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Collectables- What People Collect

Updated on April 22, 2011

What do you collect ?

Over the years I have had a collection of Shells as I was given a poster of diferent shells when young so I used to spend hours trying to find them all.

After a while I had a great collection of pens from all over the place.

When married , as we travelled I collected fridge magnets from our travels in Europe etc.

My mum collected elephants ( not real! ) after she was left a very small one from her Dad.

When working in our shop in Rangiora New Zealand collecters would come in looking for things like hatpins, teapots, salt & pepper shakers etc for their collections.

Dad ended up keeping their details for when items came in they were collecting.

A lot of people stick to stamp collecting , or coin collections while others collect some unusual items!

Old Tins

Old Newspapers etc

 Many people collect old newspapers as they have an interest with preserving history.

There are many sites that have collectors articles for sale.

Other people collect matchboxes , ciggarette packets , toys,

model cars, books, magazines, DVD's

old records, postcards , tin cans and much much more

Unusual Collections !

Barbed wire, for instance, is the star of one particular collection for one California man. Jesse S James has been collecting the spiky stuff since 1957 and has both catalogued and written a book about his specimens.

 Another strange collectible for one Iowa resident is used oil rags, which he has been doing since the 1950s, leaving him with over 13,000 items today.

If you thought that was unusual, there are records of people collecting banana labels, tea bags, nails (that's the metal kind, not the other sort!), shaving mugs, toothpaste and even, bizarrely, dreams. Wisconsin's Elizabeth Lowe has been recording dreams for many years and has over 2,500 dreams in her collection.

More unusual collections!


The leading hair dealers are Louis Mushro, a Michigan collector who deals on eBay, and John Reznikoff, who's the Guinness world record holder for his huge human hair collection.   I personally collect kitty whiskers. No! I don't pluck them out or cut them off, I wait until my cats shed them.


In first grade, no joke, A friend and I collected staples - but they had to be used. We'd pick em up off the floor, pull them out of the bulletin board (once they weren't in use, of course), and we had a big wad of them by the end of the school year.

I don't collect anything anymore but when I was a child I was an avid collector of everything that interested me. Stamps, old and foreign coins, sea-shells, books, music, knives, pets... I used to think everyone did it.

Make Money while collecting

Many people like collecting because they are passionate about the item like my Mum with the elephants.

However others use it as a way of making money .

If this is something you are keen to do then you will need to do a bit of research on your chosen item so you know the value & how much you should spend so as to make a profit.

Look for items at flea markets

Garage Sales

In Newspapers


Gum Tree

Craigs List etc.

Place wanted ads on notice boards, in newspapers, online etc for people to phone you !

Buy at markets

Kalbarri market
Kalbarri market


I have a collection of hockey cards and a huge baseball collection of Don Mattingly (NY Yankees)

More of a modern day collectable I guess but I do have a collection of beanie babies and disney bean bag characters. I also have the first three first edition Harry Potter books in hardback and a first release Furby...

I used to have a big collection of old money. Still have them somewhere in my drawers. Do you think investing too much in collectables in a waste?


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