Yesteryear Westwood Coffee Mugs from 1992

Dollar Flipper Ebay Flip 9 Comments

When you go out garage saling/thrifting, coffee mugs are everywhere. Most of the time, they’re grandma’s crappy old mugs that have tons of chips, cracks, and crazing in them. If aren’t familiar with crazing, I provide a picture later as an example. Sometimes though, you hit a score. I found these three at a Salvation Army Thrift Store

Yesteryear Westwood Mugs

Perfect Yesteryear Westwood Mug 1992
Daily Delight Yesteryear Westwood Mug 1992
Ever-Fresh Yesteryear Westwood Mug 1992

These are HUGE 12oz mugs (I think they’re closer to 16oz). A collection from Westwood came out in 1992 called “The Coffees of Yesteryear.” There were 6 total that came out.

Stole this picture from an eBay listing which had the full set of Yesteryear Mugs in their original packaging.

These were way out of my normal comfort zone when purchasing mugs. A whole $1 a piece. Seriously though, mugs usually cost about $0.25 at garage sales. Since this was a thrift store, the mugs cost a little more. The Yesteryear Westwood mugs have value because they are high quality stoneware (the ones I bought looked near mint except for minor wear on the bottom), and the manufacturing plant, located in Fresno, CA, has since closed. It’s pretty unbelievable that these mugs were made in 1992, and the nice thing about them is that they really jumped out at me from the shelf.

Keys for these mugs:

  • Vintage (20 years old)
  • Marked with the Yesteryear Westwood brand and year – this really helps you with your research. I was able to find out that these are valuable by doing a quick eBay search while in the store.
  • Very little wear from use. No stains on the inside and the bottoms just had minor scuffing
  • No cracks, chips, or crazing (see picture below for an example of crazing)
You can find the science behind crazing over at Wikipedia. The big difference between crazing and cracks are that you can’t feel crazing. It’s just stress on the nano scale that looks a lot bigger because of reflected light.

Now to the sales details. I’ve only sold 2 out my original 3. I may have been able to get a decent amount for the set of 3, but I would definitely have left some money out on the table. I’ve only included the two that sold in the profit calculation below.

  • Purchase price – $2
  • End Selling Price – $50.18
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $17.83

Total Profit: $30.35 Available Cash to go out and buy more: $32.35 As you can see, these Yesteryear mugs were a KILLER flip. That’s a solid 1,717.15% return on my $2 investment. The best part about this type of purchase is that ANYONE can spare a dollar or two to make this type of purchase! On eBay, the first 50 listings every month are free. This means you don’t have to shell out any more $$ until your item sells. Then, you can use that money to purchase some boxes (if needed) and pay for the postage. No money out of your pocket other than the original $2! Till next time, -Dollar Flipper

Comments 9

  1. Question: Does Crazing make the mug worthless? Can it still hold liquid? Is it normal after 20 years to see it? thanks

    1. I don’t think that crazing makes mugs worthless.

      For example, here’s a Royal Doulton 4″ mug with crazing on the bottom that still sold for $29.99 free ship.

      Doing a search using the key words Royal Doulton 4″ Mug gives us a large range of prices, anywhere from a few dollars up to $200.

      To me though, it seems like the crazing didn’t lower the value of this specific mug because a lot of the other mugs that look like they are from the same set are selling in the $25-40 range.

    2. For your question about if it can still hold liquid, this guy seems to argue that long term storage could be problematic with respect to bacteria growth, but it shouldn’t matter if the dish is just used as a once and done (like a mug for coffee that gets washed in between uses).

      And finally, as to the time when crazing occurs, apparently it’s most likely to occur during temperature changes. eHow has a nice description, and to loosely paraphrase, dishes can either have crazing right from the kiln, or be used for 50 years with no effects until you store it in the garage for a winter.

  2. Just stumbled across you blog here. Good idea only using the dollar items. I’ll be following your blog. Thanks.

    1. I wish! I actually listed all three but only the first two sold. The third (the Ever-Fresh mug) just hasn’t moved yet. I’m probably going to lower my price by a few dollars each time I re-list it until I sell it.

  3. I have 4 for these mugs, what is the best way to sell them and how do I determine how much to sell them for?

    1. Post

      That’s great that you have 4 of them! If it were me, I’d sell them as a lot. Make sure to take great pictures. Assuming there’s no chips, I’d probably put them up as buy it now for $100 plus shipping (another $10-15). This listing sold for $75 total, but that was an auction. I always try to price my buy it now listings higher than recent auctions. If you want to get rid of them quick, then an auction at $50 plus S/H is the way to go.

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