"It takes ages to finish a quilt you're not working on!"

Friday, April 08, 2005

Recent eBay wins..

Well, that third posting worked okay, so I will try for a more interesting one this time.. What you see on eBay is not always what you get. Or should I say what you think you see in the photo on the auction. Yesterday I received a small cloth which had been advertised as hand embroidered. I am not easily tricked into thinking machined embroidered stuff is hand embroidered, but in this case it was quite hard to tell. There was only one photo of the cloth which was not close-up, so it was almost impossible to see what the stitching was like. However, it was a pretty design, and very cheap ($5 - that should have warned me, but more about that in a minute), so I bid for it, and won it without opposition. When I opened it up today, it was clearly machine embroidered, probably in China or the Phillippines, where so much of this kind of work comes from. Now before anyone reading this gets in a huff about my comments, let me assure you, I have no problem with machine embroidered cloths, and no problem with where they originate. In fact I have a few of them in my linen cupboard that I use regularly, and this particular one will go in with them. BUT! My passion is hand embroidered cloths, because this is what I do myself, and I can appreciate the work that goes into them more than I can appreciate machined items, because I don't do that at all myself. So, I was a trifle annoyed that I had been 'tricked' into bidding for this cloth. So I phoned the seller in N.S.W. (her phone number was on the Aust Post satchel), and explained to her that I was not happy that she had advertised the cloth as hand done when it wasn't. She was very apologetic, and offered to refund my money, but I said no, the cloth was pretty in its own right, and I was happy to keep it, but I warned her that some other eBayers are not so forgiving, and if she wasn't more careful about her descriptions, she could get some rather nasty feedback. She admitted that she didn't know the difference between hand and machine embroidered stuff, so I explained that to her, and we closed the conversation quite happily. A couple of weeks ago, I received two lovely suppercloths in the mail ex eBay. They were both hand done, with hand crocheted edges, and about the same size. One had cost me $5 and the other $25. My friends gasped at the difference in price and asked how that could happen. In this case, it was due to the relative experience of each eBay seller. The $5 cloth was listed by someone who did not normally deal with linen, and just wanted to get rid of it quickly. She obviously didn't bother looking at the Textiles categories to see what she might compare hers to. I would cheerfully have paid up to $40 for this cloth, it is quite spectacular. The other cloth was sold by a lady who sells a lot of linen, and she knows what it can fetch. I was the only bidder in both auctions, which surprised me, as they were both so clearly exquisitely hand stitched and finished off. Hence my comment in brackets in the first paragraph, about being cheap at $5 - sometimes you get far more than what you bargained for! Love that eBay!

1 comment:

Isabelle said...

Hey, I love Ebay too! And that can be another great way to cross borders, isn't it? :D I buy mostly from the UK or the US.

Thanks so much for leaving your comment on my blog and your pin on my guestmap. I love discovering new blogs! And I am so excited that I finally have a pin from Australia on my guestmap!
I need to tell you, I find Australian embroidery fascinating. :D

I'll be adding your blog to my links. Thanks again! So nice to meet you!