A Knitter’s Dream Garage Sale!! GOODIES!!

Okay, it may be yet another day and the lace shawl is still on my needles but I have a good reason – well, three good reasons. The first being that I am over-thinking this so simple a beginner could do it pattern so much that I keep making mistakes. The second is that I was slaving over my Etsy Store, worrying about selling anything. Ever. The third is that I hit the mother-load of all garage sales today!

We were just driving back from my parent’s house when we saw the garage sale sign. Now normally I am not a garage sale kinda gal, more because I am always afraid to leave my car on the side of the road than anything but something caught my eye. “TREVOR! SPINNING WHEEL!” I screamed and he found a safe place to stow the care and on we went.

Arriving at this sale was like arriving at a divorce court. A married couple, clearly quite angry with one another, were bickering like small children. What I gathered from my eavesdropping (I have now shame) is that she decided to take up knitting about two years ago. When she did she must have spent a fortune on everything she bought – and she bought everything! Drop spindles, fiber, yarn, spinning wheels (yes, wheels), needles and memorabilia for her “craft room”. Then, well, she never touched one bit of it. The husband had simply had enough and just wanted the room back. Thus, friends and neighbors, my goodies!

** My First Ball Winder **

My pretty new ball winder.

My pretty new ball winder.


It’s an actual Standwood!

My first ball winder cost $2.00 (retail on Amazon is $59.87). I could have cried I was so excited to see this. The two spinning wheels (each costing a mere $15.00) had both sold, but the winder was mine! I learned the hard way that I am going to have to buy a swift, as you can see below, but who cares!

** My First Purchase of Fiber **

I have actually only spun one hank? skein? load? (what the heck to I call a pile of wool?) before so I was hesitant. They were selling drop spindles for $1.00 (I bought another one) and the two sections of wool cost $0.50 cents. FIFTY CENTS!

Fifty Cents! Now...what to do with it?

Fifty Cents! Now…what to do with it?

** Knitting Antiques Anyone? **

These two of these three pieces came out of an old factory in Ohio. The two spindles were from a plant the made wool in Southern Ohio during the first World War. The cradle is an antique she found in a store. You open it up and put your center pull ball in and close the sucker tight, then proceed to hang it for easy access. Total price, $1.00. AWESOME!

What an incredible day, so many good finds! Now I just need to figure out how to spin the fiber into pretty yarn (advice is appreciated) and untangle my newly purchased Cascade yarn. Oh – and price a good swift (also, advice is appreciated!). I am feeling so good, how about some flamingos?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Just in case the slideshow doesn’t work – I’ve never tried it before and the pictures are just so fun!

48 thoughts on “A Knitter’s Dream Garage Sale!! GOODIES!!

  1. salpal1

    wow – treasure trove! keep searching yard sales and auctions for the swift, I got mine at an estate sale for about a dollar many years ago. But i paid retail for my winder, I am so jealous! If I found a yard sale like that I would definitely try spinning. Maybe I should pay more attention to those yard sales!

      1. salpal1

        oh, you must have been in heaven. And maybe something from this is the answer to your question of what to do for your hundred flowers giveaway – make something from this new stash?

          1. salpal1

            Oh, I think anything you do is good, it doesn’t have to be over the top – save that for when you are famous and have 1000 followers and sell out your shop regularly. πŸ™‚

  2. happyhomeeconomist

    Woah… Thank goodness for compulsively shopping hoarders who are forced to confront their issues by having garage sales! I am so happy for you! I have survived many years without a swift ( although I am always saying I am getting one…). I use my ball winder in conjunction with the back of a chair (my right hand guides this yarn while my left turns the winder) or in conjunction with a coerced family member.

    1. allnightknits Post author

      She had never even taken some of the things out of their boxes in two years, so I didn’t feel too bad for her. I cannot imagine what she spent – she also had a whole section of high quality painting supplies – I think she likes the idea of hobbies but not so much the work.

  3. Jennifer

    Oh Boy! What a wonderful find! I would LOVE TO HAVE A YARN WINDER! It’s amazing how few companies put their yarn in a ball! You would think they’d get the idea – anyway – I tried to spin last year. Alas I sold my spinning wheel because it is so time-consuming and goodness HARD to do. I want to try again someday and would get a GOOD wheel next time whenever the big ship comes in. Have fun –

  4. lottieknits

    What an amazing find! That ball winder is the bee’s knees (is this another British-only phrase?) an unbelievable find! You could try putting the skein over the back of a chair until you get a swift πŸ™‚

      1. lottieknits

        Oh I can see why you just put it on the floor, I would have been just the same, eager to try out a new gadget! Alternatively you could get a willing (or unwilling) volunteer to help you! I hear bribery is very effective πŸ˜‰

  5. Hannah Rose

    Oh my god, I’m really jealous right now! What amazing and awesomely priced finds! The luckiest I ever got was when my (now ex) boyfriend, who was obsessed with yard sales and thrift stores, got me like 5 big boxes stuffed full of yarn. A lot of it wasn’t the greatest quality, but there’s a yarn for every project.

  6. pimla15

    From one yarnaholic to another…you hit the motherload! Christmas in July! Love your blog. Your posts are so amusing. πŸ˜‰

  7. kristy132

    Wow, what an awesome garage sale find! Congratulations.
    Have a great time using all your new goodies πŸ™‚

  8. Q

    Q – Super wow! My great-aunts used to have one of those “cradles” you bought. It held string in their dad’s store in Henning, Minnesota. Back then they had to wrap up purchases, no paper bags. The string holder was hanging, they’d pull the string out, wrap it around the package, and cut it off. My great-aunts showed me how it was done. They kept it in their mud room so when they needed string it was handy. I don’t know what became of it. Thanks for the wonderful memory. And, lucky you on your finds.

    I love the pics too!

  9. KerryCan

    You hit the mother lode! I love the adventure of garage sales–you just never know what the next one will bring. I bought a floor loom, at a garage sale over the winter, and tons of beautiful yarn. Too bad I have no idea how to use it . . . .

  10. Pingback: I’ve Knit 2.53 MILES this Year? | All Night Knits

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