Saturday, May 15, 2010

Kimono on a Budget: Part 3

Today's post (really I ought to rename this series "Ebay and Kimono on a Budget") focuses on another way to keep the American shopper's kimono costs down: tracking down the elusive "authentic kimono seller who lives in the US" on Ebay.

Domestic sellers mean much cheaper shipping rates, which can save you quite a bit as you can at times pay just as much for shipping things like a cheap obi from Japan as you spent buying it. I know for me most of my obi from Japan were 50% cost ($18-30) and 50% shipping (another $20-$30).

The quickest way to narrow down your search: once you go to Ebay and log in, click "advanced search" on the right on the home page. Enter your desired keywords and then scroll down until you see "Location". Click that radio button and then click the button that says "Located in United States". Scroll down to the bottom and hit "Search". Then choose "Cultures and Ethnicities" on the left to narrow things down further.

You'll notice a lot more mislabeling and fakes, as American sellers tend to not be as knowledgeable about kimono as most Japanese ones, but good deals can occasionally be found. Right now, for example, a gorgeous black kimono with red lining (I believe that's an old wedding one, not a geisha one, but I could be wrong) is up for $0.99, with only $15 shipping. Another US seller has several yukata starting at $0.99 with $15 in shipping.

If you'd like to check out other entries in this series, search the blog for "kimono on a budget" and happy shopping!

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