ISSUE 26: Feb. 2007
Yard Salers: Issue 26! New Yard Salers Site Up and Running
Yard Salers: Issue 26! New Yard Salers Site Up and Running
This issue marks a big change for Yard Salers that I'm very excited about, but most of all I hope you will be excited about.
As I've mentioned off and on in the past few months, I've been working on a new web site for Yard Salers, and it's now ready to go for you to check out and enjoy, at www.yardsalers.net. It includes a forum where we can all share tips and get to know each other, and just hang out or vent. (Venting can be cathartic).
Another big change, as you may have noticed, is in the name of this newsletter and the new web site: it's changing to simply "Yard Salers" from "Yard Salers and eBayers." Please note that the url of the new site, yardsalers.net, is a ".net," not a ".com" address. (Somebody already had .com, though I think you'll agree our .net site is very different).
This does not mean we will not still talk about eBay and selling online, but we simply won't have "ebayers" in the name.
Wow...I am getting flashbacks from the 70s...does anyone else out there remember when "BankAmericard" changed its name to "Visa"? "We're changing to Visa...we're keeping up with you....the things you want, the things you do, the places that you're going to..." Did I mention I'm cursed with a memory of picayune things like old tv commercials from the 70s?
So check out the new site when you get a chance. And if you stop by the forum and post a message in the "Please Introduce Yourself" thread, you have a chance to win a package of all my paperback books, signed, and ebooks. (Trust me..you odds on this are a LOT better than winning the lottery).
The only other thing I want to mention is that I've been following eBay's changing Feedback system, "Feedback 2.0," which eBay is rolling out first in the UK and other of its non-US sites. I wrote an article about this for AuctionBytes, which you can read at http://www.auctionbytes.com/cab/abn/y07/m02/i20/s02. In general, many changes seem to be good, but some sellers have concerns that buyers are given too much power that may be abused with their ability to give "star" ratings, as sellers will not have to ability to rate buyers this way. AuctionBytes is running a survey about the new system..if you want, take it at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=558363340457.
I'll leave the rest of my comments to the actual meat of the newsletter. Speaking of which, it has been expressed by a reader (Hi, Thom) that it would be a good idea if my newsletters were shorter, and that this might actually help me get the newsletters out more frequently. And indeed one of my goals for the new year, and new web site, is to have these newsletters go out monthly at a minimum, preferably at the beginning of each month. So this is technically February's issue. It may not be super short, but hopefully it will be more succinct (or even less long-winded) that some others I've done.
Having said that, let's get to it!
Lynn Dralle's famous "boot camp" is now in a box! "My success was no accident...It has taken me eight years to perfect my system and hit the six-figure sales level on eBay. I've done it and so can you. And now I'm doing the unthinkable -- I am sharing all of my secrets - step by step, in my eBay Boot Camp in a Box!" Click here for Lynn's Boot Camp in a Box!
Put eBay on AUTOPILOT! Earn a serious income with a part-time effort.
What can you do with Craigslist? How about bartering up from a paper clip to a house? Buy and sell cars, furniture, crafts, clothing, you name it. Buy great tickets at face value, be a movie extra or find other gigs...or even find your "dream job." For personal stories, prices of what sells for what, and ideas about how to get the most out of craigslist, click here!
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In This Issue:
1) eBay Live 2007: Suze Orman and..lunch with Bill Cobb?
2) What Sells: Trifari Costume Jewelry
3) Reader Mail -- Velvet Underground Redux and More
1) eBay Live 2007: Suze Orman and..lunch with Bill Cobb?
Anyone for Cobb salad? OK, that corny joke just came to me; I apologize. But the first rumblings of eBay Live! 2007 (Boston) are trickling in; eBay opened their registration on the website the other day (go to www.ebay.com/ebaylive), and I got my shiny new eBay "Sellsational" brochure in the mail, complete with hip figures jumping in the air, not unlike an iPod commercial.
So far in terms of details on events and speakers, I can tell you that financial guru Suze Orman will be one of the featured folks, "sharing her financial insights and motivating you to greater heights."
Also, in the last Town Hall with Bill Cobb, a member suggested they run a charity auction on eBay to give the highest bidders the chance to have lunch with him. He indicated they would look into it, and it sounds like something we may see. Stay tuned.
Who will be entertaining this year? So far I know that Kool and the Gang is the featured performer for the gala. If you don't know or remember who they are, they are probably best known for the song "Celebration," circa 1980. Another very popular song of theirs is "Jungle Boogie."
In terms of hotels, they seem to be filling up fast, and there aren't many that are close to the BCEC, the convention center where the event is being held (there is more than one convntion center in Boston, so make sure you get the right one).
Also, eBay is giving folks the chance to get the "VIP treatment" by adding a "Priority Pass" to their registration...you can "get special gifts, a separate registration line so you can bypass the crowds and get to the good stuff faster, and VIP access and reserved seating at the Keynote Address."
Comments about eBay Live 2007, or reminiscences about past ones? Post 'em here..leave a comment on the Yard Salers Community forum...just go to yardsalers.net and click the "Community" link on the left.
2) What Sells: Trifari Costume Jewelry
The other day I went to an estate sale which, on first glance, looked pretty lame. That just teaches you not to judge things too quickly.
The entirety of the sale was held in the open garage and then one connecting room of the house. Not much floor space. I passed some stuff that was in a garage, including one nice dining room set because I don't need one -- and went into the other room. Several gewgaws, thingamagigs, and hoodingys were in there -- some art, some lamps, old mugs, glasses, and the like. Not much on the bookshelf...and then I spied a cardboard box sitting inconspicuously on the bottom shelf. Peeking inside, I saw the whole thing was full of old playbills - the Kennedy Center, the National Theatre, and several smaller DC area theaters. Not bad for $10. I bought the box. (A lot is currently on eBay now and I'll report how they do later).
As I stood there paying, I saw several clear plastic bags of costume jewelry. I held one up and peeked inside. The stuff looked high-quality and I saw some genuine stones and interesting-looking pieces. The plastic openings had been taped shut, so people hadn't been able to poke around inside..I think that's one reason no one had bought them yet.
The guy running the sale casually said "90% of the things in those bags are genuine Trifari." That perked my ears up, and I decided to buy the three bags for $20 each. I knew the name "Trifari" because years ago I had bought a Trifari brooch at an antiques store, and I learned they were a reputable old costume jewelry brand.
Well, my bags yielded many treasures, several of which I have up on eBay now, and I have many many more to list. The most valuable item was a Rebajes necklace and earrings set (Rebajes was a modern jewelry designer who worked with as lot of copper) that I sold for about $75 to a lady in Australia.
And that was just one thing from all those bags!
So, with that in mind, I thought it would be fun to look at what's selling on eBay right now in terms of Trifari. (How to find a Trifari? Most pieces are marked "Trifari," and some have a little crown symbol over the T. More info is available at http://www.collectorsindex.com/information/trifarijewelryhistory.html).
A nice thing about scouting for Trifari pieces is they are not hard to find..and they usually turn up at estate sales of ladies who collected costume jewelry pieces in the 40s, 50s, and 60s.
Some of the most valuable Trifari pieces are the "Jelly Belly" items: they have a little stone in the belly area. The highest-priced Trifari item currently being bid on eBay is a jelly belly:
- TRIFARI SS JELLY BELLY LUCITE LEAPING SAILFISH FUR CLIP at $137.50 with 1 day 6 hrs left in the auction.
Now let's look at some closed auctions. These are some pretty darn high prices considering this is "costume" jewelry! Although Trifaris are beautifully designed, and many are meant to look like fine jewelry -- no doubt the reasons why they are so highly collectible today:
- Vintage "Trifari" Alfred Philippe Necklace & Earrings. Absolutely Stunning & Rare...c. 1949 - $677.99, 15 bids.
(Philippe refers to one of Trifari's most famous designers, Alfred Phillipe. Items designed by Philippe are very sought-after and highly collectible).
- TRIFARI STERLING JELLY BELLY STORK BROOCH PHILLIPE - $428.99, 16 bids
- VINTAGE TRIFARI DAVID MIR RHINESTONE SINBAD HEAD BROOCH - $417, 12 bids.
This one was designed by David Mir, Mir David Mir designed for Trifari in the 1930s and 1940s, and did some bow pins as well.
- RARE 1940s Trifari Sterling Jelly Belly Crab Pin NICE!! - $481.00, 17 bids
- MAJESTIC TRIFARI PHILIPPE CLAIRE de LUNE FULL PARURE - $465.00, 1 bid.
(A parure is a set of various items of matching jewelery).
Here's another jelly belly, this one a rooster:
- RAREST Vintage TRIFARI Sterling JELLY BELLY Rooster PIN - $379.99, 20 bids.
The completed prices go all the way down in the $300s, $200s, $100s, and between $50-$100, and so on.
What doesn't sell well? Some of the plain gold or silvetone metal earrings and bracelets, etc., without any rhinestone, pearl, or other embellishments, seem to be languishing without bids more than other items.
In general, the less elaborate pieces sell for less...on down to a couple dollars or less, but it's hard to know how any given piece will do, so my advice is to first try it in an auction, then group your unsold pieces into a lot, or move them into your eBay Store.
Still haven't read my bestselling eBay book, "What Sells on eBay for What"! You can buy it and download it instantly -- click What Sells on eBay for What or go to
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3) Reader Mail: Velvet Underground Redux and More
Last month I wrote about a rare old acetate record of the Velvet Underground selling on eBay for a crazy sum...$155,401. It seems that is not ultimately accurate, because that sale fell through, as Ian tells us, below..read on for more of the story:
Hello and thanks for your newsletter. The sale of the Velvet Underground acetate was widely reported but what wasn't widely reported is that this sale turned out to be a dud. Some "friend" of the winning bidder falsely bid on the item. When the winner was contacted he was flabbergasted and said he hardly had enough money to put gas in the car. The auction re-listed and all potential bidders were screened. The subsequent winning bid came in at $25,200.
[Ian then included the text of an article about it. I can't reproduce the whole thing here, but here are some pertinent excerpts:]
Posted ON 23/12/06
Rare acetate finds a home
After eBay debacle involving bogus bid, Montreal vendor nails legit online buyer
Christmas came early for Montreal's Warren Hill and his American friends, thanks to a buyer somewhere in the United States whose eBay bid of $25,200 (U.S.) clinched the purchase of a fragile acetate of what is purported to be the first studio recording by the legendary Velvet Underground.
The rare acetate -- it's believed there is only one other in the world -- had been bought by Hill for 75 cents at a Manhattan flea market in the fall of 2002, when he was a 25-year-old history student at Montreal's Concordia University.
The sale this week is believed to be legitimate, in contrast to what happened earlier this month when, in another eBay auction that began Nov. 28, the winning bid of $155,401 turned out to be bogus.
Another cyberspace auction of the acetate began Dec. 15, but this time the interested bidders had to register in advance and supply credit and character references.
The seller, Scott Wax, proprietor of Saturn Records of Oakland, Calif., acting on behalf of Hill and Hill's friend, Eric Isaacson, a record-store owner in Portland, Ore., spoke with the winning bidder shortly after the auction closed. On Thursday evening, Wax told The Globe and Mail, "I'm not worried we'll get paid...He seems eager to get his cheque out."
Wax went into both the first and second auctions figuring the acetate would fetch between $25,000 and $40,000. Like Hill, he became wary when, in the first auction, bidding reached $100,000 after the acetate had been listed on eBay for less than five days.
There's no question that the acetate -- an acetone-covered aluminum disc that looks like a 33.3-rpm vinyl record -- is valuable and important...[stuff deleted]
However, Wax, Hill and Isaacson never believed it was valuable to the tune of $100,000 or more. "I think what the guy paid is what the record is really worth," said Wax, who, before the auction, told his staff in Oakland it would go for $25,000.
[It goes on to say there were about 50 bids in the recent auction, with the first at $1.04. Wax said he didn't know what the buyer's intentions were, but he would be "speaking with him in the next couple of days" to determine if he was a fan or an investor."]
It also notes that the band's lead guitarist, Sterling Morrison, died in 1995; Nico, the German-born model and actress who sang on the debut, died in 1988.
The surviving members of the Velvets are guitarist Lou Reed, drummer Mo Tucker and bassist-violist John Cale.
Wow..I heard not seen that at all! You are so right. Thanks a million for sending it on..I will make a note of it in the next issue.
I heard from Tammy the other day, who has started a business with her sister making bright outdoor yard sale signs. They will be test marketing in Lowe's soon...but you can check out her web site now! I will also have a link from my yardsalers.net site. Read below..
My sister and I started a company "Sassy Signs" -- we make fun, bright and cool outdoor polybag yard signs. We are garage sale FREAKS, so we came up with the idea after taking 4 hours to make our own crazy signs for our sale. We thought, why wouldn't everyone want some cool, bright and sturdy signs -- unlike the boring black and white ones! So, here we are! Check out our site: www.sassysigns.com.
Have a great day!!
Wow...great idea! I've often thought that so many yard sale signs I see are drab, hard to read, with too-small writing..so this is a great biz idea. Your signs look eye-catching and bold, and should help bring traffic to any yard sale! :)
That's it for this issue. Until next time! - Julia
Questions about My eBooks Ordering
You can certainly purchase from me directly, as can anyone. All you have to do is email me and let me know which ebook(s) you want, if you are a subscriber and thus eligible for the discount, and then PayPal me to my PayPal id at email@example.com. I'll be tweaking and updating the ebooks page on my web site soon.
YOUR FEEDBACK WANTED: What Else Do You Want to See in Yardsalers?
I am always open to reader articles, so if you want to write about something relating to yard sale-ing and eBaying, just flag me down! I will of course give you credit, using your eBay ID, web site, or any other contact
eBooks by Julia L. Wilkinson:
[All my ebooks are offered at 1/2 price from their regular prices to the subscribers of this newsletter. If interested in any of them, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.]
- Making Big Bucks off Catalogs on eBay:
- Over 100 Books that Sell for $50-$100 on eBay
- Selling Kids Clothes on eBay: email me!
(these last two will be available for purchase via my site soon).
- How to Spot Fakes: email me!
What Sells on eBay for What: $8.95, 1/2 price from the $17.95 retail price.
My Life at AOL (available at amazon.com, booklocker.com, and 1stbooks.com)
Blogs, Blogs, and More Blogs
Check out My amazon.com Author Blog
Those of you who just can't get enough of my writing (are there any of you?) will be happy to know I now have a new blog on amazon.com. Amazon.com has created an "author blog" tool for authors to...well, blog. You'll see it if you bring up either of my books on the amazon site, but for good measure, it's at: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1593270550. (Scroll down to "amazonConnect").
My GoWholesale Blog
You can also check out my blog on gowholesale.com: bidbits
The url is:
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Copyright 2006 Julia L. Wilkinson
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