Whilst preparing a review of Dave Guindon’s Hot Item Finder software for our latest newsletter, we used it to carry out some research in the Collectibles > Paper category, and thought we would share some of the more interesting results with you. Many of them are items that could turn up at an estate sale or offline auction and some might even be found at flea markets or car boot sales.
We searched both the US and UK eBay sites for completed items that had attracted 20 or more bids. This brought up 33 items from eBay.com and 15 items from eBay.co.uk. Here is a screenshot of some of the results on the US site.
For some inexplicable reason, the selling prices haven’t shown up as they should have done in many of the listings so we had to click on the links to see how much they sold for. I have contacted creator Dave Guindon’s support desk on several occasions regarding this problem but unfortunately have so far had no response. Not good!
Diary of a Victorian Teenager
The item that we consider to be the most interesting was not the one with the most bids, nor did it sell for the highest price, fetching just $130.25. It was an 1869 diary written by a 17-year-old girl, along with an original family photograph. The insight into this young lady’s life and thoughts must have made incredibly fascinating reading.
The Hottest Hot Item
The item that sold for the highest price and attracted 78 bids (almost double the number of its nearest rival) was the original Lucasfilm “Cease and Desist” letter sent to Wicked Lasers in response to their 1W Arctic 445nm Laser. It sold for $3,850.00. Although this is a unique, one of a kind item, there is always a chance (albeit a slim chance) that something equally rare and sought after could be hiding in a box of assorted movie memorabilia in your local saleroom.
A Victorian scrap album that was listed on both the US and UK eBay sites attracted 23 bids and sold for $1,412.39 (£908.00).
This type of item could quite possibly be found at an estate sale or offline auction and with the revived interest in scrapbooking, vintage scraps are always worth looking out for.
There were several vintage pin-up calendars amongst the eBay hot items, two of which featured Marilyn Monroe. One was a 1955 calendar – with envelope – which got 34 bids and sold for $102.60, and the other, which pre-dated her first appearance in Playboy Magazine was a 1953 advertising calendar which attracted 21 bids and reached $204.16.
The other pin-up calendars were a 1954 Esquire Magazine calendar (25 bids, $288.00/£184.37), a 1952 calendar entitled “Bill Randall’s Date Book (22 bids, $152.00/£96.02) and a 1948 pin-up girl risque artist drawn colour printed advertising calendar (23 bids, $45.00).
Those results suggest that 1950s pin-up calendars are worth looking out for, and as they were a common feature in many male dominated workplaces back in those days when political correctness was unheard of, it’s likely that there are still a good many of them around.
Collectible Playing Cards
Playing cards were another product that was well represented in this hot items report with a combined total of nine auctions from the two eBay sites. The highest priced was a sealed, limited edition deck of Ellusionist Arcane Playing Cards which was listed on both sites and sold for $318.88/£205.00 with 29 bids. Next highest was 2 sets of c1930s Art Deco playing cards designed by artist Einar Nerman and listed on the eBay UK site, which attracted 25 bids and sold for £141.27 (approx $220.55).
A deck of USPCC Bicycle playing cards c1917 in a snap-sealed red box (plus an empty damaged blue box) sold for $200.00 with 26 bids and a Thomas de la Rue double pack of whist playing cards c1865 got 22 bids and sold for $162.36/£104.00.
In the lower price range were a mixed lot of over 120 partial decks of cards from 1930s to 1970s which sold for $96.00/£61.46 with 21 bids, a set of 6 new, sealed Red Dead Redemption playing cards (20 bids, $49.00), a sealed double deck of Giordano Cats cards (23 bids, $42.60), 2 Decks of brown Bee playing cards from WYNN casino (30 bids $41.00), and Lady Gaga Poker Face brand new promotional playing cards (21 bids $18.50).
Those results indicate that playing cards are a popular collectors’ item, and the Red Dead Redemption and Lady Gaga cards show that it is not just vintage packs that are in demand.
All the Proof You Need that One Man’s (or Kid’s) Junk is Another Man’s Treasure!
Although the Hot Item Finder search brought up many other interesting products, this post would drag on too long if we looked at them all so maybe we’ll come back to it at a later date. In the meantime, we’ll end with a question for any baby boomers who may be reading. What did you do with your old sweet/candy wrappers when you were a teenager?
Who knew?! But now that you do know, you can teach your grandchildren not to make the same mistakes that you made