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Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Ebay Changes - Effective 4th September 2013

Ebay are making HUGE changes to the way sellers sell, and it makes a huge impact on Small Businesses like ourselves: so much so, that it looks like we're going to have to take most of our stock off there, and sell only through our website. 

Ebay are becoming more and more greedy, and with Royal Mail also taking their price hikes sky-high, it really is a battle for us, and many other small businesses out there.

Please shop directly through our website, where we still accept PayPal payments, so are just as secure as eBay - but there's no fees to pay, which means we can bring you the products cheaper. There's also 3000 more products on our website currently, than there are in our eBay store.... I will give a little more information below:
This point is for us, a main point in why we are going to have to consider removing our products:

From 4 September, if your item sells, you’ll be charged a final value fee based on the total cost to the buyer, including postage, packaging and other related costs.

To manage any fee increase you may see, we recommend you include postage as part of your item price and offer items with free postage. You may be able to achieve lower postage costs by exploring alternatives to your current postage supplier.
(-Ebay, quoted from here: )

- What this means, is that we have a 99p item on eBay, (for example a black top hat), we currently charge the customer £0.99 + £1.00 Post and Packing. 

eBay currently take 10% fee off of the item price, not the p&p. 

Now what they are saying, is that the final value fee (the percentage they take) will now ALSO include the p&p charges (I fail to see WHY they should benefit from this) - so they suggest adding the cost of postage to the item to the item cost, making the hat effectively now £1.99 with "Free Postage", and they will then take their final value fee from the £1.99, not the 99p, which is clealy more; therefore we will be forced to up the price, or lose our profit. So we'd have the choice of up our prices to customers, or lose our business entirely as our profits would be eaten little by little.

What is also important to note, is that currently if you require e.g 10 top hats, you would pay 99p for each of the hats, £1 original postage cost, and a further 10p per extra hat, which would mean the order would total £11.80 (10 hats at 99p, postage at £1.90)
With the ebay changes, this same order would cost you in excess of £19.90, as the "postage" fee is included with each individual item, not as an order as a whole. This figure is assuming we DON'T increase our prices to compensate for their greed. You would effectively be paying £10 delivery cost for items which cost £9.99... You could argue that it will still only cost us £1.90 to send the parcel, and can take our profit from the extra postal costs, but we're not here to rip people off-  we are human, and are customers too- we wouldn't feel loyal to a business if we knew they were pocketing more money than they should be. We're trying to consider you, our customers, as well as ourselves, as without you- we wouldn't be a business at all - just a couple of mad women sat amongst a pile of miniature products!!

The same order on our website would total  £11.00...  no brainer?
If you have any more info on how YOUR small business is going to cope with the changes, we'd really appreciate some input.


Friday, 26 July 2013

Alternative Monopoly Pieces

Did you hear back in February, that Hasbro (the big guys behind the world famous Monopoly game) have now scrapped the 'iron', 'boot' and 'wheelbarrow' markers? And in replacement, have added a cat, helicopter, a diamond ring, a robot, and a guitar! (I mention due to the fact they are changing the game again, and are now scrapping the Jail corner!)

Now if you opened your game box in the past 6 months, you may have felt a little cheated in not having your favourite game token included... but we have a solution. How about our Doll House Miniature silver iron?? It's not the exact piece- in fact, it's better! 

We could get inventive here and make up a NEW collection of alternative Monopoly game pieces using miniatures. How about a microscope, bucket, whisk, or pair of high heeled shoes! There's some amazing miniatures to choose from, and they would truly make your gameplay more unique, and even personalised to the players in your family or friend circle.

Take a look on the website and see what you can find! : Magpies Miniatures

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

JiaYi Miniatures

We've just spent a LOT of time organising our JiaYi miniature collection, photographing all our stock to show the true beauty of the pieces - unfortunately something the "stock photos" didn't show, which made very little sense!!

What is Jiayi?
Well, all JiaYi Miniature pieces are handcrafted by a talented team of artisans, and are considered to be of heirloom quality. They are handfinished and painted in the most intricate of designs, often having an Asian influence to them. However, they come in a huge range of styles, including Victorian, Edwardian, Tudor and covering other periods too.
Our Jiayi range is a firm favourite amongst many of our customers, and ourselves too. It's hard to believe succh quality, and attention to detail can be achieved in something so small.
If you are a fan or Bespaq or Heidi Ott, then chances are you'll be a fan of JiaYi too.

We have Jiayi miniatures for a variery of rooms, from bedrooms, bathrooms and nurseries,, to music rooms, parlours, and an exquisite collection of lounge furniture. Opening the boxes is like opening a magnificent gift - the beauty and detail of these pieces is simply breath-taking.

Check out the entire jiayi collection on our website:Magpies-Miniatures and let us know what your favourite pieces are!!

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Alternative uses for Doll House Miniatures

Magpies-Miniatures supply minis to a wonderful array of customers, who are especially inventive with their uses for the miniatures themselves. You may think that the miniatures start and end in dolls houses, and this is proving t be far from the truth! We have knowingly supplied miniatures for people doing:
  • Paper crafts - card making.
  • Cake Toppers (our miniature Black Top Hats are a particular favourite for wedding toppers and snowmen!)
  • Taxidermy - used as props for the animals. 
  • Clay Art - again used as props for people who model using Polymer Clay.
  • Jewellery - the glass jars and bottles are a firm favourite for our Jewellery Customers.
  • Practical Jokes - one particular customer ordered a batch of stools to put in jars to present as "Stool Samples" ... :D
  • Christmas Ornaments - usign acrylic baubles which open, and putting minis inside...
just a few examples of using our tiny products for creative uses. Have you seen anything makde using miniatures which you thought was a creative idea? Or do you use them for something other than what's listed above?
Let us know!