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Trash = Treasure

posted by prop shop on Wed, Jul 15, 2009
in Prop shop

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Food packaging

Timing is everything. Someone else's trash is our treasure. We're a week into the process of finding props for American Idiot and already are hitting a small wall. There's no place to buy what we are looking for. (Yes, I've tried Craigslist, Ebay, Freecycle...and lots of driving around looking on the street...!)

We've made a good start, but I'm hoping some of our avid blog readers might be interested in helping us out. I can even provide an incentive...

So what are the magical items we need, you ask? Well, we need lots and lots of very specifically sized TVs from the 60's-90's (nothing slick and modern) with knobs and buttons. If you email me with a picture and dimensions of ones you could part with, I would be thrilled!  Oh, and they don't need to work!

We're also looking for rolling desk chairs without arms, speakers and audio equipment (again, they don't have to be working), small bookshelves, baby supplies (diaper bags and boxes, ergo-carriers and the like), packing blankets, and a basketball hoop. (Okay, I can buy that last one, but figured I might as well ask).

We also need the easier to acquire--but no less difficult to accumulate--packages of food. 

I need tons of cereal boxes, milk and egg cartons, and random other food packaging. Plus, empty cases of cheap beer. All of these can be broken down, but they should be clean and not too messed up.  At the top are some ideal examples:

Bring a stack of any of these food items (or contact me about the larger items with pictures and dimensions) to Berkeley Rep by the end of the month, and you'll be entered to win a pair of tickets to the show!  We're here weekdays from 9-5.

Help us out, reuse your trash--what a great way to recycle!



I'll be sure to bring my "trash" to you guys! I definitely have milk and egg cartons in my recycling that you can use!

Kim | Wed, Jul 15, 2009

Man, you just need to drive around Oakland- I saw a couple of those armless rolling chairs right by my house. i have baby carrier and will save cereal boxes.

jan | Wed, Jul 15, 2009

Love finding free stuff, but you have to be careful, even in the "free stuff" cateogry, there are scams lurking.

One person offered me a free HP printer online, when I emailed, they said that the printer was no longer available. Shortly after, they gave me a link to get a "free teeth whitener" as somewhat of a consolation prize. Everything was done with auto-responders but it looked very realistic and well, just plain old kind.

You can cross check any suspicious post at

it pays to spend two seconds and see if anyone else has encountered the same post!

Happy hunting!

Josh the craigslist scam killer | Tue, Jul 27, 2010

hey - I actually collect food packaging (and household packaging a lesser extent) - mostly 1960s-1990s sorts of things - Im not sure if I can help with the current stuff - but - if you ever need something really weird for your productions - say - a 1980s bottle of shampoo or ...well..anything like that - I could lend out that sort of stuff- check out my link.....
you guys wouldn't happen to have any older packaging in your prop departments - would you - there are a few specific examples Im looking to obtain (and like you said - this stuff doesnt really pop up on ebay or at yard sales..unless its actually "antique") - drop me a line ...

Pete | Wed, Jul 27, 2011

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