Tuesday, August 21, 2012

That Tchotchke in the Window

This is the shop window at Notting Hill Gate where our onion pot sat, lonely and unloved, for about a week before I came along and opened my wallet. The store looks cool, and they do have some cool mid-century stuff -- the kind of stuff I used to be able to find at Goodwill back in the 1980s. In truth, though, it's a bit overpriced, catering as it does to the Portobello Road tourist.

I check out the window every time I walk by, which makes Dave nervous. But I almost never buy. We have enough stuff to dust/pack/unpack/maintain.

Nearby are a retro men's clothing store, women's clothing store, book store and music store. I think all the shops are related, perhaps under common ownership. I once bought a groovy paisley shirt at the men's store, but I've never even been inside the book or music outlets -- I favor the Oxfam used book store on Portobello Road, which benefits charity, and who buys music in a store these days?

Incidentally, when the proprietors of this outlet say they buy, they're stretching the meaning of the word. When I went to the Alexandra Palace antique show back in March, I bought a German vase from the '70s, burnt orange with turquoise trim. I thought it would look cool and retro, but when I got it home it seemed appallingly ugly. So I took it to this store, and they offered just £3. I agreed, since I'd only paid £10, and I figured getting something back would be better than nothing. The vase appeared in the front window soon afterwards, priced at £15 -- and then promptly disappeared! Some people will buy anything.


Ms. Moon said...

There IS a fine line between hideous and charming sometimes, isn't there?

The Bug said...

That's funny - I think I'd go in & ask to split the difference in profit. OK, no I wouldn't, but I'd sure think about it!

Linda Sue said...

OW! That's a hefty mark up! I've had many "antique" booths in my time- sold things reasonably- would see them later in another booth for three times as much. Torn between feeling like a fool and outrage that they would mark up so high. Ebay was good for a while because the buyer would set the price...sometimes it was way over the top- like $350.00 for a 30 cent mouse from Goodwill...but at least I did not incur the bad feeling of ripping some body off.

Lynne said...

The nerve of that shop marking your hideously beautiful vase up drastically! Shame on them!

Looks like a cool shop to browse in.

Steve Reed said...

Ms. Moon: Just one of many seeming opposites that really aren't opposites. As Joni Mitchell famously sang, "Laughing and crying, you know it's the same release."

Bug: That would be a nice, if improbable, outcome!

Linda Sue: I used to sell things on eBay but I got out of the habit, and now it just seems like so much trouble. I'd rather give up £7 than go through all that rigmarole.

Lynne: Indeed! I'd expect SOME markup, but that was a little out of hand. And then someone paid it! Go figure.