Finding Decorating Treasure for $23

Every November, one of my favorite ways to spend a Saturday morning is to attend a holiday church bazaar.

Have you ever been to one that along with craft vendors and bake sale tables, has a trash-to-treasure rummage sale?

2019 Trinity Bazaar sign

These sales are the reason I mark them on my calendar every year. Church bazaars always have the best rummage sales, even better than my secret place to find decorating treasures and the local thrift store.

Over the weekend, I went to one at a church in Columbia, SC that a friend told me about. She belongs to the church and helps to organize it every year. She knew I would enjoy it.

Trinity Bazaar map

She was right.

I had no idea what I was walking into, but the line that was out the door and in the rain 10 minutes before the bazaar doors opened, told me that is was going to be good. Thanks Alison for telling me :-)

The Trinity Bazaar was the largest rummage sale in one place I have ever visited. They even handed out maps so you would know where to go.

The trash and treasure sale at the Trinity Cathedral in Columbia, SC

I was like a kid in a candy store. There was so much merchandise all highly organized by category. This made it easy to hone in and see if I could find what I sought.

Brass candlesticks on a sales table at holiday bazaar

I was looking for silver or brass taper candleholders to create a Christmas display on my fireplace mantel. I found 4 sets right away that fit the style I was looking for all, for a whopping total of $6. :-) In my tote bag they went.

Used kitchen items on a sale table

Holiday shopping at a church bazaar brings back many fond memories. My mom was a crafter and always helped plan and make items for the women’s club bazaar to which she belonged. She was also very involved with the church bazaar when I was growing up.

Book and furniture room at holiday church bazaar

I remember when the bazaars were getting close every year, the dining room in our house looked more like a factory production line than a place to eat.

I always liked the rummage sale sections the best. I even remember my first bazaar rummage sale purchase when I was about 10 years old. It was a ceramic coat lapel pin of a man’s head that was wrapped in a green turban. I know it sounds funny, but I guess at the time I thought it was worth spending some of my allowance to buy. I no longer have it, but wish I did. It would surely make me smile.

Silver and silver plate items on a sale table

The Trinity Bazaar has been an annual event to raise money for charity for over 70 years! So it is well-known and attended each year. The prices were so low on everything. It was truly thrilling to find so many nice and brand name items for a few dollars.

Used brass taper candle holders found at a church trash and treasure sale.

These are the candle holders I found. I am using all of them to decorate the fireplace mantel for Christmas. I did a little DIY’ing on a few of them to fit my design vision.

I am going to keep the Waterford pair just as they are. They were one of my most expensive finds – $3 for the pair. :-) They are heavy and not too ornate. I will be using them all year long, not just for the holidays. You will see what I did with the brass sets soon.

White Ironstone pitchers found for $3 at a church trash and treasure sale.

When out thrifting, I always look for white dinnerware and pitchers for my collection. I was happy to find these William Sonoma bowls, a ramekin and two large pitchers…

Ironstone marking on bottom of white pitcher.

… one is Ironstone. Price $3.

Church bazaar trash to treasure shop finds. Blue and white table linens and a wood bowl

I found a wooden bowl that I will be using to display Christmas decor and classic table linens. I always look for table linens so I can create unique and colorful table settings all through the year when we entertain.

I had such a good time going to The Trinity Bazaar and found exactly what I wanted. Buying new things is always nice, but something about finding exactly what I wanted for a few dollars is thrilling to me. I will definitely be going back next year.

Have you been to any church bazaar rummage sales this year?

If you like the thrill of the hunt and don’t know of any, ask around. You can also look for signs on the side of the road in late October advertising the local church holiday bazaars and Google search for churches in your area that may hold an annual bazaar.

If you go to one… make sure you bring a big tote along with you to hold all your thrilling finds and bring them home safely. :-)

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21 Comments

  1. Hi Diane! I can’t stand it! A wood dough bowl for 50 cents?? Do you think the owner knew what a treasure they were selling? Those white pitchers and white dinnerware for basement bargain prices?! Unbelievable! There’s nothing better than old-time, authentic rummage sales. I grew up in St. Louis, Missouri where true rummage sales abounded, I love accompanying my Mother, rummaging through the magic and the feeling of euphoria when Mother scored an incredible find! I moved from away from St. Louis when I got married and have never lived in another place since where the words “rummage sale” were spoken. I’ve gone to many thrift sales, holiday bazaars, congregational garage sales, but nothing that comes close to the rummage sale you attended and those of my youth. Lucky girl! Happy Thanksgiving to you and Ed and family!

    1. Hi Judy – I was beyond excited when I first entered the sale. I agree with you, finding a true Rummage Sale is not as popular as they once were. I already have the date for next year on my calendar. I hope you can find one in your area. Wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy. :-)

      1. Diane, I have never been but it is on my calendar for next year. You never know what treasures you might find. Hope to see you there.

  2. Trinity Cathedral Bazaar’s date for next year is November 14, 2020. The address is 1100 Sumter Street, Columbia, South Carolina. So glad you enjoyed it, Diane! I found an ornate silver plate napkin ring for 50 cents! Added that to my collection. :)

  3. I love what you bought and am in awe that you could hold yourself down to just what you knew you would use! I tend to kinda get carried away and buy too much at a time. If I’m ever lucky enough to find a rummage sale like yours , I’m going to TRY to follow your example and buy only what I know I’ll use. As always thanks for sharing your blog and I can’t wait to see what you do with these finds!!!

  4. Oh wow what bargains, I always loved a good rummage through the church sales, sadly I don’t get about much now, but you did great, keep on enjoying as long as you can. Happy ‘hunting’.xx

  5. Yes, the thrill of the hunt is exciting! Sometimes even better than after ‘the find’!

  6. Wow Diane! You got some real treasures for great prices! Way to scope that giant place out! Beautifully organized sale and a map to boot! Woo hoo!!!! Always such fun to find something at bargain prices that you set out for. Can’t wait to see what you do with them! Yesterday I was at a local thrift store and found a vintage Avon clear glass pumpkin candleholder that I will put in my stash for next halloween, but not before first using it during this autumnal season.

  7. I think I’ll have to fly down next November to attend! Love all of your finds but it would have been perfect if your childhood turban headed man was at the sale!

  8. Hello. I just wanted to let you know that when you used your former email provider to send the current post, I got it directly in my mailbox. Otherwise, the posts you sent before this one always ended up in my Spam box, even though I made sure you are in my list of authorized senders.
    My cat would agree with you when you say that sometimes change is not good! LOL

    I love to go to bazaar sales and thrift stores! If I went to a sale like the one you went to I would have needed a truck!

  9. What fun! To find so many lovely things at those prices is “priceless”. I went to a big craft/decorating sale recently where prices were out of sight. They were selling garage sale stuff for Neiman Marcus prices. Needless to say I came home empty handed. I’m with you. So much fun to find bargains. I’m glad you found some great ones. I LOVE the white bowls. I have 4 like them that I use every day. Can’t wait to see what you do with everything. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

  10. Church sales are a great source for crafter n thrifters . The one in the photos was well organizes . Some are just stuff piled on tables or in boxes. I look forward to the last day when it is a bog full for cheap. You have a great eye for scooping out the undiscovered treasures. Enjoy your blog have been a fan for awhile.

  11. You found beautiful and useful things that can be used over and over, and what a major bazaar you visited. I would love to attend one that large and with that much to choose from.

  12. Looks like fun!! Last weekend I went with a friend to a backyard boutique. This was a very large backyard with many vendors set up. Some were crafts and some established home business’ My favorite vendor used old jewelry to re make beautiful necklaces, bracelets and earrings. So much fun to poke around and I bought some fun gifts Food trucks lined the long driveway. We had a great morning adventure together.

  13. Just seeing the place is something else. I can only imagine all the work that goes into organizing such an event. You scored. Thanks for sharing.