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How to Offer Cheaper Return Shipping

31 Jul

I have been listing away my miles of clothing, shoes, boots, accessories, jewelry and handbags on certain websites. In general, the more you list, the more you sell and the more you sell, the higher potential that occasionally something will be returned.  That is the most difficult thing about listing clothing online because no one is able to try it on and even when listing measurements, in which I have increased my activity as of late in order to insure a more accurate fit, there is always a chance it won’t work for the Buyer.  Hence, a return.  This happened to me the first time this week when a very nice Buyer wanted to return a sweater.  She actually said it had a tiny pinhole in it.  Sure, I would  simply sew up the hole and be done with it, but she wanted to return it. Because it had a tiny pinhole, the particular website on which it was sold deemd it “Fake, Faulty or Falsely Advertised.” Quite harsh, but okay.  And as a result, I was then responsible for return shipping.  Now, I sell on a lot of websites, as you all know.  And most of them do not require the Seller to provide return shipping.  But what bothered me even more was that this website wanted me to send in $11.30 via Paypal so that they could pass on a return shipping label to the Buyer.  I was shocked.  I shipped the sweater First Class for $3.47.  Why did I have to pay $11.30 for it to be returned?  And so I emailed and asked them.  The website support said they had standard rates for calculating shipping.  But what confused me is that they only charge $7 if you buy their shipping label when you ship out initially!!!  All of that didn’t quite compute. However, they did ask if I would like to provide a shipping label for the Buyer.  Heck yes, I did.  But I had to figure out how. Which I did pretty simply. I went into my handy dandy Paypal Shipping bookmark that I spoke about back in “Printing First Class Labels from Your Printer”, and edited the Return Address to the Buyer’s Address and the Shipping Address to my address.  Then when I went to “Print,” down at the bottom left hand corner of the print window there is a little “PDF” tab that lets you Save or Share as a PDF.  Either way you do it, you get a file for the label.  Attach that to your return email and voila, you only paid $3.47 for return shipping.

Throughout this process, I was explaining in my emails to this particular website that I sold on a lot of sites, that Return Shipping was rarely paid for by the Seller, and that shipping could be economically obtained for First Class at $3.47 or in a Priority Mail Envelope for around $5.  As a result, I hope all websites initially offer the opportunity for Sellers to send a return label to their Buyer at a rate that is not over three times their initial shipping cost.  It would even be nice if someone could write and post a short explanation of how to obtain First Class and Priority Labels on the each website in the FAQ, Help or Shipping & Returns sections.

 

Garage Sale Weekend Recap: “The Fisher Price Jackpot, The Purse Motherlode & the Schleich Animals”

30 Jul

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Find My Finds: Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

I had high hopes for the first sale in a very nice nearby neighborhood, but it turned out to be a dud.  So onto the freeway I went, heading to the southern end of town.  As I approached my first sale, I swerved off to the side of the road, spotting another sale that snuck up on me. There I began to spot purses that looked to be better than your average variety as I snapped up five Coach purses, a Lucky Brand Suede & Canvas Bucket Tote, a Hobo Lauren Wallet, a Kipling Gray Flannel Satchel, a Banana Republic green and pink wallet, a Steven by Steve Madden green satchel and a Louis Vuitton pochette.  All for $50.

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On to where I was previously heading, all of the advertised American Girl items had been poached at 7:00 a.m. according to the dad who had been left in charge of his daughter’s very highly-priced garage sale.  I did find a bucket of Schleich animals that were not priced.  The dad said those were probably only a dollar since the daughter had not priced them, she seemed to price the things that were important, he said.  I handed over my dollar and went across the street to buy a Concord Dollhouse Table & Chair set for $2.

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On to a sale to benefit a soccer team, the people were friends of mine and I heard later they were… intrigued by my quick survey of the situation, purchase of one Barbie and one Hello Kitty phone, and quick exit.  I said my hellos and goodbyes, but I had places to be and things to do….

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Heading back over the hill to the main part of town, I swerved again to a sale I was passing by.  There I spotted an old, old, flocked Tweety Bird bank that looked light it may have been made out of chalk.  I also picked up a Bugs Bunny, a Gund Panda, and a Dolls by Pauline two-face rag doll, each for $1.  And an Anthropologie dish for a quarter.

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Over to a sale that hadn’t started yet, but I hit the next day thank goodness, around the block I picked up a Barbie Basics Black Label Collector set of Ken clothing and a Snow White Pez set, all for $5.

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And further down the street I picked up an Avon Fuzzy bunny for $2 in the box – I had the same one as a little girl:

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Time to backtrack, I hit a sale where I picked up the Cole Haan Avalon Cross Body bag, some Premier Designs necklaces and a few great jewelry pieces for myself, all for $8.

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The next two were duds and I headed out of the way to a sale where I found more Laurel Burch jewelry than I was sure I wanted to buy.  But at $2 each, I picked up 7 pieces, 5 earring pairs and 2 necklaces.

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Another no go in between and I finally found my second motherlode of the day (the first being the purse lady). Toys and more toys, I couldn’t believe my luck.  Fisher Price sets complete and in great condition, Fisher Price Little People, Fisher Price Noah’s Ark, Fisher Price Busy Day Home, Fisher Price Play N Go Farm, House and School,  Fisher Price Peek A Blocks, Mattel Royal Boutique Disney Princess playsets, Victoria’s Secret Pink Dogs, Disney Princess Movie Projector, Duplo Cinderella Set, Fisher Price Telephone and two Hallmark Illuminations ornaments.  All?  For $25.

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Three last stops and I picked up the uber amazing (to me) Dora’s Talking House with all of the furniture for $5, the Ed Hardy bag for $2 and Fisher Price Perfectly Pink Lil Discovery Fairy for $1.

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$124 spent.  I could make $1,750.00.  Time will tell…

Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

 

U-Line Shipping Bags: Your Easiest & Cheapest Shipping Solution

29 Jul

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Over the years, with all of the shipping I’ve done, I’ve learned some shortcuts to package and ship quickly and cheaply.  My new most favorite way to ship is by using U-Line Poly Mailers that come in a variety of convenient sizes to fit almost every need. You can quickly ship a shirt or flat shoes or fabric alone, or use these bags to cover smaller boxes that don’t need additional reinforcement.  That way you can ship everything 13 ounces and under via First Class from $1.93- $3.47 instead of $5.00+ for Priority mail envelopes and boxes.  (Etsy now allows you to send anything under 1 pound via First Class, though you’re not paying much less than the Priority Mail price for those packages in the 14-15 ounce range.)  I’ve lived off of the 10″ x 13″ mailers, but recently ordered and have been using the 12″ x 15.5″ size which gives me more wiggle room for larges pieces of clothing and larger boxes.  I have been ordering them off ebay from the UPAKNSHIP store where I can get 100 of each for about $10.  That’s 10¢ a bag and well worth the ease of slipping an order in, whipping off the small plastic strip that covers the industrial sticky stuff that keeps these things locked tight, and folding over the top, ready for the shipping label.  Size ranges as follows:

4×6 & 5×7 POLY MAILERS
6 X 9 POLY MAILERS
7.5 X 10.5 POLY MAILERS
9 X 12 POLY MAILERS
10 X 13 POLY MAILERS
12 X 15.5 POLY MAILERS
14 X 17 POLY MAILERS
14.5 X 19 POLY MAILERS
19X24 & 24X24 POLY MAILERS

I find that the middle range gives you the versatility for many different sizes as you can fold the mailer and seal to whatever dimension you need.  Though you never know, I just may start stocking the smaller and even larger variety to make my life even easier.

 

Sunday Sales: “The Littlest Pet Shops, Polly Pocket Aristocats & Batman Playsets”

28 Jul

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Find My Finds: Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

I was really heading to a sale I had missed the day before because they had updated their sale listing for that Sunday and still listed Dooney & Bourke purses.  I was pretty sure that meant that they were priced too high and I was right.  They had marked out the $115 price tag on one and brought it down to $90 and the other was just as expensive along with a very nice Brighton purse they were also trying to sell.  I only purchased the Fisher Price Trio Batcave set for $2.

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On to another sale I picked up a Brighton clock for 25¢ and a Fisher Price Imaginext Joke playset for $3.

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One final sale I had also missed the day before because they did not open at their 9:00 specified time.  Good thing I returned to find a jackpot of Littlest Pet Shops, a Polly Pocket Bluebird Disney Aristocats Scat Cat Pad from 1996 complete, an Ello Keepsake boxes set, a Keenway Fantasy Palace with furniture, an Applause Disney Princess Finger Puppet set, a vintage Playmobil Hospital Set 3495, and a Bratz World House, all for $25.

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So in less than an hour and $30.25 spent, I could make at least $450.  Time will tell…

 

Lundby Dollhouse Update

25 Jul

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Well, this is a crazy coincidence: the last time I posted about Lundby Dollhouses was on the exact same day one year ago! “Lundby Dollhouses from Sweden”  Who would’ve thunk that one year later I would find myself in posession of the Gothenberg version for all of $20 (or less when you consider I bought it as part of a group deal with a ton of new in the box toys and ERTL diecast metal Thomas Trains).  In that previous post, I detailed both the newer versions that Lundby currently offers as well as the vintage versions as is the one I found.  Reading my own previous research, I see that a complete, triple box Gothenberg house like this had gone for $384 English pounds.  Strangely enough, researching today, I can’t find many good examples of the same for sale or sold.  The two pieces sold on ebay appear to have been in poor condition:

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And the only piece available on Etsy (other than mine) is going for a bit more and doesn’t have the original box:

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So I don’t know if we’re just in a slump of Lundby dollhouses these days or if they really are becoming more rare.  For more info on the dollhouses and the company, refer back to my previous post of one year ago: “Lundby Dollhouses from Sweden”  And to take a look at the pieces I have for sale, you can find them in my shop MissBargainHuntress on Etsy:

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I had two offers the first day I listed them!

 

Alexandra Koukinova Russian Cloth Dolls

24 Jul

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Last Sunday I went to a couple of garage sales where I picked up these amazing Russian cloth dolls. Getting back home I used my vast researching skills to type “Russian Cloth Doll” into the internet and looked at a long list of images to find similar versions.  Sure enough, I found that they were from Alexandra Koukinova depicting traditional festive dress from various regions of the country:

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What’s more, their prices range from $100-$800:

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From their website you find that the dolls are not that old, and it is difficult to find the “textile” dolls:

Alexandra” Company was created in 1989 in Moscow . Alexandra Koukinova – a graduate of School-Studio of the Moscow Art Academic Chekhov Theatre and a member of the Union of artists of Russia – is the main artist and the foundress of the Company “Alexandra” creates exquisite hand made porcelain art (including portrait) collection and souvenir dolls, which are fulfilled with historical reliability, unexcelled mastery and top quality. More than 100 designs of textile, clay and porcelain dolls were made for years of existence of the Company.

Exclusive art collection porcelain dolls are produced in the single copy (unique au thor’s dolls) or in limited editions – from 3 up to 35 pieces in a series. Porcelain souvenir dolls are produced up to 150 pieces in a series.

If you want to buy unique uncommon outright gift, please, contact us – any art hand made doll of “Alexandra” Company – whether it be a diminutive porcelain souvenir either an exclusive author’s or collection porcelain doll, is the indispensable exquisite detail in design of an interior , which will decorate each house, will make it even more warm and more cozy.

More information on Alexandra herself:

Alexandra Koukinova was born in Russia in 1964. She is also known as Sasha.  From a young age she used to draw and sew dresses for her dolls. She also used to study fashion books. In 1983 she began studying in a Theatrical Institute and became a theatre costume designer. She eventually started making dolls during the breaks between theatre performances. She then made her first cloth doll.  The Company started in Moscow in 1989. Her cloth dolls wore costumes representing various regions of Russia. They were exquisitely decorated with beadwork and she paid great attention to detail. She later made dolls with porcelain heads and limbs.

 The dolls I have shown are 24″ with amazing detail.  I have them listed on Etsy.

 

Sunday Sales: “The Monster High Dolls & The Russian Dolls”

23 Jul

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Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

A friend had told me of a garage sale a neighbor was having on that Sunday.  So I headed on over just before the starting time of 10:00.  I immediately spotted the cookie sheet full of Monster High Dolls, plus a couple of Liv Dolls.  For all 12 I paid $15.  Then I also picked up the Lalaloopsy doll, the Furreal Friends puppy and the Jaba the Hutt at $1 each.  Heading to my car, I saw that another neighbor was putting things out.  I wandered over and grabbed the Our Generation Doll, the Monsters Inc. Sully, the two Furbys and the Train Top, all for $5. Then I saw the large cloth dolls laying in their plastic bags.  I asked her about them and she said they were given to her by her mother-in-law.  Under one’s skirt was a note written in Russian, and so I surmised they must be Russian.  I asked her how much and she said she didn’t know.  After pondering a moment, she said $20 for the three and then had to run in the house.  When she came back out I said, okay, I would take them, and handed her a $20.  More on those dolls later but they’re worth at least over $100 each.  All spent? $43.  And I already sold one of the Monster High Dolls for $20, so I’m almost halfway there.  Total Potential Gain?  At least $750.

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Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

 

 

Garage Sale Weekend Recap: “The Annalee Dolls, The Lundby Doll House & The Swatch Watches”

22 Jul

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Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

This recap has taken me three days to write because, as you can see, I found a lot of stuff.  Not just a lot of stuff, a ton of stuff.  First stop I found a pile of Toy Story Jessie Dolls and the Candy Lunch Box, some Hello Kitty Ornaments, and some Star Wars Action Figures and an Ornament, all for $10.

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Then over to a bit of a scary situation which turned out to be an estate clean-out.  The great-grandmother was 96 when she passed.  At the end of the driveway was a bin of very large and some small old Annalee Dolls.  I know people collect them and I asked the guy how much.  “For the whole bin?”  “Well, yeah okay?”  “How about $10?”  I wasn’t even sure I wanted the whole bin but I agreed.  And inside I also found three Swatch Watches new in their cases!  Crazy.  Plus a bunch of vintage Avon and Hallmark ornaments.

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The Toy Story Theme continued as I hit an annual block sale where this nice guy was giving stuff away for next to nothing.  I was so jealous of the guy ahead of me who walked away with a pile of unopened Lego Sets, all for $10.  But I didn’t do too badly.  I found a pile of Toy Story toys and other unopened toys, plus a pile of ERTL Diecast metal Thomas Trains, plus a Lundby Dollhouse and two garages in their boxes, all for the grand total of $35.  Total steal.  After making my rounds around the block, returning back to my car parked by his sale, he called me back to pick out some dollhouse furniture from a box, where I also found the vintage Flying Nun Doll, all for free.

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Across the street from the guy, was an older couple selling a ton of cool vintage items.  For $20 I walked away with some great stuff like old Fisher Price Little People, two Starbucks Holiday mugs, Kelly & Tommy clothing, a vintage Annie Doll and outfits and so much other stuff I can’t even remember…

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Down the street I found a Fisher Price Little People House and Farm and bag of people, all for $5.

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I headed over to another block sale where I picked up a few Hallmark ornaments and two German Bruder Trucks for a buck each.

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A quick stop on a street with inconvenient parking, everything was $1 or less.  I picked up the Seahorse, the Curious George Book, the Matchbox Dino Volcano and a Gymboree purse: $4 total.

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I stopped by a repeat sale and picked up two more Thomas Dam trolls at a dollar each, and then I stopped for a sign to find yet another repeat sale where I had hit the motherlode of Polly Pockets before.  This time I hit the motherlode of Barbie stuff including the Barbie suitcase, classroom, wicker set, dolls, baby, crib and then even some vintage Liddle Kiddles, all for $20.

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Off to the other side of town, I stopped by one on the side of the road, literally, of a parking lot.  Where I found a pile of Skylanders and a Betsey Johnson Betseyville bag, all for $12.  All of the Skylanders are worth in the neighborhood of $100.  A few more sales and I only found the Wedgwood Peter Rabbit set for $2.

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As you may have guessed, I haven’t even gotten through to research every teeny tiny item I picked up that day. I estimate I spent about $140 and I predict I could make $2,750.00.  Time will tell.

Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

 

A Friday Garage Sale & Thrift Shop Stop

21 Jul

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Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

I ran to a garage sale Friday morning where I found the cowboy boots, some shoes for myself, the two Starbucks mugs and the VTech  Tote N Go Laptop, all for $4.  Then I figured I had a few more minutes to spare, so I ran into my local Goodwill.  There I found a brand new Tommy Bahama shirt for $1.99, a Teatro Olivia playset for $3.49, a really cute Franchi Clutch for $4.49, a pretty fuchsia suede wallet for $1.99, an Oneida Deluxe Raggedy Ann & Andy plate for 99¢ and a Wild Wings Hummingbird mug for $1.99.  $15 and I was out of there. So for $19, I could make around $150.

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Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

 

Quick Thrift Store Trip: “The Gund Grover, The Go Diego Go Matchbox Set & The Vintage Girl Prints”

18 Jul

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Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

A quick run into two of my favorite thrift shops netted me the above.  At the first I found the vintage 1972 Renaissance Prints for 50¢ each, the Ty Dora and Ty Boots at $1 each, the Purple Panda Littlest Pet Shop for 50¢ and a bag of toys for $1 totalling $4.50.  And at the second I found the Matchbox Go Diego Go for $2, the Gund Grover for $1 and the Boyds Bears Moose for another $1, totalling $4.  For $8.50 I could gain $130:

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Find My Finds:  Threadflip ~ Poshmark ~ Amazon ~ Etsy ~ Bonanza ~ eCRATER

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