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I Brake for Yard Sales: and Flea Markets, Thrift Shops, Auctions, and the Occasional Dumpster Paperback – April 1, 2012


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I Brake for Yard Sales: and Flea Markets, Thrift Shops, Auctions, and the Occasional Dumpster + Flea Market Fabulous: Designing Gorgeous Rooms with Vintage Treasures
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Stewart, Tabori and Chang (April 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1584799226
  • ISBN-13: 978-1584799221
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 7.5 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (185 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,268 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Lara Spencer is a Good Morning America coanchor and former host of CBS-TV’s The Insider and PBS’s Antiques Roadshow. She lives in New York City.


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Customer Reviews

This is a great book with lots of fun and helpful tips!
Kristen
It was easy and fun and while I probably won't have time to venture out every weekend, I really want to try this with a few other items and see how it works out.
Clarehomestead
I love Lara's book as I love to find a good buy at a garage sale or flea market.
Caroline M

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

137 of 140 people found the following review helpful By Clarehomestead on March 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
I don't know much about interior design so I was a little skeptical when my mom gave me this book. I like watching Lara on GMA but I wondered how it would relate to my very non design oriented life. I admit I was totally shocked. She gives so many practical tips on how to find amazing deals at flea markets, yard sales, and estate sales. I bought a bureau for twenty five dollars from a flea market and using her refurbishment tips, I spray painted it with a black glossy spray, added some cool new knobs (which I never paid attention to before...but what a difference they make) Now I have a piece in my bedroom that literally looks like a thousand dollars. It was easy and fun and while I probably won't have time to venture out every weekend, I really want to try this with a few other items and see how it works out.
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57 of 58 people found the following review helpful By DIY Decor Fan on March 23, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A great read and guidebook for all those who love flea markets & yard sales. The book will train your eye so you can see how special a flea market item can be once you add your personal touches. Best of all, the book is a soft-cover so you can take it with you when you head out to that weekend estate sale.
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46 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Liza on March 31, 2012
Format: Paperback
"I Brake for Yard Sales" will come in handy to anyone looking to design or redecorate their home in a frugal but stylish manner. There is so much Lara has shared in this thought-out book. I am now ready to go to yard sales and estate sales to look for a simple piece of furniture and turn it into something unique that my friends will talk about.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Melissa Pagano on March 30, 2012
Format: Paperback
Great tips for the novice when it comes to what to look for at flea markets
and yard sales that will help you spot the perfect item for any room in the house that you want to bring a bit of "sparkle" to. Also, has many tips for DIY's for those items you find that need a little TLC to return it to its former glory.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By ShootingLA on April 11, 2012
Format: Paperback
Before reading this book, I had little practice in thrift store shopping and now am completely hooked! Lara shows you exactly what to look for when out at yard sales, thrift shops, and antique stores, then gives AMAZING tips on how to transform items that you might have disregarded, if not for her advice. The photographs are amazing and show the color and decorating quite well :) Buy this book!
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26 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Mountainear on July 17, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
With all of the publicity around this book I thought it would be great and provide information on how to transform things. What this book did teach me was that you have to know a lot about furniture, the names that are worth investing in, the fabrics to use, etc. to make this a really savvy way to get good furniture for less and make it your own. I was hoping for instruction on what products to use to strip off finishes, and other advice like that. Ultimately, this book was simply a pat on the back for the author by the author. I should have purchased a different type of book for my needs. I won't send it back because I don't want to pay the shipping charges, but this won't make "the shelf" at my house. This is not a book for the novice flea marketer or garage sale junkie who is looking to turn trash into treasure.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By CLady on April 11, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The cover of the book alone is a piece of decor for my coffee table. I've found so much inspiration to redo many pieces of my own furniture. I have a set of chairs that I'm re-upholstering using Lara's DIY tips. I have a standard wooden dresser that I've repainted in glossy white and added a mirror to the top of it to create a very glam look. The dresser Alone has changed the entire feel of my master bedroom. I never expected to love the process so much. This book has give me so many ideas that I can't wait to redo a few of my regular pieces and turn them into my own customized statement items!! A must have go to guide for so many reasons... And thank you Lara for sharing all you're secrets with us!
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31 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Thoughts by CJ on January 19, 2013
Format: Paperback
As a NCIDQ certified interior designer I cannot tell you how frustrating it is when another "celebrity" decides to become a design expert. There are plenty of talented individuals with a good eye that have never been formerly trained in design. I work with and respect those individuals. However, it is depressing when a budding (or established) celebrity thinks they have something new to share with the public. Clearly, great deals can be found at garage sales. The saying, "one man's junk is another man's treasure..." is certainly true.

My mother thought I might enjoy this book, and as she is a fan of the morning show this celebrity is on, thought she would order it (as it was promoted on the show, of course). I thought it might be fun to read too, at first. I was so disheartened when I actually started reading it. Obviously this woman relies on a big-time designer friend, one that most ordinary people would not have access to. She pawns off her yard sale finds as part of her design statement, which is likable, but in very high-end interiors. For example she is shown sitting on a designer sofa, which retails between $10,000 and $15,000. The yard sale loving cup looks lovely in a room that probably was decorated for over $50K. I think this is not the right message, and defeats the purpose of the book.

Finally, there are lovely pictures of her country "estate". Again, not a home the average person uses as a retreat. My main complaint was that the celebrity author marketed the book to people like my retired school teacher mother. She touted her idea of decorating from yard sales as this neat and novel idea. Aren't I a regular gal? kind of deal, but really the book is for other celebrities like herself. The rest of us already know that flea markets and yard sales are great ways to find interesting items. Stick to your day job, and leave the designing to the rest of us.
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