The 16th Annual World’s Largest Textile Garage Sale

Yesterday my friend Laurie and I went to the World’s Largest Textile Garage Sale. This was our first time going to this event and we found so many wonderful things! I also ran into my friend Mimi shortly after I got there. I love surprise meet-ups like this…so much fun!

I don’t do very much city driving, so I was already a little bit turned around. This was all made worse when I discovered that I put the wrong address into the GPS. The event was held at the University of Minnesota Reuse Program Warehouse, not at the Textile Center itself. As a result, I was about an hour late (sorry, Laurie!). But I’m glad I know where both locations are now. Did you know that the Textile Center library has fiber tools and kits available for 35-day checkout?

The way the sale works is that individual crafters and businesses donate books, yarn, patterns, fabrics, notions, etc. to the Textile Center. There is a two-hour preview sale the night before a big garage sale. Everything is available for garage sale prices. There were looms for $25 and $30, magazines going $1 per stack of 10, bags with 4 skeins of yarn for $8…you get the idea. There is an aisle like a coat check where you can drop off a bag or two of finds when you can’t carry it anymore but want to keep shopping. Then, the sale closes and re-opens at 3pm for the bag sale, where everything you can fit in a brown paper grocery bag is $2. We didn’t stick around for the bag sale, so I can only imagine the energy that must have been in the room!

Our plan of attack was just to pick out what we liked first. When we were done browsing and couldn’t carry any more, we took another look through our bags. We kept everything that we loved and left behind the things we wouldn’t actually use so that someone else could enjoy them. Now we have plenty of yarn to play with, patterns to try, and books to read until next year. And a new adventure: basketweaving!

Note to self for next year: bring more large bags! You might want them.

I’m anxiously waiting for more information about donating to the Garage Sale, which will be available in January. It would be a good idea to go through my crafting supplies and pull out the things I don’t actually have a project for. Someone out there will love them even more and make something spectacular!

You can also donate to the Textile Center throughout the year. They can use textile-related books and videos, as well as fabrics and yarns that are clean and in good condition. Just be sure to call ahead before you bring in your donation.


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