The Thrill of the Hunt Summer Series: Sarah’s Treasures!

Front Entryway Sarah Sofia Productions

Today marks the last post in a summer series on “the thrill of the hunt” AKA finding that one piece of furniture or item for your home or event your hosting.  The summer series featured guest posts from professionals in the interior design, estate sales, professional organizing and event industries.  My guests included Jennifer Burnham, Pure and Simple Organizing, and Cheryl Luckett, Dwell by Cheryl.  You can view their “treasure hunting” tips here and here. Make sure you follow both of these talented women on Instagram and Twitter!

What makes something a treasure? It’s what ever accessory, piece of furniture, décor item that you value or that you like!  Often times you may see the value in something that someone else might not.

As a wedding and event planner, I’m always using different pieces to decorate and style an event. These pieces may also be part of my home décor.  I hit up garage sales, yard sales, Charlotte Market Place’s Vintage Charlotte Pop Up Flea Market, Metrolina ReStores, HomeGoods, Southern Marketplace, Sleepy Poet Antique Mall and Catawba River Antique Mall to name a few.

Just like my two guests, Pure and Simple Organizing and Dwell by Cheryl, I enjoy a good deal and making that “treasure” fit my home or event décor.  It’s fun when I can kill two birds with one stone. Like these two bunnies I found at Catawba River Antique Mall for my Easter décor, which was featured in Easter Celebrations.

Easter Bunnies

My home décor is full of blue and white and I was thrilled to find these plates, tea pot, and containers, which have all found homes in my kitchen and living room, at a local yard sale.  I still can’t get over scoring all of the below finds for a total of $14.25!

The Thrill of the Hunt

I had been looking for an arm chair for my mater bedroom during One Room Challenge last spring and of course found this beauty a few months later for a whopping 25 cents! The chair is currently in my family room and waiting for a little TLC reupholster make over. I would love to do something like this to it in the below right photo!

Thrill of the Hunt

I hung my blue and white plates from the yard with my three other plates I purchased from Lance Jackson with Parker Kennedy Living, on the kitchen wall.  It’s add the perfect dimension and depth I was looking for to complete the kitchen updates without breaking the bank.

Thrill of The Hunt

I scored this white porcelain Royal Haeger pitcher and basin for 25 cents at the yard sale! Yes, that’s right $0.25 for both, which could run you $40-$60.  It completes the vintage look in my front entryway and looks great styled with hydrangeas as seen below from my Front Entryway post.

Front Entray Way

Another favorite from my treasure hunts is a beautiful miniature pitcher from Modern Cottage’s booth at Vintage Charlotte! It’s currently in my kitchen and is a great place to display small flower arrangements or herbs like basil.  I also found these vintage metal spike flower frogs and stand at a vintage Parisian booth! All three finds look great in my kitchen.

Thrill of the Hunt

Let’s not forget all the Lilly Pulitzer I found at the Metrolina ReStores in Charlotte!  So excited that one of my friends scored this white ottoman to store her shoe collection after one of my recent posts!

The Thrill of the Hunt

I had a hard time walking away from these Lilly Pulizer elephant garden stools, especially since I already have one elephant stool in my home.


The Thrill of the Hunt

My last major treasure from this summer was this campaign three drawer piece from Habitat Metrolina ReStores.  I’ve been slowly transforming the former dinning room into my office since we moving into our house a year and half ago.  We are in desperate need of storage, especially for our files and this piece is a perfect fit.  The cell phone photo is grainy, but you can see it has good bones.

The Thrill of the Hunt

I started spray painting this bad boy white and it just doesn’t look right.  Back to the drawing board and rethinking the color and paint.  Chalk paint might be interesting or going bold with coral to match with the color scheme of mint and coral with mainly white furniture and pops of green in my office.  Stay tuned!

I hope you have enjoyed my summer series and have learned a thing or two about a long the way.  Who knows, maybe your next big score is just around the corner!



Styling and photography – Sarah Sofia Productions


The Thrill of the Hunt Summer Series: Helpful Hints for the Hunt, Dwell by Cheryl

Cheryl Luckett, Dwell by Cheryl, is my second guest in a summer series on “the thrill of the hunt” AKA finding that one piece of furniture or item for your home or event your hosting.  You can view my previous guest, Jennifer Burnham, here. Make sure you follow both of these talented women on Instagram and Twitter!

Cheryl is one of those people that you first meet and instantly makes you feel at home. Not to mention she gets excited over the thrill of the hunt like I do and does it with style, as you will see from her fun wardrobe!

Cheryl has her hand in everything.  If you follow her on Twitter or Instagram you will know that she is always out finding the latest treasure! She’s a registered dietitian by trade, works in Human Resources by day, but “completely obsessed with interior design”.  Cheryl’s obsession became a business venture when she started her own interior design business, Dwell by Cheryl.

Dwell by Cheryl Logo

Those who know me know I am ALWAYS on the hunt for a good deal.

On The Hunt

Whether it’s at a thrift store, an antique mall, a yard sale or the clearance aisle at my favorite retailers, I can always sniff out a good deal.   In fact, it’s hard to say when it first began, but I have memories of a Michael Jackson purse strapped across my chest stuffed with my allowance as I scoured through a table at the local salvage center with my Aunt.  Yep, I’ve always loved a good deal.  There’s just something about finding something you love and paying next to nothing for it, even if it does require lots of work.

I’m often asked, how I find so much “good stuff”.  It’s seems like a simple question, but the answer is pretty complex.  I actually taught an entire class on it this Spring.  You can read more about that HERE.

Finding the good stuff

There are so many things you can do to increase your chances of finding great deals on home décor and furnishings, but there are a few that top the list.

Finding the Good Stuff

The first is frequency.  This is the tip that most don’t like to hear, but the fact of the matter is I don’t always find great deals.  Some trips to the thrift store are a total bust.  However, the difference between me and many others is the fact that I don’t let that deter me from going back.  You see, thrifting in particular is all about timing.  The more often you go, the better the odds of finding something spectacular.

Finding the Good Stuff

The second is do your homework.  I actually study before I hit the road on a serious deal-seeking adventure.  I find that it helps to know what’s new and now when you’re standing in a sea of old stuff.  With home décor and furnishings, context is everything.  However, the context in thrift stores, antique malls and yard sales is less than inspiring, so you often need to bring the inspiration with you.  For example, you need to be able to envision how the vintage lamps will look in your modern space.

Finding the Good Stuff

For an untrained eye, that can be difficult, so magazines, apps and catalogs can be great for translating what you see into what the item could become.

Lastly, don’t over think it.  Lord knows I’ve faced my share of retail regrets, but few of them resulted from a purchase made verses the ones not made.  In my humble opinion, home should be a haven, a safe place for you (and yours) to dwell.  It should be filled with memories and you should aim to fill it with things you love.

It's not perfect, but it's mine and I love it!

It’s not perfect, but it’s mine and I love it!

I find it interesting that so many of us over think the whole process.  We debate over how it will be used, where it will be placed, is it “on trend”.  However, when you really love something (not just like it) I’ve found that it often just works.  It works not because it’s the perfect hue or just like the one you recently saw elsewhere for much more, but simply because you love it.  So quit worrying so much.  It’s YOUR home and it should be a representation of YOU.

Happy hunting!!

Dwell by Cheryl is an interior design company based in Charlotte, NC.  Among Cheryl’s many accolades is winning Best of Houzz in Design and Service for the second year in a row.

Everyone deserves to Dwell in a space that they absolutely cannot wait to come home to.  Let Dwell by Cheryl  help you to create a dwelling you love.

Contact Dwell by Cheryl Website/Blog

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The Thrill of the Hunt Summer Series: Jennifer Burnham, Pure & Simple Organizing

Today marks the first post in a summer series on “the thrill of the hunt” AKA finding that one piece of furniture or item for your home or event your hosting.  The summer series will feature guest posts from professionals in the interior design, estate sales, professional organizing and event industries.  My guests include Jennifer Burnham, Pure and Simple Organizing, and Cheryl Luckett, Dwell by Cheryl.  Make sure you follow both of these talented women on Instagram and Twitter!

When you first meet Jennifer Burnham she’s all business and you can see why she is so good at being a professional organizer.  I find her job so interesting and even thought about doing it. Then I had kids and thought maybe I need to hire someone like Jennifer.

Like me, she’s type A and has a niche for getting people organized. She is a Post-It girl! However, you start talking to Jennifer about estate sales, yard sales, and the thrill of the hunt while thrifting and she becomes one of the best storytellers.  I mean this girl has different voices for the all the characters she meets while treasure hunting.  It was a no brainer to have Jennifer guest post with all her experience in thrifting and estate sales. I hope you find her as charming and informational as I have.


Pure and simple Organzing

It is true – I love the thrill of the hunt, the treasure hunt, and the thrill of a deal. I’m not sure when it all started but all I know is the treasure hunt bug bit me hard and I’ve never looked back!

I’m often asked, “How do you find such great stuff?”

I’ll answer in a few fun tips if you love deal shopping as much as I do.

1. Go often.
The more you go the better the odds that you find the deals. I frequent estate sales and yard sales every weekend, and visit the occasional thrift store throughout the week.

2. Go anywhere and everywhere.
Deals and thrills don’t just live at your local Goodwill store. They can be found in a number of places:
Thrift stores
Goodwill, Value Village, Salvation Army Family Store
Google “thrift store {insert city} and smaller stores will pop up on your radar
Swing by and give them a try.
Metrolina Expo Antiques Show
Flea Markets
Yard Sales
Estate Sales
Antique “malls” or stores
These are buildings that have vendor booths that you can shop from
Sleepy Poet
The Depot at Gibson Mill
Gaston Pickers

Sometimes, the farther you travel, the better the deals. I snagged a great Pyrex bowl in Dallas, NC for $3.75. In Charlotte, it would have been $15. 🙂

Yard Sale

3. Make it a habit
I add dates and events to my calendar right away so I’m ready to strike when the day comes. No one likes being a day late and a dollar short.

4. Know what you like and what you don’t like
This will help you from hoarding your house full of great deals but of stuff you don’t necessarily love.

Yard Sale Finds 1

If you are shopping for something particular, make a list and have it out and ready.

5. Plan it out
Estate sales
Sign up for their weekly emails to be notified of sales happening in your area
Most estate sales start on Thursday and end on Saturday/Sunday
Yard Sales
Search Craigslist for locally advertised sales
Pick an area and stick to it. For example, I might commit to browsing the Lake Norman area one weekend and South Charlotte the next, but I know I can’t do both.
The local newspaper also has a garage sale section. I never look at this because I don’t take the paper. 😉
Metrolina Expo Antiques Show
First weekend of every month
I always add the event to my calendar in order not to miss it

Yard Sale Finds 2Yard sale find from my treasuring hunting this week!

6. Be prepared
Checks and/or credit card (for estate sales and thrift stores)
Shopping bag
Shop hands free by taking your own bag
Most yard sales, estate sales, and smaller thrift stores aren’t equipped with shopping carts or baskets. I always take my own
Boxes in the car to contain and protect your treasures when riding from sale to sale.
Notebook (if you care to record what you paid for each item)
Snacks and water
Shopping can wear you out and the last thing you want to do is run out of steam and head home too early.


Pure & Simple Organizing is a professional organizing company based in Charlotte, NC. Our mission is to inspire others to live a less complicated life through better organization. Mounds of physical clutter can weigh heavy on our minds. I specialize in giving someone the opportunity to increase their quality of life by cleaning up and out!

Being organized is a way of life, and it can drastically improve your quality of life.  It is amazing to see the stress roll away when someone’s home is finally a retreat and no longer a stressful storage unit. I consider it an honor.

Contact Pure & Simple Organizing and let them help you get your life organized. Website :: Blog

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