One of Alice’s rarest and most coveted pieces is the Anthropologie Knitted & Knotted Limehouse sweater coat she wore in Twilight. Rightfully so; the sweater is gorgeous, featuring ornate diamond stitches and leafy blooms. When it was in stores in 2008, it wasn’t cheap — it retailed for $198, but that isn’t uncommon for clothing from Anthropologie.
The problem now is that almost everyone who is looking to sell this sweater knows that it was featured in Twilight. Therefore, they want to make a profit off of it. I can’t be mad at someone who wants to make some money, but riddle me this: why are people paying $400+ for an oftentimes used sweater that only retailed for $198? I understand wanting to own something really, really badly. And if you have the money to spend and you want to do just that, go for it. But a sweater that retailed for less than $200 is under no circumstances worth $400 or $700 or $1,000 — all prices I’ve seen it go for on eBay.
It’s not just about the price. I’m saying this on principle, and here’s why:
– a lot of eBay auctions are deliberately driven up in price by friends or family members of the seller in order to sell the item for more money. This creates a cycle, because anyone looking to resell an item they bought for $500 is going to want to make as much of their money back as possible.
– many items are bought at cheap prices and resold for more in a deliberate attempt to scalp buyers. My first encounter with the Rebecca Taylor dress that Alice wore to Bella’s birthday party was this: I saw it in an eBay auction that eventually ended at about $450. When I checked the seller’s feedback out of curiosity, I saw that she’d bought the dress the week before from some unsuspecting person — for about $100. I was suddenly glad that I didn’t win.
– it negatively influences the way we view auctions for certain items. If I won a Knitted & Knotted sweater today for $198, I would probably think that was “cheap.” In reality, no, it isn’t cheap; it’s what it sold for originally. I didn’t get a “deal”; I got exactly the price I would have paid in the store. I don’t have Alice’s money, so I have to be smarter in my approach, as I’m sure most of you do, too.
Are you suddenly going frugal on us, Alice?
Okay, let’s make no mistake — if I have money, nine times out of 10 I’m probably going to blow it. “Saving” is still a pretty foreign concept for me, although I do try. All I’m saying is that we need to be smarter about this. Instead of fighting like newborn vampires over the scraps of a Limehouse sweater coat, why not organize a Facebook campaign to have it re-released? If an item is available to you locally, why not pick one up for your fellow costumers and ship it to them for a fair price, rather than putting it on eBay?
Maybe I’m being too idealistic, here. But then, I’ve always been the optimist in the family.