Friday, April 20, 2012

Valuable Surplus

On a recent decluttering frenzy, I was surprised at my inability to toss or give away certain items that I no longer needed or used. This led to an assorted collection of books, toys, outgrown ballet clothing and other miscellaneous items collecting in a box in our study. A table at the local farmer's market proved to be the perfect outlet for these goodies and resulted in a few jingles in our pockets. The market bug bit, and my mind started whizzing at how I could exchange our unwanted excess for money in my pocket, preferably without spending a cent in the process.

Here are a few of my subsequent market makes from the past few months:

Cream cheeses made during our milk flood and marinated sundried tomatoes, all prepared and ready for a Valentine market, when deluges muddied the farmer's road resulting in a canceled market, and a delicious picnic for us. The only cost to me was the price of the tubs, and my time. Once Rosie has calved and is providing milk again, I hope to sell more of my cheeses.

Vigorous strawberry runners captured in recycled tins, then decorated with paper scraps look so pretty. Total cost for this venture was zero.

The options are as varied as my imagination and creativity.

I have some ideas for selling knitted items using wool scraps, but I am hesitant to compete with the grannies from the old age home. Their colour choices leave a lot to be desired, and I know my items would be popular. I just would feel awful if I stole their business.

I am thinking homemade soap, lip balm, and other delectable honey and beeswax cosmetics, or how about pickles, pat├ęs, breads and bakes. Fabric scraps could be turned into cushions, kids clothes, bags, beanbags, toys...

Toddler's dress made by my daughter
My daughter has also jumped on the market bandwagon with her delightful tutu's.

Enticing ideas leap into my mind, all I need to do is put them into practice. What do you have that is waste or excess to you, that will delight someone else? It doesn't have to cost you a cent, except your time.


  1. Very entrepreneural Cath! Well done. Wish I could get some of that yummy produce.

  2. Fantastic ideas there. I have been thinking of,,,well attempting to think of is more appropriate lol,,,,similar ideas to you. I was trying to think of something different that I could maybe make up either very cheaply or by reusing stuff I already have. Its tricky, but I figure there has to be a way to make money that still lets you be at home with the kids!

    Best of luck!!