World’s Longest Yard Sale ’14


My Philco radio already at home in my kitchen with my red diamond tea (Diet Coke) glass.

The first week in August for the last 3 years has been like Christmas for me. Just like the last two years, here and here, I made my list and had my fingers crossed that I would find the vintage goods/antiques/junk that I felt my year of good behavior warranted. My list was heavy on things I needed for the rehearsal dinner I am hosting in October. This year did not disappoint.

We left a day earlier this year. Instead of driving all day on Wed. for the opening day on Thursday, we left Tuesday afternoon and drove to Memphis for the night. That left only 5 hours to Jamestown, where it all started. My travel partner this year, Donna, was a first timer. She will definitely be on the travel roster in the future, whether she wants to go or not! Having just sold her antique shop, which she had worked in for 25 years, she was a wealth of information and knowledge. Lori, my travel partner the last 2 years had planned to go, but 2 new grandchildren in 6 weeks had left her with new grandma brain. After texting me that she could get off work early the next day to leave, I replied that I hoped she meant today and not tomorrow. Nope, she meant tomorrow. Got her days mixed up and there was NO CHANCE  of her getting off. Bless her heart, she was pretty upset, and I really wanted her to go, but what do you do? Shop on, my friends, you shop on. Did I mention we were going in her car? Soooo, at 3:30, it was decided that I would take the Fofo (as my kids refer to my Ford Focus). The car was unloaded, Donna culled down her luggage to about half and we took off. 8 hours of chit chat made the drive feel like 2 and we were in Memphis in no time.

We left Memphis around 9 and when we got on Hwy 127 (the entire sale is held on this highway, from Alabama to Michigan),  we started seeing sales immediately. Our plan to head to Jamestown first lost its wheels. I was powerless to stop the pull of tents filled with old stuff and my cohort wasn’t any stronger.  We parked, jumped out, hearts pounding and breathing fast, and headed for the goodies. I think we could have shopped there all day, spent all our money and filled the car, and then gone home. Lots and lots of wonderful stuff. Some prices were  “dealer” prices, but there were plenty of things that were more than reasonable. I wish I still needed vintage kitchen tablecloths, ’cause there were tons for $10 each.  I ended up with a Fenton hobnail vase, candle sticks, a box of coffee cups and saucers, and some napkins. The last 3 things were wedding oriented, the vase was for me 🙂 I saw some chairs I wanted, but weighed the want/need against space/money, and I decided to leave them (foreshadowing here). After a few hours, we headed to Jamestown. It was a little anticlimactic after all the shopping we had already done and because it was around 5, folks were starting to shut down. We finished up and Donna found a place that was a farm to table in Byrdstown, TN where we had dinner. A wonderful way to end the first day.

That night, I was looking at hash tagged pics on Instagram of the sale and saw a chair, exactly like the ones I had seen earlier, but decoupaged with a map. SO CUTE! Now I wanted those chairs with all my heart!!!! Donna said we could go back the next morning, but I didn’t want to revisit. Our plan was to start farther south and then work north, so were were going to have to drive by anyway, and maybe we could take a peek if that happened. I wanted to stop at a place in Crossville that had tin marquee letters. I had seen them the year before, but wedding plans weren’t firm so I decided against buying it (want/need, space/money again). This year, I wanted to pick it up. They were in the same place and it was early, but they had just sold the last big C. I was so sad. They did have some other painted letters, though, and I dug thru the pile until I could spell out my last name. Yea! Perfect for my new kitchen.

I posted a pic of the C on Instagram and my future DIL commented that she had been looking for one and if they had another, could I pick it up. Well, they didn’t, but I’m gonna give her the C and keep the “loud” for my kitchen wall. I think it fits me, my kitchen and my family better anyway.

We successfully shopped all day, only making it about 5 miles the first half because of the density of vendors.  My one indulgent buy was a red and white Philco clock radio for $45. So worth it, so beautiful in my kitchen. It only plays AM stations, of course, but that monophonic sound takes me back to my childhood and I want it to be a part of the soundtrack of my grandchildren’s childhoods, too.

We ate our ice chest lunch as we drove and were getting on down the highway to where we had seen the chairs. They were near the road the day before, so Donna kept her peepers peeped as we crept by. She saw them, covered with clothes and yelled. I pulled in an exit, left the car parked behind some cars and jumped out, as Donna yelled, “Don’t act like you want them!!!!” We thought we remembered them being $15 each. Not bad, but not a steal. However, the need/want had increased considerably since I had seen the decoupaged chair. I strolled over, moved all the clothes off and acted like I was checking them out. I saw $15 alright, $15 a PAIR!!! Oh, yeah! Still, you don’t yardsale/junk without asking “Can you do better?”.  She said she could do $12/pair. WHAT??? I’ll take them. (For future reference, I might have a map decoupaged chair available for purchase, if you are interested). Our car was pretty full, so we had to unload the whole thing and puzzle piece everything in, shoving things into nooks and crannies until we made it all fit. We were pretty proud of ourselves until we realized that we still had our luggage to load.

During the day, Donna had received several texts and phone calls concerning her husband. A medical issue had come up in the morning and although she was sure it was nothing, he did go to the doctor. The fact that she was able to get reception at all was a miracle. The day before, we weren’t able to get anything in that area or anywhere until that night when we got back to our hotel. My phone still wasn’t getting anything, but hers did. Call it what you want, but looking back, I can see God’s hand intervening.  As the day went on, it was evident the situation was more serious than they initially thought. By 3 in the afternoon, the news wasn’t as good as she had hoped. I asked Donna if she wanted to leave, but she was hesitant. Our plan was to shop one more day, but the car was nearly full anyway, so any more shopping would only be for small things. Also, we had found almost everything we had on our lists. She was still on the search for a pink Princess phone and I still hadn’t found any vintage white damask tablecloths at a good price, but overall, we had checked a lot of boxes. I saw a tablecloth the first day at $20, but I can pay that here or on Etsy. I wanted cheap because I need a lot and I had only seen that one. Anyway, we got out of the car and I told Donna to think about it and we would do whatever she decided.

If I said God spoke to me thru yard sale-ing, would you laugh? I left the car worried about Donna’s husband (we are family) and also worried that she was worried about cutting the trip short. Anyway, we headed to the tents and I started digging through a bin of linens. Guess what I found? A damask tablecloth. How much? Three dollars!!!! I kept digging and found FOUR MORE. He gave them all to me for $12. He also had hankies, my addiction, 14 for $10. I won’t say that my desires are always lined up with God’s, but it was sweet to know that the desires of my materialistic heart were met then. For me, it was a sign that we were done, go home.  We were light headed with the euphoria of a good deal, but there was more to come. In the next tent, guess what I found? A pink Princess phone! HA!  AND he came down $15 on the price! Needless to say, we left knowing that it was time to come home.  The next day, instead of heading up to thru KY, we headed west to Texas. As we left the hotel, it started to rain and it didn’t stop in the area for the whole weekend. Shopping would have been impossible in the rain and with the lightning.

Most of the loot is still out at the house. The things that I’m using for the wedding are already stored in the wedding bullpen, aka Clark’s crib, but some is waiting for a home. Which brings me to my dilemma, too much of a good thing. When discussing this with my daughter, she suggested a WLYS ’13 give away on this blog. Last year’s finds that didn’t find a home and are languishing in the attic. What do you think? People are always doing sponsored give aways on their blogs. I’ll just do it to sponsor the “clean out the Cloud’s attic” cause. I’ll gather a few things that I’ve decided I don’t need or have already served their purpose and you get a chance to be gifted with them. Let me know what you think and stay tuned, I’ll be getting together a plan.

And now…just some of this year’s bounty!


Bowls and crocks for pickles at the dinner.


Home made popsicles! I can’t wait!!!


 Metal letters soon to be seen on my kitchen wall instead of the floor.


1. vintage baby vases

2. toy globe

3. 24 hankies, 2 pillow cases (for dresses), a tablecloth, and a pair of little girl’s gloves

4. 16 vintage salt cellars, the winner of the best buy award. I got 6 with the silver plated collars for $5 (just saw some on Etsy, 3 for $79) and 11 Victorian crystal cellars. Donna said she sold them in her shop for $15-20. I paid $12 for all of them. I’m gonna need to get an Etsy shop going. A couple are chipped, but I’ll just put them at the places of the people I don’t like as much.

5. hammered aluminum serving tray $3.  I hope I remember where I “stored” the others.

6. little blue bowl that is part of a set. I already have the larger one. mint green melamine bowl, just ’cause I liked it. itty bitty pyrex baking dish, expect to see it with warm dips this fall.

7. the fabulous chairs.

8. crystal candle holders (I bought another but it didn’t make the photo shoot).

9. Fenton hobnail milk glass.  I have tons of vases, but I needed that one, too. I’d never seen this pattern for the creamer and sugar bowl and it was cheap.

10. silver vintage souvenir “Paris” ashtray. just loved it so it came home with me. 5 bucks.

The most expensive 1 item on this list was $15 for the Fenton vase. Other than the radio, the other big buy was this:


Swoooooon! A zinc baker’s trough, used back in the day to mix up large batches of bread. I priced them when I got home and found on at $225. Probably over priced but made me feel great about dropping $45. You WILL be seeing this baby at future parties at the Honeysuckle House!



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3 Responses to World’s Longest Yard Sale ’14

  1. Katrina Hines

    I loved reading your blog. Sounds like you all had a great time.

  2. Vicki

    Sooo…How DO you clean vintage tablecloths? I use Biz, but it does not always work. Just picked up a sweet $5 cloth at an estate sale.

    • acloud

      I soak in oxiclean (is that the same and biz?) and cascade. Make sure you dissolve the powder first and use HOT water for the soak. After soaking overnight, wash and then lay it in the sun. If there is still a stain, I sometimes use lemon juice on a stain before I put it in the sun.
      I’d love to see a pic of the tablecloth! I have a weakness for them. I even buy hole-y ones and make dresses for Helena. I’ll be sad when she’s too big for a 1 tablecloth dress.

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