A funny thing has happened since sites like eBay came along. Things that we used to just throw in the garbage or box up and take to the thrift store have become collectible. If you look at all of the vintage stuff being sold on eBay, it is amazing that we ever throw anything away. I say that because it seems that no matter what it is that you might be thinking about selling, somebody is a ready and willing collector if the price is right.
Before you go off on any large scale cleaning purges in your basement or attic, it could be very much worth your time to take a moment and browse through eBay's categories and listings. If you are throwing away something that was made before 1990, there might be someone looking to add it to their vintage collection. It seems that people are feeling nostalgic about the items they grew up with during the 1970s and 1980s.
Two very popular categories where people sell off their old merchandise are toys and clothing. Both of these are filled with listings put up by people who dug out the old bags and boxes filled with things like Member's Only Jackets, Smurfs, concert shirts, GI Joe figures, and any number of relics from days gone by. People in their thirties through fifties are snapping these old items up. What they do with their collectibles is a very personal choice. Some may be purchasing clothes to wear, but I imagine most of the toys are being displayed unless the buyers are getting them for their own children to play with and experience.
Vintage items are defined differently depending on the category in which you are interested. One of the most popular "vintage" categories is clothing. Although the term is used rather loosely, vintage clothing is generally agreed to be items dating from the 1920s through the 1970s. Many people purchase vintage clothing for their personal use and actually wear the items either because they enjoy the look or feel of them. Antique clothing is older than vintage and is usually not purchased with the intention of actually wearing it. These very old items might be seen on display in museums or other such displays commemorating fashions of the past. Finally, "retro" clothing consists of items originating in the 1980s and 1990s.
Other categories will show variations in the years defining their eras. Computers, for example, will not have any items falling into the antique category, but models dating from the 1980s are certainly considered vintage. This is due to the fact that changes in computers and computing have been dramatic from year to year. A model from the 1980s is certainly a piece of technological history because so many generations of improvements have come and been improved upon since they were introduced.
Next time you start cleaning house, compare some of the older items you find to what is available on eBay. If it is an older item, include the word "vintage" in your search. You may be surprised to find that you have some hidden treasure sitting in your att