Ten Items to Collect for Five Dollars or Less

Collectible Jewelry
Jewelry is a great collectible

If you have been wanting to start a collection but thought everything collectible is really expensive, take a look at these ten items to collect for five dollars or less.

Ten Items to Collect for Five Dollars or Less

Many of these collectibles are relatively easy to find at garage sales, thrift stores and estate sales. Others are generally found in antique stores and auctions, both on and off line.

Vintage Costume Jewelry

The broad category of vintage costume jewelry allows collectors to limit their collections in numerous ways, such as:

  • Style
  • Era
  • Color
  • Material
  • Manufacturer
  • Type of jewelry

Several ideas of beautiful costume jewelry that is usually priced less than five dollars that is fun to collect include:

  • Pins and brooches
  • Holiday jewelry
  • Avon jewelry
  • Enameled jewelry
  • Clip on earrings
  • Bangle bracelets
  • Wooden jewelry


Collecting antique and vintage buttons is a hobby enjoyed by collectors worldwide. Often large jars or tins of old buttons are sold at garage sales, thrift stores and auctions for less than five dollars. Buying the whole container of buttons gives you the extra enjoyment of bringing your jarful of old buttons home and searching through the lot for unique and special buttons. Individual or small lots of buttons are also sold in antique stores and online auctions. Although many button collectors limit their collections to buttons made of a specific material or buttons of a certain style or design, many others simply collect buttons they find attractive.

Pez Dispensers

First introduced in the 1950s, Pez candy dispensers are a fun item for the entire family to collect. Each year several Pez conventions, such as Pez-a-Mania in Ohio, are held throughout the world. Even though there are many Pez dispensers selling for hundreds, and even thousands, of dollars, collectors can easily find fun dispensers to add to their collections for less than five dollars.

Hot Wheels

Hot wheel collectors know the thrill of owning classic muscle cars from the 1960s, sleek European sports cars and big four wheel drive off road trucks. With new issues coming out on a regular basis, hot wheel collectors have a continual new supply of fun collectibles in addition to the thousands of miniature cars from previous years. First released in 1968 by Mattel, the line consisted of sixteen cars including a 1969 Corvette sneak preview.

Hot wheels are generally divided into three categories:

  • Contemporary Hot Wheels are cars from 1990 to the present
  • Modern Hot Wheels are cars made from 1980 to 1989
  • Vintage Hot Wheels are cars that were made before 1980

Wade Figurines

Manufactured by the well known Wade Pottery company, these adorable little figurines, also known as Wade Whimsies, were first introduced in 1953. Through the years the whimsical little creatures were sold in retail stores and packaged in Red Rose Tea as premiums. Many of the figurines were introduced as sets such as:

  • US Animal Series
  • Nursery Favorites
  • Circus Animals
  • Circus People
  • Endangered Species
  • Noah's Ark
  • Pet Shop Friends

Many of these miniature porcelain figurines are often found in garage sales and thrift shops priced at $1 to $2 or less.

Vintage Ladies Handkerchiefs

Trimmed with beautiful lace or hand crocheted edging, vintage ladies' handkerchiefs are a popular collectible item of today. Many handkerchiefs have beautiful embroidered flowers or designs delicately crafted on a corner or around the hankies inner edge. These delicate ladies items are often found still in their original box in excellent condition priced at under five dollars.

Antique and Vintage Postcards

Collecting postcards is a popular hobby that falls into the category of ephemera. Collectors often limit their collection to a specific type of postcard such as:

  • Scenic
  • Holiday
  • Historical.
  • A specific geographical location
  • Postcards with images of people

Vintage Greeting Cards

Another popular ephemera collectible, vintage greeting cards are beautiful and affordable. Although many greeting cards are sold separately, it is common to find them being sold in lots. Many greeting cards feature beautiful die cut designs and hand written notes from decades past. The most popular kinds of greeting cards are:

  • Birthday
  • Christmas
  • Valentine's Day
  • Anniversary


Whether you collect 78s, 45s or albums, there are numerous records available for less than five dollars. In fact, at some garage and estate sales it is possible to get an entire box of records for that price. Record collectors often limit their collections by:

  • Artist
  • Genre
  • Period of music
  • Label
  • Record format

Political Memorabilia

Collectors of political memorabilia have a vast array of items priced under five dollars to add to their collections. These items include:

  • Pins, lapel pins and buttons
  • Keychains
  • Bumper stickers
  • Matchbook covers
  • Postcards
  • Decals

Whether you decide that one of the ten items to collect for five dollars or less would be the perfect hobby for you or you choose one of the many other low priced collectibles, you will soon be enjoying the fun of finding a special treasure.

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Ten Items to Collect for Five Dollars or Less