It’s every thrifter’s dream come true: a humble find at the Goodwill that turns out to be a stunning collectors’ item — and with a selling price to match.
Jessica Vincent, a horse trainer from Virginia, discovered a unique vase at a Goodwill in Hanover County in June. Made of clear glass in the shape of a bottle and decorated with elegant swoops of color, the vase stood out.
Vincent told the New York Times that she’d started thrifting as a kid and snagged a couple of surprising finds in the past. The vase set off her thrifting Spidey senses, though she almost didn’t buy it.
Vincent continued shopping but eventually returned to the vase. Since it didn’t have a price tag, she left the rest up to fate, saying she’d spend no more than $8.99 on it.
She paid $3.99.
“I knew it was good, and I thought, you know, maybe it might be [worth] like $1,000 or $2,000,” Vincent told Block Club Chicago. “I was just curious more than anything. I wanted to go home and research it.”
That’s just what she did, discovering through a Facebook group that the vase was the work of a renowned Italian architect, Carlo Scarpa.
According to Architecture Daily, the Venice-born Scarpa once worked as director of the Venini Glassworks, where he studied the craft of glassblowing.
Wright’s vase bore the mark of Venini Glassworks. And she told Block Club that she received an offer to buy the vase for $10,000 shortly after posting it to an art-glass Facebook group.
Another group member advised her to contact an auction house in Chicago to inquire about selling it. The Wright auction house put it up for sale, fetching a whopping $107,100 from a private collector.
The New York Times reports that Vincent will net about $83,500 from the sale, with the rest going to the auction house. Vincent said she plans to use the windfall to renovate her 1930s farmhouse.
“This is just my Christmas miracle,” Vincent told Block Club. “It’s just awesome.”