Etsy or eBay?

BlogHer Original Post

Let's say you've been invited to a summer wedding and would like to buy a dress on the internet ...perhaps you don't have time to shop around in the mall or would like something with a different vibe.

Etsy and eBay are terrific places to get a dress! What's the difference?

On Etsy you can buy one-of-a-kind dresses in made-to-order sizes from artisans who are selling their creations directly. You can search by fabric, color, or description and find stunning and original garments that you could never track down in brick and mortar shops. 

I have quite a few favorite shops on Etsy and have never been disappointed. You'll have plenty of time to communicate with the vendor, can sometimes make changes in design (wider straps, shorter hems) and can feel good about supporting a craftsperson.

Here are three dresses presently available on Etsy:

So, why shop at eBay if Etsy is so much fun? 

On eBay, with patience and a little bit of luck, you have the possibility of scoring something you might never be able to buy in a store. EBay is packed with designer/off season/overstock/discounted dresses. Did you fall in love with a dress on JCrew last fall but miss it when it went on sale? It just might be on eBay. Have you always wanted an Agnes B. dress but never been able to afford one? Check eBay. Think you'd like to shoot for the moon and grab something very couture? Click on eBay.

Three hot eBay choices.


Here are a few tips to remember when shopping Etsy or Ebay

* Know your size. Have a pal help you measure yourself if need be or go to JCrew and see what size fits you before you start bidding.

* Read the return rules. Some sellers may not accept returns or have a time limit. 

* Remember that, in both cases, you are most likely dealing with individuals. 99 percent of the time whomever is selling to you does their best to represent the quality of their merchandise. Read carefully and understand what you are buying. On an eBay garment any damage must be described and you may not be purchasing an unworn frock.

* On Etsy you may ask for more photos or information if you aren't sure what a dress really looks like. Check seller ratings at both sites and be fair when you rate your purchase experience.
You could click on Etsy and spend your money with a small company or even a person and you'd most likely end up wearing something no one else would have or you could click on eBay and save a ton of money on something you might not be able to afford in a store. 

Both are lots of fun to browse through, even if you don't need a dress. Have you bought a show-stopper at either place? 


Blackbird writes every single day at


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