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How to Shop on eBay

One of designer Meredith Heron's many claims to fame is being the proud owner of "the house that eBay built." The savvy shopper has found some incredible pieces over the years and was kind enough to share some of what she's learned along the way. Here are her top five tips:

1. Download a sniper application.

This allows you to put in the highest bid you are comfortable paying for a desired object without having to monitor the auction. It will save you money and stress in the long run!

2. Get search savvy.

The search is half the battle. Knowing the terminology around the period/style you're looking for is key. Mid-century modern, Hollywood regency and faux bamboo are all popular searches. When hunting for great vintage pieces, also try searching for "pair of chairs" or "pair of lamps" as this will bring up great options that you might not have otherwise come across. You can also set up regular searches in your eBay account. This will scan the site daily or weekly for your desired items and notify you of any new listings!

3. Fabrics are fab.

There are tons of fabulous fabrics for sale on eBay—from vintage to discontinued or in-demand patterns. Start your search by manufacturer (e.g. Schumacher). If you know the name of the specific pattern you're after, search for it directly.

4. School yourself on shipping.

This is particularly important for Canadians, who will inevitably be shipping across the border from time to time. Get as much information as possible about where the items were manufactured for customs purposes. You'll need proof from the seller that the items were made in the USA in order to avoid paying duty. Ask for this information prior to bidding. Also ask sellers to estimate shipping rates to Canada, which can really add up. If sellers claim they don't ship to Canada, ask anyway. Some can be persuaded!

5. Know the lingo.

NWT stands for New With Tags. Took Heron months to figure that one out.

Meredith Heron on set with Steven and Chris.Meredith Heron prides herself on her intensely personal yet uniquely collaborative approach to every design project she takes on. Her bold and distinct style blends the classic and the unexpected and is always mindful of the uniqueness of each client. The result is design that beautifully contains the elements that a client loves and seamlessly weaves them into a fabric of decor and design that flows.


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