Friday, April 29, 2016

Train me, that's all I'm asking.

So I started my new job at the end of last week, and I don't really like it.

I mean, I don't hate the job. It's another sales position and I've done that before and done well with it so I know I can do the job and perhaps even grow to like it.

My issue is with my training, or lack thereof. My first day (a week ago yesterday) was the start of my computer training lasting 6 hours. Sunday I came in and finished up my training and that lasted about 5 hours. The next day I was starting on the floor. I got a little bit of training from the sales associate, but when the day was roughly half over I was doing what my job will be. Helping customers, getting the items out of the two stockrooms (where I have NO idea where anything is), and ringing them up. The other sales associates were helpful in answering questions and things like that but I was pretty much on my own since they were also doing their own jobs.

I had the next day off, and the next day when I went in the manager made a comment about how it was good I was there since the department had been busy, which is shocking since I'm brand new I'm training, not reserves. That day was pretty much the same, things pointed out as they came up but I was pretty much doing the job as I will be, on my second day on the floor with a very confusing stock room to sort out. I also got a phone call from the loss prevention person telling me he didn't know I was supposed to be there today so he almost came down when he saw me behind the registers on the cameras. It's like, why are you telling me that? I guess it's good to know that communication there is just as bad as it was at my last job but that doesn't make me feel comfortable. I'm there because I'm supposed to be. He also told me that he'll observe me for a week and then talk to me about loss prevention. If you want me to do a good job, train me. Don't correct me after the fact, train me and then correct if I make a mistake.  

Luckily a lot of what I'm doing is similar to what I've done before so I'm able to apply what I already know to this new situation, but it's all so frustrating. There are several things that are different that are taking a little time to adjust to (like their registers being ancient) and several things that are brand new. I want to learn so I can do a good job. And while I am certainly learning now, it's all on the fly so it's the bare minimum. I want to be able to do a good job, but that does not seem to be their priority.

I'm also back to being scheduled 5 days, which I hate. I know it's retail and blah, blah, blah but I'm part time. I don't need to be there 5 days. I'll do long days I just only 4 of them. I didn't tell them that when they hired me because they didn't ask, but I'm not going to fight that fight right now. They even called me to work on Saturday night today. I missed the phone call since when I'm at home I don't usually keep my phone on me, but I am not coming in. Either they don't have someone or they think it's going to be a busy time and I am NOT putting myself in that situation. I have literally had two days learning that department. On Monday I'm going to be on my own for an hour when the other associate goes to lunch. I am far from thrilled about it. At this point I just don't want to go back there, but I will. 

I am going to try to ride it out. I'm not planning on being there forever and if I can hold on for 11 months I'll hopefully be moving by then. However it doesn't hurt to keep looking. I would feel bad jumping ship so quickly after joining them, but really it's not like they've invested a lot in training me.

In another frustrating note, the job is commission (which again was not told to me until late in the game), and I'm not sure if I'm getting training pay. So I might be digging myself into a hole that I have to pay them back while training. I even got to work off the clock for almost a half an hour the other day. My last job was a bad situation, and I'm thinking I really didn't change anything as much as I just relocated to a different bad situation.   

The Grand Finale! (More Shoes!)

We've finally reached the end of our posts from the Etsy lot. I honestly didn't think we'd get to this point. We very nearly didn't since I started talking about this in April and it's now late June and I'm just getting back to it. I had been meaning to finish it, but things just got in the way and per usual I was focused on other projects. However today I was cleaning stumbled across the stuff I hadn't talked about and got motivated and wanted to get it all finished and all put away. So let's get the finale started!

 You've already seen two listings devoted to shoes from the lot, that's the topic for this post too. There were a lot of shoes within the lot, that's why I bought it. I saved the bests for last, the shoes that were the reason why I couldn't pass this lot up. I'm sure by the end of this post you'll understand why.

First up we have a pair of felt slippers. Made from a hot pink felt these slippers have a strap of pink felt that's been decorated with a bright green chiffon ruffle. They belong to Skipper's nightgown "Lullaby Lime (1971)". They look to be in decent shape with minor play wear. I don't have any other part of the outfit, but if I ever do I'll have the shoes to go with it! I wouldn't be surprised if I ended up with it. I have some weird knack for stumbling across vintage Barbie nightwear.  

Those weren't the only felt shoes in the lot. Also included were a pair of felt booties that belonged to Barbie's "Sweet Dreams (1972)" pajama set. Made out of a slightly darker pink felt than the first pair, these boots are simple but cute. They have a single gold button on the front of them for decorations. The booties weren't the only thing from the lot from that outfit. I also got the vanity set. We have a mirror, a brush, and a comb. All made from a hot pink plastic, they're all super small and super cute. They are all marked Japan and the mirror even has the classic B logo molded into the back (I originally thought this was a more modern piece since I was used to that logo on all my childhood items). They're in pretty good shape except the bristles on the brush are a bit warped. I wonder if the child actually tried using them on a doll. They're so thin they're really only for show. While doing my research for this post I've seen just the vanity set listed for around 10 dollars on E-bay, so getting it as part of the lot was a pretty good deal.

Also in the lot we have a pair of Barbie shoes. These are they skinny 80's era heels that I love and pick up whenever I find them (I have several different shoe molds that I collect in all types of colors). These are the smokey gray ones with embedded silver glitter. They are marked on the bottom as being made in the Philippines. I already have at least one pair of these, possibly two, but I think they're from Hong Kong (but don't quote me on that). I'll add these to the spare bag and use them when I see fit. They are really cute shoes and I love having multiples.

After that we have two pairs of pilgrim shoes. Both pairs are a rich blue color, very similar in color but a shade or two different so you can tell which pair is which. They are both unmarked, which is common in Mattel made pilgrim shoes. They are really good quality so I'm confident they are official Mattel made products. My first real pair of pilgrims! They're not my favorite style of shoe, but I'm glad I have them in case I ever do need them. They haven't been played with much, the only issue is that one of them has an indent in the back, but overall it's not too terrible. I'm going to tuck these away into the vintage Barbie shoe storage for when I might need them.

Next we have a pair of white Skipper flats. They are marked on the bottom as being from the Philippines, so they're probably from the 80's, early 80's if I'd had to make a guess. These shoes aren't the same mold as vintage Skipper shoes, but they're close enough for my purposes. I have so few skipper shoes and so many of them are so fragile I worry about them splitting when on the doll. They are a little thin, so I'd worry about a straight leg doll cracking them, but one of the bend leg dolls can wear them. They also fit Francie, but are a bit of a tight fit. I wouldn't leave them on her since she'd also probably split them. Usually I just display vintage Skipper shoes next to the doll that's supposed to wear them. It keeps them safe.

After that we have a pair of red flats. Made from a very squishy rubber, these shoes can fit either Francie or Barbie. I haven't identified which outfit they came with originally, but both dolls have had outfits released with this shoe mold. They marked on the bottom of each shoe with Japan. This is my first made in Japan pair, but not my first pair of these shoes. These are the flat shoes that Mattel is still using, just in hard plastic. I bet this shoe mold is the longest used shoe mold in Barbie's history. They're really in very nice shape. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with them yet, but I don't think I have any red ones, new or vintage. I'll have to scan the collection and see if any Francie doll needs a shoe upgrade. I have so few shoes that look good on them any new pair is appreciated! 

Continuing on with Francie shoes, we have another pair for her. These are vastly different from the last pair. Made from an apple green hard plastic these shoes are sized just for Francie's feet. They have a kitten heel as well as a peep hole at the toe. They are also both marked Japan on the bottom. They are in very nice shape, but one of them has a split at the peep hole, which I think these shoes are prone to do. I haven't identified which outfit these shoes belong to either.

Next we have a bit of a head scratcher. When I was just looking at the lot from pictures, I thought it was another pair of Francie shoes. A pair of red kitten heels, similar to a pair I already had. However when they arrived I realized something, they were HUGE. Easily twice the size of a regular Francie shoe. Despite the large size, the shoe and Francie's shoe have a lot in common. They share the same proportions, and a general look. I'm still trying to find out where this shoe came from, but I'd bet they had a shared history with Francie's footwear. They have too much in common to not. They are completely unmarked, and I spent some time trying them on different sized feet in the collection. They fit most dolls, but they tend to be too big and make the doll's feet look oversized. Right now the best fit was Ideal's Misty, but her feet were slightly too big and stretched them out in places. I thought they could be the Ideal Samantha from Bewitched shoes, but I looked it up and I think it's a different shoe mold used for that doll. I'll keep everyone posted if I find out anything about it.

Here's the shoe next to a Francie shoe to show the size difference. The penny is there to show scale.
Next we switch over to Barbie. Here we have a classic Barbie open toe shoes, in what I believe is the color fuchsia (looks hot pink to me). They are properly marked with the left shoe marked Japan and the right shoe unmarked. This color is hard to find and came with the following outfits; Fraternity Dance (1965), Jump Into Lace (1968), Pink Sparkle (1967), and Underliners (1968). Oddly enough I have Underliners from a different lot of things, but I didn't have the shoes. These are in really nice shape and in a color I certainly don't have yet!

After that we have a pair thigh high gold boots for Barbie. These either came from "Winter Wow (1969)" or the Sears exclusive "Golden Groove Set (1969)". I'm betting Winter Wow. They are quite a bold look, made completely out of a metallic gold fabric these boots are very mod. They are in decent shape, the gold is fine one one side, but the other side has the gold rubbing off showing the silver which is very common with these boots. I'm planning on reselling these since I can't see ever using them and I worry about the fabric continuing to age.  I'd rather sell them and get some of my money back and not have them.

Our last pair is the biggest reason why I decided to jump on this lot when I saw it. It's a pair of vintage Barbie close toe shoes. These are the aqua colored ones that came either with "Barbie Learns to Cook (1965)" or "Knit Hit (1968)". They're both correctly marked on the bottom Japan. These shoes are a harder to find color since it came with only two outfits. In my experience there's two types of closed toe shoes (not counting spikes), the ones made from shiny plastic and the ones made from a more matte plastic. These are the shinier plastic. They are in amazing shape, just perfect. If these weren't marked Japan I'd assume they were brand new. They really are just so stunning, and most likely worth around 25 on their own. I don't have a lot of vintage Barbie shoes so I'm thrilled to get a pair as nice as this one.
So that was the thrilling conclusion of the random lot from Etsy. I think I did pretty good for 25 dollars. And I'm glad to finally share it all with you!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

A different type of accessories

In the random lot the majority of the items in the lot were made out of plastics or rubber, pretty typical stuff for accessories. However there were a few pieces made out of fabric from it. The majority of it it's a random grouping, but I can at least group it together by what it's made out of.

Up first we have a bit of trim. Measuring roughly 13.75 inches long and a bit under 1.5 inches wide it's a piece of white trim featuring an embroidered pink center with attached lace on both sides. It's actually really cute, but a little big for Barbie scale. And unfortunately it's not long enough for someone like Chatty Cathy. It is really pretty though. I plan on keeping it in the random trim bag and in the hopes I'll find a use for it some day. The lace is sewn to the center piece at the top and the bottom so if need be I could always take it apart, then it might work better for my purposes.

After that we have what I assumed at one time was a pair of tights. Somewhere along the way they were cut down to just the leg part. They honestly could have been thigh high stockings for all I know. Made from a white netting other than the damage at the top they look to be in decent shape. It does suffer from some minor snags here and here. Luckily they have enough material at the top so I might be able to salvage them. If I take the seams down some I can hem them at the top so at least they won't be in as much danger of getting a run in them. However who knows when I'll get around to it and whenever I do a simple repair, it never ends up being truly simple.

Moving on from that we have another pair of tights, but these I know are tights and always have been because they're still all together. These are yellow but made from a similar fabric at the white pair. I'm not sure if they're vintage or not. I do know that Mattel used tights a lot in the Mod era and I can think of at least one outfit that used yellow tights, but not sure if these are them. They are in very nice shape, they do have some snags here and there, but their condition doesn't tell me much about their age. I've seen vintage items in great shape and much newer items in total trash state. It all depends on how much they were played with. They're part ways inside out in the picture since I don't like handling them for fear of snagging them.

The next item we have is a scarf. At least I think it's a scarf, for some reason it's incredibly long. It's a whopping 23.5 inches long! Made from an unhemmed white tricot material it features sewn on fringe at the short ends. When I got it there was a knot in it that I took down. It's in nice shape, especially for being unhemmed, there's only minor fraying. Not sure where it's from or if I'll ever use it, but I'll hold onto it. Never know when you'll need a scarf that you can bundle up in and I really mean bundle.

After that we have a knitted scarf. I'm pretty sure this is home made, but I could be wrong. Made from a bright pink yarn (I assume acrylic) this scarf features very loose stitched in a square netting effect and long fringe at the ends. It's a little felted, so I assume it's older (or was very popular). The fringe on the ends has mostly unraveled. I don't have a lot of mod era winter items, and don't really dress my dolls in coats, but I'll add this one to the bag where I keep fabric accessories. It's cute enough to keep around.

Our next fabric piece is a belt. I haven't identified it, but I'd bet it was made by Mattel. Here we have a belt, made out of a brown/tan/yellow colored fake suede fabric. It's not hemmed, but has white top stitching along the edge of the piece. It has a metal buckle and a single belt hole on the other side to close it. I think it belongs to a coat. At least if it's for Barbie, it would need to be something bulky in order to fit, unless she wore it very low on her hips. I'll share this item on Flickr and hopefully someone there will tell me what it is. *UPDATE* I found out where the belt it from, it belongs to Barbie's "Fun Fur(1971)" jacket and is apparently hard to find.

Moving on from that we have what I believe is a belt, but now that I'm thinking about it it could be something else, possibly a book strap. It's a simple red vinyl strip with one end having a cut out buckle part and other side being cut into a point so it will be easier to thread it through the openings. One side is smooth and one side has a very faint crosshatching pattern pressed into it. The belt itself is a little too wide for the holes, so I doubt I'll ever use it in far of damaging it, but I'd still like to know what it's from.

After that we have something that's a bit confusing for me, as in I'm not really sure what it's supposed to be. What we have it a small box made out of a blue gingham with solid white on the inside. It has a ribbon bow on the top with a long loop so you can close it using the clear plastic button on the side. I guess it might be a purse? It's really nicely made, tiny and fully lined. Whoever made this knew what they were doing. I wouldn't even try something like this is a much larger scale. It's a little dingy and the ribbon ends are a bit frayed but it's in very nice shape. Not sure what I will do with it, but I will keep it. It's an impressive bit of textile art.

Moving on from that, I believe our next item is a pair of Tutti socks. Made from white tricot fabric, these little socks have practically no foot definition. I do have a pair of Skipper socks and these are for a way smaller foot. So I'm going with Tutti. I do have a Tutti doll but I don't want to deal with putting these socks on her rubber legs, so we're just going with it. They are in decent shape. These type of socks are unhemmed at the top, they just roll the material down on the inside to create the finished top. On mine the unfinished part has rolled up so it's visible, it's an easy fix you just roll them back down. Don't know if I'll ever fight with them to put them on the doll, but I'm glad to have them.

After that we have a pair of short white gloves. Made from the same tricot as Tutti's socks these short gloves are made by Mattel and adorable. I just love little gloves like these. I don't have very many of them, I actually only have one single white vintage glove. This is my first pair. I do have a couple reproductions, but I am very glad to have these. They are in really nice shape (even though I do find that tricot cleans up nicely). I'm not sure who will be getting these, but I know someone will. They're a great addition to my collection and was one of the reasons why I wanted this lot in the first place. These usually sell for at least 7 dollars a pair plus shipping so another good value coming in this lot.

Our final item in this section I actually didn't know was in the lot when I bought it and didn't know what it was when it arrived. It took a little research to find out what it was. It's a slim green vinyl belt with a gold front clasp. It's actually the original belt to the second issue twist and turn Barbie dolls and is very hard to find. When doing research I found a completed E-bay listing where a belt of comparable condition sold for 40 dollars! I'm really not sure what to do with this. I rarely collect vintage swimsuits, but if I ever did it would be foolish to sell the hardest to find part of it. I guess I'll keep it. As long as I'm careful with it it's not like it's going to lose any value by just holding onto it (if anything it will go higher in value).

So that was the last of the fabric made items, not too bad for a lot that I didn't spend very much on.

Stay tuned for the next part!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Random stuff I don't have a cute name for!

Our next section is all things that I didn't have a set group for. So I'm grouping them together in their un-groupable-ness.

Up first we have a necklace. This is actually the newest item in the lot. I can't remember exactly where it came from but I believe it's from the early Fashionista era. It's made out of a deep pink plastic and is very much a statement piece. I can't remember if I've owned one of these before, but I know I won't for long. It's destined for the doll donation bin. It's in nice shape and should make a kid very happy.

Next we have a pair of hair picks. These are Barbie sized, not something you'd actually use for the doll's hair. They're not super flimsy, but they're not made from the strongest of plastic. I'm not sure if these are for Barbie or another doll. I actually have a few of these already. The bottom part is the same, just with a different topper. The two in this lot are identicle. Made out of a purple plastic they both have a vaguely flower looking top with four tines at the bottom. They're completely unmarked and in decent shape except for some extra plastic and slight warping at the bottom. I'll just toss them into the bag with the other ones and never think about them again. Does anyone know where they're from? I think they're just standard clone items. Perhaps cloned from something official.

After that we have some silverware. Made from white plastic we have a set of two knives, spoons, and forks. They're still attached to the plastic they were made on. These might be 80's or 90's Barbie but I haven't been able to identify them yet. They look to be decent quality with only minor excess plastic that needs trimming. I'm not going to remove them from the plastic, I don't have a need for a set of silverware right now. I might throw them up on E-bay or just tuck them away for now. Luckily they're small so they don't take up much space.

After that we have a pink clone Mirror. This is so familiar I know I had one growing up, in fact I might still have it if I dug through some of the random bags I have kicking around. I think mine's purple. Anyway, this mirror is your standard clone quality. This one does have several spots where it needs excess plastic trimmed off. Made from a thin plastic it's very easily bent, but does quickly pop back into shape. It does have a small bit of silver foil in it to mimic an actual mirror. For what it is, that's a nice touch. Not sure what I'm going to do with it, I might trim off the plastic and toss it into the donate pile. Maybe some kid will want to play with it.

Next we have a soda cup, again I had something like this in my childhood. It's a white plastic cup designed to look like a glass of soda with a lid and an attached straw. It's a bit different than the one I have from childhood. Mine is hard plastic, this one is a cheaper blow mold. Other than that they are identicle. They both have a green sticker wrapped around the cup part that says "SODA". What kind you ask? Well the sky's the limit! As long as it's soda and ideally something to do with a red dot since the O in soda is a big red dot for some reason. I'll be holding onto this, just in case I ever need a soda cup. 

After that we have a plastic phone. Made from white plastic it's a princess style phone. It's actually made up of two pieces, the dial rotary is in fact a separate piece. You can move it if you want to, but it's hard to do. There's even a sticker underneath it of the numbers. Not sure why they even bothered. The numbers aren't aligned properly and the holes are too small to even see the numbers under it. It is a cute phone, but the plastic "cord" between the base and the handset makes it hard to use. It's so stiff that the handset can't be placed on the base, it wants to rest behind the base (like it is in the picture). I guess that would only work if you wanted to pretend the person had put the phone down for a second. The stiff cord also makes it hard to use it with dolls. Even a doll with decent articulation will have a hard time holding the headset to their ear since the base wants to float up. I will be keeping this, but if I wanted to use it, I'd need to replace the cord. But I doubt I will. I really don't think I'll actually ever use it. It's just too cute to get rid of. I remember this style of phone from my childhood. Mine was made from purple plastic but other than that I think they're the exact same.

Changing gears, we have something slightly different, a pair of clone eyeglasses. Made from a soft slightly translucent red plastic, these glasses are vaguely cat eye in their design. They are made from one piece and when you try to straighten out the ears, tend to bow in the middle. They are unmarked, but if I had to guess, I'd say they were from Hong Kong. They do suffer from some excess plastic on the edges, but I'm not going to do anything about that. They're so delicate I think removing it would damage it. Interesting note, they have three nubs on the backside of them around where the nose piece is in real glasses. I assume these are to keep them off your doll's face. I like them and will be keeping them, but don't think I'll ever use them. They don't look that nice and I do worry about them staining a doll's face, but they're cute so I'll hold onto them.

After that (and finally) we have a white vanity set. Made from plastic we have a brush, comb, and mirror. These are doll sized and have a cut out for the doll's hand so she can hold them. I think these are Mattel and maybe from the 80's. The backs of the brush and mirror are decorated with flowers. The mirror has a foil sticker in it for added realism. I'll probably post these on Flickr to see if anyone can identify them for me. If they can, I might list them on Ebay. Perhaps someone will want them.

Random stuff done! Onto our next section! Just two more to go!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Let's Get Physical, Physical!

It's time for our next installment of what was in the lot from Etsy! I hope you're not getting tired of it, we have three more posts to go after this one. With the majority this lot I'm able to break it down into pretty defined groupings. (Shoes, hangers, purses, and so on), but with some of them it's not as clear cut. Our next grouping is kind of cobbled together into a "Sport and Activities" section. It's not the best, but at least it's a bit cohesive.

Up first we have two Barbie sized tennis rackets. They are completely made out of plastic, with a long slot in the handle for the doll's hands so they can "hold" it. One is white and one is yellow. The color is the only thing different between the two of them. They're both completely unmarked and in pretty nice shape. I'll probably toss these into the doll donation bin since that meeting is coming up soon and while I can't remember if I have tennis rackets already I can't see myself using these.

After that we have a yellow sun visor. Made of a yellow plastic that looks like a perfect match to the yellow tennis racket, I bet these two items came together. It's your standard sun visor, marked under the brim with "China'. I already have some like this one, so this one will also get donated.

Next we have a pair of sunglasses. I'm not even sure if I saw them when I was deciding to buy the lot or not, but even if I had they weren't much help in swaying me. It's just a generic purple pair of aviator sunglasses. I would bet these are knock off of Mattel 80's era sunglasses just made out of solid plastic where they didn't even bother painting them metallic so it would look like you could see through them. These will also end up in the donated pile. I have enough sunglasses I don't use, I don't need a pair I don't even like.

Also in the lot were parts of Great Shape Skipper's original outfit. I know it's hers because at a recent doll meeting someone had a bunch of 80's era items and one member pieced together a complete Great Shape Skipper doll and outfit from the items. I now own her pink and blue striped tights, her blue and pink workout bag, and her pink squishy made in the Philippians sneakers. They're all in pretty good shape but I do need to wash the sneakers. I plan on listing these on E-bay since I don't have Great Shape Skipper and don't think I'll ever get one. So maybe someone trying to complete their doll will want them and buy them so I can recoup some of what I spent on this lot.

And finally we have a jump rope. I actually only figured out what this was because of doing research for something else in the lot. It's the jump rope from Skipper's "Action Fashion" (1971) accessory pak set. Made from a red and white twisted twine? it's closed at both end with clear plastic. It's super simple, but effective. Mine's in pretty good shape, the white part is not as pristine as it could be and the plastic ends don't look perfect, but I think that's just how they were made at the factory.

Our next item is a bit of a cheat, it really should be under shoes, but since I have so many shoes to talk about and can fit them under the sporty theme, I'm going to talk about it here. It's one of the great things about owning your own blog, I make the rules no matter how petty they our. Here we have a pair of ballet slippers. Made from a sickly looking off yellow vinyl (not sure if these aged to this color or they started out that way) these toe shoes feature a bit of corded ribbon stuck that's been punctured into the back of each shoe to create the ribbon ties. Both cords have been knotted and have fraying on the edges but other than that look good. The cords are a pale pink color, so I wonder if that's the color the shoes started out as. They are crudely marked on the bottom of each shoe as Taiwan. I haven't been able to find a specific definite proof of where these came from, but I believe they are vintage 70's era Mattel. I did see a loose Ballerina Barbie outfit being sold with the same style of shoe, and they were using this same shoe mold back in their made in Japan days. It's not Ballerina Barbie's stock shoes but I believe they could be shoes sold with one of the additional outfits sold for her. Can't say I'm 100 percent sure they are though. I'll add these to my vintage shoe collection, but not sure if I'll ever use them. We don't have too many Ballerina's around here. And the color looks less gross in the picture than it does in real life.

Our final part of this grouping is a trio of ice skates, well two pairs are ice skates, one pair is missing the skate parts but is made from the exact same mold. I don't think these are Mattel made, but I could be wrong. They're much nicer condition than your usual knock off quality. Made from a white rubber with a hard plastic "blade" that gets set into the soles of the shoes these ice skates have a very unusual feature, they have real laces. They have a slit down the front with holes on either side so you can lace them up. They are marked on the bottom as "Hong Kong". The pair without the blades are a shade or two lighter than the other pairs so I think they are a matching set. The laces are a bit frayed and worn and for some reason the ones with the blades all have pieces of tape or tape residue on them. I'm assuming it was just easier to stick the tape on them and not have to both tying them each time they wanted to use them. I wasn't able to identify the shoes, but I did see someone selling a pair on E-bay for 20 bucks! Which is crazy, yes they're cute shoes, but not 20 dollars cute. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with them. I might end up listing them on E-bay, or not. It's not like I don't have a shortage of things I need to sell on E-bay. I do know I'll remove the tape and it's sticky residue. That's got to go.

And with that we've completed the sport section of the random lot. Lots of interesting stuff, some I can use, some I can not. A few things will get donated so it's not a total loss. Even if I can't use it, I can at least try to find someone who will enjoy it.

Stay tuned for the next part! (Hopefully I won't be keeping you waiting for months to finish it!)

More Shoes, just what I needed!

After taking a long break from posting about that random lot I purchased off Etsy, it's time to get back into it! In the lot there we some other shoes. Modern shoes, several of which I already have an example of, perhaps even in the same color. However with my shoe addiction, repeats are never a bad thing. In fact, the more the merrier!

Our first pair of shoes are simple white tennis shoes. These are made by Mattel and is a shoe mold they've been using for decades. These are made out of a slightly flexible plastic and are a little rough around the edges. They are marked on the insides as being made in Hong Kong. I have seen knock off of these shoes before, but I think these are official Mattel made pairs. They just didn't have good quality control back then (or now, but that's another blog post). I like these shoes, they fit a variety of dolls including Skipper. I have several pairs of white sneakers already, but I have no problem adding another pair to my collection.

After that we have a pair of pink boots. These are combat boots and date from the 90's. I know because I have/had a pair just like these growing up. And I hate, hate, hate them. These shoes are designed so that the doll's feet don't sit in them properly. The toes are closed off, so when the doll is standing on them only her toes touch the soles. I hated it then and I hate it now. These are unmarked, most likely from China and will get donated. I have a pair of them in black (for some reason), but will not be keeping a pair of them in pink. I know I will never use them. They look to be in decent shape, guess they didn't get played with much, probably because they're awful. It's a cute mold, it's the fit that drives me batty.

Moving on from those (and taking deep calm breaths) we have a pair of genie slippers. Made from a white plastic these simple flats are arched to fit the high heeled foot and feature a curled toe. They are marked on the insides with China. One of them is a little dinged up at the toe part but it should display decently. I actually already have a pair of these in white, so these would be spares. I only use the first pair at Halloween, so I doubt I'll ever need a second pair but it's still nice to have. They are a little dirty, so I'll have to give them a quick washing before putting them away.

After that we have a pair of pink sneakers. These are different than the first pair since they're newer. These are the bigger sized shoes made for the flat foot "gymnast" style dolls. They are slightly squishy and made from a very hot pink pink plastic. They're in really nice shape, don't think they got played with much. I'll most likely swap these out at the doll donation meeting. I don't dislike them, but don't have any dolls that have the flat feet so there's no need holding onto them in case I ever get one. Especially since I don't really care for that body.

Our next three pairs of shoes have something in common, they all share the same markings. Inside each shoe they have "TBKI China" molded into them. I believe those markings mean they are from The Brass Key Inc.. Brass Key is a company mainly known for their porcelain dolls, they make a lot of porcelain Disney dolls. It was after I looked up the markings I remembered something. Way back when I was doing E-bay searched for Disney doll shoes in the hopes of finding new colors of the Disney store flat shoes that I was obsessed with (still am in fact) when I discovered that Brass Key had sold boxed sets of Disney themed Barbie outfits. They were knock offs, but I'm guessing these are the shoes they would have come with. I don't think they ever made porcelain dolls that small and I'm pretty sure all their dolls have molded and painted on shoes.
We have two different styles of shoe from Brass Key, a standard Barbie "Minnie Mouse" style pump and a flat shoe. The heels aren't an exact copy of the Mattel shoe, but they look pretty darn close. The front part on these shoes seems to be larger and the inside edge is a little rougher. So while it's not an exact clone, I think Brass Key started with a Barbie shoe and did some minor tweaks to get their shoe. I have two colors, white and a peach color. They fit 90's era Barbie feet pretty well. I'll add these to my spares bag. 
The flat Brass Key shoe looks to be a pretty standard knock off of the 80's era Big Head Skipper doll shoes. I compared it to one of those shoes and the biggest difference is that Skipper's shoes have a small heel and this one doesn't. There are a few other minor differences, but they are very minor. It's clear who was inspired by who. These shoes do have an interesting design feature. Both pairs have two small molded in slits in the back of the shoe at the heel. I assume for ribbon to be threaded through so you can put it on the doll's feet. My shoes didn't come with any ribbons and I'm not sure if these shoes originally had them. I wouldn't be surprised if they made the mold for ribbons at one time and either eliminated the ribbons during production or reused the shoes without sealing up the holes. I can always add them if I want to, but I most likely won't bother. I'm glad I got these shoes, they actually work really well for Live Action and Living Barbie dolls and I know I don't have enough cute shoes for them.

There was also a single shoe just like the pumps above, just in dark blue. I'm keeping it, but I really doubt I'll even find it's match. Into the solo shoe bag it goes.

The other solo shoes in the lot are as follows: a florescent orange 90's era Barbie pump from Malaysia, a thin cheap dollar store clone blue pump with the "vampire" bites on the bottom, and a right foot blue open toe sandal marked Taiwan. I'm going to keep all of them, but will most likely only bother to hunt down the mate for the Taiwan shoe. And even that's iffy since I don't have many 80's doll's to dress.

Stay tuned for our next part! (Whenever that may be)

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Short update (with some minor doll talk)

Today was E-bay day. I got five auctions completely finished, recreated one that had aged out of the system, took picture for one I had written the text for earlier, and redid one which consisted of taking new pictures and rewriting the ad, so it was pretty much a brand new listing.
The past week E-bay was kind enough to give me a go-around of free listings. So they all ended today, and I had six things with bidders! Per usual I had a lot of watchers, but not too many bidders but I am pleased with that many sales. I even had a couple of people do the buy it now on some things during the week. I always like that since it means more money! Right now April has had eight sales, and everything has been listed for the week so hopefully more things will sell. My record for sales in a month was 14 but that was with enough free listings so I could keep renewing listings every week. With these new sales that means I have some more listings to create. My account is getting full, but I still have plenty of stuff to list. My dresser is once again chock full of E-bay items to list and that doesn't even start on several boxes of stuff I have kicking around.

I would like to say that I am being smart and using my E-bay profits to build up my bank account, but that's simply not the case. As with tradition I'm using it on dolls. At least when I use my E-bay money for part of it it's not all coming out of my bank account. And perhaps one of these days I'll be better. This month I splurged and bought Grace Kelly. I hated spending so much on her, but she's getting harder and harder to find and I figured I should bite the bullet and get it over with. I bought the "To Catch a Thief" version and plan on reselling her clothes and original body to make up some of my expenses. At least I can say with E-bay sales I'm at least buying less things than what I'm selling. So in some sad little way I'm making progress in pairing down my things.

Today is also the start of my last week at my current job. I had today off, but it's business as usual at work. I was expecting my hours to be slashed when I put in my notice, but no such luck. I guess since we've lost so many people at work they can't afford to cut my hours back even though I'm leaving. Including me we've lost ten associates the past month or so. I also found out our assistant store manager is leaving. Her last day is a week after mine. The store is taking a big hit by losing her. Quite frankly she's amazing. Smart, dedicated, great to work with, and for, so they're going to really suffer with her gone. And the sad thing is, she probably would have stayed longer except the manager is a nightmare (she's why a lot of people have left) and the way the company is running thing is burning everyone out. I honestly think that store won't be around for too much longer, it really seems set up to fail. I am sad to leave some of the people I work with, but there's just no reason to stay. Especially if there's no store there soon to stay for.

I start my training at my new job this Thursday. I told work that I needed that day off, and somehow they actually gave it to me. That means this week I only have two days off, but I guess I'll manage. I have a lot of things outside of work I need to get done but I have been trying to force myself to do things before and after work. It's just hard because I'm so tired after work and there's some things I just don't want to do. Hopefully things will get better once April is over. It would be hard for it to get worse in some aspects right now.

Tomorrow is another day (just not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing right now)

Saturday, April 9, 2016

I got the job!

Yes, it's true. I got a new job. I had my first interview on Monday, they called on Tuesday for a second interview, had my second interview on Wednesday, and they called to offer me the job about 25 minutes after I had gotten out of the interview. Of course I accepted it and told them I'd put in my two weeks notice where I worked. I didn't have my availability at that time for the upcoming week, but I told them I'd let them know once I did. I called on Friday morning and left a message, but still haven't heard back from them. If I don't hear from them I guess by Monday I'll give them a call on Tuesday. (I'm working on Monday so I think the timing will be better to call on the next day).

Hopefully they call back and we can start my training. I know it's unlikely, but there's a tiny voice in my head that keeps chiming in that maybe they changed their minds and unoffered me the job.

But even if that happens, I can't go back. I put my two weeks notice in on my manager's desk and have told everyone that I care about at work that I'm leaving. I have a lot of reservations about leaving, I do like a lot of the people who I work with, but I absolutely hate being a cashier and I hate the way the manager manages things and I hate the direction the company is heading. And everyone else is feeling the same way, including me in the past month we've lost or are losing 10 associates. We're not a big store, so that's a huge chunk of who works there. When I told the assistant manager I was leaving, she teared up. Not that she was that super sad to see me go, but she's been under so much stress trying to keep the store going and dealing with a manager who is totally useless and pretty nasty when dealing with associates she's reaching her own breaking point. And that's so sad to see because she is amazing. Hands down the best manager I've ever had. She's super smart, knowledgeable, helpful, dedicated, and talks to you like a person instead of a punching bag. It sounds like everyone is trying to find something else, and the people who can bail out are. I think if the economy was any better we'd also be losing more management, there's just nothing out there for them so they're stuck. I am sorry to see things end like that. They are some of the most dedicated people I've worked with, they really work hard to help out the customer as much as possible, but with the company floundering as it is, their hands are tied as it continues it slow march to it's closing.

They did just renew the store's lease for 3 more years, but cut back everyone's hours to nearly nothing. We rarely have more than one cashier for the entire store, some days we have huge breaks without one and other people have to jump in and do it. A few weeks ago I just had a week where I had 8 hours for the entire week. I'm lucky that I'm not living on my paycheck, right now I'm focused on saving my money for when I move out, but there's no way I could survive working there. My new job is a slight step back in terms of money (I'm kind of back on commission), but there's better chances for earning more. In all honesty a lot of what I will be doing is what I did in appliances, just now I'll be selling shoes.

 I will also miss the employee discount. My new job is a bit higher end so I'll be buying less from them and they don't sell toys so I can't even use it for Barbie's any more! Which in terms of savings, might be a good thing. I really shouldn't be buying. I have enough. I even went and removed Etsy and E-bay from my history so I can stop wandering on over to see what's new. I do it without thinking about it and that's got to stop. I need to be getting rid of stuff, not getting more.

I have given myself a time frame for moving out, next April. That will give me lots of time to save up money and the time to consolidate my stuff. I have a lot of things to list on E-bay to get rid of and to hopefully make some money on. I spent time this week working on relisting things that had aged out back when E-bay went from 100 free listings to 50. Even lowered the price on some things in the hopes of getting rid of them. I spent some time organizing some of the storage and was able to move all E-bay items out of the Chatty Cathy shelf of the bookcase. It's a minor victory, but something that's been bugging me for a while. Not sure if it will remain like that, but at least now the bookcase is back to being my collection, even though a lot of shelves are cluttered with dolls I'm not sure where to put right now. I really need to get another bookcase, but as is, I just don't have the room for it. Perhaps someday I will.

I also have been spending some time thinking about what I'll need for moving out on my own. Right now my plans are moving back north, which upset my mother when I told her, so I will need to think about what I will bring. I'm assuming my father will help me move (which he's done too many times to count) but the truck has a limited space. Right now I'm deciding what's important enough to bring and what's not important enough to leave behind for now. Right now my thoughts are I'm going to leave the bookcase here, since it's just a simple press board one in okay shape and takes up a lot of room and bring my set of dishes since they don't take up much room and it would cost about 50 dollars to get a new set. Luckily I have lots of time to think and thinking's free.

However my moving plans aren't set in stone. Nothing is set in stone for me, ever. In the middle of last month someone very important to me fell of my radar. Someone I miss dearly. This happened last year too, pretty much at the same time. They did come back, but them disappearing like this again is very worrisome especially since I know what lead to them not being around last year. I'm just so worried and unsure over it. I'm just taking things day by day and hoping I'll hear from them soon, even though I'm not sure if I ever will. There's a pit in my stomach that just sits there dragging me down. 

I'm just trying to look at the big picture, and be patient. I just hope there is a big picture out there for me and I'm not just working towards a gilded frame. :/

Monday, April 4, 2016

Just a quick, long, rambling, update....

Hello everyone, just wanted to do a quick update on a few things in my life right now.

I am still working on the posts about that doll accessory lot, progress is just slow since I'm working on a million other things at the same time because that's just what I do. There's so much stuff to talk about. Next lot I buy is going to have less stuff! (Just kidding. If it's good, I will buy it regardless of how many items are in it).

Non-doll related, I had a job interview today and it went really well. I talked with the interviewer for over an hour and she said she was very interested in hiring me but needed to talk with the higher ups and could possibly need a second interview. Which would be a good step in the right direction. I feel bad about leaving my current job, I like a lot of people that I work with but they recently did away with my department so I got switched to another section. They did work with me so I was able to keep the same pay rate and stay off commission, but I'm just not happy there. Every day is dreadful and even when I'm done and have a few days off I'm still not happy because I know that I will eventually have to go back there. A lot of the new department has things in common with my old job, but there's still several new things (including helping out in a department I've never worked in before) and I've gotten no training. I'm tired of having to teach myself how to do my job properly when they keep failing to train me and I'm fed up with it. So I've been looking harder for a new job in the hopes of being able to get out of there. Even though I like some of my co-workers, I don't see to many of them now that I've switched and what's the point of liking a few people when I'm miserable being there?

I'm really glad the interview went well, I was really nervous going in and felt I wasn't right for the job. It's a bit higher end than my current job. Walking up to the store I had a total fight or flight moment and thought about just leaving, but I made myself go. Part of the issue was that my confidence was shaken up on last Friday. I had a job interview with a competing store and it did not go well. I'm not one to say this, but honestly I think the person interviewing me just does not like me. I interviewed with them last year as well, before I started working where I work now and that interview was short, had odd questions, and didn't have a lot of content. This interview was pretty much the same way, except now I had a year of experience under my belt working in one of the departments I would possibly working in there. It's like, hello! I've been doing that job there for a year, I can certainly do it here. Oh well, I guess I should just cross that company off that list. That woman's been working there for a year less than I've been alive, so I doubt she'll be moving on any time soon and there's no point wasting my time with a person who is setting me up to fail. Seriously, who asks a question regarding "tell me a time you felt threatened at work or school?". What an odd, odd, odd question. I applied there since I figured my current experience was going to be helpful in getting a job there, but apparently that's not the case.

And I will point out another issue I had with the first interview. I applied like 12 days before hand, got no calls so I assumed they weren't interested. I applied for a new position that popped up online, they called the next day around 2:30, asking if I could come in for an interview THAT afternoon. It's like, the afternoon is halfway over. I made an appointment at 4:30 and thought it was about the second application, turns out it was for the first one. Good to see they can move as slow as molasses, but I have to jump when called. (And I don't even work for them!) I talked to someone who works there that I sort of know and they said to call and ask about the job since that show initiative, but I'm not sure it's work wasting more time on it. She really does not seem to like me and I mean it, I am not one of those people who assumes everyone who's not super nice to them it means they hate them. I know I'm not that important, but there's something about this woman where our dealings are not good. But today was the total opposite, (even though I was still pretty much the same me as from Friday and wearing the exact same interview outfit, so clearly the issue from that first interview was not me) so hopefully something will come from that.

Ebay was good this past month. I had a grand total of 11 sales so in-between January and February's numbers. I'm not sure if April will be that good since I don't have any free listings beyond the 50 so most things will just get one turn this month, but at least they'll be getting an option to sell and are not just sitting around collecting dust.... well, they are but they're also collecting views and hopefully will move onto someone elses house to collect different dust.

Keep your fingers crossed for me please!