florida keys estate sales & auction services, personal property appraisals, liquidations

purr fect thrift store – not so

In Uncategorized on January 21, 2011 at 7:57 pm

Today I visited the Purr Fect Thrift Store in Marathon Key at 3850 Overseas Highway, directly across from the City Park, in the historic Overseas Lounge building.  We visit other stores because we routinely make it our business to know what’s being offered in resale, where and for how much.  I often will travel to see various antique stores, consignment stores or secondhand stores and try to do so at least once a week.  At first impression, Purr Fect is apparently named for its resident felines, who by the way, were sitting atop a child’s high chair during my visit – ah, yuck.

Purr Fect is a new, three-room thrift store with good visibility, parking and access.  The entry-way is a small foyer with an office, register, and some jewelry and artwork (one piece which I though I recognized from a recent yard sale).  There was a china set already missing several pieces being sold as a “set”, when I asked the cashier if they would break it up (I wanted the sugar bowl), he said, “No, cause it’ll be easier to sell as a set.”  I wanted to ask him how long it had already been in the store, but didn’t.  If he wanted to pass on a sale when it was obvious I had been the only person in the place all morning, then that’s his business.

The second room had mostly sunglasses, kitchen ware and minor household goods like small works of art, candlesticks, pocketbooks (handbags), but everything was dirty.  I picked up several small containers with lids (covered bowls and such) to use as storage for game pieces we have and everything had dirt and grime in it.  This is okay when you’re moving stuff pretty quickly, but certainly not when it appears to have been sitting on the shelves for some time.  To add insult to injury, the attendant was reading the newspaper when I arrived, gave me less than an enthusiastic hello, and I couldn’t help but think, “who has time to do that when they’re trying to launch and market a new business”, and “shouldn’t you be cleaning this place up”?  Again, tidy but dirty.

The third room had bigger and bulkier items, lamps, luggage pieces, christmas ornaments, toys and a wood hope chest that looked like it had promise, but unfortunately it was stuffed with old pillows.  If you’ve got a great piece, it needs to be showcased to avoid buyers having to rearrange your displays.  I didn’t see any real antique items or unusual items, this appeared to be a thrift store of modern and unwanted used goods.  I did notice on the way out there was a sign for accepting donations, so perhaps that accounts for the contents.  All in all, a store space and a layout with a lot of promise, but only if the owners make a dedicated effort to sell upscale, clean, older items in an attractive setting.  Hey, what do I know?  Also on the way out, I passed a very tanned shirtless bicycle man (homeless?) who had just purchased a cane basket for the front of his bike.  Like they say, one man’s trash IS another man’s treasure.

Now, let me quickly add that I later learned that all items sold at Purr Fect benefit Forgotten Felines, funding their efforts to feed, medicate, spay and neuter abandoned cats in the Middle Keys to prevent over population and once I knew that, it all clicked together.  The store  is volunteer run so hours may vary slightly, but normally scheduled hours are between 1-4pm, seven days a week. If you’re in Marathon and want to volunteer (maybe to clean – bring some lysol and paper towels for the love of God) please call Forgotten Felines volunteer Sally at 305-896-0932.  Sally is also accepting donations which are 100% tax-deductible.  You know, cats like to live in clean environments too.

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