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Fashion & Style

Honest Ed's signs selling online for "outrageous deals"

Posted by Aubrey Jax / March 12, 2014

Honest Eds sign sale onlineIf the 9 to 5 work week wasn't already dragging you down, Monday's sign sale at Honest Ed's probably had you white knuckled at your desk, watching tweet after tweet and Instagram pic after Instagram pic of the huge line of freelancers, artists, shift workers, restaurant industry types, pensioners, and the un(der)employed (plus maybe some braver than you just playing hooky) snaking around the block outside Honest Ed's.

Then something changed. You heard they were waiting in line for three hours, four hours, or more. You thought to yourself, "haha." Sure, the signs are instantly recognizable as pieces of Toronto history and are embedded with the emotions of many an anxious am-I-lost-or-is-that-the-exit shopping trips or summertime strolls through the Annex, but who in their right mind would spend eight hours getting some flimsy sign used to sell sunscreen and soap?

Of course, you now know you were too hasty in your judgement, friends: some of those line-standers stand to make a day's wages or more off their loot on Ebay, Kijiji, and Craigslist, while according to David Mirvish, they paid "anywhere from eight cents to $30 for their souvenirs." Signs are popping up online now for anything from about $50 to $600, and before you scoff and ask who's buying, note there are plenty of "signs wanted" adds offering a hundred bucks or so, too. Head, desk.

Here are five "outrageous deals" online right now.

Honest Eds signsThe Canadian combo: Girl's Justin Bieber Sleepwear $4.99
Also the best use of scare quotes going, there's nothing more Canadian than this combo: teen dream Biebz and Honest Ed's. Yet prices for this Justin-branded wear are in US funds, which seems somehow fitting, and at $51 USD (C $56.53) with free shipping it's currently the best deal you'll find on a sign. Bidding is open, so nobody tell the Beliebers.

Honest Eds signsThe sex bomb: "Vaseline Lotion 525ml $4.99"
This Craigslist seller claims to have waited in line for nine hours on Monday, so $100 begins to seem fair for this hot little number (which the seller wisely chose not to pass onto their mother). Anyway, a hundred bones is a small price to pay to turn your home into a love palace -- it could work out to a nickel per bone, right? "Wet Ones" might be a nice companion piece.

Honest Eds signsThe nostalgia: "Ladies or Misses Baseball Caps $1.99"
Baseball caps for under two bucks, and doesn't this just make you think of Geena Davis, Madonna, and Rosie O'Donnell throwing down on the green fields of yesteryear. Hold on, I think I have something in my eye. Actual baseball caps you can get for C $138.00 on Ebay? These Sochi Olympics Russian baseballs caps, a signed Billy Williams, a fancy Gucci Kids hat, this vintage LA Raiders cap, or a Waterford Crystal St Louis Cardinals World Series 2011 cap - baseball, I never knew you were so weird.

Honest Eds signsThe sketchbag: "As Advertised "Listerine" Cool Mint Mouthwash 1.5 litre $4.99"
Your shabby-chic (honestly just shabby to most) drug den could be a bit peppier, and I'm not talking uppers, unless you're holding. A vintage ad for Listerine will show off your dark, self effacing sense of humour, and the hidden meaning and context of "cool mint" will be a conversation cornerstone for many a sesh to come. The sign's sitting at C $99.75 right now, which is about what you'll get on Church for your mom's TV, plus the seller used Comic Sans so they probably need the money for something illicit. Bonus: Knife Set, because you're living hard.

The "biggest thing going" on Ebay right now is this auction for three 60 inch long signs: "Welcome," "Fleece Wear," and "Christmas Trees." Smell a deal? Wait -- the winner of the bid only gets to select one sign, with the option to triple their bid for the whole lot of three. As of this writing two bids have bumped the auction up to $609.67, so this isn't just a case of someone dreaming big. There's just something about that bubble font.

Photo by Steven Hoang in the blogTO Flickr pool



CW / March 12, 2014 at 01:09 pm
I imagine the effort to make a fake wouldn't be worth it?
MSigs / March 12, 2014 at 01:40 pm
For all the time I spent in line there's no way I'd sell the ones I got.
Perry Como / March 12, 2014 at 01:52 pm
LOL. yaaaaaay i own an honest ed piece of art!!!! DUMMIES!!!!!
Chester / March 12, 2014 at 03:28 pm
If anyone pays $100 for a sign that say vaseline lotion, you're an idiot.
Clay / March 12, 2014 at 03:29 pm
The "Free Ride To Jail" one, and other similar statement signs are definitely worth $100 or more. Id pay that for a good one hands down, but never on ebay. This was foreseeable, and good on those that bought and are selling for their small profit. Understanding, that if you hold on longer, say 2016 or so when the BIG signs go down, they'll be worth even more.
scottd / March 12, 2014 at 03:47 pm
If it doesnt say "Ed" on it its not worth the money.
Simon / March 12, 2014 at 03:58 pm
As is always the case with every single goddamn "look at the price on eBay!" story ever written, these mean nothing. You could list an Honest Ed's sign a billion kazillion dollars if it made you happy, but all that matters is what they actually sell for, whatever the hopes of optimistic speculators.
Thomas replying to a comment from Simon / March 12, 2014 at 06:24 pm
Did you noticed the number of bidders on most of them? 19 bids, 30 bids, 15 bids.
jer / March 12, 2014 at 06:32 pm
But people are bidding over $50 and over $100 on some items! Do you think someone is faking that or they won't come through with payment?
John / March 12, 2014 at 06:50 pm
The first line of this blog post: "If the 9 to 5 work week wasn't already dragging you down, Monday's sign sale at Honest Ed's probably had you white knuckled at your desk".

Can we please stop assuming everyone works from 9 to 5, Monday to Friday, and in an office? Are the streets completely void of cars and people roaming around during these hours? Absolutely not, as is reinforced by the rest of the above quoted sentence - "freelancers, artists, shift workers, restaurant industry types". There are many, many occupations out there (which this blog post surprisingly listed) that do not follow this rigid, ancient schedule and are not based in rooms filled with desks surrounded by walls on three sides. That being said there are also those who are not in full-time employment aka students who can have classes at various different times throughout the day (University) and are very flexible with their time. Just count the number of times the words "Monday morning", "workweek", "morning commute", "evening commute", "humpday", and "thank god it's Friday" is mentioned in the media and on the news - this generalized assumption is nothing short of prolific. And as for "start planning the weekend", it is already pre-planned for many and myself included - work.
Perry Como replying to a comment from John / March 12, 2014 at 09:01 pm
Dude you seem angry. Did you miss out on the sign sale?
Jim Neighbors replying to a comment from Perry Como / March 12, 2014 at 09:33 pm
Even Coffee Time sells its breakwich sandwich 24/7 realizing that breakfast isnt at 8-9am for everyone. Alot of shift workers in this city work afternoons 4pm-12 or nights 12am - 8am.

Give me a god damn friggin break you'd think a blogger that works from home and checks out online porn inbetween posts would understand that.I write an article and submit it around 10 am then I go to the coffee shop and pick up a few groceries, return home around noon work on an story that's due tomorrow. Head up to the mall get a few things, call a few friends see if anyone wants to hook up if yes, head out for some dinner and drinks, if no head back home, check out some online stuff maybe watch a movie on netflix, rinse and repeat. How do you like being stereotyped....
Van replying to a comment from Chester / March 12, 2014 at 11:16 pm
LOL! Couldn't agree more!!
Jay / March 13, 2014 at 12:05 am
All signs purchased that day are stamped on the back for authenticity with signatures by the two typographers and Daniel Mirvish – dated. There should also be a white sticker price tag. If anyone is seriously contemplating bidding on a sign, make sure to ask to see the back of the poster before purchasing.
TorontoRocks! / March 13, 2014 at 12:15 am
Honestly I wish I could have bought a few of these. My parents have fond memories of Honest Ed's. They bought their first " pots and pans " at Ed's when immigrating here in the 70's. I anticipated a flurry of excitement on ebay. But bidding over $100 for a sign? Come on.
nic / March 13, 2014 at 01:33 am
nic / March 13, 2014 at 01:34 am
Beth / March 13, 2014 at 04:53 pm
Thanks for the information about the auctions very helpful.
Queen v / March 13, 2014 at 06:43 pm
~ So worth the wait... while we waited we swapped our individual stories of Ed Mirvish...and the city we love, I will never sell my signs. I have a sign of the first item I ever bought with my mom using saving from my weekly allowance of $1.00 @ Honest Eds ~
Alex replying to a comment from John / March 13, 2014 at 07:45 pm
PREACH! I once told my bank I would have trouble sending them supporting docs for a line of credit because I didn't work a standard M-F job. I did night shifts and getting to HR for what I needed during their 9-5 hours was tough. The person on the phone took that to mean I wasn't even employed. Unreal!
Lino Giannotti Jr / March 14, 2014 at 09:43 pm
The end of an incredible era Uncle Frank
Other Cities: Montreal