Tuesday, August 30, 2005

The Ebay Queens Ride Again

I discovered Ebay in 99, when I was halfway through nursing school, a year and a half out from the divorce and my finances were at an all time low.

At first I started buying things the kids and I needed; at that time it was like a big free for all garage sale that you could see from your living room.

Then I started dating someone who had a digital camera, and it transformed my Ebay experience.

I started out selling my jewelry and graduated to selling some of the old junk I'd bought at thrift stores over the years, and made enough money at it that it soon became a second income.

My friend Bev, who is the only person I've ever known who has reformatted a hard drive by accident, was intrigued...and eventually brave enough to buy a computer and a digital camera, just so she could try out ebay.

We've gone to estate sales, garage sales, snatched goodies out of each other hands, sold everything from rubber swim caps (who knew that THOSE were collectible?) to car parts.

It's only fair -- I wouldn't be a nurse if it weren't for Bev, and she wouldn't be selling on Ebay if it weren't for me.

A year ago, Bev slowed down and I stopped; a combination of boredom, whiny buyers, and people pricing garage sale stuff for the same price it would sell on Ebay. And it wasn't until a few weeks ago that we both started up again.

Maybe it was just in the air, but Bev and I decided to go to some estate sales...and one of the four we decided on advertised fabric, $1 a piece. Bev put that one last on the list and away we went...

Those of us who sew know the ultimate truth, that "She who has the most fabric, wins." And this lady had to have been one of the front runners -- I have never seen so much fabric inside someone's house. It was piled 3-4 feet deep in every room of the home, and dated from the 50s to the 90s.

Bev doesn't sew, and doesn't know much about fabric...so I told her what to buy, and how to describe it, and she made $200 from her $30 fabric investment. And after all these years of selling on Ebay, she finally figured out why I like to sell fabric -- it's easy to store, easy to ship, it doesn't cost much for the buyer or the seller, and it's fun to look at and handle.

Last weekend, I was too busy to go out with her, and she found ANOTHER house full of fabric. And this time, she offered them $400 for all of it, and they took it...and the entire second story of her home is now full of fabric...so Bev wins, and she doesn't even sew!


AVA said...

EBay is awesome, it's a genius idea. I've only just started buying stuff from there, but I'd love to sell, too bad I'm in Mexico and the shipping costs for that would be a bit expensive.

Penelope Marzec said...

I tried ebay, but I didn't make much money--only a little. I guess I just don't have the right stuff to sell.

Running2Ks said...

Ooooh, good e-baying tip!