Hello everybody ! I'm German living in France and I often buy items on eBay U.K. I'm a Wedgwood jasper collector, so I often buy china. I just "fell" on KATE's guide which I find very useful and interesting. I bought china from her some time ago and everything arrived in very good condition ! Here is her guide. Spend a minute on it and you will certainly learn things.
I'd like to add some remarks basing on my - not always happy - experience as a china buyer. Most of sellers use bubble wrap. This is o.k. when each item is firmly wrapped in it. When an item is lossely wrapped, however, there is danger that it will brake. Personnally, I prefer newspaper. It costs less (or nothing !) and it's a wonderful wrapping stuff. Make sure to fill every hollow item (pots, vases ...) firmly with paper or with polystyrene flakes, if it's a small item. Then put your bubble wrap around by pulling it strongly before fixing it. Fill the box with newspaper and then put the items in it, one after the other and ALWAYS separated by crumpled newspaper. The items should in no case touch each other or be at the sides of the box. When the box is full, make sure that there is no free space in it. Put other layers of paper (or paper "balls") on the top until the box becomes difficult to close. Use force to close it and then put large tape around it. Your box should be a compact item. In that case, posties may play foot with it, I can assure you !
A short remark about packing material : it is absolutely NOT necessary to buy lots of it. Keep used boxes in all sizes and store newspapers. Purchasing tape, some polystyrene flakes and some bubble wrap will do. Thus you will be able to keep shipping charges down. Shipping is already very expensive (in particular to abroad), so, please, don't make it still more expensive. I am sure that you will get much more buyers !
This wrapping problem concerns me very much. Within 20 months, I received 3 parcels with broken china from England. When paying the seller, I asked him to pay much attention to packaging in order to avoid brake. Unfortunately, some of them did what Kate tells us in her guide NOT TO DO. It's very disappointing for a collector to receive damaged items, sometimes searched after during a long time ... When this happens and the seller doesn't understand the problem (some don't ...), you have to make a claim via PayPal. This takes a long time and a lot of time and it is neither funny for the seller nor for the buyer. In most of the cases, the seller has to make a partial or even a total refund (so he has earned nothing !) and the buyer doesn't get the price he paid for the damaged item (there are PayPal costs, of course ...). I think we should avoid this and rather try to make packaging sure. It's so great to find rare items on eBay (that you mostly wouldn't find elsewhere ...) and to have contacts with people from other countries. So everyone should try to make each transaction as pleasant as possible, and packaging and shipping costs are part of it.
Sorry for my mistakes, but I don't master this beautiful language perfectly.
Kindest regards from Paris and a lot of pleasure on eBay !
Preparing parcels for overseas ...
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19 August 2008
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