Sault natives John Goulay and Rebecca Mergaert, partners in life and in business, love collecting and selling vintage items.
Not only that, they help others sell off vintage items from their homes, things which are considered no longer needed by those wanting to part with them, but considered treasures by collectors.
With that in mind, the couple launched Vintiques Estate Sale Services three years ago, recently chatting with SooToday as we took a look at some of their wares and presented them with a pair of nifty SooToday sunglasses.
“What it entails is if somebody is moving out of their house and their contents are still there, maybe an elderly parent is moving into a retirement home or passed away and the children don’t know what to do with the huge amount of materials in the house, we go and organize an estate sale, which is like a large garage sale,” John said.
“We get everything organized, we do all the displaying and setting up of the items for sale, we do all the advertising and then we have a three-day sale of the entire contents of the house...in some houses there’s a lot of stuff. We have to go in weeks ahead of time just to organize all the materials.”
Among all that stuff, John said, is “lots of furniture because a lot of the children don’t want the old antique furniture, so we have a lot of really nice furniture.”
“We come across furniture that’s old and solid, sturdy furniture you can’t get any more,” Rebecca said, adding (Vintiques Estate Sale Services) is a good service for families. I think it’s invaluable, really. It’s less stressful for a family.”
There are also a great many books, vintage jewellery pieces, clothing, tools and recreational items which John and Rebecca come across while clearing out people’s houses, the couple displaying their own personal items they collected over the years, on sale at the fourth annual Fishbowl Festival launch held at Outspoken Brewing Sunday.
“We’ve been collectors for years,” said Rebecca, a semi-retired social worker who is studying to be a certified appraiser, while John is a retired schoolteacher.
Items the couple had for sale at Outspoken Brewing included clothing, vintage board games from the 1930s and 40s, toys, furniture and magazines, John a fan of 1960s pop culture items in particular.
“I have an antique Parcheesi board game at home, which I picked up in southern Ontario for 75 cents,” John said, when asked if there is an item which he owns and holds near and dear.
Most of the estate sales are held in the homes themselves, while at other times, John and Rebecca have rented halls for their sales.
“Personally we’ve always enjoyed collecting so this just excites us, and secondly, I think this is a helpful service a lot of people don’t know about. It’s a very helpful business for those who need this type of estate service,” John said.