the garage. Out of mind, out of sight, right?!
So watch out Richmond Lions Club, we are going to hit the next market day! Hmmm, hope its not as early...