Hello! Along with not knowing what I'll find at a thrift store each time I visit one, I also don't know what prices I'll find on the items that don't have a pre-determined cost (such as clothing or books). For instance, it's not unusual to find a price of 99c - on a dollar store knick-knack.
But then there's the prices I noted yesterday while browsing in the office supply section of a local thrift store. Within a few inches of each other, I came across a like-new but generic-looking clipboard that had a Staples logo on it. Next to it was a portfolio-type stationery package with this on the cover:
I'd not heard of this brand, but assumed that "1774" referred to how long the company has been around. The back cover said "Made in Italy". I already knew that Italy is home to high-quality paper purveyors, so I felt that whatever was inside would be nice stuff.
The portfolio wasn't sealed, so I opened it up(picture taken later on at home):
A variety of papers inside. There are envelopes on the left-hand side, which appear to go with the sheets on the right. In between these are two note card sets. I believe the larger of the two note cards is what's called a correspondence card, but I'm not sure what the smaller card - it measures about 2 1/2" x 4" - would be used for. Perhaps a gift enclosure?
Anyway, it was clear this was high-quality stuff indeed. Wasn't sure how much of this stationery set had already been used, but there was still enough to make the asking price a bargain.
How much did the thrift store want for it? $2.00. And what price did they they slap on the ordinary, Staples-brand clipboard? $2.00. Yep - the same price for two very different items of two very different qualities.
Read up on the Pineider brand when I got home, and learned that indeed, 1774 refers to the year the company set up shop in Florence, Italy. Since then, various well-known writers, business leaders, entertainers and royalty have purchased Pineider products. Their stationery is handmade, with deckled edges and tissue-lined envelopes.
My particular stationery set doesn't appear to be available anymore, so I don't know what it had originally cost. The prices I saw for Pineider stationery were eye-popping though. Needless to say, my purchase was worth more than two bucks!
Admittedly, I don't have much use for stationery since I make my own greeting cards, but there's times when I don't feel like making a card, or else an occasion pops up suddenly and there's no time to make one. I like to keep a small amount of commercially-produced stationery on hand for such times.
Nothing I had on hand already is as nice as the Pineider brand is. But thanks to the thrift store, I can have a little champagne taste on a beer budget. Not bad!