Let’s Go Shopping!

Looking for a fantastic, bargain filled destination on Florida’s west coast? You really can’t do better than The Exchange, located right in Sarasota. This fantastic consignment shop has been in business since 1962. The store actively supports local area arts organizations and has awarded more than $8 million dollars in grants and scholarships over time – a most impressive statistic, indeed! According to the organization’s website, “Over 260 dedicated volunteers work to ensure that the ever changing inventory is filled to the brim with such amazing finds as Baccarat crystal, Tiffany silver, Gucci handbags, fine jewelry, men’s and women’s clothing, high-end furniture and oriental rugs.”  To learn more, please visit their website here.

So just how good is The Exchange? This author decided to put it to the test. With a $100 ceiling budget, she challenged herself to score five functional or decorative household treasures that “valued” more than their date-sensitive sticker price, at least according to the Worthpoint Worthopedia. So without further ado, here are her selections… and results!

  1. An Arthur Court acrylic and aluminum centerpiece.

This delightful and hare-raising selection from 1987 consists of two rose colored, ruffled acrylic bowls supported by an aluminum frame. Four adorable rabbits doing handstands support the structure. It measures about 14″ x 14″ x 11″ including the base.  This 14 carrot centerpiece was tagged at $18.49.

Close up of the Arthur Court punch bowl. The rabbit is doing a handstand!

According to the Worthopedia, the three most recent sales of this Arthur Court collectible were $50.00, $66.99, and $21.99 – for an average of $46.32.  So far, so good!

  1. A Hadley Pottery mug.

Nothing says “good morning” more than this coffee cup decorated with a cheerful, hand painted rooster.  This blue, green, and pink selection measures about 3-3/4″ tall and is marked Hadley on its bottom. Hadley is a pottery company that is located in Louisville, Kentucky; it has been making whimsical and appealing tableware items since the 1940s.  This cute cup was priced at $6.99.

Hadley pottery coffee mug.

According to the Worthopedia, the three most recent sales of single Hadley pottery mugs were $15.00, $23.00, and $12.00 – for an average of $16.66.  Still ahead here!

  1. A Margaret Studios caddy.

Hold everything and check out this wooden and stainless steel caddy. It consists of salt and pepper shakes and two pickle or condiment bowls, all supported by a handled, dark brown wooden frame.  This efficient serving piece has a distinctly mid-century look to it.  It was made by Margaret Studios, a family owned company started in the 1940s and originally located in Antigo, WI.  Margaret Studios produced hand turned and decorated wooden bowls and serving items. This multi-taster was marked at $12.49.

A Margaret Studios wooden and stainless steel caddy.

According to the Worthopedia, the three most recent sales of similar Margaret Studios table accessories were $59.00, $13.49, and $58.00 – for an average of $43.49.  Now that’s something to relish!


  1. A Gailstyn-Sutton salad bowl and stand.

This distinctly Danish modern style salad server from the 1960s consists of a round glass bowl housed in a dramatic teak caddy frame. The glass bowl measures 9″ in diameter and is 6″ tall. The company made this basic design in a number of sizes and forms to accommodate entrees and other meal courses.  It was tagged at $14.99.

Danish modern style salad server from the 1960s.

According to the Worthopedia, the three most recent sales of similar vintage Gailstyn-Sutton glass and teak servers were $25.00, $21.63, and $68.00 – for an average of $38.21. Salad days indeed.

  1. A Vietri pottery quartet.

This fantastic foursome consists of two Vietri coffee mugs, a lidded sugar bowl, and a handled creamer. All are primarily red in color and are hand-decorated with comical, charmingly rendered water animals, including snails and turtles.  All are marked with the blue Vietri sailing ship logo. This distinctive pottery is produced in the Campania region of southern Italy, an area known for its colorful ceramics from the 15th century onward. The collection was priced at $17.27.

Two Vietri coffee mugs, a lidded sugar bowl, and a handled creamer.

According to the Worthopedia, the three most recent sales of similar hand painted Vietri lidded sugar bowl and creamer sets were $15.99, $24.50, and $38.00–for an average of $26.16.  And for the mugs, the three most recent sales of similar mugs each were $26.99, $19.99, and $29.50–for an average of $25.49, or $50.98 for two.  The grand total value for all four pieces is about $77.15 according to recent sales. Wow–that’s even better than a caffeine rush!


So, how did we do here? Pretty darn good–and it looks like The Exchange truly lives up to its fantastic reputation!  There’s nothing better than coming in under budget and exceeding expectations, and that’s just what happened here…at least according to the Worthopedia.  Overall, we “spent” $70.23 on the five items.  The average Worthopedia “value” of all five is $221.82, resulting in a whopping difference and “profit” of $151.59!  Please see the summary chart for more details–and check out The Exchange when you can.


 Exchange Price 

 Worthopedia Value 


Arthur Court Centerpiece




Hadley Pottery Mug




Margaret Studios Caddy




Gailstyn-Sutton Salad Bowl and Stand




Vietri Pottery Quartet








Rebekah Kaufman is a Worthologist who specializes in vintage Steiff and other European plush collectibles.  You can follow her blog, which focuses on vintage Steiff finds, Steiff antiquing and travel adventures, international Steiff happenings, and the legacy and history of the Steiff company at http://mysteifflife.blogspot.com.  Sign up for her Steiff newsletter by contacting her directly at steifflife@gmail.com.

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