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
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