Follow me on my pathtojunkentreasure as I hunt for treasures at flea markets, garage sales, rummage sales, thrift stores, estate sales and wherever I can find a treasure. I'll share my love of hammered aluminum, vintage Christmas, vintage jewelry, doilies and tablecloths, milk glass, garden items and other treasures. I'll also share some advice on my crafting projects, gardening and recycling items. Please join me on my pathtojunkentreasure!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

More Hammered Aluminum

You never know what you will find at a sale.  That's part of the reason why I love to shop them.  At a recent garage sale of mostly newer items, I found 2 wonderful Everlast hammered aluminum candle holders for $2.  They are so different from what I have.  How could I ever pass them up?  Another reason why you should always stop at a sale even though from the road it doesn't look like anything will interest you.  You never know!

The 12 trays also by Everlast were at an estate sale for $10.  It was an estate sale further away from where I usually go but since I wasn't busy that day, Austin and I took a ride.  He was happy that he found some Coca Cola items.

Tomorrow starts the sidewalk sales in downtown Crystal Lake at 8am.  The Carriage House will open at 10:30 as usual.  We have marked down soooo much!  I was just there marking down some of my vintage jewelry.  I want to make room for new treasures.  The Crystal Lake Antique mall across the street from the Carriage House will be having a flea market on Saturday.

I'm trying to make room in my space so all hammered aluminum is 20% off.

Upcoming dates:  July 31 Holy Hill flea market on the grounds of Basilica of Holy Hill in Hubertus WI.  I haven't been to this sale but have always wanted to.  It runs from 7-3pm. Free parking and admission.

Elkhorn flea market is Aug 3-7, Mukwonago flea market is Aug 20-21 and Shop the Shed in East Dundee IL is August 27.

The McHenry County 4-H fair in Woodstock IL is Aug 3-7 and the Boone County Fair in Belvidere IL is Aug 9-14.  Both are loads of fun.  I especially love to see the quilts and sewing projects.

Happy treasure hunting!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Tips and Places for Treasure Hunting

Since treasure hunting season is in full swing, I thought I would share some tips and places to treasure hunt.  I saw this blog post from ( on Summer Antiquing.  There are some good tips listed as well as some of the more known places to treasure hunt.

My first choice to hunt for treasures is at garage sales.  I look for them all year long.  When the season finally kicks in, I am out all day.  Watch out for the sales that start on unusual days.  By me, Thursday through Saturday are the normal days for sales.  If a sale falls on a Wednesday, be sure to go to it.  The usual buyers may not be there.  I usually check the newspaper for sales, but lately more people are saving on cost and not advertising in the paper.  Free on line garage sale/estate sale sites are very popular so I get listings daily. Just Google garage sale ads and many will pop up that you can subscribe to.  Even Craigslist has sales listed.  On sale days, follow garage sale signs.  Many people only advertise by putting signs up.  Don't underestimate a sale just by the looks of it when you drive by.  I even stop at sales that only have baby items out (even though I don't need any of those items).  I have found many treasures at sales like those.   Also, if the house having a sale looks run down and creepy, stop anyway.  You can never tell what you will find.

Estate sales also have free sites that you can subscribe to.  I receive those listings daily too.  Keep a log of the sales/dates and times so you can plan a route.  You can stop at more sales if you are organized.

I like to visit new areas to treasure hunt.  I usually try to find an antique mall or thrift store in the town.  Thrift stores seem to have more items during garage sale season so stop at them often.'s tip about going to the downtown area is great.  I will stop in that area first if I don't know anything about the area.  Whether I stop in an antique store or thrift store, I always ask if there are other stores around like that one.  People are usually very helpful.  When I'm at an estate sale, I always talk to the other people on line with me to find out where they like to go or what other estate sales companies they like to shop at.  I get on those email lists for future sales.  I have made many friends at rummage sales and we always swap information on upcoming sales.  When you see the same faces at every sale, it becomes easy to make friends.

I try to visit smaller towns as often as possible.  I prefer smaller off the beaten path places.  Crystal Lake, Ridgefield and Woodstock Illinois have many nice shops.  Carriage House Antiques is a wonderful carriage house filled inside and out with antiques and good stuff.  Karen and Di have been in business for 12 years. Across the street is the Crystal Lake Antique Mall which sits at the edge of the downtown area where there are other stores and eateries to stop at.  Ridgefield is a quaint antiquing town that is a few minutes away from Crystal Lake.  Also a few minutes away is Anew Interiors Anew located on the historic square in Woodstock.  There are other shops and eateries in Woodstock to visit.

As many of you know, I love hammered aluminum pieces.  At one point, I had over 300 pieces. Slowly, I have been purging my collection and have around maybe 150 pieces.  I lost count again. My 2 favorite pieces came from garage sales.  Years ago when the boys were small, we stopped at a sale in Woodstock.  I always took the boys with me (even carrying them in their car seats so they couldn't touch anything).  I wasn't finding anything of interest at this sale until I spotted an aluminum table for $10.  I managed to carry it and the car seat!  It was a Wendell August Forge table.  Another piece I found at an estate sale years ago for $3.  It was an aluminum waste basket by Arthur Armour.  Both pieces are very collectible and hard to find.  I display them in my room along with other aluminum pieces that I treasure.  I have grouped them with some shell items.  (That's another collection for another post.)

Happy treasure hunting!

Monday, July 18, 2016

Adding to My Collection

I found another ironstone pitcher this week!  That's 2 this week and both were only $5 each.  I'm keeping both for my new collection.  That's how it all starts.  I can't believe how lucky I was to find them both.

Another thing I have always loved is white enamel pitchers.  I had 1 and was happy with it.  Until I found 2 more and then I found another one at the Cedarburg WI flea market yesterday.  I guess I have another collection!

The white enamel pitchers go so well with the milk glass.  The enamel pitchers have gone up in price since I started buying them.  I bought the one yesterday for $12 but most that I have seen are at least $38 and up.  That's why I grabbed that one.

Even though it rained all the way on our drive to Cedarburg, it stopped just as we got there and we found street parking.  That saved us $10 (the cost to park in the fair ground lot).  There were still vendors to shop from and the crowd was thin so it was really easy to walk around.  The morning was cool so it was enjoyable all around.

I spent a few hours helping out at the Harvard Community Garden as I like to do on Monday mornings, as much as I can.  It's my 9th year as a Master Gardener and it's my 9th year helping out at the garden.

The harvest was over 900 lbs today.  We even had a reporter from the Northwest Herald there to do a story in the near future.  It's so rewarding to know that we are helping families in need.  It's also a great way to learn about vegetable gardening

 In the afternoon, I spent some time reworking my booth at the Carriage House and marking items on sale.  We are getting ready for the sidewalk sales in downtown Crystal Lake next week, July 28-30.  I also brought in some new items so that my space looks refreshed.

Keep cool this week.  Happy treasure hunting!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

My Collections

I'm taking advantage of these hot days to go through my hammered aluminum collection.  At the Carriage House, we are doing a display of hammered aluminum so it was time to part with some of mine.  I probably still have at least 100 pieces.  Down from over 300 years ago.  I decided to part with some of the bigger pieces.  I had bought this wonderful wire basket this weekend and it was perfect to hold the aluminum.  (I have such a weakness for wire baskets).

Another weakness I have is towards hammered aluminum pitchers.  I love the detail and look to them.  I dug those out of my stored collection and displayed them in the dining room alongside a few silverplated pitchers that I have started to enjoy.

I have been looking for ironstone pitchers recently.  I love the clean simple look to them.  I really had wanted to find a medium size one, but when I came across this large one (for $5) at a garage sale this weekend, I couldn't pass it up.

This should be a fun week for sales.  The McHenry County Defenders are having another sale starting on Thursday at 9am at the Algonquin Township Office on Rt 14 in Crystal Lake.  The Mukwonago WI flea market is this Saturday and Sunday and the Cedarburg WI flea market is Sunday.

Happy treasure hunting!

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Sale Updates

I have added more sales coming up to my favorites page.  Please take a moment to check them out.

Nellies Barn Sale is on Oct 7-8 in Roscoe IL.  I went last year and it was wonderful!  Lots of great treasures.

Another one is Shop the Shed by SavvyCityFarmer in East Dundee IL on Aug 27.  I will be helping out at this sale so make sure to stop by and say "hi".

Tomorrow is the fair at the Historical Society Museum in Union IL.  The white elephant sale starts at 9am.  It's always lots of fun!  You can tour the museum for free tomorrow.  There will be an antique auction plus lots more fun.  Even a magician!  Here Austin and I are in front of the barn for last years fair.

Thursday is a garage sale for the McHenry County Defenders at the Algonquin Township Office on Rt 14 in Cary.  Sale starts at 9am.  

I can't buy any large items for at least another week since my van was rear ended and the trunk was pushed in. It goes into the shop on Monday for a few days and then I will be back out filling it up.  I have caught up with small things at home but I miss treasure hunting.  At least no one was hurt.

I have started marking down outside/garden items at the Carriage House.  Even lots of treasures inside the store.  I'm trying to get ready for the Crystal Lake sidewalk sales July 28-30.  

Austin and I stopped at  Home at Last Chic & Antique 253 Peterson Rd in Libertyville the other day. It is a nice mix of old and new and the day we were there, everything including sale items, was 40% off.  

Happy treasure hunting!