For my first post of 2015, I thought it might be useful to give some money saving tips given that most of us will be pretty broke post festive season. Also given these cash-strapped times – and with the seemingly endless bleak economic outlook – it is perhaps timely that we take a look at ways to help us doll collectors save our hard earned pennies. After all, even when we are economising, we should still be able to reap the joys of collecting- just without breaking the bank!
1. Do You Really Need That Doll?
One of easiest ways to save money is to actually make money! There are bound to be dolls, clothing or accessory items that you no longer need or want. It is easy to lose track of a large collection; particularly if you store away your dolls. Perform a collection audit by carefully going through your dolls and selecting any doubles or ones which no longer appeal or go with the current direction of your collection. It may be helpful to sort them into piles (not literally of course!): ‘keepers,’ ‘maybes’ and ‘sell’, for example. Be sure not to rush into any rash decisions – I talk from experience here – so be sure you are really ready to part with those items before hitting eBay!
2. Watch Out for Those Hidden Costs
Whilst we’re on the subject of eBay – sad to say it isn’t always the goldmine it once was and recent hikes in fees have put off many collectors. Be sure to check out alternatives such as Mister Dollface and other online forums. These alternatives charge less to list and some are even free. They also tend to be friendlier and far less draconian in their treatment of everyday sellers.
3. Swap Shop
Another great way of unloading unwanted items and getting your hands on those secondary market grail dolls is to swap with other collectors and doll friends. This is made even easier with the proliferation of the internet but is extra fun if done at real life dolls swaps and meet-ups. When swapping online be sure to check out credentials and recommendations before agreeing to ship your precious dolls.
4. Reap What You Sew
As well as saving money you could also combine a new or existing hobby by sewing, knitting and generally getting creative for your dolls. New outfits, hats, accessories and even wigs can be created at home thereby expanding and breathing new life into your collection. Patterns, tips, and advice – as well as craft materials – are easily purchased online or at doll shows.
5. Try The One Doll Rule
One of the issues I have over the last few years with some doll manufacturers is the lack of separate outfits and the tendency toward producing only dressed dolls. If you love to dress and redress your dolls, you could always splurge on a dressed doll and purchase loose outfits on the secondary market to give yourself hundreds of mix and match possibilities. Add wigs and accessories for even more ways to customise. This method also helps if space is an issue. However, the knack here is to stay strong and not to cave into those impulse doll purchases!
6. Stick to Your Budget
Just like other areas of our life it is just as important to stick to the budget you set for yourself. In auctions try not to go over the amount you set for yourself. Another exact item will come by soon enough. Be sure to shop around if you are purchasing new and be sure to keep an eye on shipping charges. For overseas purchases be sure to factor in those dreaded import charges!
Well, I hope you find this useful and be sure to share your own money-saving tips in the comments section below!