13 June, 2010

For the love of Lilli Ann - a 5.30am bidding frenzy!

Regular readers of my blog will know that I love Lilli Ann, a US designer that made wonderful suits and coats from the 1940's-60's (her company made garments after the 60's, but the best stuff is from the 40's and 50's). Unfortunately, her 40's and 50's garments are quite rare and quite expensive (suits range between US$ 400-700), so it was wonderful that I found this fabulous 'nipped waist' coat on ebay recently . . .

I love the 'hourglass', New Look design of this coat - it is really divine. I have been on the prowl for a coat exactly like this for months, but the ones on etsy were in the US $399 range. I simply did not want to pay that much for something I could not try on so imagine my delight when I spotted one on ebay USA for $9.99 auction (or $195 Buy it now). Of course, like a fool I didn't use the Buy it now facility and instead thought, 'oh not many people will see this (no one had bid on it by then), so I will go for the auction, perhaps I can get it for much less'.

Little did I know that the 12.43 bid end time in the US translated to 5.43am on a Sunday morning Australian time - ouch! So on Saturday night, after having a few too many red wines at a school trivia night I set my mobile phone alarm for 5.30 - was I mad? The answer is, yes, I think I am a little mad when it comes to vintage, so up I got at 5.30am, foggy with a slight hangover and logged on to ebay, just to find out that the coat was already up to $203.50. I must explain that I not an early morning person, I repeat not. I usually get out of bed at 8am when I can (!).

However, there was a happy ending to this story, as I can report that due to my well-timed spipe I got this little beauty for US $232.50 - more than what I could have gotten through 'buy it now', but much less than the equivalent on etsy.

So what is the lesson for me (and perhaps for all of us in this?) I think (a) sometimes 'Buy it now' can be better when it comes to rare items and (b) before bidding work out what the local time will be for end of the auction - bidding at 5.43 am after a big Saturday night is not an experience I would recommend!

Happy bidding to you all!


  1. AMAZING Coat - its truly divine.
    HILARIOUS story - American time difference can kill!
    Enjoy your LILLI ANN beauty, its certainly worth the early morning pain :)

  2. Haha! I've gone through this experience myself, but still tend to avoid the 'buy it now' unless I have no other choice. Love the coat! When do you usually wear your Lilli Anns?

  3. Thanks for the comments girls. Collar of Dove: I usually wear my Lilli Anns to work actually (although I am overdressed!). Or if I go into the city for the day. I will do a separate post later of me in the coat (its speeding over here from the US as we speak) so stay tuned!

  4. Argh, bidding on ebay is so stressful! I am so glad you got it, though; what a great coat! Whenever I see a LA piece online (even though always post 60s so far) I think of you :)

  5. Congratulations! What a beautiful Lilli Ann piece! I know the feeling you describe all to well, I would have set my alarm to...and in fact, have done the very same thing :P Just don't tell anyone :P Ah, for the love of vintage...<3