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If there is one thing we humans love doing, it's collecting. Coins, seashells, stamps, baseball cards, vintage artwork — you name it, we hoard it. Some people see it as a hobby, while others build rooms or create special places in their homes to showcase their fascination with accumulating objects they're interested in. But there’s a whole other category of people who undertake the challenge of finding the rarest and most extraordinary items from every corner of the world.

Collectors of the most random objects have stockpiled impressive quantities of things they’re obsessed with and shared pictures of their discoveries with everyone on the internet. We at Bored Panda have scoured the web to bring you a list of sometimes whimsical, sometimes slightly creepy, but nonetheless captivating collections that might inspire you to start one of your own.

From shark teeth to four-leaf clovers to tiny balls from pen ink cartridges, continue scrolling to check out these interesting displays. Be sure to hit upvote on your favorite ones and let us know about the things you love to collect in the comment section below! Keep reading to also find our interview with professor and an avid collector Shirley M. Mueller, M.D. After you’re done admiring this list, take a look at Part 1 of this feature right over here.

#1

One Cup Of Sand From Every Beach And Desert I Visited Over The Past 3 Years

One Cup Of Sand From Every Beach And Desert I Visited Over The Past 3 Years

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Kate Fei
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2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Not a good idea. Do not do this people. If everyone takes one cup of sand, after millions of visitors what will be left behind? Some countries have already stated it to be a problem.

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#2

I Am Nearly 14 Years Old, And Have Been Collecting Succulents And Houseplants For Nearly 3 Years. Here Are My Succulents

I Am Nearly 14 Years Old, And Have Been Collecting Succulents And Houseplants For Nearly 3 Years. Here Are My Succulents

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#3

Bentley Likes To Hide His Toy Mice Under One Specific Sofa. Here He Is With The 13 I Pulled Out Today

Bentley Likes To Hide His Toy Mice Under One Specific Sofa. Here He Is With The 13 I Pulled Out Today

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Human curiosity, as well as creativity, knows no bounds. Millions of people from around the world share the enthusiasm of acquiring all sorts of unusual items most wouldn’t think of collecting, yet for them, it’s irresistible. These possessions may even become a part of their personalities, signaling to themselves and others who they are and where they belong. Some collectors have even turned their hobbies into full-time professions by opening museums or galleries and offering tours right in their own homes.

To find out more about what’s going through our minds when we crave to collect things we feel deeply interested in, we reached out to professor Shirley M. Mueller, M.D. Being an internationally known collector and scholar of Chinese export porcelain, she happily shared some insights about creating unique collections and our behaviors related to it.

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#4

My Grandma Kept And Framed Her Valentine's Cards She Got In Second Grade, Around 1924

My Grandma Kept And Framed Her Valentine's Cards She Got In Second Grade, Around 1924

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#5

Here Is My Vinyl Record Collection

Here Is My Vinyl Record Collection

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#6

Weird Christmas Tradition: Parents Buy Me These Bird Pens Every Year Without Fail. Here’s My Collection After About 10 Years. I’m A 26-Year-Old Male By The Way

Weird Christmas Tradition: Parents Buy Me These Bird Pens Every Year Without Fail. Here’s My Collection After About 10 Years. I’m A 26-Year-Old Male By The Way

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Mueller is a professor of neurology at Indiana University, as well as a renowned author of multiple books. Combining her two fields of interest, she recently published Inside the Head of a Collector: Neuropsychological Forces at Play, which explains the mysterious and often little-understood logic of the collectors and delves deeper into some of the topics discussed in the article.

According to Professor Mueller, an enormous number, around 30 to 40 percent of the population, collects one thing or another. And the reasons people lean toward accumulating unusual objects are numerous. One of the most common ones is simply because it gives them pleasure. "In anticipation of obtaining that special object, our pleasure center 'lights up' using a sophisticated scientific technique called functional magnetic resonance imaging," she told Bored Panda.

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#7

My Collection Of More Than 200 Four Leaf Clovers

My Collection Of More Than 200 Four Leaf Clovers

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#8

I'm A Hardcore Collector Of 70s Space Age Mod, And Pick Up Every Single Piece I Find Thrifting. Here Is My Upstairs Living Room With Some Of My Finds Over The Years

I'm A Hardcore Collector Of 70s Space Age Mod, And Pick Up Every Single Piece I Find Thrifting. Here Is My Upstairs Living Room With Some Of My Finds Over The Years

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#9

I Recently Helped My Father-In-Law Pick Out A New Telescope. Today, He Said Thanks By Gifting Me His Collection Of NASA Mission Patches He’s Been Collecting For Over 40 Years

I Recently Helped My Father-In-Law Pick Out A New Telescope. Today, He Said Thanks By Gifting Me His Collection Of NASA Mission Patches He’s Been Collecting For Over 40 Years

Every manned mission from Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo. I’m speechless.

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The neuroscientist who is board-certified in neurology and psychiatry explained her research in great detail in her article in Psychology Today. The method she mentioned is called the Oddball paradigm, and it's an experiment where the participant is presented with a string of ordinary items interrupted by extraordinary ones. Their brain activity is registered using a functional magnetic resonance machine which revealed that once people witnessed the unusual, their minds showed an overwhelming response.

"This may be why we seek the unique when we collect. It stimulates our brains in areas that connect to our pleasure center. This may also have an evolutionary benefit. We explore the new until we determine whether it is a benefit to us or not," Mueller wrote.

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#10

Hello There, Here's My Collection. It's Pretty Much Finished And I'm Super Proud Of It. Hope You Like It

Hello There, Here's My Collection. It's Pretty Much Finished And I'm Super Proud Of It. Hope You Like It

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#11

My Father's Collection Of Concert Tickets

My Father's Collection Of Concert Tickets

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varwenea
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2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

That's one reason I dislike digital tickets these days. I want the mementos.

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#12

This Book Collection Sorted By Color

This Book Collection Sorted By Color

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Another common reason that drives some collectors forward is pride. By acquiring exquisite and rare objects, people feel excited it might set them apart from the crowd and could even lead to recognition and admiration from others. "Other collectors, aside from the rareness of the piece, want to acquire it at a modest price. That is their joy and gives them pride in being so astute. It’s the possession for comparatively little money that excites them," she added.

#13

My Local Liquor Store Keeps A “Wall Of Shame” Of Fake Driver’s Licenses They’ve Accumulated Over The Years

My Local Liquor Store Keeps A “Wall Of Shame” Of Fake Driver’s Licenses They’ve Accumulated Over The Years

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#14

Slowly Finding More Beatrix Potter 50p Coins. Found The Flopsy Bunny Coin Tonight

Slowly Finding More Beatrix Potter 50p Coins. Found The Flopsy Bunny Coin Tonight

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#15

My Collection Of Uranium Glass That Glows Under UV Light

My Collection Of Uranium Glass That Glows Under UV Light

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madxmen
Community Member
2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Is it safe or you can have some type of disease after long years exposed to it?

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Then we have the history-lovers who feel fascinated by uncovering precious gems from our past and dream of getting their hands on antiquities. Mueller stated in her piece that this makes them feel closer to a time long gone, and can even give them a way to reconnect with their ancestors, important historical figures, or events that happened years ago. "This is the reverse of feeling a sense of history in looking toward the future. This collector may hope to build a legacy by passing on special objects to future generations," the professor explained.

#16

My Parents Have A Map Of Bills From Around The World

My Parents Have A Map Of Bills From Around The World

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#17

Everyone Who Leaves The Hospital I Was At, Leaves Their Covid Temp Check Sticker In The Same Spot

Everyone Who Leaves The Hospital I Was At, Leaves Their Covid Temp Check Sticker In The Same Spot

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#18

My Hometown's Museum Has A Collection Of Objects Doctors Have Removed From Patients' Throats And Lungs

My Hometown's Museum Has A Collection Of Objects Doctors Have Removed From Patients' Throats And Lungs

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Myrtille rat
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2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

some medals and buttons but how do you end up with a safety pin in your throat , and what’s that big thing right in the middle of the collection oO ?

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When asked whether having more of the same item makes us believe these objects are more valuable, the professor said, "A neuroeconomic concept is that we value what we own more than similar or identical items which others own. This is called the endowment effect. Thus, having more of the same items does make us think they are worth more than the same items which others possess."

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Mueller pointed out that stumbling across and admiring extraordinary collections online can inspire us to take up the challenge of starting one of our own. "Additionally, knowing someone we admire who collects can inspire us to do the same," she said.

#19

I Collect Antique Pencil Sharpeners So My Kids Will Have Something To Throw Away When I'm Gone

I Collect Antique Pencil Sharpeners So My Kids Will Have Something To Throw Away When I'm Gone

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#20

I Want To Share My Nintendo Gaming Cabinet With You All

I Want To Share My Nintendo Gaming Cabinet With You All

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#21

All The Shark Teeth My Grandma Found When She Was Younger That I Now Own

All The Shark Teeth My Grandma Found When She Was Younger That I Now Own

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We humans certainly stand out from the rest of the natural world by gathering items purely for the joy of the hunt and satisfaction of owning them. And apparently, this phenomenon is nothing new. Archeologists have discovered that 105,000 years ago, humans in the Kalahari region of southern Africa collected crystals. "Our analysis indicates that the crystals were not introduced into the deposits via natural processes, but were deliberately collected objects likely linked to spiritual beliefs and ritual," Dr. Jayne Wilkins, lead author of the study, told Forbes.

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And as it turns out, we have never looked back since the moment we started. "Collecting is additive to life itself," Mueller told us. "It isn't a job; it isn't a hobby. It is a passion. What could be better?"

#22

I've Been Thrifting Vintage Pyrex For The Last 10 Years. 95% Of My Collection Was $10 And Under

I've Been Thrifting Vintage Pyrex For The Last 10 Years. 95% Of My Collection Was $10 And Under

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varwenea
Community Member
2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The vintage PYREX vs newer Pyrex has borosilicate glass making them shatterproof, not true of the current varieties. These are durable and valuable. https://tuulavintage.com/valuable-antique-vintage-pyrex/

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#23

Started Collecting 1oz Bars Of Pure Metals: Aluminum, Titanium, Copper, Nickel, Silver, Gold

Started Collecting 1oz Bars Of Pure Metals: Aluminum, Titanium, Copper, Nickel, Silver, Gold

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#24

My Pen Collection 2021

My Pen Collection 2021

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Okasan Willis
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2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I have a fountain pen collection that started with my Grandfather's pen from WWII

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#25

My 20+ Year Collection Of Art Deco And Commemorative Cameras. Mostly Between 1930 And 1950

My 20+ Year Collection Of Art Deco And Commemorative Cameras. Mostly Between 1930 And 1950

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#26

My Grandfather Next To His LEGO Collection He Did During The Pandemic

My Grandfather Next To His LEGO Collection He Did During The Pandemic

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#27

I Collect Old Drinking Glasses And Came Across This Beautiful Cabinet Last Week At Salvation Army. It’s Perfect

I Collect Old Drinking Glasses And Came Across This Beautiful Cabinet Last Week At Salvation Army. It’s Perfect

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#29

My Grandma's Collection Of 544 Different Cookie Cutters That She Has Been Expanding For 50+ Years

My Grandma's Collection Of 544 Different Cookie Cutters That She Has Been Expanding For 50+ Years

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#30

I Have Autism And Have Very Weird Interests. One Of My Favorite Hobbies Is Collecting Old Security Alarms

I Have Autism And Have Very Weird Interests. One Of My Favorite Hobbies Is Collecting Old Security Alarms

A couple of months ago a local company started saving the stuff they take out instead of throwing it away they then dropped it off for me to play with

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#31

My Little Collection Of LEGO Flowers

My Little Collection Of LEGO Flowers

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#32

I Kept All Of My Old Cell Phones Throughout The Years. Decided To Display Them For Some Reason

I Kept All Of My Old Cell Phones Throughout The Years. Decided To Display Them For Some Reason

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Nina Nielsen
Community Member
2 years ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

You must still be using the nokia 3210 Since it's not in the collection. How is the battery doing 85%?

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#33

Some Dice Appreciation After Reorganizing My Collection. I Only Want More

Some Dice Appreciation After Reorganizing My Collection. I Only Want More

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#34

My Uncle Just Showed Me His Old School Star Wars Collection

My Uncle Just Showed Me His Old School Star Wars Collection

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#35

Found This Vintage Powder Pigment Collection At A Thrift Store. Something About Tiny Glass Vials Are So Satisfying

Found This Vintage Powder Pigment Collection At A Thrift Store. Something About Tiny Glass Vials Are So Satisfying

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Suutashi
Community Member
2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

😨 You really need to be careful handling these. The materials that were at one time used to create pigments like these were extremely toxic. Even the outside of the containers could be contaminated because there weren't many safety protocols back then.

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#36

I Found A Bunch Of Rocks On A Beach And Organized Them By Color

I Found A Bunch Of Rocks On A Beach And Organized Them By Color

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#37

My Sister Is Collecting Banana Stickers

My Sister Is Collecting Banana Stickers

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#39

Every $1 Bill I’ve Collected From Tips Over 2 Years (Roughly 1600)

Every $1 Bill I’ve Collected From Tips Over 2 Years (Roughly 1600)

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varwenea
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2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

If there is a dollar bill shortage instead of coins shortage, this person can help a bit. 😀

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#40

7 Years Worth Of Bugs. Should Be Full By 2030. Will Update

7 Years Worth Of Bugs. Should Be Full By 2030. Will Update

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#41

My Fiancée Took Me To IKEA So I Would Have A Place To Display My Collection

My Fiancée Took Me To IKEA So I Would Have A Place To Display My Collection

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#42

My Completely Obsolete DVD Collection

My Completely Obsolete DVD Collection

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Firstname Lastname
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2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

As convenient as streaming is, this room of discs is full of so many bonus features, and for that, I am jealous.

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#43

My Aunt's Perfume Collection

My Aunt's Perfume Collection

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Firstname Lastname
Community Member
2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Really hope they are well secured on that wall and not all going to fall into the world's stinkiest pile of broken bottles.

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#46

My Grandparents Had The Full Coke Bottle Collection From Different Years

My Grandparents Had The Full Coke Bottle Collection From Different Years

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Roborowski
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2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

These are the Coca-Cola 1998 Evolution Of The Contour Bottle 6 Miniature Coke Bottles

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#47

My Dad Kept All Glasses He's Ever Worn Since 1964

My Dad Kept All Glasses He's Ever Worn Since 1964

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Myrtille rat
Community Member
2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I mocked my mom as a kid when I saw that she kept all of her glasses because they were kinda weird looking to me and why would she want to keep that sh*it ...now at 43 YO I have a stash of 10 because meh maybe I will need a pair if mine broke and because they were kinda expensive and because whatever ...now she is the one laughing :)

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#48

I Have Been Keeping A Collection Of The Tiny Balls In Pen Ink Cartridges Since Middle School

I Have Been Keeping A Collection Of The Tiny Balls In Pen Ink Cartridges Since Middle School

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#49

Back In ‘99 I Told My Mom We Couldn’t Throw These Away. She Still Has Them 23 Years Later

Back In ‘99 I Told My Mom We Couldn’t Throw These Away. She Still Has Them 23 Years Later

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#50

My Dad's Salt And Pepper Shaker Collection

My Dad's Salt And Pepper Shaker Collection

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varwenea
Community Member
2 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

They look more like a collection permanently borrowed from diners and eateries. 😂

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Note: this post originally had 134 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.

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