Category Archives: News

What started out as a supporting set of articles has become a burden on the website. This will be kept up-to-date as time allows.

November 2019 Summary

Logo small     This was a busy month but not with the Goodwill shopping and this was reflected in the month’s total shopping list. The twenty-nine items cost less than two hundred dollars total but netted almost ten thousand dollars for a little over fifty times my cost. The chart below shows where the money went this past month and this was due in part to the sudden scarcity of high-end products for some reason. I have been checking the website after I learned that most of their good jewelry was being sold in this manner through their auction site. I have yet to find any high-end clothing from this area on their auction block though. Some of the names I regularly look for are not showing up in any quantity at the eighteen or so stores I frequent like Brioni, Salvatore Ferragamo, Gucci, Oxxford Clothes, Stefano Ricci or Versace.

Treasures – The name of Isaia is seldom seen in this area where I shop but it is definitely one of those that can make your heart rate increase as they are well known for their attention to fine detail and exceptional quality. One of these beautiful pinstripe jackets was picked up this month as a great example of this workmanship. Two names in the line of shirts, better known for quality and style, were found with the names of Giorgio Armani and Eton. Burberry’s, Canali and Ralph Lauren Purple Label are also a quick pick up when the brand names show up on beautiful dress pants and my size. There were three names of neckties worth mentioning which were located: Brioni, Massimo Bizzocchi and Stefano Ricci. These are just some of the names that are becoming more difficult to find.

Dress Jacket – A beautiful dark gray pinstriped dress jacket created by the fashion house Isaia was located and well worth the unusually high price of thirty-one dollars considering it runs on the retail market for about four thousand. This is an uncommon name located in my area and is not as well known as it should be. Their logo is that of a bright red piece of coral.

Shirts – Four shirts were located; a beautiful Alton & Lane gingham purple (new brand in my collection), a grey dress shirt by Giorgio Armani from his Collezioni series put me back only $4.99, a solid black dress shirt by Eton and a bright yellow fun shirt for my youngest daughter showing the ASU Sun Devils mascot for her favorite university.

Pants – Four pair of dress trousers were grabbed, two of which bring in a retail of well over seven hundred dollars each showing the names of Burberrys’ and Ralph Lauren with the Purple Label. The other two were from Canali, tan and black, always a good fit with their own respectable high retail listing.

Ties – Only nine neckties were picked out from the racks of silk this month with the names of Albert Goldberg, Brioni, Canali, Ermenegildo Zegna, Fendi Roma, Fendi Cravette, Massimo Bizzocchi, Stefano Ricci Firenze and a Yves Saint Laurent Paris PGLR Homme. A good representation of the French and Italian designers!

Shoes – Two pair of Western boots from the well known company Justin were picked out sitting right beside each other and just my size for a total of a little over thirty dollars. One was a pair of black lizard skin and the other was a very soft light tan elk skin, both of which provide great support to my ankles and look great with anything I wear.

Accessories – A beautiful Ryrie black leather study bible quickly found its way into my buggy. I am quite surprised how much a good Christian Bible costs and this is a nice one. Two pair of cedar shoe trees were located, one from Allen Edmonds and the other from Vintage to fit my collection of dress shoes that I need to take better care of. A Bentley’s Finest Tea wooden box with square separations works great for those expensive ties I just picked up and so does the JR Cigar humidor. A humidor is also a great place to store important papers you would like to pass on to the next generations. Two Pampered Chef stoneware items were located, a 12-inch bowl and a 12 muffin pan, always a useful item in any chef’s kitchen. The small Lane cedar box and a Shoeshine Express horsehair brush finish off this month’s collection of useful products.

     The following chart shows how much was paid for each item, the tagged price before my discount and a link to the retail price of that article or one similar to it if I could not find the exact item. Use this as an aid in looking up the prices you may find on a similar item.

November 2019

$192.19 $223.25 $9,729.40


Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin

Dress Jacket

3,995 Isaia 130’s 31.00 31.00 3,995.00




747 Alton & Lane Gingham 3.99 3.99 135.00 Purple
Armani, Giorgio Collezioni 4.99 4.99 325.00 Grey Italy
Eton 6.99 6.99 275.00 Black Romania
Russell ASU Sun Devils 3.49 3.49 11.99 Yellow Honduras


2,405 Burberrys’ 19.99 24.99 760.00 Tan USA
Canali Pantalone 9.74 12.99 425.00 Tan Italy
Canali Pantalone 3.50 6.99 425.00 Black Italy
Ralph Lauren Purple Label 15.99 19.99 795.00 Grey Italy


1,707 Albert Goldberg Faconnable 1.00 2.99 12.00 Black Italy
Brioni 7.99 7.99 240.00 Brown Italy
Canali 3.74 4.99 230.00 Navy Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna 1.49 1.99 205.00 Navy Italy
Fendi Roma 1.49 1.99 200.00 Red Italy
Fendi Cravette 3.74 4.99 200.00 Red Italy
Massimo Bizzocchi 8.50 8.50 150.00 Silver Italy
Stefano Ricci Firenze 0.99 0.99 275.00 Navy Italy
Yves Saint Laurent Paris PGLR Homme 2.24 2.99 195.00 Red USA


460 Justin Boots Roadhouse exotic 15.20 19.00 309.95 Black USA
Justin Boots Soft elk leather 15.20 19.00 149.99 Tan USA


415 Allen Edmonds Cedar shoe trees 2.24 2.99 25.00 Cedar USA
Bentley’s Finest Teas Wooden box with 6 compartments 1.99 1.99 24.99 Brown USA
JR Cigar Cigar humidor 4.99 4.99 50.00 Wood USA
Lane small cedar box 3.99 3.99 89.00 Tan USA
Pampered Chef 12 muffin stoneware 6.99 6.99 22.00 Tan USA
Pampered Chef 12-inch stoneware bowl 2.99 2.99 25.00 Tan USA
Ryrie Study Bible New American Standard 3.99 3.99 67.99 Black USA
Shoeshine Express horsehair brush 1.49 1.49 13.49 Brown USA
Vintage shoe trees Cedar shoe trees 2.24 2.99 98.00 Wood USA

     You find the best examples when you least expect it and it is great fun to share with others much like yourself. Thank you for reading and good luck with your own search. I hope these posts help you in finding that little gem just waiting to be pulled out from the rest.

Key words: Albert Goldberg, Allen Edmonds, Armani, Bentley’s Finest Teas, Brioni, Burberrys’, Canali, Ermenegildo Zegna, Eton, Faconnable, Fendi, Isaia, JR Cigar, Justin, Lane, Massimo Bizzocchi, Purple Label, Ralph Lauren, Russell, Shoeshine Express, Stefano Ricci, Vintage, Yves Saint Laurent

October 2019 Summary

Logo small     I was about to give up on finding anything in the area of high-end clothing when this past week made up for this shortfall. It turns out that my return on investment approached a record for this year of the retail being almost ninety times as much as I spent. It wasn’t my target of the three-digit number of 100 times, but it came close. This is also the month where people go crazy looking for Halloween costumes and where better to find the best ideas than the place with the greatest variety; Goodwill of course. They even help you look for that certain theme that fits you best. My costume you may ask? A wealthy Wall Street business man, of course. That should scare everyone!

Treasures – The treasures located were quite nice even though the total number of items was one of the lowest, with only 32 this month. My closet space overflow is quickly disappearing so my taste for the finer things is sharpening in relative proportion. I’d like to think so anyway. Research is showing the one item that loses the greatest percentage against the initial cost in my collection is that of men’s suits. As an example, a barely worn, six thousand five hundred dollar Brioni tuxedo from Neiman Marcus was purchased for less than thirteen dollars (See last month). I just picked up one of Ermenegildo Zegna’s more expensive like-new suit jackets for one dollar this month as another example. A rare label with the name Isaia had my heart racing as I checked the size to make sure the beautiful shirt would fit, and it does! A different kind of personal treasure was the large print, very large King James Bible. It will serve me well. Additional treasures worth mentioning would be the two original water colored paintings, one of which brings our family closer to their six hundred year old English roots. The following provides more details and photographs which can be clicked for enlargement.

SuitsErmenegildo Zegna came in with two very nice suits with my expenditure of $28.49 for the $6,400 retail value of this collection on the last Sunday afternoon of the month. One of the suits is a very nice medium grey in color two-button “Trofeo” while the other is a grayish dark brown “High Performance”. The jackets fit very well and all I had to do was let the pants cuff out for the required extra length. Ermenegildo Zegna sells very well in this area and the number of suits located at Goodwill in comparison to other brands reflects this. As an example, I have as many Ermenegildo Zegna suits as the next two brands put together; Armani and Burberry. The Trofeo (trophy) wool is described as the “superfine Australian Merino wool characterized by longer and more elastic fibers that make garments smoother and more comfortable” ( This also allows for less wrinkling, softer and longer wearing, thus a better buy for the money in my opinion.

Dress JacketsErmenegildo Zegna shows up again with two more items in this category. A very lucky find was a light brown “15milmil15” made in Switzerland on the higher scale of the Zegna brand that I was able to walk away with for only one dollar! Thursday is “Dollar Day” for the tag of a certain color for that week and blue was that color. It is hard to believe that no one picked this one up for the 35 days it was hanging on the rack. What a beautiful and super soft coat this one is to have found its way into my buggy. On the opposite end of the scale of the Zegna brand is the Z style with the price tag of $7.99. This one is made in Mexico but adheres to the stringent refinements of the brand headquartered in Italy.

Shirts – Six very nice shirts were located with two of them sporting name brands that are new to my collection. These new brands are the very respectable Marc Jacobs and Lubiam. It was quite a surprise to find the Marc Jacobs with the tag showing “Made in Sri Lanka” but the Lubiam was “Made in Italy”. The other four that were also made in Italy were a cream colored Canali, a seldom seen plaid Isaia Napoli and two other white and blue dress shirts from a much sought after Ralph Lauren Purple Label. My cost for the six shirts was less than $10 per item netting a total retail of an impressive $2,256.

Pants – Now that I basically have a matched pair of trousers for each of the dress jackets, I am very selective as to what brand and color to pick up these days. The only pair of trousers selected this month was a tan Canali Pantalone, just my waist size and the length, so it automatically made its way into my collection. This company is top notch in both design, fashion and quality in all their mens wear. The attention to detail and fit make their name one to keep on your list to look for.

Ties – One of the managers of a frequented Goodwill store reminded me that I now have stiff competition from a young man he referred to as the “new” tie guy. He said he sees him almost daily which probably explains why I found the racks deficient of the name brands I usually come across from week to week. You have to wonder where he gets his information. I was able to locate four very nice pieces of silk from Ermenegildo Zegna and Gianni Versace. I was not aware that Zegna carried the more personal line of the “Su Misura” in ties and also located a five-star version (*****), their top of the line for neck-wear. These were located in a less effluent area where the typical customer may not be as familiar with the higher-end name brands. These stores are always worth checking at least every couple of weeks.

Accessories – The library of books found on my shelves quickly shows an interest in what I like to research. Three such books are new to the shelves with one of the topics intended to revive my ability to have an intelligent conversation in the German language. The other two are very nice leather bound King James Version Bibles, one of which I was surprised to find with a list price of $229. My home church always has someone who appreciates a beautiful leather bound Bible.

     In the category of accessory clothing, four sets of cedar shoe trees will find good homes stuffed in the empty leather shoes that are looking to be properly stretched. A very nice leather Gucci belt found its way into my collection to be hung on the inside of the closet door, although there is some speculation to its authenticity. With the large number of high-end neckties growing weekly, some of the very expensive ones require a specialized storage container and the two small Lane cedar boxes are just the right size for such items.

     With the cold weather pushing its way across the country this time of year, a great item for keeping the chill off the rooms was located with the circulating oil Pelonis heater. This great little portable radiator filled with a viscous oil gives off a constant controlled radiant temperature with very little use of electricity. It has a thermostat and a heat control to maintain a constant, comfortable atmosphere within a large room. The $13.49 spent on this item will more than make up for the difference it makes this winter provided it works properly. There is always a reason things show up in the Goodwill stores and I checked to make sure it worked before it made its way to the cashier. The large picture in the black frame was purchased to frame a pen and ink drawing I did years ago that is gathering dust. It is time to put it on the wall behind glass now.

     The kitchen will become more efficient with the three Pampered Chef stoneware pieces located for making the pizza and bean dip as well as countless other recipes that are made that much more tasty. A great collection of plastic measuring cups and spoons was found in a plastic bag for a great price compared to what I would have had to pay at our local grocery store. My youngest daughter borrowed my old set and “forgot” to return them. She can keep them now that I have a more complete set. That worked out well for both of us.

     Last on the list are two spectacular water color originals that the Goodwill stores are well known for carrying in my metropolitian area. It helps to know your local artists or perhaps just appreciate a beautiful piece of artwork that fits well within your home color scheme. I actually won an auction as the only bidder at with a five dollar bill for an original of the “The Ostrich Inn, Wherstead” located just outside of Ipswich, Suffolk, England. Geoff Pleasance painted this in great detail in 1976 and I am the very fortunate person to now be able to pass it on through the line of our family to come. The Inn was built in 1612 just down the road from where our paternal family lived before they removed to the New World in 1635. Chances are pretty good that they were very familiar with what was on the menu at that time since it was within a mile of where they lived on the main road to the city of Ipswich.

     The other water color, from Hugh Riker, is a much larger rendering of a Western stage coach heading across a sparse barren desert in the direction of a local storm. The artist evokes a sense of future action if the slow moving transport is to follow the faint path shown in the picture. The painting works great in my office against a complimentary colored wall just above my computer. It’s a great way of removing myself for a moment from the technology of today to that of yesterday when a cool storm revived the travelers from the hot summer desert heat. You can click on the photograph for a closer view of the stage coach.

     The following chart shows how much was paid for each item, the tagged price before my discount and a link to the retail price of that article or one similar to it if I could not find the exact item. Use this as an aid in looking up the prices you may find on a similar item.

October 2019

$189 $248 $16,481 87.0x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
6,390 Ermenegildo Zegna High Performance 18.74 24.99 2,995.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Trofeo 9.74 12.99 3,395.00 Grey Italy
Dress Jackets
4,690 Ermenegildo Zegna 15milmil15 1.00 17.99 3,195.00 Brown Switzerland
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 7.99 7.99 1,495.00 Grey Mexico
2,256 Canali 4.50 8.99 275.00 Cream Italy
Isaia Napoli 9.99 9.99 495.00 Blue Italy
Lubiam 1911 6.99 6.99 200.00 Blue Italy
Marc Jacobs Marc 10.39 12.99 386.00 Blue Sri Lanka
Ralph Lauren Purple Label 12.99 12.99 450.00 White Italy
Ralph Lauren Purple Label 10.39 12.99 450.00 Blue Italy
425 Canali Pantalone 5.59 6.99 425.00 Tan Italy
1,070 Ermenegildo Zegna ***** 1.00 1.99 275.00 Purple Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura 2.39 2.99 245.00 Blue Italy
Versace, Gianni 1.59 1.99 275.00 Red Spain
Versace, Gianni Classic 1.99 1.99 275.00 Red Italy
1,650 G.E.M. Publishing King James Ver. Large Print 3.99 3.99 299.00 Purple USA
Gucci belt 15.99 19.99 450.00 Black Italy
Harris Cedar shoe trees 2.00 2.00 20.00 Cedar USA
Hugh Riker water color 19.19 23.99 125.00 Tan USA
Lane small cedar box 1.99 1.99 89.00 Tan USA
Lane small cedar box 1.99 1.99 89.00 Tan USA
Measuring cups Measuring cups 0.01 1.49 5.00 White USA
Necklace cabinet Necklace box 3.74 4.99 62.80 Brown USA
No name Cedar shoe trees 2.24 2.99 20.00 Cedar USA
no name Large black frame with glass 3.74 4.99 19.25 Black USA
Nordstrom Cedar shoe trees 2.00 2.00 20.00 Cedar USA
Pampered Chef Large Round Stone Pizza 2.99 2.99 35.00 Tan USA
Pampered Chef Large Round Stone Pizza 2.49 2.49 35.00 Tan USA
Pampered Chef Rectangle stone 2.99 2.99 31.00 Tan USA
Pelonis Oil heater 13.49 17.99 69.99 Cream USA
Thomas Nelson King James Ver. Giant Print 2.24 2.99 29.99 Red USA
Wie geht’s 7th Edition German introduction 2.99 2.99 249.95 Black USA

     You find the best examples when you least expect it and it is great fun to share with others much like yourself. Thank you for reading and good luck with your own search. I hope these posts help you in finding that little gem just waiting to be pulled out from the rest.

Key words: Canali, Ermenegildo Zegna, G.E.M Publishing, Gianni Versace, Gucci, Harris, Hugh Riker, Isaia, Lane, Lubiam, Marc Jacobs, Nordstrom, Pampered Chef, Pelonis, Ralph Lauren, Thomas Nelson

August 2019 Summary

Logo small     As with any month you could pick out of the year, each has their own fantastic surprises when you least expect it. This month of August was no exception. I certainly went over my budget for the month but it was well worth it, or so I keep telling myself. I was over the 100 times mark until I found the Hummel figurines and the retail purchase price dropped to 37 times what I paid. Each visit to the Goodwill stores is a new education in “what in the world is that made for” or “how much did someone give for that shirt” or “it actually cost five hundred times as much as what I just paid for it”? August is always a fun month to go “thrifting” and here are 68 examples why . . .

Treasures – A quick measure of what would be considered a valuable gem on these treasure hunts would be how much more it would cost than what I was able to pay for the item. The $6,495 Brioni tuxedo would hit the top of the list in this category in that case. I paid only $12.98 for it. Next in line would be the beautiful Canali windowpane mohair grey jacket and then the plush Ermenegildo Zegna sweater. Another rare find was a beautiful regimental striped Kiton neck tie that would look great with any brown, blue or grey suit.

Suit – As mentioned earlier, the goose bumps hit their ceiling when I found the Brioni tuxedo jacket that listed for $7.99. I looked through the pants section one more time and found the matching trousers and they were tagged for only $4.99. Although the name was not listed inside the pants, the familiar pattern inside the waist band and the satin side stripe running down both legs gave it away quickly. Total price for the suit by the company that dressed James Bond in several movies came to only $12.98 and is listed at Neiman Marcus for $6,495. As a side note, Brioni suits are worn by Pierce Brosnan in all of his Bond movies and by Daniel Craig in Casino Royale. Brioni, a famous Italian bespoke house, was introduced to Bond by costume designer Lindy Hemming in the movie GoldenEye. I’m not saying that you will become a secret agent if you wear this suit but it sure does make you look the part! Brioni is a name to keep your GoldenEye looking for while shopping your favorite thrift stores.

Dress Jacket – The Italian company of Canali makes some fantastic men’s clothing and the dress coat I found with this name fit as though it was tailor made for me. The grey plaid/windowpane wool and mohair will dress very well with any shade of grey trousers or even a pair of khakis. This jacket is made from a special blend of comfortable wool along with mohair. According to, “mohair can be twisted and bent without damage to the fiber; it is the most durable animal fiber.” It has the ability to take wear due to its surface smoothness. “Canali has represented tailor-made Italian luxury and men’s elegance since 1934, promoting the values of Made in Italy excellence through its artisanal know-how and creating sartorial masterpieces of exceptional wearability and comfort season after season”. You can expect high end quality with anything from Canali but not have to pay high end prices.

Shirts – For any man, the shirt is one of the most versatile means of showing your style and how you define who you are. Nine of these shirts made the list this time. Listed alphabetically are the Aster 1873, Canali, Ermenegildo Zegna (3), Lululemon (2), Psycho Bunny and one from Tesla. I’ve thought of putting on the Tesla shirt and visiting their car dealership in the big city for the fun of it to see what their response would be. I was told that clothing from Lululemon should last a long time since they are so well made and expensive. Compared to the three Zegna and Canali shirts, they really are not that expensive making this a great buy for the long haul. The new shirt on the block is Aster. They are known more for women’s clothing but the quality of this shirt stood out for me. The Canali shirt was a natural pick up since it was my size and a color I did not have in the closet. The three Ermenegildo Zegna shirts were quite different from one another with one being a Su Misura (very high end), another leisure wear and the last quite ugly according to my daughter. You can figure out which one she was talking about in the photograph above. She also told me I was too old to be wearing the Psycho Bunny but I’m not that old . . . yet.

Sweaters – I ran across four very nice sweaters with one being a very thick pile high end from Ermenegildo Zegna and two of the others being from a younger Zegna Sport. Total combined retail price of the four sweaters would come to over three thousand dollars but cost me only $31.56. The one Zegna sweater is certainly a very nice one but I find it amazing that someone would pay over a thousand dollars for it and then donate it to the Goodwill. The multicolored brown is 100% alpaca, light and very warm for those cold evenings coming up in the next few months. We raise alpacas so this makes a great example to show what can be made from their fur. Many thanks to those who can afford and donate such nice clothing and then provide an opportunity for those of us who recognize the great names but are not otherwise able to afford such nice apparel!

Pants – Three unusual pair of pants, each from Ermenegildo Zegna, showed up in my shopping buggy. A pair of tan casual wear fit perfectly while another blue “jeans” were made for a 6’ 7” tall basketball player with much longer legs than mine. It isn’t often that I find a brand new pair of Ermenegildo Zegna trousers with the store tags still attached. This pair even came with a plastic zip lock pouch with extra buttons. One pair of tan colored trousers were a similar cotton cargo style pair and had the drycleaner’s tag still attached. This pair also had the waist adjusters to let out or pull in the waist to better fit you after the Thanksgiving dinner coming up shortly. Another tan pair fit perfectly that I paid less than five dollars for would have cost 110 times as much retail. If I had purchased thee two together at a retail store, they would have set me back more than fifteen hundred dollars. My actual cost combined for the three high end pair was only $21.37. A price I could more easily afford.

Ties – Twenty ties made it to the list this month hitting their usual high number in comparison to the other categories. Listed in alphabetical order are an Armani, Bally, Brioni, Burberry, Canali (3), Ermenegildo Zegna, Gucci (2), Hermès (2), Kiton, Lanvin Paris, Luciano Barbera, and Massimo Bizzocchi (4). I was quite thrilled to have found the Hermès but one of them was clearly a fake. Can you tell which is the real and which is not? It is very seldom and a highlight of my search to find anything made by the fashion house Kiton. There it was mixed in with the four seldom seen from Massimo Bizzocchi. Kiton is considered by many in the clothing industry to be the Best! “Massimo Bizzocchi has his own line of ties and is the Chairman of the Kiton Corporation, producer of arguably the finest (and maybe the most expensive) suits in the world.” When you find a cache of the highest quality clothing in one group, you have to wonder if someone died or if he made his wife so made she found a way to get rid of her anger (and the clothes). Enough said about that except that I was a lucky person to be at the right place at the right time.

Shoes – Five Allen Edmonds and one Tod’s cost me $27.95 but had a retail value of over two thousand dollars. I’ve already promised by father a pair of black Greyson dress loafers from my favorite brand – Allen Edmonds. These included the following styles: Boulder, Greyson Dress loafer, Shelton, St. Thomas V.I., and Verona II. The Tod’s were a pair of Gommino drivers that I plan to wear around the house since I already have a pair of Gucci drivers for the car. This was an exceptional find with this many of my favorite brand. It doesn’t happen very often. I’ve learned that Tod’s last a long time and these list for almost five hundred dollars, more than one hundred times what I paid!

Accessories – Here is where it gets a bit interesting. My youngest just enrolled in a college and I found a pair of winter socks with the college logo all over it. She’ll like keeping her feet warm with her stocking stuffer this Christmas. She is also interested in joining the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) and I found a scarf from this organization for her to let her know the application is in the works.

     Two Honeywell fans were located, one for keeping my cool in the office and the other for those hot summer evenings at home. The fans are easily located in any department store, are relatively quiet and not that expensive. They were on the shelf and I needed both.

     My other daughter will love the Justin Mutton Bustin’ bandana since she is the cowgirl of the family. She later informed me this was not a “real” cowboy bandana but rather, a child’s lookalike that are handed out at the local rodeo. Chalk this one up to experience.

     Lane makes some very fine furniture and their cedar sample shown here works great for putting those special high-priced neck ties in a safe place. Just roll up the tie and it’s just the right size for four of your very best.

     Another fantastic assortment of M.I. Hummel figurines were located as compared to last month, with all but a couple in perfect condition and most with the earlier TMK-2 trademark placing them being created in the early 1950s. The list of these figurines is a bit lengthy with a total of 16 but well worth the steep price I had to think twice of paying. They are detailed below as to what each is called. They cost more than $500 total but have a market value in excess of seven thousand dollars. That could of course change any time for the better or for the worse.

     Last on the list were two very nice Pampered Chef stoneware items, one being a glazed deep dish pie plate and the other is a popular medium baker.

     The following chart shows how much was paid for each item, the tagged price before my discount and a link to the retail price of that article or one similar to it if I could not find the exact item. Use this as an aid in looking up the prices you may find on a similar item.

August 2019

$784.85 $838.43 $29,580.63 37.7x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
6,495 Brioni Tuxedo 12.98 12.98 6,495.00 Black Italy
Dress Jacket
1,995 Canali Windowpane mohair 17.99 17.99 1,995.00 Grey Italy
2,416 Aster 1873 4.50 8.99 175.00 Brown Italy
Canali 5.59 6.99 345.00 Peach Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura 3.99 3.99 510.00 Green Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 545.00 Green Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 545.00 Green Italy
Lululemon Athletica 14.99 19.99 58.00 Purple Canada
Lululemon Athletica 11.24 14.99 68.00 Purple Canada
Psycho Bunny 8.79 10.99 120.00 White Peru
Tesla 2.25 4.49 50.00 Black China
3,235 Calidad de Exportacion 9.99 9.99 200.00 Brown Peru
Ermenegildo Zegna Zegna Sport 5.59 6.99 895.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Zegna Sport 5.59 6.99 845.00 Navy Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 10.39 12.99 1,295.00 Navy Italy
1,530 Ermenegildo Zegna Zegna Sport 4.99 4.99 550.00 Tan Honduras
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 9.99 9.99 485.00 Tan Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 6.39 7.99 495.00 Blue Italy
4,153 Armani, Giorgio 1.99 1.99 150.00 Navy Italy
Bally 1.99 1.99 195.00 Navy Italy
Brioni 1.99 1.99 230.00 White Italy
Burberry 6.39 7.99 190.00 Blue England
Canali Milano 2.39 2.99 250.00 Brown Italy
Canali 1.59 1.99 230.00 Brown Italy
Canali 1.59 1.99 230.00 Yellow Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna 1.59 1.99 205.00 Brown Italy
Gucci 0.99 1.99 200.00 Red Italy
Gucci 2.24 2.99 200.00 Pink Italy
Hermès 5435 FA 0.99 1.99 180.00 Grey France
Hermès 1.99 3.99 388.00 Pink China
Kiton 1.59 1.99 295.00 Brown Italy
Lanvin Paris 2.39 2.99 140.00 Yellow Italy
Luciano Barbera 0.99 1.99 195.00 Black Italy
Massimo Bizzocchi 1.59 1.99 150.00 Blue Italy
Massimo Bizzocchi 1.59 1.99 150.00 Black Italy
Massimo Bizzocchi 1.59 1.99 150.00 Blue Italy
Massimo Bizzocchi 2.99 2.99 150.00 Blue Italy
Versace, Gianni 6.39 7.99 275.00 Yellow Italy
2,042 Allen Edmonds Boulder 4.79 5.99 195.00 Brown USA
Allen Edmonds Greyson Dress loafer 5.59 6.99 395.00 Black USA
Allen Edmonds Shelton 4.79 5.99 247.00 Brown USA
Allen Edmonds St. Thomas V.I. 3.99 4.99 364.95 Brown USA
Allen Edmonds Verona II 3.99 4.99 345.00 Brown USA
Tod’s Gommino drivers 4.79 5.99 495.00 Tan Italy
1,668 Local University Winter socks 1.49 1.49 13.99 Red China
DAR National Society Daughters of the American Revolution 1.49 1.49 38.74 Blue China
Honeywell Small black electrical fan 5.59 6.99 14.00 Black USA
Honeywell Small black electrical fan 5.59 6.99 14.00 Black USA
Justin Mutton Bustin’ bandana 1.99 1.99 18.00 Red China
Lane small cedar box 1.99 1.99 89.00 Tan USA
M.I. Hummel 1976 20-year plaque 4.99 4.99 40.00 White Germany
M.I. Hummel 1976 20-year plaque 4.99 4.99 40.00 White Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 2/II Little Fiddler TMK-6 157.89 157.89 1,000.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 14 Bookends TMK-3 41.00 41.00 400.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 47 3/0 Goose Girl TMK-2 9.25 9.25 200.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 74 Little Gardner TMK-2 5.02 5.02 200.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 81 2/0 School Girl TMK-2 5.08 5.08 350.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 82 2/0 School Boy TMK-2 8.50 8.50 350.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 92 Plaque TMK-2 16.05 16.05 189.95 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 99 Eventide TMK-2 75.00 75.00 1,200.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 99 Eventide TMK-2 19.50 19.50 750.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 152/0/A Umbrella Boy TMK-4 40.00 40.00 875.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 152/0/B Umbrella Girl TMK-4 53.00 53.00 875.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 186 Sweet Music TMK-2 24.30 24.30 225.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 360/B Boy wall vase 37.45 37.45 375.00 Tan Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 360/C Girl wall vase 37.45 37.45 375.00 Tan Germany
Pampered Chef Glazed deep dish pie plate 3.99 4.99 40.00 Tan USA
Pampered Chef Medium baker 3.99 4.99 42.00 Tan USA

     You find the best examples when you least expect it and it is great fun to share with others much like yourself. Thank you for reading and good luck with your own search. I hope these posts help you in finding that little gem just waiting to be pulled out from the rest.

Key Words: Allen Edmonds, Armani, Aster, Bally, Brioni, Burberry, Canali, DAR, Ermenegildo Zegna, Gucci, Hermès, Honeywell, Justin, Kiton, Lane, Lanvin, Luciano Barbera, Lululemon, M.I. Hummel, Massimo Bizzocchi, Pampered Chef, Tesla, Tod’s, Versace

July 2019 Summary

Logo small     July of 2019 was an unusual month in that I was able to focus on a different topic entirely and it had little to do with clothing, my usual motivation. This idea drastically changed the statistics I was looking for with my monthly target being at least 1/100th the actual cost. In sharp contrast to last month, the average retail was less than 25 times what I paid for the 54 items and I spent way over my monthly allocation. The next month will have to be a great event to make up for this factor.

     With a bimonthly meeting coming up with our state M.I. Hummel Club, I decided to look for reference material in the book and magazine section of the thrift stores. Not only did I find what I was looking for but also found a number of great examples of the actual topics themselves, Hummels!

Treasures – I was able to locate some very nice items of clothing that can be considered treasures, items to use and possibly pass on. I was able to locate on a pair of ladies Gucci slacks that fit my daughter Goodwill had mistakenly put in the men’s section and were clearly a woman’s higher end pair. Another pair of high-end black slacks that fit me came from Ermenegildo Zegna and would have cost me 232 times as much as I paid if I had purchased them at retail. I believe my sister will love the $750 Stefano Ricci scarf I found for less than ten dollars. A pair of like-new Bally loafers fit perfectly for less than eight dollars.

     Then there were the six beautiful M.I. Hummel figurines, in great shape to add to the collection already taking up one wall. There were a great many more items that would qualify as treasures but one additional should be mentioned here. This was a genuine Patek Philippe Geneve wooden watch presentation box made of piano wood valued at close to two thousand dollars. These are very hard to come by so make sure you take a look at it in the accompanying photograph. The little red paper bag can be found on eBay with an asking price of around $90 and the outer cardboard box lists for much more than that. Did I mention that the plastic hang tag sells for as much as $99? It’s a crazy world but anything with the name of Patek Philippe commands a healthy price.

Dress Jacket – Only one dress jacket was picked up but it was a very nice charcoal colored Giorgio Armani. This was a perfect fit and appeared to have never been used and could not be put back onto the rack. Armani has a number of different brands within the company and the black label, like the one inside this jacket, tells me this is on the upper end of his clothing lines. One thing I have noticed with his jackets is the rough texture, not a silky finish like many of the other high-end clothing houses.

Shirts – Just six shirts were located that warranted consideration for making their way into my closet. These included a Giorgio Armani Collezioni, a grey Ermenegildo Zegna Z, an unusual but very nice Il Migliorr Tesla, a white Rag & Bone Standard Issue, a Stetson button down and a Vineyard Vines Slim Fit Tucker shirt. It’s hard to go wrong with the two Italian brands Armani and Zegna and I I am trying to limit my purchases in shirts to either those that fit perfectly, would make a great gift or is from a brand that merits not passing it up.

Pants – Three high-end names of some very nice pair of trousers were located. Anything Canali seems to be made just for me and the light grey Sport Canali pants are great for just kicking around informal events in style. Another nice find was an unusual pair of black dress Ermenegildo Zegna pants with the hard-to-find five-star asterisks (*****) designation to let you know you found their best of the best. These $1,295 pair of pants were picked up for only $5.59, a fantastic find for about the price of a fancy Starbucks flavored coffee! Another surprise was the ladies $980 Gucci black viscose boot cut pants I found in the men’s section that had hung there for 31 days. This meant that they qualified for the Thursday color of the month making my cost just one dollar. This was an even better buy since they fit my younger daughter. She will most certainly agree with that! A photograph will be added shortly

Ties – Two Canali and four Ermenegildo Zegna ties were picked up making this a clean sweep for the Italians. It would appear that this website has educated my town of the better names to pick up and the good selections are becoming harder to find in my local area.

Shoes – I was surprised that the beautiful Bally Cesano loafers actually fit my large feet since they looked a bit smaller on the store shoe rack. I don’t actually need any more shoes but wasn’t about to pass up the $675 like-new pair for only $7.99.

     Another great find was a pair of brown Western style Dan Post Miller round toe boots, my size of course. These $179.99 boots, with a Goodwill price tag of $29.99, were a bit rough when I found them showing that they were dirty and dried out to a small extent which would probably explain why they had been on the top of the shoe rack for 30 days. Lucky for me, they had the Thursday “one dollar day” green tag and I grabbed them hoping they would look like new with a bit of elbow grease and leather conditioner. Sure enough, Dan Post makes a very good quality Western boot and they lived up to their brand as I expected. This was a great purchase for only one dollar and is what keeps me on the road checking out all the Goodwill stores. You never know what you might come across.

Accessories – There were 37 items to fit this expanding category. I will mention only a few here and let the photographs provide most of the descriptive catch this month. There was a great book and magazine collection on the M.I. Hummel figurines, six M.I. Hummel figurines (HUM 10/I Flower Madonna, HUM 46/0 Madonna, HUM 56/A Culprits, HUM 87 For Father, HUM 196/0 Telling Her Secrets and HUM 331 Crossroads Limited), a number of books and an old British map I found that can be used as reference material to assist me with my own family history, a much needed butter dish, a small curio cabinet to put the smaller Hummels in, a giant clothespin to use as a “chip clip”, a coffee mug, a soup mug, three Pampered Chef stoneware items, a Patek Philippe Geneve wooden watch presentation box, a Pyrex 3-quart dish with lid, and a very expensive Stefano Ricci scarf. All in all, a very nice month.

     As always, the following chart shows how much was paid for each item, the tagged price before my discount and a link to the retail price of that article or one similar to it if I could not find the exact item. Use this as an aid in looking up the prices you may find on a similar item.

July 2019

$624.70 $674.76 $15,430.75 24.7x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Dress Jackets
2,295 Giorgio Armani 6.39 7.99 2,295.00 Charcoal Italy
1,239 Armani, Giorgio Collezioni 6.99 6.99 495.00 Grey Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 4.99 4.99 450.00 Grey Italy
Il Migliorr Tesla 9.99 9.99 45.00 Grey China
Rag & Bone Standard Issue 9.99 9.99 90.00 White Peru
Stetson button down 4.99 4.99 69.99 Grey China
Vineyard Vines Slim Fit Tucker Shirt 5.59 6.99 89.50 Green China
2,700 Canali Sport 3.99 3.99 425.00 Grey Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna ***** 5.59 6.99 1,295.00 Black Romania
Gucci Viscose boot cut pant 1.00 12.99 980.00 Black Italy
1,075 Canali 5.99 5.99 230.00 Brown Italy
Canali 1.00 1.99 230.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 1.99 1.99 205.00 Yellow Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 1.99 1.99 205.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 1.99 1.99 205.00 Orange Italy
855 Bally Cesano 7.99 7.99 675.00 Brown Italy
Dan Post Miller Round Toe 1.00 29.99 179.95 Brown USA
7,266 Ars Edition Lebensweisheiten 5.61 5.61 35.43 Tan Germany
Barry The History of Mass 3 vol set 20.87 20.87 72.98 Black USA
Better World Books Hummel: Her Life and Work 3.73 3.73 55.21 Orange Germany
Collectors News HUMMELS 1978-98 Miller On Hummel 3.98 3.98 55.21 Grey USA
Free Wind Press Tall Ships of Newburyport 3.49 3.49 171.14 Blue USA
Goebel 1979 Hummel Festival Eaton, OH 6.68 6.68 29.99 White Germany
Goebel 7 Hummel Figurines Catalogs 0.99 0.99 50.00 Red Germany
Goebel Hummel Figurines Catalog 1955 19.00 19.00 20.70 Blue Germany
Goebel Insights Hummel Club Magazines 9.79 9.79 72.00 Many Germany
Goebel Insights Hummel Club Magazines 11.34 11.34 36.00 Orange Germany
Goebel Insights Hummel Club Magazines 18.42 18.42 180.00 Blue Germany
Goodspeed Hickman Co. Tennessee Biographies 11.50 11.50 12.00 Yellow USA
Krause Publications Official Hummel Price Guide 2013 13.26 13.26 32.20 Green USA
Morison Maritime History of Mass 1784-1869 12.99 12.99 186.70 Blue USA
Portfolio Press Hummels and Me: Skrobek, Gerhard 4.29 4.29 65.73 Orange USA
Terence Dalton Ipswich, Town on the Orwell 3.28 3.28 38.03 Grey England
Wonsch Hummel Copycats with Values 3.49 3.49 118.86 Purple USA
Curio cabinet Wood and glass 5.99 5.99 161.95 Brown USA
M.I. Hummel HUM 10/1 Flower Madonna TMK-2 30.98 30.98 450.00 White Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 46/0 Madonna TMK-2 21.49 21.49 125.00 White Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 56/A Culprits TMK-1 28.49 28.49 1,100.00 Brown Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 87 For Father TMK-3 15.60 15.60 200.00 Brown Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 196/0 Telling Her Secrets TMK-5 31.36 31.36 390.00 Green Germany
M.I. Hummel HUM 331 Crossroads Limited TMK-6 28.37 28.37 500.00 Brown Germany
Crown Manor Butter dish 1.59 1.99 18.00 Tan USA
Darice 9192-08 Super jumbo clothespin 1.99 1.99 6.34 Wood USA
Dennis East Inter. Coffee mug 1.19 1.49 22.00 Brown USA
Home Décor S18 Red Collection 28.7 oz soup mug 1.00 3.99 11.99 Red China
Pampered Chef Bean dip bowl 6.99 6.99 55.00 Tan China
Pampered Chef Dutch Oven Large Roaster bottom 3.99 3.99 88.75 Tan England
Pampered Chef Family Heritage Collection 4.99 4.99 39.00 Tan Italy
Pyrex Oblong 3-qt dish with blue lid 4.99 4.99 41.00 Blue USA
Encyclopædia Brit. 1890 Suffolk England map 13.78 13.78 124.99 Tan USA
Encyclopædia Brit. Suffolk England 1890 map 23.77 23.77 13.00 tan Japan
Goodwill bag Goodwill reusable bag 0.99 0.99 0.99 Blue China
Patek Philippe Patek Philippe Wooden Watch Box 135.00 135.00 1,937.11 Brown Switzerland
Stefano Ricci scarf 27.98 27.98 750.00 Blue USA

     You can expect to find the best examples when you least expect it and it is great fun to share with others much like yourself. Thank you for reading and good luck with your own search. I hope these posts help you in finding that little gem just waiting to be pulled out from the rest.

Key words: Bally, Canali, Dan Post, Encyclopædia Britannica, Ermenegildo Zegna, Giorgio Armani, Goebel, Gucci, Il Migliorr, M.I. Hummel, Pampered Chef, Patek Philippe, Pyrex, Stefano Ricci, Stetson, Vineyard Vines

November 2018 Summary

Logo smallIt must be true that your perspective changes to a reality when you have to move to another address and relocate everything that you have accumulated. It took me a full two weeks to transfer all my belongings to the other address and now all the boxes look alike when I try to find anything. I am a firm believer that the opposite of Goodwillitis is Goodwill Gluttony.

     It was difficult limiting my visits, but I was able to make only one trip to my three favorite stores one Friday this month, just before one of the Saturday half-off days. I spent $71 on fifteen items and the retail would have cost me $3,826 or 54 times as much. This was not near my goal of 100 times as much but the purchases were certainly well worth the time and money spent. Where else can you find the variety and quality in high-end name brands that are affordable than the Goodwill stores?

Treasures – Items of quality, durable use and difficulty to locate (rare) are one of my keys to the definition of a treasure. The two Ralph Lauren Purple Label shirts definitely fit this description. They are well made and fashion fast. The black Ermenegildo Zegna tuxedo trousers are a nice addition as a second pair to match my Ermenegildo Zegna tuxedo suit just waiting for that special event to properly represent the occasion. A dark blue tie is always a welcome item when the label represents the exclusive French house of design by Charvet. These treasures have a special place in their respective locations just waiting to be represented on those days when they show best what they were made for.

Shirts – This one trip to my three favorite stores yielded seven shirts of obvious quality. I paid more than usual for the Burberry London shirt, $15.99, but this is a name I have learned that represents lasting quality and style. The shirt went into the buggy just the same since it sells for twenty times as much brand new. Two other shirts by Charles Tyrwhitt were located and I knew from experience that these would fit very well and look great with any suit I choose to wear. An additional two dress shirts from Ermenegildo Zegna, one dark brown and another a beautiful light blue were picked up with the knowledge that the blue one cost close to $500. The last two shirts were from Ralph Lauren but also represented his top of the line Purple Label. Both of these shirts list for $450 each and I was able to secure the two for a total of only $13.58, an otherwise rare find.

Pants – Formality and attention to appropriate etiquette is quickly fading out in some areas of our country but the word tuxedo lets you know this article of clothing is all about correctness and proper decorum. I was fortunate to locate a pair of black Ermenegildo Zegna tuxedo trousers to match my perfect one button tuxedo coat by the same company. If I had purchased these pants new, they would have cost me more than one hundred times as much. The price I paid was a little more than a cup of flavored coffee, $5.59.

Ties – On the one visit this month, I located a number of my favorite names and a few I rarely see but knew were of great quality. A seven-fold Barba Napoli tie from France grabbed my eye and I grabbed it back. Two other ties from France, I knew needed to be purchased, was a blue Charvet and another from Hilditch & Key. The Italians were well represented with one each from Canali, KOLTE and Sartori.

Accessories – I needed a thin pair of dark blue socks and found the size and color I was looking for. The price, a modest 55 cents. A quick run through the clothes washer and they will keep my feet warm and match my outfit for the day.

     The following chart is a breakdown of what I purchased for the month of November 2018. My total expenditure was $71 which would have cost me right at fifty-four times as much, or $3,826, if full retail had been paid. I saved twenty percent over the tagged price of $92.55 by using their monthly coupon and the colored tags that were marked half off.

November 2018

$71.05 $92.55 $3,826.00 53.9x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
2,330 Burberry London 15.99 19.99 320.00 Tan Turkey
Charles Tyrwhitt Slim Fit 3.50 6.99 110.00 Red England
Charles Tyrwhitt 6.39 7.99 110.00 Blue England
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 395.00 Brown Romania
Ermenegildo Zegna 7.99 9.99 495.00 Blue Italy
Ralph Lauren Purple Label 7.99 9.99 450.00 Blue Italy
Ralph Lauren Purple Label 5.59 6.99 450.00 Cream Italy
595 Ermenegildo Zegna Tuxedo 5.59 6.99 595.00 Black Italy
899 Barba Napoli 1.59 1.99 116.00 Silver France
Canali 3.19 3.99 200.00 Blue Italy
Charvet Place Vendôme 1.59 1.99 245.00 Blue France
Hilditch & Key 1.59 1.99 135.00 Blue France
KOLTE 1.50 2.99 125.00 Gold Italy
Sartori 2.39 2.99 78.00 Red Italy
2 Generic Socks 0.55 0.69 2.00 Blue USA

     Knowing your brands in each category of interest, as to which will command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the products that sell well or have a long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you a good net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

Key words: Barba, Burberry, Canali, Charles Tyrwhitt, Charvet, Ermenegildo Zegna, Hilditch & Key, Hummel, KOLTE, Patek Philippe, Ralph Lauren Purple Label, Sartori

October 2018 Summary

Logo smallThe month of October this year was quite a departure from the regular browsing through the clothes racks. There were a number of changes in my expenditures that dictated a different approach to what was to show up on this web site at the end of the month. One of these directions turned to an interest in high-end watches and fountain pens, specifically those made by the Swiss manufacturers Patek Philippe and Montblanc.

A recent visit to the only Patek Philippe dealer in our metropolitan area produced an immediate fever for more information on this elusive and very expensive example of perfection. This visit created an even greater impulse to research more on the fine artistry and care taken to create what some consider to be the very best name in watches in the world. Although I was lucky enough to recently find a beautiful example of a ladies Patek Philippe wrist watch, I know the possibility of finding one show up on my own wrist is quite remote, if ever at all. Nevertheless, the nice sales lady behind the counter of the dealer of these fantastic pieces of workmanship took more than thirty minutes of her time to help educate me on the beautiful time pieces and almost had me convinced that I could afford an irresistible $37,000 Calatrava. Common sense and my thin wallet stepped in quickly to reassure me that this was not a possibility.

Patek Philippe Collections. Click to enlarge.

An opportunity presented itself later on which allowed me to affordably add to my library of used books these fine watches from Patek Philippe.  All of the books purchased, with the exception of one, were originally sold by the Patek Philippe Museum.  The list price for each of the four annual Collection Books on their website in new condition is CHF 660 which equates to $658.72. Each one of these four books is a pristine work of art in itself and I consider myself quite fortunate to have such a museum quality set to look through each evening after dinner!

Montblanc 380 ballpoint pen Click to enlarge.

The last item made the list this month of the ten items, a beautiful Montblanc type 380 ballpoint pen.  A co-worker carries a Montblanc fountain pen in his shirt pocket and it became a topic of discussion which led to learning how to distinguish a fake from the real thing. I’m still not totally convinced this one is real but it was certainly worth a two dollar bill to have a nice working pen even if it there is that slight chance it may be an imitation.

The following chart is a break down of what I purchased for the month of October 2018. My total expenditure was $147.57 which would have cost me right at thirty times as much, or $4,454.29, if full retail had been paid.

October 2018

$147 $161 $4,454 30.2x
Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Origin
Montblanc 380 ballpoint pen 1.99 15.50 420.00 Germany
Patek Philippe Collection Catalog 2017 0.01 0.01 25.99 Switzerland
Patek Philippe Collection Catalog 2018 0.01 0.01 25.99 Switzerland
Patek Philippe Collection Book 2009-2010 12.99 12.99 658.72 Switzerland
Patek Philippe Collection Book 2010-2011 13.59 13.59 658.72 Switzerland
Patek Philippe Collection Book Volume I – 2014 18.74 18.74 658.72 Switzerland
Patek Philippe Collection Book Volume II – 2015 13.59 13.59 658.72 Switzerland
Patek Philippe Collection Book Volume III – 2016 27.95 27.95 658.72 Switzerland
Patek Philippe Collection Book Volume IV – 2017 48.72 48.72 658.72 Switzerland
Schiffer Patek Philippe: Highlights 9.98 9.98 29.99 USA

Knowing your brands, as to which command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the brands that sell well or have long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you a good net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

Key words: Montblanc, Patek Philippe

March 2018 Summary

Logo smallThis month was an especially good time to find Goodwill treasures! I spent way too much but the pickings were exceptionally great in some of the categories. I was way off the three-digit figure with my average cost being only fifty times the suggested retail value.

Treasures – What a great month for finding some real gems. There were almost too many to mention in this section alone. One of my favorite names in clothing is that of the Italian Brioni. I was able to find several examples of this fine brand; a Brioni Roma charcoal suit, a Brioni Weinberg suit jacket, a pair of Brioni Cannes trousers and three Brioni ties. Another name I like is Dunhill. There was a like-new brown linen suit just my size as well as a Dunhill shirt to go along with it.

Speaking of suit coats, I also located a top of the line Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura and a beautiful Luciana Barbera Hopsack jacket. This jacket is super soft and has the working surgeon sleeve buttons.

I had heard of DSquared before but never saw one of their shirts until this month. Now, I see why they cost as much as they do.

Gucci was well represented with a black pair of suede horse-bit shoes, a signature logo belt and a brown tie.

It is not very often that you find the once very popular Goebel Hummel figurines but there were quite a few available this month, eleven that I was able to pick up for a very good price considering what they are valued at in the latest price guides. Apparently, the grandkids didn’t want grandma’s collection and opted to let someone else have a start at a very nice hobby.

Lastly, a real treasure was the 1901 Ulysse Nardin art deco pocket watch converted to a wrist watch that I really didn’t need but was hard to resist. The Swiss company is known for their high quality and longevity. Perhaps, my son will like to pass this on to his grandson one of these days.

Suits – Two suits were located well worth mentioning. As mentioned previously, Brioni is a favorite of mine for good reason. They are recognized as one of the finest men’s clothiers and charge accordingly. You can typically find some very good examples of their line in cities that have a Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue or Barney’s. The other name that I seldom see is that of Dunhill. This suit fit perfectly and looks like it is brand new.

Dress Jackets – I’ve been much more selective as to what I will purchase and three great examples that I couldn’t resist were the black Brioni Weinberg, a very nice Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura and a very soft brown Luciana Barbera Hopsack.

Shirts – I had a nice surprise with a couple that I had not seen before, namely the DSquared2 and the Massimo Trovato. Other names you would otherwise recognize were two from Giorgio Armani, Canali (2), Charles Tyrwhitt, Ermenegildo Zegna (3), Eton (3), Isaia, and LaCoste. I knew the DSquared2 was an expensive brand but didn’t realize the shirt I found for $5.59 originally sold for around $775.

Vest – There are certain brand names that when you run across from time to time that grab your total attention. One of these that secures my response is that of Yves Saint Laurent. You know that this item cost the initial purchaser a rather large sum of money and the quality will be there for years to come. I rarely have the opportunity to wear a vest but on those occasions, this navy vest will come in handy.

Pants – This category seldom has very many items but I was able to find four sought after name brands that represented this area very well. These were a navy pair of Armani Black Label cotton pants, a cream colored Brioni Cannes trousers for dressy occasions, a pair of black Canali Pantalone and a brown pair of Ermenegildo Zegna Z slacks.

Neckties – Eighteen ties found their way back to the house this month. These were Giorgio Armani Cravatte, Brioni (3), Burberrys’ (3), Caesar Shop, Chanel, Charvet, Dunhill, Ermenegildo Zegna, Gucci, Lanvin Paris, Louis Vuitton Paris, M.C. Escher Beetles, Massimo Bizzocchi 8.00 CM and an orange Salvatore Ferragamo. I was very surprised to find the luxurious black LV tie but it was well worth the $7.98. Missimo Bizzocchi represents the upper level of handmade ties in the world with his connections to the house of Kiton!

Shoes – Only one pair of shoes made the list this month but it was a great pair to find. I located a used but very nice pair of black suede gold horse-bit shoes and although they were two sizes too small I went ahead and picked up the $550 pair for less than forty dollars. The very next Goodwill store I visited had a like new pair of brown Gucci but they were marked way out of my range at $250. Three pair of very nice cedar shoe trees were secured for the rest of my shoe collection.

Accessories – The name of Gucci showed up again with a signature belt I was able to pick up for only $1.19. The signature belt is a bit flashy for my taste but perhaps someone in the family might like to wear it.

On a rare occasion, you will find a host of items that were brought in to a Goodwill and are marked accordingly. I was lucky to have enough in my spare account for just such an occasion when I located eleven Hummel figurines and five books on the subject. Although I spent more than I should have, I remember thinking a while back that I missed a great opportunity because I hesitated too long but not this time. While I was in college, a girlfriend whose parents were from Germany introduced me to these highly prized porcelain figurines and convinced me the real value they represented for a future investment. They have taken a nose dive lately but that just makes it that much easier to pick up some of the best examples for an affordable price.

A few other items in this category worth mentioning were the Kate Spade scarf that made it to the half-price period and a favorite brand of one of my daughters. She’s already claimed it but will have to wait until her upcoming birthday before she will see it again. Several pair of cufflinks and shirt studs were located, a really nice set of floor scales and a much needed wooden shoe rack to get a number of my shoes off the floor.



March 2018

$720.76 $822.06 $36,096.06 50.1x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
8,045 Brioni Roma 19.97 24.99 5,750.00 Charcoal Italy
Dunhill Linen 18.72 24.99 2,295.00 Tan Italy
Dress Jackets
10,720 Brioni Weinberg 7.98 9.99 4,950.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura 10.38 12.99 4,175.00 Brown Switzerland
Luciana Barbera Hopsack 7.98 9.99 1,595.00 Brown Italy
5,360 Armani, Giorgio Armani Exchange 9.99 9.99 85.00 White China
Armani, Giorgio Luxury Collezioni 9.73 12.99 595.00 White Italy
Canali  – 7.98 9.99 350.00 Blue Italy
Canali 1934 5.59 6.99 345.00 Grey Italy
Charles Tyrwhitt Slim Fit 3.59 4.49 110.00 White England
DSquared2  – 7.98 9.99 775.00 White Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura 5.24 6.99 510.00 Blue Spain
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 7.98 9.99 395.00 Blue Turkey
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 7.98 9.99 395.00 Brown Turkey
Eton Classic 6.38 7.99 305.00 Brown Romania
Eton Classic 5.24 6.99 305.00 Blue Romania
Eton Made To Measure 5.24 6.99 305.00 Orange Lithuania
Isaia Houndstooth 5.24 6.99 495.00 Blue Italy
LaCoste Oxford 3.36 4.49 89.50 Yellow Tunisia
Massimo Trovato Double twisted cotton 3.49 6.99 300.00 Blue Italy
690 Yves Saint Laurent Classic 1.00 3.99 690.00 Navy Italy
2,240 Armani, Giorgio Black Label 3.49 6.99 525.00 Black Italy
Brioni Cannes 5.59 6.99 700.00 Cream Italy
Canali Pantalone 6.73 8.99 450.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 565.00 Brown Portugal
3,413 Armani, Giorgio Cravatte 2.39 2.99 150.00 Navy Italy
Brioni Roma 3.99 4.99 230.00 Red Italy
Brioni  – 3.19 3.99 230.00 Red Italy
Brioni  – 3.99 3.99 230.00 Brown Italy
Burberrys  – 5.59 6.99 190.00 Brown England
Burberrys  – 6.38 7.99 190.00 Blue USA
Burberrys  – 6.38 7.99 190.00 Red USA
Caesar Shop Caesar 1.49 1.99 150.00 Brown Italy
Chanel Chain-link scarf 0.49 0.99 245.95 Navy Italy
Charvet Place Vendôme 2.39 2.99 245.00 Gray France
Dunhill London 2.39 2.99 150.00 Blue England
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 0.01 1.99 205.00 Yellow Italy
Gucci  – 3.99 4.99 200.00 Red Italy
Lanvin Paris 1.59 1.99 165.00 Red France
Louis Vuitton Paris 7.98 9.99 215.00 Black Italy
M.C. Escher Beetles 1.49 1.99 62.03 Blue Italy
Massimo Bizzocchi 8.00 CM 1.99 1.99 175.00 Blue Italy
Salvatore Ferragamo  – 2.39 2.99 190.00 Orange Italy
580 Gucci Gold-Bit loafer 39.94 49.99 550.00 Black Italy
Shoe tree Wood 2.39 2.99 10.00 Cedar USA
Shoe tree Wood 2.39 2.99 10.00 Cedar USA
Shoe tree Wood 2.39 2.99 10.00 Cedar USA
5,049 Gucci Signature Belt 1.19 1.49 400.00 Brown Italy
Hummel 007 /1 Merry Wanderer 22.50 22.50 650.00 TMK-3 Germany
Hummel 011 2/0 Merry Wanderer 26.29 26.29 113.00 TMK-4 Germany
Hummel 025 Angelic Sleep 40.65 40.65 350.00 TMK-1 Germany
Hummel 047 / II Goose Girl 67.23 67.23 350.00 TMK-3 Germany
Hummel 061A + 061B Bookends 25.24 25.24 950.00 TMK-2 Germany
Hummel 061B Chick Girl 18.14 18.14 475.00 TMK-2 Germany
Hummel 079 Globe Trotter 22.50 22.50 138.00 TMK-5 Germany
Hummel 094 /1 Surprise 15.70 15.70 238.00 TMK-2 Germany
Hummel 187 /A Collector’s Plaque 29.99 29.99 113.00 TMK-5 Germany
Hummel 187 Collector’s Plaque 87.49 87.49 800.00 TMK-2 Germany
Hummel 195 2/0 Barnyard Hero 15.25 15.25 115.00 TMK-6 Germany
Hummel Authorized Book 5.16 5.16 29.95  Book USA
Kate Spade scarf 12.47 24.99 98.00 Grey USA
Luckey’s Guide 9780896891197 3.74 3.74 26.09 Book USA
M.I. Hummel 9780942620085 6.94 6.94 32.50 Book USA
M.I. Hummel Album 9780883658789 4.42 4.42 24.99 Book USA
 The Golden Anniversary 9780942620085 3.85 3.85 32.50 Book USA
no name Cufflinks 5.59 6.99 13.79 Silver China
no name Shoe rack 9.58 11.99 48.82 Pine USA
Swank Shirt studs 5.99 5.99 29.95 Black USA
Sunbeam Floor scales 3.19 3.99 19.99 Black China

Key Words: Armani, Brioni, Burberrys’, Caesar Shop, Canali, Chanel, Charvet, Charles Tyrwhitt, DSquared2, Dunhill, Ermenegildo Zegna, Eton, Goebel, Gucci, Hummel, Isaia, LaCoste, Lanvin, Louis Vuitton, Luciana Barbera, M.C. Escher, Massimo Bizzocchi, Massimo Trovato, Salvatore Ferragamo, Swank, and Yves Saint Laurent


April 2017 Summary

Logo smallApril is the month for tornadoes in my area and it felt like I was creating one running through all the Goodwill stores locally. Two large goals were met this month: hitting the three-digit mark of having the items worth more than 100 times what I paid and having the total reach over $50,000 if purchased at their retail value. Of course, it wouldn’t have hit that last mark had I not found right at ninety items. Surprisingly, there were no pants or overcoats located to add to this list this month. The following is what I was able to locate and purchase this past April.

Aquascutum, Burberry's and Sartoria Castangia jacketsTreasures – Every now and then you run across a name you haven’t heard of but the quality is clearly apparent. Such was the case of a Castangia Sartoria jacket with its beautiful hand stitching, surgeon sleeves and a great Italian fit. I had never heard of this brand but a quick search on my cell phone while standing in the aisle said to put it immediately in the basket and enjoy it later. L-R: Lubium Loro Piana, Oxxford, Versace, Zegna x2Another great jacket, but a name I am well acquainted with is that of Oxxford Clothes. The $4,600 Gibbons two-button jacket landed in my basket for only $5.59. A number of tuxedo shirts from Armani and Jos. A Bank were picked up for those special occasions as well as a very nice Brioni plaid shirt. As sweaters go, you can’t do much better than those from Brioni, Ralph Lauren Purple Label and Carolina Herrera. These three make any trip well worth the while. The names of Bvlgari, Stefano Ricci and Oxxford Clothes represented special pickups in the neck tie section. Salvatore Ferragamo is always a welcome name to locate when cruising through the shoe rack looking inside each and every shoe for that reclusive brand. Finding a Louis Vuitton purse always begs the question as to whether it is the real thing or a very good fake. Kiton shoe bagsThis one that I purchased for $14 appears to be the real thing and should make for a great birthday present for one of my daughters in the near future. It’s always good to plan ahead for special events like these and have an item worthy of this celebration without spending a fortune. Another fantastic but relatively scarce name is that of Kiton. They make the very best clothing, shoes, belts … everything. I picked up two pair (4) of Kiton shoe bag covers for a total of $10. Anything with that name located on it shows that it lives up to its slogan of the “Best of the best plus one”.

Burberry London and Givenchy Monsieur suitsSuits – One of my favorite names in suits, well everything else they make as well, is Burberry. When you can find a very nice navy Burberry London suit that is just your size for less than twelve dollars, it makes its way to the buggy, post haste. The same goes for a brown Givenchy Monsieur suit. Prices at the Goodwill stores in my area have recently been marked down for suits from the usual $19.99 to $14.99 and with my 20% discount coupon, each was purchased for $11.97. A good investment for those days when you want to present your best and go from navy (power) to brown (trust) while looking professional.

Canali dress jacketsDress Jackets – Sixteen dress jackets were picked up this month. I was trying to cut back since they take up a lot of room but check out this list of jackets and you will understand why it made it to sixteen. Aquascutum double breasted, Burberry’s (3), Giorgio Armani, Canali (4 in cashmere, silk, super 120’s), Castangia Sartoria, Ermenegildo Zegna (2), Lubiam Loro Piana tuxedo, Oxxford Clothes Gibbons, Versace double breasted, and Yves Saint Laurent. Great names for some great quality jackets! (See also photographs above)

April shirt purchaseShirts – Twenty-eight shirts were picked up. Shirts are easy to cruise through with their tags sitting up next to the neck of the hanger just begging to be seen. Here is what I was able to locate. Again, I am trying to limit my selection but some of these just jumped into my buggy wanting to go home with me. Tuxedo shirtsGiorgio Armani (3, Collezioni tuxedo), Bogosse, Brioni, Burberry, Canali, Dolce & Gabbana, Ermenegildo Zegna (7), Eton, Façonnable, Harry & Sons, I Love Ugly, Ike Behar, John Nordstrom, Jos. A Bank (tuxedo), Lorenzini, Psycho Bunny, Rag & Bone, Versace, Yves Saint Laurent pour homme, and Zumo.

Sweater April purchaseSweaters – I have experienced a new awakening about the retail price some sweaters go for on the high end scale of clothing. The Brioni I located has a retail in Neiman Marcus of almost two thousand dollars and the Ralph Lauren Purple Label is right behind it at more than twelve hundred. Wow! Each of these was purchased for only $4.99. Others located worth grabbing were from Giorgio Armani A|X, Carolina Herrera, I Levrieri (2) and a grey Lyle & Scott merino.

April tie purhaseTies – Once again, the number of ties fell behind the number of shirts this month with only thirteen picked out of the hanging racks. A name I didn’t expect to find was that of Bvlgari. The tie is in the upper region of pricing coming in at $245 just above Canali at $230 but quite a bit less than the Oxxford Clothes tie I found that sells for $295. Other ties located were from English Laundry, Ermenegildo Zegna Couture, Ermenegildo Zegna Disegno Esclusivo, Fendi, Salvatore Ferragamo, Stefano Ricci and Valentino.

April shoe purchaseShoes – My son needed some good quality shoes that were slip resistant so I located two of the Ecco brand in his shoe size and this met his requirement. Two other shoe brands worth having in my closet are the Salvatore Ferragamo wing-tip tassel loafers and the To Boot New York Calhern. The other items found in this category are the shoe trees from FootJoy, Men’s Wearhouse and Rumson Whitehouse Hardy New York.

Setwell hangersHangers – I was surprised at the high price some of these maple suit hangers retail for. Setwell is one of the best brands to look for and has a retail price of more than $57 each but are well worth the price I paid of $1.19 per item. Suits last much longer when well supported by the wide, smooth maple from this company of hangers. I was lucky to come across seven which had been put out on the floor that same day.

Pocket Square – It was an unusual month for locating good pocket squares. I found a brown plaid pocket square with the quickly recognizable Burberry Equestrian Knight and a beautiful Dominie plain white. Two others of notable quality but no name on their tags were from Japan and China.

Louis Vuitton purseAccessories – This is another category, always with interesting surprises. Here they are in order: Budweiser select cigar humidor (great for storing photographs), Drake’s silk suspenders, Hanes socks, Kiton Munich shoe bag covers (2 sets), Louis Vuitton Alma PM monogram cloth purse, Lucien Piccard 11567-01 Adamello Chronograph new in the box, full bottle of Ralph Lauren Romance Eau de Parfum, and a US Mint set of 2003 quarters.Lucien Piccard watch

As with previous months, the following chart is broken down into different categories with the subtotal for each, the amount paid, tagged amount and the retail price with a link, where available, as to where the price was located. I hope this chart becomes a valuable tool for you in making a choice when locating the high-end item you might run across.

April 2017

$508.64 $664.14 $51,987.85 102.2x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
3,590 Burberry London 11.98 14.99 1,995.00 Navy USA
Givenchy Monsieur 11.98 14.99 1,595.00 Brown USA
Dress Jackets
28,155 Aquascutum Dbl breasted blazer 1.00 9.99 405.00 Brown Canada
Armani, Giorgio CG1216 7.98 9.99 610.00 Grey Italy
Burberry’s Jacobson’s 7.98 9.99 1,995.00 Grey USA
Burberry’s Saks Fifth Avenue 7.48 9.99 1,550.00 Brown USA
Burberry’s  – 7.98 9.99 1,550.00 Navy USA
Canali 100% cashmere 4.99 9.99 1,595.00 Grey Italy
Canali Proposta 9.99 9.99 1,295.00 Tan Italy
Canali Silk & cashmere 4.99 9.99 2,695.00 Tan Italy
Canali Super 120’s 5.59 6.99 1,895.00 Navy Italy
Castangia Sartoria 7.98 9.99 1,500.00 Navy Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna ~Soft~ 4.99 9.99 2,495.00 Gold Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna ~Soft~ 7.48 9.99 2,495.00 Grey Switzerland
Lubiam Loro Piana tuxedo 5.59 6.99 750.00 Black Italy
Oxxford Clothes Gibbons 2Btn Notch 5.59 6.99 4,575.00 Gray USA
Versace Dbl breasted Classic 4.99 9.99 599.99 Navy Italy
Yves Saint Laurent  – 9.99 9.99 2,150.00 Green France
9,400 Armani, Giorgio Collezioni 2.49 4.99 295.00 Purple Tunisia
Armani, Giorgio Collezioni tuxedo 7.98 9.99 545.00 White Italy
Armani, Giorgio Collezioni tuxedo 11.99 14.99 545.00 White Italy
Bogosse Pierre 32 3.74 4.99 185.00 Green Turkey
Brioni Plaid cotton sport 5.59 6.99 625.00 Blue Italy
Burberry Golf 5.59 6.99 325.00 Grey Italy
Canali  – 4.99 4.99 275.00 Blue Italy
Dolce & Gabanna Gold 10.38 12.99 358.00 Grey Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 14.99 14.99 495.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 4.99 4.99 495.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 3.99 4.99 450.00 Tan Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 6.38 7.99 495.00 Green Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 7.98 7.99 495.00 Pink Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 4.99 4.99 495.00 Cream Turkey
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 3.99 4.99 395.00 Brown Turkey
Eton Slim 3.99 4.99 245.00 White Romania
Façonnable  – 2.49 4.99 165.00 Blue Hong Kong
Harry & Sons  – 5.59 6.99 107.00 Peach Italy
I Love Ugly Hi Stranger 3.99 4.99 105.00 Green China
Ike Behar Neiman Marcus 3.99 4.99 265.00 White Canada
John Nordstrom Canclini 3.99 4.99 99.50 Blue China
Jos. A Bank tuxedo 2.49 4.99 99.50 White Hong Kong
Lorenzini Neiman Marcus 4.49 5.99 158.00 Yellow Italy
Psycho Bunny v-neck 5.24 6.99 95.00 Grey Peru
Rag & Bone Beach button 4.99 4.99 250.00 Tan China
Versace Jeans Couture 3.99 4.99 375.00 Blue Italy
Yves Saint Laurent pour homme 5.24 6.99 890.00 Grey Malaysia
Zumo Long Black Iggy 6.38 7.99 73.20 Black India
4,121 Armani, Giorgio A|X 7.98 9.99 150.00 Grey China
Brioni  – 4.99 5.99 1,815.00 Grey Italy
Carolina Herrera CH HC 2.49 4.99 95.00 Black China
I Levrieri  – 3.99 4.99 134.49 Blue Italy
I Levrieri polo 2.49 4.99 472.00 Grey Italy
Lyle & Scott V-nect 2.49 4.99 160.00 Grey India
Ralph Lauren Purple Label 4.99 5.99 1,295.00 Yellow Italy
2,660 Bvlgari  – 2.39 2.99 245.00 Orange Italy
Canali  – 2.39 2.99 230.00 Orange Italy
English Laundry By Roffe 1.59 1.99 70.00 Brown England
Ermenegildo Zegna ***** 1.59 1.99 205.00 Gold Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Disegno Esclusivo 3.19 3.99 205.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Disegno Esclusivo 3.19 3.99 205.00 Red Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Disegno Esclusivo 2.39 2.99 205.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 1.99 1.99 205.00 Red Italy
Fendi Cravatte 1.59 1.99 295.00 Brown Italy
Oxxford Clothes  – 1.99 1.99 295.00 Navy USA
Salvatore Ferragamo  – 3.99 4.99 190.00 Red Italy
Stefano Ricci Maus & Hoffman 4.00 4.00 250.00 Grey Italy
Valentino Cravatte 1.00 4.99 155.00 Brown Italy
436 Ecco Holton’ Venetian 14.37 17.99 179.95 Brown China
Ecco Johannesburg GTX 5.99 5.99 170.00 Black Indonesia
FootJoy Antique shoe tree 0.49 0.99 19.30 Brown USA
FootJoy Antique shoe tree 0.49 0.99 19.30 Brown USA
Hugo Boss RS Pattern socks 1.59 1.99 17.00 Black Italy
Men’s Wearhouse Cedar shoe tree 0.99 0.99 10.00 Cedar USA
Men’s Wearhouse Cedar shoe tree 0.99 0.99 10.00 Cedar USA
Rumson Whitehouse Hardy Shoe tree 0.79 0.99 5.00 Wood USA
Rumson Whitehouse Hardy Shoe tree 0.79 0.99 5.00 Wood USA
Salvatore Ferragamo wing-tip tassel loafer 13.47 17.99 695.00 Black Italy
To Boot New York Calhern 9.98 19.99 398.00 Brown USA
203 Setwell Maple suit (7) 1.19 1.49 202.93 Maple USA
Pocket Square
205  – Silk 0.99 0.99 15.00 Bronze China
 – Silk 1.99 1.99 15.00 White Japan
Burberry plaid 0.79 0.99 90.00 Brown Italy
Dominie plain 0.79 0.99 85.00 White USA
2,125 Alfani Bow tie 0.01 0.01 55.00 Black China
Budweiser Select humidor 5.59 5.99 78.00 Black USA
Drake’s Silk suspenders 1.59 1.99 75.00 Black England
Hanes socks 0.79 0.99 2.83 Black USA
Kiton Munich shoe bag cover 9.75 9.75 39.95 Black Italy
Kiton Munich shoe bag cover 9.75 9.75 39.95 Black Italy
Louis Vuitton Alma PM monogram 14.37 17.99 1,500.00 Brown France
Lucien Piccard 11567-01 Chronograph 37.44 49.99 224.99 Black Switzerland
Ralph Lauren Romance Eau de Parfum 19.97 24.99 94.00 Clear USA
United States Mint 2003 Quarter Mint 7.49 9.99 2.99 Silver USA
Black shirt studs 0.01 0.01 12.00 Black China

Knowing your brands, as to which command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the brands that sell well or have long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you surprisingly great net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

July 2016 Summary

Logo smallEvery month is a surprising treasure hunt in that you never know what you will find at your local Goodwill stores even though you have a mental list of what you would like to discover. You need to set your goals high enough so that you aren’t buying items you don’t need or worth reselling. It is much easier to purchase an item than it is to sell it at a substantial profit. The average of items I’ve purchased had a retail of 76 times higher. If I sell on the average of 1/10th the retail price, I’ve made a good profit. That is one goal. Another is to have a monthly purchase totaling 1/100th the retail price. I met that last month at 1/107th the sales price but missed it by a large margin this month due to finding some great brands I couldn’t pass up and locating some hard to find items never seen before. Apologies ahead of time for the bad photographs.

Some of the treasures represented in July may not be what you would consider a prize but have found a good home and better yet, a great item for someone’s birthday. A $2,300 Burberry trench coat made its way last week through the postal system to my sister. I could have bought 121 more at the price I paid for this great item. Last evening, my oldest daughter received a sweater by Rag & Bone, a Louis Vuitton messenger bag, a Kate Spade wallet and two Giorgio Armani silky blouses. She was happy. My younger daughter informed me that I would never find two brands in the Goodwill, both of which I found this month: Lululemon and Vineyard Vines. Other items I consider heart racers were the three Brioni shirts located in an out-of-the-way Goodwill one of which was like new silk of their higher end, the Dolce & Gabanna Martini black shirt located the day after half-off sale, A Classic V2 jacket and a Collection black shirt from Versace and a brand new with tags from Neiman Marcus pair of Ermenegildo Zegna Couture pants.

Two dress jackets were located. The first was a Versace Classic V2 I paid $4.99 for, well worth the price. The other was a dark brown with gold checks summer jacket by Ermenegildo Zegna. I try to wear something totally different every day to work and though no one says anything, I can tell by the long stares they are probably wondering how many suits of clothing I have hanging in my closets.

Burberry trench coat as birthday presentThe unique plaid of Burberry is always a welcome site, especially when it comes to their trench overcoats. There are a number of different models with built-in or zip out linings, with and without belts, shoulder padding, etc. The Burberry I sent my sister should be about her size and looked quite new though I could not find that particular model on their website. Regardless, it should put a big smile on her face when she opens the postal package in a few days.

shirtsShirts are easy to browse through when comparing manufacturer’s tags for the brands I am looking for. I usually prefer the Italians for their workmanship, quality, and slim trim but ventured to some other brands due to their recent history. Of the twenty-two shirts, I located an Armani Exchange dress shirt, Brioni (3), Burberry (2), Canali, Dolce & Gabanna, Ermenegildo Zegna (5), Ike Behar, John Varvatos (2), Michael Kors, Oscar de la Renta, Saks Fifth Avenue and Versace. I also found the two brands my daughter said I would never see of Lululemon (2) and one from Vineyard Vines. She has very good taste in clothing and I will put these on my list of “grab immediately when found”.

The sweaters category was well represented by a very heavy cotton and wool Rag & Bone ladies mixture of black, white and a bit of red thread. After a visit to Neiman Marcus with my daughter a few weeks ago, I was also told I would not find one of these in the thrift store. It’s amazing how big a grin your face can support when you see the label staring you down from the Goodwill rack and you can’t wait to see their expression when you say, “look at what I found today”.

Pants hangers and overcoat sweaterSeven pairs of pants were located with three pairs right in a row on the same rack. Six of these were from Ermenegildo Zegna and the price is always perfect compared to what they cost new. One of these had the Neiman Marcus Last Chance tags marked at $395 and were the upper end of what Ermenegildo Zegna offers as their couture line. The retail price of the $14.97 pants is $780. This was indeed a good find. One of the other Zegna pair of pants was a never before found black shorts. Michael Kors usually shows up with the Better Quality area or is marked accordingly. I picked up a nice pair of these leisure pants that fit perfectly at half the usual price.

Ties and shoesThis is the worst month thus far for the number of ties or perhaps I am beginning to just get “picky” as to what I pick up. Of the five pair of ties, I found one each from Giorgio Armani, Ermenegildo Zegna, Lanvin, Lugari and Gianni Versace. I still have a hard time distinguishing the better brands without looking at the tags and took a chance on the Lugari. The best price I could find on a new one was only $23 while the better end was the Versace at more than ten times that amount at $275.

In the shoes category, there was only one item located but was a good brand; Allen Edmonds. The Maxfield version is one I do not have and was just my size for a great price of $6.48.

The accessories type is kind of a miscellaneous one and thus yields some of the more surprising items you didn’t realize you had to have until you see it in the store. During a half-off-Saturday, I found two really nice leather belts from Bally, one made of ostrich. One other item staring me in the face the same day was a folding knife in its original metal box from Winchester. Couldn’t pass up a nice pocket knife for less than a ten dollar bill.

Last minute purchasesSome of my last minute purchases this month were notable in that I was able to find some first of their kind, for me at least. These were a pair of Zegna shorts, a white Lululemon Athletica shirt, the Vinyard Vines that fits perfectly, a polyester Zegna shirt, a beautiful purple Burberry long sleeve and the Zegna ~Soft~ summer weight jacket.

The 48 items I purchased this month totaled within two dollars what I spent last month but was worth less than half the retail value. Something to keep in mind next month when shooting for the magic number of one hundred times the value if purchased at retail. Hope you performed better than I this past month. Goodwill hunting!

July 2016

$262 $393 $17,572 67.1x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Dress Jackets
2,390 Ermenegildo Zegna Soft 7.98 9.99 1,295.00 Brown Italy
Versace Classic V2 4.99 9.99 1,095.00 Gray Italy
2,295 Burberry Trench Coat 18.72 24.99 2,295.00 Black England
7,339 Armani, Giorgio A|X 2.99 5.99 89.50 White India
Brioni  – 4.79 5.99 880.00 Yellow Italy
Brioni 2.99 5.99 625.00 Blue Italy
Brioni  – 2.99 5.99 625.00 Tan Italy
Burberry London 5.98 7.99 425.00 Tan England
Burberry London 14.37 17.99 395.00 Purple USA
Canali  – 2.99 5.99 345.00 Gray Italy
Dolce & Gabanna Martini 7.48 14.99 375.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Sport 0.01 5.99 245.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 4.79 5.99 295.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 2.99 5.99 245.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 4.79 5.99 395.00 Red Spain
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 4.49 5.99 395.00 Blue Italy
Ike Behar Neiman Marcus 2.99 5.99 225.00 White Canada
John Varvatos Slim fit 4.79 5.99 268.00 Green Indonesia
John Varvatos  – 4.79 5.99 148.00 Blue China
Lululemon Athletica 6.48 12.99 108.00 White Canada
Lululemon Athletica 10.38 12.99 108.00 Black Canada
Michael Kors  – 3.99 4.99 49.50 White China
Oscar de la Renta  – 4.79 5.99 90.00 Yellow  –
Saks Fifth Avenue  – 4.79 5.99 168.00 Tan Hong Kong
Versace Collection 7.98 9.99 750.00 Brown Romania
Vineyard Vines Tucker Shirt 2.99 5.99 89.50 Blue USA
395 Rag & Bone Neiman Marcus 2.99 5.99 395.00 Grey China
3,040 Ermenegildo Zegna Couture 14.97 19.97 780.00 Tan Portugal
Ermenegildo Zegna Sport 7.98 7.98 125.00 Black Hong Kong
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 475.00 Navy Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 445.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 395.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 695.00 Gray Switzerland
Michael Kors  – 7.48 14.99 125.00 Tan China
883 Armani, Giorgio Giorgio Armani 5.99 5.99 225.00 Silver Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 1.49 2.99 195.00 Red Italy
Lanvin  – 1.99 3.99 165.00 Green France
Lugari  – 7.99 7.99 22.95 White Italy
Versace, Gianni  – 3.99 7.99 275.00 Gray Italy
275 Allen Edmonds Maxfield 6.48 12.99 275.00 Black USA
955 Bally Astoria 1.99 3.99 350.00 Brown Italy
Bally Ostrich 1.99 3.99 350.00 Brown Italy
Display Fixture 4-way  rack 14.37 17.99 99.78 Chrome USA
InterDesign  hanger Tie hanger 0.49 0.99 8.99 Chrome  –
Setwell Suit hanger 0.49 0.99 60.00 Natural USA
Setwell Suit hanger 0.34 0.69 20.00 Natural USA
Setwell Pants cuff 0.34 0.69 7.50 Wood/metal USA
Whitmor  Hanger Tie hanger 0.99 1.99 13.99 Chrome
Winchester 2004 Edition 9.98 19.99 45.00 Brown USA


Top 10 Clothing Brands

In order to determine an accurate order for a listing of the Top 10 Clothing Brands and to make it easier to read, I decided to use some of the industry’s own critics to establish a good, overall listing of the top brands. I selected eleven lists with a varying number between nine to fourteen companies each and came up with an overall top ten clothing brands. A description of how this was achieved follows.

1. Prada
2. Gucci
3. Chanel
4. Dior
5. Louis Vuitton
6. Armani
7. Dolce & Gabbana
8. Burberry
9. Versace
10. Fendi
11. Hermès
12. Oscar del la Renta
13. Guess
14. Valentino
15. Marc Jacobs
16. Ralph Lauren
17. Coach
18. Cartier
19. Yves Saint Laurent
20. Ermenegildo Zegna

Every one of these companies, and more, is competing for your money and it is always good to know when to pick up a brand in the Goodwill and have that knowledge that it is worth buying due to the name being well known for not just it’s expense but more importantly for the quality. Here is a set of links of organizations that gave their impressions in no special order as to the top brands recognized around the world. As you can see, the same names occur in some of the lists but may be in different order. Learn these brands and take a closer look at whether you believe it would be worth your while to take to the cashier when you are ready to check out.

(A) I ran across this list of the Top 10 Most Expensive Clothing Brands and was surprised as to some of the names provided. This article can be found on and in short is represented in more detail as to how they were chosen but here are the top ten suggested in the order represented from the top to the number ten:

1) Gucci, 2) Chanel, 3) Prada, 4) Dolce and Gabbana, 5) Armani, 6) Marc Jacobs, 7) Dior, 8) Guess, 9) Versace, and 10) Valentino.

(B) ABCNewsPoint had a similar top ten and most of the same are represented here as well in different ordering:

1) Gucci, 2) Chanel, 3)  Dolce and Gabbana, 4) Prada, 5) Armani, 6) Versace, 7) Dior, 8) Valentino, 9) Guess, and 10) Fendi.

ABCNewsPoint also ranks the top ten most expensive mens suits in the world for 2015:

1) Stuart Hughes Diamond Edition, 2) Alexander Amosu Bespoke, 3)  William Westmancott Ultimate Bespoke, 4) Kiton K-5, 5) Desmond Merrion, 6) Brioni Vanquish II, 7) World Wool Record Challenge Cup, 8) William Fioravanti, 9) Ermenegildo Zegna, and 10) Brooks Brothers.

(C) has a list of fourteen of the most expensive clothing companies in the world:

1) Oscar De La Renta, 2) Louis Vuitton, 3) Prada, 4) Chanel, 5) Dior, 6) Gucci, 7) Dolce & Gabbana, 8) Armani, 9) Burberry, 10) Versace, 11) Ralph Lauren, 12) Hermès, 13) Fendi and 14) Marc Jacobs. also ranks the ten most expensive men’s suits in the world:

1) Stuart Hughes Diamond Edition, 2) Alexander Amosu Vanquish II Bespoke, 3)  Drmeuil Vanquish II, 4) Zoot Suit, 5) William Westmancott Ultiimate Bespoke, 6) Kiton K-50, 7) Desmond Merrion Supreme Bespoke, 8) Brioni Vanquish II, 9) World Wood Record Challenge, and 10) Ermenegildo Zegna Bespoke.

(D) Another website, has a similar arrangement of some of the same companies:

1) Oscar del la Renta, 2) Louis Vuitton, 3) Prada, 4) Chanel, 5) Dior, 6) Gucci, 7) Armani, 8) Burberry, 9) Versace, and 10) Fendi.

(E) has a very similar list as above of nine of the most expensive clothing brands:

1) Oscar del la Renta, 2) Louis Vuitton, 3) Prada, 4) Chanel, 5) Dior, 6) Gucci, 7) Dolce & Gabbana, 8) Armani and 9) Burberry.

(F) Another site, has the top 10 World class clothing brands in 2016:

1) Gucci, 2) Chanel, 3) Prada, 4) Dolce and Gabbana, 5) Armani, 6) Marc Jacobs, 7) Dior, 8) Guess, 9) Burberry and 10) Valentino.

(G) has eleven most luxurious clothing brands for 2015:

1) Prada, 2) Gucci, 3) Louis Vuitton, 4) Burberry, 5) Dolce and Gabbana, 6) Chanel, 7) Dior, 8) Versace, 9) Hermès, 10) Fendi and 11) Armani.

(H) also has a list of the top ten most successful fashion brands:

1) Gucci, 2) Prada, 3) Chanel, 4) Fendi, 5) Coach, 6) Cartier, 7) Louis Vuitton, 8) Hermès, 9) Rolex and 10) Burberry.

(I) Amazing Beautiful World has a list of the 12 Most Expensive Clothing Brands of 2013:

1) Gucci, 2) Chanel, 3) Dolce and Gabbana, 4) Prada, 5) Armani, 6) Versace, 7) Dior, 8) Valentino, 9) Yves Saint Laurent, 10) Guess, 11) Fendi and 12) Louis Vuitton.

(J) ListAKA has a page with the Top 10 Best Luxury Clothing Brands in the World as listed:

1) Louis Vuitton, 2) Chanel, 3) Prada, 4) Dior, 5) Hermès, 6) Burberry, 7) Gucci, 8) Versace, 9) Armani, 10) Dolce & Gabbana

(K) ListOvative has a list of the Top 12 Best Luxury Clothing Brands in the World as follows:

1) Louis Vuitton, 2) Hermès, 3) Gucci, 4) Prada, 5) Chanel, 6) Burberry, 7) Fendi, 8) Dior, 9) Dolce and Gabbana, 10) Armani, 11) Versace, 12) Ralph Lauren.

I took twenty of the companies offered and assigned a reverse score for each based on their placement. For example, if the company came in first place, it was assigned a number 20 while second place came in with a score of 19 and so forth. More lists will be added as they are located and the scores/rank adjusted accordingly. These numbers were tallied for each ranking and the results are shown below with the company indicating the higher scores toward the  top. Prada came in first followed quite closely by Gucci and Chanel. For some, the score was separated by only a few numbers so this example cannot be considered statistically significant in any way but rather be taken as just a list of the lists compiled to make it easier to compare for this period of time.

 Rank  Company Score A B C D E F G H I J K
1 Prada 198 18 17 18 18 18 18 20 19 17 18 17
2 Gucci 196 20 20 15 15 15 20 19 20 20 14 18
3 Chanel 195 19 19 17 17 17 19 15 18 19 19 16
4 Dior 148 14 14 16 16 16 14 14 14 17 13
5 Louis Vuitton 138 19 19 19 18 14 9 20 20
6 Armani 137 16 16 13 14 13 16 10 16 12 11
7 Dolce & Gabbana
137 17 18 14 14 17 16 18 11 12
8 Burberry 107 12 13 12 12 17 11 15 15
9 Versace 101 12 15 11 12 13 15 13 10
10 Fendi 82 11 8 11 11 17 10 14
11 Hermès 69 9 12 13 16 19
12 Oscar del la Renta
60 20 20 20
13 Guess 49 13 12 13 11
14 Valentino 48 11 13 11 13
15 Marc Jacobs 37 15 7 15
16 Ralph Lauren 19 10 9
17 Coach 16 16
18 Cartier 15 15
19 Yves Saint Laurent 12 12
20 Ermenegildo Zegna 0

(A) Top 10 Most Expensive Clothing Brands
(B) ABCNewsPoint
(G & H)
(I) Amazing Beautiful World
(J) ListAKA
(K) ListOvative