Lynn’s eBay eZine April 30th, 2015 Volume XI, Issue 07


My nephew Zachary turned 9 years old a week ago today, so happy Birthday Zach! My brother flew up to Bellingham to spend time with the boys and to see family. Uncle Lee is the best!

Here is my mom, Zachary (the birthday boy), Kai (his birthday is next month) and my brother Lee sitting on a bench in front of my mom’s beach house. I wish we could have been there!

But as usual it has been crazy busy here! Houston still hasn’t decided on a college and the deadline is May 1st. Oh boy! It is down to Loyola Marymount and Pepperdine. Either way, Houston will be attending college on Highway 1 or “the” PCH. Time will tell which one will win!

Let’s start this ezine off with a score! While touring LMU last Friday, I heard the offer sound go off on my phone. I quickly checked it and couldn’t believe I was being offered over $100 for an item that had been up at auction a few weeks prior with a starting bid of $49.99 and it didn’t sell. I LOVE it when that happens.

Here is the item and an interesting back story.

Click here to see this auction.

While it was listed at auction I received this question.

“I’d like to ask your permission to publish your listing images on our nonprofit website. If possible we’ll reconstruct the pattern (the pictures are sharp enough for that) and publish them both mentioning you as donor on the site, and if you wish, provide a backlink to this item while it is still unsold. If you have no objections to this, please let me know? Your permission would be much appreciated.

By the way, we have images of a quite similar item in our collection, That was a beaded tray to put hot teapots on. 

Thank you and best wishes,
Library Director of the Antique Pattern Library, a project of New Media Arts Inc, a nonprofit registered in the USA (although I am Dutch myself)”

Pretty cool! I told her that yes of course she could use the images. But you know what I really liked? She called my photos sharp! Yay!

But back to that best offer. Since it was considerably higher than a $100, I quickly accepted it. I had only paid $1 for this item at a garage sale about a month prior. I knew it was some type of Victorian bead work but thought it might have been part of a fireplace screen. Never thought it would be a trivet for a hot teapot. Awesome!

As April comes to an end I have to say that The Queen’s Court challenge for this month was my favorite one yet. Seriously! Here is how it all came to be.

My little sister, Kiki, mom to Zach and Kai that you just read about, had a very best friend named Tara. When my sister was in hospice, we started calling her Tara dot Trott—I can’t really remember why now, but it always made my sister smile.

Well, Tara was in Palm Springs with her mom for a vacation a few weeks ago. She stopped by my office to say hello and we had her mom take a photo of me, Tara and my mom.

When I looked at the photo I couldn’t believe all the “crap” on the shelf to the right in the photo. That is my “to be listed” shelf. Or kind of a “catch all” for those things that are not fun, easy or exciting to list. I am sure you all have one of these “catch alls”.

I tend to list the easiest items first…dish sets, flatware sets, coffee mugs, collections, etc. and shove all the random extra stuff onto our “to be listed” racks .

Whatever the case may be, our Queen’s Court challenge for April was to list one shelf of stuff from your rack (not the entire 5 shelves full…but they could if they wanted ) or a box or two of things in your way.

It was our most successful Queen’s Court challenge to date. I could rank these challenges (on our private forum) by posts or views, but using either one as a rating scale this challenge wins! Hands down. There were 1,237 views and 131 posts. It was super fun following along with all the members who shared their “before” and “after” photos. It really got us all motivated!

Here are a few of the random things that I listed off of that one top shelf. Seriously, I did not even make it to the second shelf down.

This one is super awesome because it is a combined wedding album and guest book from 1899. I have to admit I spent an hour researching Hattie Baxter and her husband. Couldn’t find anything on them. But what a special and prized item for some ephemera collector or family member.

Click here to see this auction.

This item (a walking stick or cane) I have been tripping over for months. It was actually on the floor next to the shelf. So glad it is listed!

Click here to see this auction.

Here is a piece of fruit from a basket full of Alabaster stone fruit pieces that I finally listed from that shelf. I am TERRIBLE at identifying fruit and vegetables so if anyone wants to help me out and correct me, I am very grateful and rarely insulted!

Click here to see this auction.

BTW, here is my empty shelf before I filled it up with ORGANIZED boxes full of flatware, coffee mugs, and shot glasses. So wonderful! Thank you to the Queen’s Court! You all ROCK!!

Here it is getting organized. It is all good in my eBay world! Progress is being made!

Speaking of the awesome Queen’s Court I am very happy to announce this ezine’s featured member, Jan. She is amazing and always willing to post with helpful identifications and tips. Jan is a super positive member and a wonderful asset. We Love you Jan Lane! And she is Darling! Here is her story…..

“Hi there! My husband and I have been entrepreneurs most of our lives. Back in the early 80s I had a brick and mortar country store, selling primitive antiques and country decor. Then we had two boys so I quit working and focused on them, as well as, supporting my husband in his various business ventures. The “boys” have long since moved on, both following their own entrepreneurial paths. Now we have a beautiful 3 year old granddaughter who is the light of our lives!

But on to my eBay journey…

It all started back in December 2004 when I began using eBay to liquidate my excess inventory of scrapbooking supplies. Little did I know what I was getting into! As my scrapbooking inventory was successfully depleted, I realized that I didn’t want to quit selling on eBay—I was hooked. So I started going through the house and listing our personal items. I warned my husband that if it wasn’t nailed down, it would probably end up on eBay.

Eventually, I ran out of personal stuff to sell, so the obvious solution to my eBay addiction was to resell other peoples’ stuff, and I began frequenting garage sales, estate sales, thrift stores, and auctions. We even purchased the inventory of several stamp and hobby stores that had to close their doors.

Currently my best-selling niches are stamp collecting supplies, scrapbooking supplies, dollhouse furniture, and of course, dinnerware. I just purchased 92 pieces of Longaberger dinnerware this weekend with lots of serving pieces, some hard to find.

Here is one of the listings:

Click here to see this auction.

I discovered Lynn years ago from an offer for one of her books in my Kovel’s monthly newsletter. I subsequently subscribed to her newsletter, read her books, and followed her sales. What makes her unique among other eBay “gurus” is that she actually has a good eBay business!

Here is a score for which I must credit Lynn and the Queen’s Court. I bought a flat of collectible glass shoes at an auction at an average price of $1 a shoe. One was an old kerosene lamp with a shoe base, but the toe of the shoe was completely broken out. I almost ignored my own motto: “Don’t throw it away until you’ve tried it on eBay.” But before I threw it out, I ran it by the QC and was advised that the piece had value even in its current state.

So following Lynn’s advice of “price it high with Best Offer”, I listed it for $225 and happily accepted a Best Offer of $100. Just think, I almost threw away a $100! Here is the listing:

Click here to see this auction.

Thank you so much Jan for sharing your eBay journey!

OK, I have to tell you that I have been extremely lucky with computers lately. Yes, I did say computers. Not my usual MO (Modus Operandi) but I was out at a sale with my mom last month and a woman had a Macbook Pro for sale for $500. It was barely used and Indy’s Macbook had just crashed.

I called my brother (our resident computer expert) and told him all the specs and the price and he said “is it stolen?” It was not and that was my first clue that I should buy it! My brother also said that if Indy didn’t need it, he could use a laptop.

It turned out that the darling lady who sold it to me had not wiped it clean. I gave her my driver’s license number, showed her photo id, gave her my phone number, address etc. and assured her that we would securely wipe it.

She was very lucky that I bought it instead of some unscrupulous person. Lee immediately securely wiped all her personal info. He also upgraded Indy’s computer so it worked out great. My brother loves his new/used laptop for a bargain price and Indy’s laptop is humming along like new. A win-win.

That was my first score. My next was a $20 mini pc laptop that actually works at a different estate scale. Can’t have too many backup plans with three computer users in this house!

My third, and I hope luckiest score, was last week at a different estate sale. An entire Mac system for $30. I just thought the monitor and speakers were super cool. After I bought it I called Lee and told him about it. He didn’t think it would be worth much because it was outdated. Turns out “computer vintage” for Apples makes them quite valuable if done in a sleek mid century style.

I am still waiting for my Mac SE30 to be worth a fortune . It was my very first computer EVER that I bought from the USC bookstore in September of 1990 when I was getting my MBA. Still not worth much more than $100 to $200.

But my $30 Mac cube turned out to be valued at close to $500 if in excellent condition. I started the auction at 10 times my purchase price and hoped for a bidding war. It will end the day before this ezine comes out so fingers crossed! Here is the listing.

Click here to see this auction.

So what are those crazy kids of mine up to? Let’s just say A LOT and leave it at that. I am not going to write about them in this ezine. I must start preparing for their leaving my life and going off to college. Just kidding! They will always be a big part of my life wherever they are. So (for once) let’s start with Indiana!

She is running for president of her house. At Xavier, they have six houses, much like the Harry Potter movies. She is a member of Gonzaga and she is running for president with her friend Maddie Rhodes.

These girls will be Juniors next year, and I am not sure, but I think most presidents are probably seniors. Hopefully I am wrong. I am certain that these two girls are way ahead of their competition!

During this past weekend, Maddy baked 80 brownies for every single Gonzaga house member. Then Indy wrote an individual message for each brownie….things like “Gonzaga is lucky to have you”, “Have a wonderful day”, “This is not propaganda” etc. Fun, Fun!

Here are the girls at school on Sunday after they put an individual brownie in each locker and then decorated the outside of the Gonzaga house locker bank. By the way, Indy and Houston’s school is so awesome and safe that the lockers don’t even have locks. Gotta love that!

OK, now Houston’s turn. Baseball has been going super well! Even with his shoulder injury he is playing 3rd base and hitting like a star. The Xavier baseball team is on a 6 game winning streak. I hope that when you read this it has been extended to 7! Go Saints!

Here is a recent newspaper snippet and a photo.

I sold something recently that involved quite a bit of coordination because the item was in Bellingham, WA at my dad’s house. My dad had found three old projectors when he was cleaning out his garage for his new car. Let me back up here…not “old” but vintage!

Anyway, he was going to donate them to charity but instead gave them to me to list. But how was I going to list them from California when the items were in Bellingham? Enter my mom and dad who are always willing to help.

My dad drove the projectors out to my mom’s house so she could take the pictures, get all the dimensions and email me the info. Then my dad took them back home to wait until they sold, as my mom (being an eBay seller) had no space for them .

I took a best offer on one yesterday for $200! Thanks dad! My dad took the projector to a few places in town to get quotes on packing it and shipping it. The first quote was $50 to pack it and $150 to ship it. Seriously?

Here is that item.

Click here to see this auction.

My dad finally found a very nice gal named Amy at Fairhaven Post and Parcel who packed it for $30. I changed my “ship from” address in Auctane to my dad’s house and printed the label from here. I emailed it to Amy and she printed it and put it on the box for me!

It ended up only costing $58.70 to ship by UPS when I used my own account which has special pricing. I had charged $99.95 for shipping so it all worked out well!

In the midst of all of this listing and selling, I did manage to have some fun. My friend Kelly suggested we go to Stagecoach. It was a blast! Thank you Kflan . We saw Jake Owen, Tim McGraw, Justin Moore, Dierks Bentley, and Miranda Lambert. I can’t believe we have such awesome festivals right here in our back yard!

Here are a few of us in front of the ferris wheel. Check out all the outfits in the background. Yikes!

This valley is very small and we ran into quite a few friends at Stagecoach. Hard to believe it when there were 80,000 plus people attending. The valley is also very small when out garage saling.

I happened upon a sale that was benefitting PDCMS. PDCMS stands for Palm Desert Charter Middle School which both of my kids attended and it is AWESOME! I asked what they were raising money for. The fundraiser turned out to be for a trip to NY and Washington DC. I asked who was in charge and they mentioned one name that I had never heard before and then they said, “Mr. Harvey”.

OK, well then, I had to buy some things because Mr. Harvey was one of my kid’s favorite teachers. He is the best and Houston and I had run into him at the movie theater recently. Tony is so sweet he saw us waiting in line for popcorn and just had to come over to say hi!

I paid $5 for a box of Dallas Chewing Gum Trading Cards from 1981 and the 36 packages had never been opened. Amazing! It didn’t sell at auction so I raised the price and put it in my store with best offer.

Click here to see this auction.

As my mom was getting ready to leave to go back home after her fun April visit, she wanted to tidy up the kitchen and the fridge. What a doll! However, she put a huge Tupperware container of spaghetti down the disposal and guess what? It backed up and not even drano could fix it.

My dad suggested some acidic formula that I could leave overnight. Unfortunately, it backed up into the disposal side and ate through the plastic disposal. What a mess! Thank god for Max who came to our rescue. Got it cleaned up, snaked and a new disposal installed. We love Max!

Speaking of disposals, reminds me of why flatware sells so well on eBay. Customers are constantly leaving their flatware in the disposal when they turn it on and voila… this is one of the reasons that replacement flatware sells so well on eBay. Another reason is because of children. Houston and Indy often take my good stainless to school or in their cars to eat on the run and somehow it never makes its way back into the drawer . Sometimes I even find the flatware under their beds. Is every teenager like this?

Flatware is awesome! And I am super excited to announce our new series Cutlery to Cash. But before I give you the details, check out these 3 salad forks that I recently sold for $60.00. Yes, I did say $60.00 for 3 salad forks. That is $20 a piece. Gotta love flatware.

Click here to see this auction.

Check out this email I got from Denise with the subject “So excited!!!” as soon as we announced this new series….

“I was listening to three of the four calls from the “Dinnerware to Dollars” series driving a Uhaul truck from Indiana to Florida and I was thinking the whole time, “Man I hope Lynn does this same format with flatware!!” And WA-LA two days later here is the email I have been waiting for!! I hope I am one of the first to purchase your new “Cash to Cutlery” series because I was so psyched about your “Dinnerware to Dollars” series!! I would tell everyone, DO NOT HESITATE TO BUY ONE OR BOTH OF THESE SERIES, AS THEY WILL PAY FOR THEMSELVES IN ONE SOURCING TRIP!!! I love the simple format of these series- What to buy, what to stay away from and how to price them!! Thanks Lynn for another winning series that I can’t wait to listen to and profit from!!

Denise Hunter!!”

And here is more information about Cutlery to Cash…

Wouldn’t you like to sell $928.49
of Flatware in a month?

I’m super excited to announce our newest teaching tool, “Cash from Cutlery”. This brand new teleseminar series will help your take your flatware profits to the next level. Flatware is an easy-to-find, easy-to-sell, and easy-to-ship product category. Whether you are just starting out or have years of experience selling flatware, this teleseminar is for you.

But why are we calling it Cutlery to Cash? Cutlery is what flatware is called in Europe…the origin of our flatware, silverware, and all sorts of eating utensils…whatever you want to call it…Cutlery is the original western word!

In the past 90 days on eBay I have sold $2,785.49 in cutlery/flatware. This translates to $928.49 per month. Please keep in mind that these numbers are not as high as my dinnerware numbers for several reasons.

First, my average sales price for a dinnerware order is $33.42 and my average sales price for a flatware order is $26.03. Secondly, I have 6,234 listings of dinnerware and 2,532 listings of flatware. Lastly, a good set of dinnerware will run you $200 to $1000. A good set of flatware will run you $10 to $100.

To recap the benefits of selling flatware/cutlery:

  • You invest much less money when purchasing flatware
  • Cutlery is faster to list than dinnerware
  • Flatware takes up less space
  • Flatware is a breeze to ship.

After my kids both leave for college, I am seriously considering focusing on flatware. It is a joy!

The Flatware Success eBook is one of our top-selling and most helpful tools of all time; I am really happy that it has done so much to increase your bottom line profits.

Since the flatware eBook came out in 2011, there have been major changes to my system of listing and selling flatware. It has evolved and improved over the past years. The improvements include CHANGES to:

  • Brands to always buy
  • Tricky brands
  • Brands to never buy
  • Research and new sources for doing so
  • How to structure and strategize your listings (this has completely changed)…Markdown Manager, Best Offer, etc.
  • How our flatware selling strategy has changed with eBay’s new defect policy
  • Shipping pricing, materials and methods

So without further ado, I am very excited to announce our newest teaching tool “Cash from Cutlery”. Think of it as an updated companion resource to the Flatware Success eBook, but it is audio instead of the written word.

The introductory price for “Cash from Cutlery” is a bargain and a fraction of what I sell each month in flatware.

You will have access to me for 70 minutes a week from May 7th to May 21st. Every Thursday at noon Pacific Daylight Time we will have a 70 minute phone call where Mo and I will go over the major changes from the past few years and also answer YOUR questions regarding these changes.

We will also wrap up with a final call two weeks after the first three calls to circle back around and look at some of your listings, critique them, and answer new questions that have arisen.

  • Flatware Call #1: Thursday, May 7th Noon Pacific
  • Flatware Call #2: Thursday, May 14th Noon Pacific
  • Flatware Call #3: Thursday, May 21st Noon Pacific
  • Flatware Call #4: Thursday, June 4th Noon Pacific

Here is my rough draft for the topics for each call…Of course this is subject to change 🙂 but only for the better!

Call #1:

Welcome & Overview of the series
Flatware Sourcing Examples to get us Motivated!
Changes to Manufacturers to Always Buy
Questions regarding Manufacturers and Out of the Box Examples

Call #2:

Welcome & Overview
Updates from last week
Flatware Sourcing Examples of Always Buys to get us Motivated!
Changes to Tricky Manufacturers
Flatware Sourcing Examples of Tricky Manufacturers
Styles/Pattern to Always Buy
Never Buy Manufacturers

Call #3

Welcome & Overview
Update from Last Week
New Flatware Sets
Listing Strategies
Actual Listing
What to do After the Auction Ends—Store
How to Ship

Call #4

Welcome & Overview
Results from the past month
Questions from being out in the trenches
Auction Critiques for Student Listings
Wrap Up

Once you sign up, you will receive an email with instructions on asking your questions.

Click here and get started now.

The sky is the limit. Ask me how much you should pay for a sterling silver set you have had your eye on or maybe you shouldn’t buy it at all? Ask me how much you should price a Dansk serving spoon?

The more questions I receive, the more up-to-date and informative this Cutlery to Cash Series will be for all of us! I can’t wait.

Happy eBaying!


P.S. This series will provide you with information and answers that can help you to make money!

P.P.S. If you are unable to make one or all of the calls, don’t worry, the calls will be recorded and available for listening after the call.

P.P.P.S. This teleseminar series is an investment in you and your business. It is also a tax-deductible business expense (as always, check with your accountant.) Order now.

P.P.P.P.S. This information would be a bargain at three times the price! This is full of experience gained over a lifetime. Reserve your place today!

I was out at garage sales last weekend and there just wasn’t anything great. There were tons of sales but no quality items. I had just about given up when I spotted signs for a sale in Rancho Mirage. I followed the signs and found one sale that was just Victorian furniture….not a big seller on eBay. I was driving out of the neighborhood when I found another sale right around the corner.

And in the driveway was a bright yellow kayak. My kids have been begging for a kayak because we live on a faux lake. I had passed up one about a month ago for $125 and was kicking myself because they go for about $300 to $600 new. This one was priced at $150 and had never been used.

I tried my usual sales pitch…”single mom, son going to college next year, etc. etc. and could I please have it for $100?” Nope, he and his partner just couldn’t do it as they had paid close to $400. I took pictures of it and decided to think about it.

Luckily while walking around the sale and thinking, I found a pile of Wilton Armetale plates that were only $1 each and there were 12 of them. I asked if they would take $10 for the pile and they said yes. I knew I could make enough on those plates to pay for the kayak so I tried one last time. They said OK, $110. Score!

Here are the guys sitting on the back of my SUV after they helped me get it loaded. Seriously, it barely fit. I couldn’t see out of the passenger side or back at all. It was a scary ride home but luckily we lived really close.

As I was coming through the gates into our community, Cami (one of our favorite guards), just looked at me and shook her head. I unrolled my window and said “Isn’t it awesome?” and she said “The things you do for those kids”! Too funny!

Here is one of the listings for the Armetale plates. They didn’t sell at auction so I have raised the prices and put them in my eBay store with best offer.

Click here to see this auction.

The kids were extremely excited to have the Kayak. Did I say that they were and still are extremely excited? Houston took it out immediately on the lake and spent several hours in it.

Then it was Indy’s turn. She loved it as well!

I took the kayak out the next morning and absolutely loved it. I do need help getting in and out because I don’t want to fall into the disgusting water. As I was getting in, Houston had my arm, but my legs started to do the splits—one was on land and one in the boat. I almost bailed at that point but somehow managed to get my butt in the seat. When I brought the kayak back, Houston held onto the edge of the boat, and I rolled onto the grass. Graceful! Always an adventure around here .

I will learn how to get in and out of that kayak on my own….mark my words! Speaking of marking events, can you believe that this year is eBay’s 20th anniversary year? They officially began in September of 1995 and I have been selling since 1998. Oh my goodness!

To celebrate, I think all of you should join us for the eBay radio party in June. I have been asked back to speak at the eBay radio party in Las Vegas, June 16th to the 18th. This event is always a ton of fun and sells out quickly. So I encourage you to buy your tickets and make your plans now. As you know, Lee says “If it ain’t fun we ain’t doin’ it”.

For more information, click here – Radio Party in Las Vegas Event.

OK, let’s wind this ezine up with a score in progress! By the time this ezine is emailed out on Thursday am, this auction will have ended. I know this Hudson’s Bay Blanket will sell for at least my opening bid price of $49.99 since it already has a bid. Let’s hope it goes higher. I paid $2 for it at a recent estate sale.

Click here to see this auction.

Thanks for reading my ezines! I appreciate it!
Happy eBaying!

Lynn Dralle, ‘The Queen of Auctions,’
Creator of the best-selling eBay Boot Camp in a Box.

Lynn is an experienced eBay Power Seller, author and teacher. If you want to know the eBay tips, tricks and tools that Lynn uses for buying and selling at online auction click here.

Some links in my emails to you may be affiliate links. You can be confident that I only partner with companies that I fully stand behind.