eBay Radio Costumes

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The last day of the eBay Radio Conference & Party they asked people to dress up in their best eBay costume.

Here is mom and I.  I used the cards from the eBay auction game to make letters and a “crown” for myself.  Dawn came up the night before we left and helped, I guess the feathers were too much for the first glue gun because it caught fire!  We even got featured on the eBay for Business Facebook group!



Jason from Thrifting with the Boys wore a colorful hat



One guy wore his numerous eBay pins


The shipping triplets. The ladies were in bubble wraps and carried purses out of priority boxes.



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eBay Radio Conference and Party Continued

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I thought it was really cute that they had a miniature office of an eBay seller set up in the conference room.





The photo station


A couple other pictures of the conference:



A screen shot of how eBay looked in 2003.

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eBay Radio Conference & Party 2015 Day 1

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This year I decided to reward myself and attend the eBay Radio Conference and Party in Las Vegas June 16- 18th.

I arrived on Sunday evening, did some shopping on Monday prior to the conference. Unfortunately didn’t have any luck thrifting here.  We stayed at MGM Signature which was nice because there was a kitchen so we went to Alberstons the first night to get stuff for breakfast and snacks.


I found it interesting they have a “Wisconsin Cheese Shop”



Because it was over 100 outside they had a water station by the cash registers.

Day 1: Social Selling Day


Standing by the conference sign.

Candy Ballroom



Each day started at 9:00 am and went until around 5:00.

The line up for the day was: Marsha Collier, Stephanie Inge, Kat Simpson, live broadcast of eBay Radio, Cliff Ennico and Joel Meek.

Marsha Collier was the keynote speaker and discussed Social Commerce.  In 2014 there were 2.8 billion internet users.  She talked about the importance of being engaged in social media as a whole.  We learned about a new app called Periscope, where you can stream live video to those that follow you.  I had also already signed up for Klout, but this reminded me to be aware of it.   The worldwide average score is 39.3 mine is currently 24 so I guess I need to get that up some.  Click here to find your score.

Next up was Stephanie Inge, who talked about social media marketing via Facebook and Instagram.   There were many take a ways, but one was that for every 10 post on Facebook only talk about your product on 2 posts.  Make sure your eBay store url is in your profile.

Kat Simpson focused on Twitter and Your Tube.   You need to think about what outlet your customer base is using but with 270 million active users on Twitter and more than 1 billion on You Tube these venues are definitely something to keep in mind.  Remember you are not on social media to only sell your product and take from people but to give value and create genuine connections.

Cliff Ennico was entertaining, he took a topic that could be seen as boring and jazzed it up- The legal issues of Social Media Marketing.  This 45 minute session covered many issues, but one thing to remember like in life think before you speak, think before you post!

While Pinterest might be a time suck, Joel Meek talked about how to use Pinterest to Benefit your Business on eBay. Interesting fact, there are 50 billion pins and 1 billion boards currently on the site.  The average pin is repinned 11 times. Which for an eBay store owner means your product has potential to be seen by hundreds of people and since the pins can be re pinned it can live on. Unlike Twitter or Facebook which can fall to the bottom of the page and may never be seen by anyone again.

Vendors also lined the room, it was great to be able to learn more about the products available.  There was also a white board in which you could sign up to have lunch with the speakers or eBay staff members each day.  The first day I had lunch with Marsha Collier and about 7 other sellers. For those attending next year, I would recommend signing up for these lunches. It was great to hear others experiences, success and learning.

eBay-Radio Vendors2

Vendors3 Vendors

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Creating an Online Store

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I have been working on adding new features to this website, including creating an online store so people can buy my products here as well on eBay.  I thought this might take a couple of months at the most, boy was I wrong!

Luckily my husband is in IT so he helped me get started, we sat down to complete a task list for the project.  I thought perfect now I have direction so the next week I started to get to work. But as I quickly learned this was going to be more of a project then I thought.  After reading more about the website definitions and playing around with my development site I found myself even more confused.

So I will have to have another sit down with my husband, my goal is to have my eCommerce store up and running by the end of September.

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Tips for attending estate sales

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For work I attend estate sales, garage sales visit many thrift shops and do online auctions. Here is a look at some tips for one of those venues, estate sales.  I decided to do this post because As I attended a prior estate sale,  I realized shoppers are not always friendly to new comers.  We need to remember at one time we were all new to the scene.

I was walking up to get my “number” and over heard someone asking how this works, another shopper said “you get a number, there numbers” and started to walk away. It may seem common sense but I remember walking up to my first one curious how this works.

Some questions you may have about sales:

  • Why do people have estate sales?  Most common is homeowners decides to downsize or someone has passed away. The goal of the sale is to sell off a large portion of the home’s contents quickly.
  • What can you buy at a sale?   This is the reason they can be addicting, you never know what you will find! You can see anything for cheap paper plates to expensive antique pieces and high end furniture.
  • Who attends these sales?  People from all walks of life.  Collectors, interior designers, antique dealers, resellers and those who just love the hunt for something different.

Tips for attending:

  • Check out the company’s website for details and pictures before you go.
  • If the sale is run by a professional company the prices might be higher. But if the company is reputable they should price things appropriate to the market.
  • The best stuff is usually sold the first few hours. Remember treasures are different for everyone so that doesn’t mean you can’t find great things the last day as well.
  • Expect to wait in line. Most limit the number of customers inside the house.
  • Don’t take a huge purse or tote. If you are a regular they may allow you to bring in bags for your purchases but you must ask first.
  • Make sure to have enough cash on you. Some companies will accept credit but not all.
  • Most companies give discounts the second day.
  • Don’t forget to check all rooms.
  • All sales are final.
  • Sometimes sales will allow you to bid on big ticket items.  You give them your best price and they will call you if it’s accepted.
  • Be prepared to carry your finds yourself, estate sales workers often won’t help you load your car.
  • I like to always have boxes and packing supplies in my car in case I buy breakables. Most sales have supplies but just in case.
  • Smile, have patience and have fun!


Do you have an Estate Sale tip and/or experience?  If so, share below.

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Love Purses

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For my business I am shopping a lot, I find all different types of purses and that is the hardest thing for me let go and sell and not keep!   The other day I was curious what is the most expensive bag that is known?

The answer is the Hermès Birkin Bag.  A Hermès handbag received so much attention when Grace Kelly carried it, she was attempting to hide her private “baby bump” but since the public adored her the bag became a success and the company renamed the bag Kelly bag.  The construction of each Kelly bag requires 18 hours of work by a single artisan.  But how did the company go from that to the Birkin bag which has waiting lists and sells for thousands of dollars?

A chance meeting between actress Jane Birkin and Hermes chief executive Jean-Louis Dumas in 1981.  They were on a flight sitting next to each other when the actress’s clutter handbag came crashing out of the overhead compartment.  Dumas heard Jane’s complaints about how nice good quality bags are never big enough and thus the Birkin was born. It comes in six sizes 25cm, 30cm, 35cm, 40cm, 50cm and shoulder style with an endless array of colors and leather finishes.

What one has the highest price tag? Are you sitting down? At an auction a red crocodile skin purse with white gold and diamond hardware was sold for $203,150.


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Death Becomes Her

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Death Becomes Her A Century of Mourning Attire

This was an exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York October 21- February 1st.  I unfortunately was not able to see the exhibit in person but found some pictures and information online.

Today the question still comes up, how should the grieving dress?  It seems the only thing we still have in common with the mourning fashions of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries is the color black.  This exhibit showcased those mourning fashions by displaying approximately 30 ensembles from 1815 to 1915, primarily from The Costume Institute’s collection, including mourning gowns worn by Queen Victoria and Queen Alexandra. You can see the progression of appropriate dress from mourning capes to silks to later shades of gray.



The elaborate hats and parasols along with other accessories had their own corner. This included Victorian mourning jewelry which often had the hair of the deceased. The mourning industry came into its own in the 1840s, with stores for the purpose of selling mourning textiles and accoutrements like bonnets, shawls, veils and gloves.



In the nineteenth century a widow stood to face a two-year mourning period. Add to her grief  what she worn represented the entire family’s, as well as her status, taste, and level of propriety.  The expense of a gown and the length for which dark clothes were worn, stood as indicators for the families economic and social standing.  The proper “full mourning” dress consisted of deep and true matte blacks, heavy materials. If silks or taffeta was used it had to be dulled through texture.  Mourning attire reflected the fashion of the time, corseted waists in 1860’s, princess seams late 1870’s and full gigot sleeves of the 1890’s.




A soft-gray wedding dress from 1868 is the first sign of moving away from just black. According to the exhibit, the bride worn the half mourning colors in honor of those who died in the Civil War.  Also in the latter half of the 1800’s black became seen more in everyday dress.  By the late 19th century not only was black being seen more is was accepted as a normal color in fashion.

By 1885, Arthur’s Home Magazine noted that “black has been so generally worn for a long time past that it is not always easy to distinguish between those who are in mourning and those who are not.”  At the beginning of World War I it was the end of the formal mourning attire and turned to more personal style.

From what I have read the exhibit was simple and spare, befitting the subject matter, although they do manage to get in some flashes of dark humor. One quote projected on the wall comes from the 1867 etiquette manual Hints of Common Politeness: “When we see ladies persist in wearing sable, we are reminded of the reply a young widow made to her mother: ‘Don’t you see,’ said she, ‘it saves me the expense of advertising for a husband.'”


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Grammy Awards Red Carpet 2015

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Best and worst dressed from this years Grammy Awards.

Everyone might have different opinions but here is who is on my list.


Taylor Swift by Elie Saab. I love this dress silhouette and color looks great on her.


Gwen Stefani wearing a Atelier Versace jumpsuit.  I like that the top almost looks like sheet music.


Anna Kendrick Tuxedo by Band of Outsiders. So simple, I would normally think a necklace was needed but I think it looks great without.


Jhene wears a dress by Alberta Ferretti, love this look and the color works with her skin tone. I am a sucker for pleated skirts!


Usher in Calvin Klein. Nice to see something besides black in menswear that is not crazy.

Kelly Osbourne in dress by Christian Siriano


Rihanna in dress by Giambattista Valli Haute Couture.  Yes it is a statement but is just too much dress. I think it overwhelmed her and looks like she should be a cake.


Kim Kardashian dress by Jean Paul Gaultier.  This is all wrong, where to even start?  The slit, shoulders, sleeve length, front pockets?! It is a bedazzled bathrobe.


Miley CyrusDress by Alexandre Vauthier. The cut out placements are just odd. Guess they kind of match her!


Charli XCX in a suit by Moschino.  Without the fur wrap and different hair style this may have been improved.
Katharine McPheeDress by Emilio Pucci. The color washes her out, ill fitting and the jewelry/hair doesn’t add anything either.
Bleona Qereti I realize the Grammys is a show you can take risks but this is just weird. Too long of a tail for one thing!

Can’t decide if I love it or hate it

Jane Fonda in Balmain jumpsuit. The color looks great and her figure looks killer. I just can’t decide if it ages her or is chic.

Madonna Ensemble by Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy. The reason she  is in this list is because I think it is a little too much.  However she still looks great and it wouldn’t be Madonna without something over the top!


What do you think?

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Red Bull Art of Can- Chicago

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Red Bull Art of Can was a nationwide search in which artists are asked to create pieces of art using only Red Bull cans as their primary material. The exhibition was open to the public and free November 7-16 in Chicago.


The public voted for their favorite via social media and a six judge panel chose the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners.

1st Place Winner Kathryn Beale “Amigos”.


2nd Place Winner Kaleb Dean “Mr. Bull, A Community Brand”.


3rd Place Winner Stoyu Palahanov “Metal Harmony”.

CAns Can

People’s Choice Winner Courtney Zingler “Face the Bull Within”


Here is a look at some other artists.

“Ride the Bull” by  Crooked Arrow Jackson



“Swing of Things” by Angie Weaver


“Nuts about Bull” by Forman Lauren


” Street Light People” by Sunshine Durant

Street-light-people Street-light-people2

“Rosey ME” by Monica Eddleman

Dress Roses

“Flight of Mind” by Kayla Yi


To learn more visit the Red Bull exhibit.



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SAG Awards Red Carpet Best & Worst Dressed

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Another red carpet, this time the SAG Awards and another chance to pick best and worst dressed.


Lupita Nyong’o wearing Elie Saab. I like that she worn a pattern which not many do on the red carpet.
Emmy Rossum in Giorgio Armani. I love this look, so classic and modern.  The fabric makes me wish I could touch it.

Julianne Moore in emerald Givenchy. Love the fit and color.


 Maria Menounos in a gold and strapless Ramona Kaveza dress. Looks perfect.


Viola Davis walked the carpet wearing a white halter Max Mara gown. One word, stunning.


Camila Alves in a purple Donna Karan Atelier gown steels the show.


Reese Witherspoon in Armani. Always love her look.


Joan Collins still has it.



Amanda Peet I don’t think this color or shape is flattering for her.


Laverne Cox arrives in Johanna Johnson.  The dress looks wrinkly and ill-fitting.


Julianna Margulies in a Giambattista Valli Couture gown. I like the color but that slit is to high and large.  Plus her stance looks awkward in this dress.


Melissa Rauch Pamella Roland. This look is boring to me. She needs some accessories or the dress should have a different shape.


Lo Bosworth. Where to start? The color washes her out, neckline is not flattering and she should have picked a longer dress to hide that large bruise on the front of her leg.


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