Wednesday 30 April 2014

Searching For Treasure At The Car Boot Sales. (More clutter for the smallholding house).

We went to a car boot sale the other day.  I always go look looking for old copper kettles, brass, heavy rock records, gardening books and tools and anything else that catches my fancy.  It's bit like going in one of those cheap supermarkets.  You pay 27p for a can of 'al cheapo' baked beans.  Then you walk down the middle aisle and pick up up a 50 inch colour television and pay 500 quid.  Not quite but you know what I mean?

I found these 2 murky looking Victorian brass candlesticks.   They soon polished up well (see the one on the right) with some 'Brasso' and some good old elbow grease.  Anybody know a good home made brass and copper cleaner?

I asked the lady car boot seller what she wanted for them?


"I want fifteen Euro for them."

"They are Victorian, you know".

"Yeah I know."

Says me.

I didn't bother haggling.  They were worth 15 Euros.  That's about 12. 50 in Sterling.  Brass isn't worth a lot at the moment.  You can pick up some really old Victorian brass on Ebay very cheaply.  I won't be selling them though.  They can go with my other 4 brass candlesticks.  That's more clutter for our little house on the smallholding.  Said it before we should have lived in the past.  Preferably on a large country estate with a farm and walled kitchen garden.

What's your best find on a car boot sale?


  1. We don't visit the vid greniers here (car boot sales) because I don't have a tidy enough house to start collecting bits and pieces. day the renovations will be completed (or nearly) and then I shall be on the hunt for old things to put around the place. Love those candlesticks. Would probably not buy brass though because it would be something else I would have to clean!

  2. Hi Vera, We are like human Wombles on our smallholding. I some times don't clean my copper and brass for 12 months. Some people spray a clear laquer over them to keep the shiny patina but I don't mind them being dull. They are old any way. I can't resist old oil paintings and old gardening books, especially if the paintings are signed and cheap. I also like anything to do with the Battle of Britain. Don't see many Spitfires memorabilia in Ireland. Look forward to reading about your smallholding renovations. Thanks!

  3. Hey Dave.....methinks we have more in common than just rock music. I too sometimes feel I was born out my time... I love older things around me, they are better made, more pleasant to touch and have untold stories to tell if only they have a voice. Car boots for me are akin to opening up a fresh field to a bull whose been under cover all winter. Old tools to give a new life too, books to thumb through after other readers, garden plants (when I get a garden to tend once again), old fishing tackle to tempt some wary tench and old furniture to give new life to. Speaking of victorian my next move in my continuous search to place roots is an 1860's house with many original features... Not exactly going to be renting if all goes well so this may be the place I finally find peace.

  4. Hi John, Gosh I miss those great car boot sales in England and Wales. We use to go to the Countess of Chester hospital car boot, Chester Rugby Club, Chelford in Cheshire and Chirk air field. I always ending up skinting myself because I couldn't miss a bargain or ten. You meet some great characters too.

    I hope your new house works out for you and I look forward to reading about it on your blog. Thanks!

    1. Those are the very same as I frequently visit.

  5. To keep them looking good, buff them with 00 grade wire wool (the very finest). Great for old furniture too, before waxing.

  6. Demi-johns @ 50p, including traps.

  7. If anyone is looking for house to sell or maybe to buy this is the offer for you. house for sale

  8. Yes Cumbrian, car boot sales are great for finding home brewing equipment. We are still enjoying the Mead we made from your recipe. I like car boot sales because you never know what you will find: old gardening tools, books, rock records, antiques, household items..? There are a myriad of treasures to be found. Thanks.

  9. Hi Berta, I write my blog about smallholdings, occasionally rock music and about growing vegetables. I am sure readers would like to know of any smallholdings/ small farms available on your site. Thanks for your comment.


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