Monday, September 3, 2007

My Secret "Girlie" Side

I've never been much of a girlie-girl. I loathe pantyhose and high heels. I almost never wear makeup or jewelry. I have no interest in designer shoes or handbags. Heck, some days on the farm, I don't even brush my hair!

But for all my daily concerns with dirty, non-girlie things like loading hay, training horses, and picking maggots out of wounded sheep, I have to confess (with a certain amount of embarrassment) to one exceptionally girlie hobby.

I collect porcelain dolls.

Not just any porcelain dolls. Just the most exquisite---and usually quite pricey---dolls made by Franklin Mint. Preferably the Gibson Girl dolls or some of the historical or storybook themed ones. I have an entire wall of my office with shelves on it to display them, about two dozen in all, plus another half dozen or so other dolls that I started with before I graduated to Franklin Mint.

For several years now, these dolls have been my secret addiction. Whenever friends come to visit, I'm embarrassed to show them my office, because this wall of dainty, elegantly dressed porcelain ladies doesn't fit with my idea of who I am.

I like to blame them on the fact that I'm no longer in the SCA. My husband and I did medieval historical recreation for many years---in fact, that's how we met. But after moving several times and getting busy with other aspects of our lives, we eventually stopped participating.

For all those years, I had the creative outlet of designing, making, accessorizing, and wearing my own medieval-style costumes. But after we quit, I got tired of seeing them hanging unused in my closet, so I gave them all away to a friend: Thirteen years worth of green, crimson, purple, royal blue, and ivory colored gowns, embroidered, beaded, jewel-bedecked. Once they were gone, my closet was spacious, practical---and dull.

Right around then, the doll collecting began. I guess they were a smaller-version, eye-candy substitute for the costumes I'd given away. Having spent many tedious hours making my own costumes in past years, I could really appreciate the dolls' intricate level if minuscule detail.

I love them, and I hate the fact that I love them. I can't wrap my brain around the idea that I have such a girlie hobby.

But soon, that inner conflict will be resolved. I'm selling them all on EBay to try to keep this farm running a little longer while we wait for some horses to sell.

When I started putting the listings up today, I soon learned something: It's really time consuming to make a good EBay listing!

After you decide which item you want to list first, you have to find a good place with a nice background and take lots of close-up, well-lit photographs of the item. Then you have to download the photos to your computer, select the ones you want to use, crop them if necessary, and save them in the proper format. Then you have to fill out the EBay forms, upload the photos, and write a detailed, sincere-yet-enthusiastic description of the item.

I have LOTS of things I'm planning to sell, but I only managed to get five listings made today. Three of the Franklin Mint dolls, my gorgeous leather motorcycle jacket, and Ken's 1992 Nissan Sentra GXE.

There will be lots more listings to come in the next days and weeks. Everything I sell will go towards helping us keep this farm going, so please check my auctions every now and then to see if we have anything you "need." Tell your friends, too!

If you want a preview of some of the things that will be coming up for sale soon (and some things we're offering for sale directly, not on EBay), visit our Online Yard Sale. The list is not complete, and it doesn't have a lot of detail right now, but if you see anything you're interested in, contact me, and I'll be happy to take photos and send you a more thorough description of the item.

We are almost entirely out of hay now, and almost entirely out of money.

On the bright side, our mare Bonnie has suddenly become very popular. I have two buyers who are interested in her already, and today I got calls from two more people asking about her!

All the potential buyers seemed knowledgeable and pleasant, like they would probably provide Bonnie a good home. So keep your fingers crossed for us that one of them will decide that she's the one for them. That money would do WONDERS for our cash flow right about now!

1 comment:

Mark said...

I wish you success with your sales. Making that month to month is an ongoing nightmare at times. And yet I'm not really looking forward to exchanging the unpredictable for a nine to five job. I'm really not. Sending you good thoughts (which is all I can afford right now.)