Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Question For Sellers Of Vintage Textiles – Your Opinion Needed.

Oh my goodness, you wont believe the horrible weekend/week I have had.

I am not going to go into any details right now, my heart hurts and I just can’t.

My hubby and kids are fine, but my family did loose a very beloved member of our family this weekend.

It has left me not feeling like being online, and not feeling like doing much of anything.

I’ll be back soon and fill you in.

Any way,  I wanted to pop on and ask you all your opinion.

Okay, I sold an antique quilt top to someone.

They decided to wash it in the washing machine.

Well, it, of course, fell apart on them.

Now they are demanding a refund.

Stating it was this and that and had to be washed.

It’s condition was exactly as I described it.

Even inspected it again and again when she would email questions.

And it was exactly as I stated.

She was happy with it when it arrived, she even left me positive feedback for it.

It wasn’t until she washed it in the washing machine and it fell apart, did she become unhappy with it.

So,  I guess my question to you all is…

Do you think it is my responsibility to give her a refund because she didn't launder it properly?

You see, if it was me…

I would have hand washed it in the sink.

I would NEVER wash an antique quilt top in the washing machine!

Personally, I don't feel like I am responsible for a refund.

If she would've gotten it in and emailed saying she didn't like this or that about it, then asked for a refund, where she was able to return it in the condition it was sent.

Absolutely, I would have given a refund to her.

But now that she destroyed it because she didn't launder it correctly, I don't believe it is my fault.

What are your thoughts on the matter ?

How would all handle it?

Have you ever had a situation like this happen?

I look forward to hearing from you,



Bittersweetfolkart said...

Hello Tam

Firstly ..I am so sorry for your loss ..

Secondly .. the lady and the quilt ..she is not entitled to a refund .
Anyone who owns any antique quilts..and I do
knows that you DO NOT put them in the washing machine !!

so please don't worry any more about it .


Bittersweetfolkart said...

I am so sorry for your loss...

And in my opinion the lady is not entitled to a refund
she should have know that you do not put an antique quilt in the washing machine !!


oldecrow said...

This is tricky one! I would say no refund. If she asked lots of questions, she should have been smart enough to know "NOT" to wash a vintage textile in the washing machine! That is what I would have told her when she asked for a refund. On the other hand, you always want your customer to be happy and satisfied, so I would ask myself is it worth all the bad press she's going to give you if you don't refund her money. Can you salvage any of the quilt top if she returns it to you?
Good luck with your decision, it certainly is not an easy one!
Olde Crow Mercantile

Lori said...

I am sorry to hear of your loss. I just said a prayer for your family.

No refund! Anyone in their right mind should know not to machine wash an antique quilt top. She should have contacted you before washing it.

Deppen homestead 1862 said...

I say no refund ~ she purchased it & then it was her decision to wash in the machine~ ugh, I think it is sad that she did that~ but it was her mistake not yours~my opinion~ because if it was me that purchased it I would never once think to tell the seller anything let alone expect them to pay me~
Sending you my thoughts & prayers

Penny said...

Hi Tam..... so sorry to hear about a loss in your family..... do stay strong....
I have never sold anything online, but I would say NO REFUND! If the item arrived to the buyer in the condition you stated, you are not responsible for anything she does after that. At least that is my opinion.....
Good luck! Prayers for you and your family.

Tiff said...

Tammy, I'm sorry for your loss and I will keep you in my prayers.

As for the quilt. Did she send you pictures of is after she washed it? Do you really know it is destroyed? If she emailed you so many times about the condition and it was fine when you sent, then it sounds like she might be trying to scam you. Either way, if it was mailed in the condition you described to her and arrived at her house that way, you are NOT responsible for what she does with after it is in her possession. I would NOT refund her the money. She is trying to make you pay for her mistake.

Hope things get better for you soon.


Primitive Stars said...

Hello Tammy, sorry to hear about your familys loss. And about a refund on the quilt piece, most certainly not!!!! That is NOT your fault that she went ahead and machine washed a old quilt piece, come on, you don`t do that and secondly, why, I like my quilts on the older looking side. Anyway, thats crazy she wants a refund when it`d HER fault,take care, Blessings Francine.

Laura Rhodes said...

It would really help if you put in a disclaimer for people buying your items. It helps cover yourself. Common sense isn't that common these days. Hope everything works out. Sometimes one has to eat crow in order to keep a good name. Do whatever you feel at peace with. Blessings Laura

Jessica said...

Nope, no refund. And from now on make sure you add a note about NOT laundering the item on Etsy or wherever else the item is for sale. That way your base is covered in case it ever happens again. Sadly, people who do things without common sense are the reason there are tons of disclaimers on packaging. :-/ So add the disclaimer from now on. :-)

Sorry for your loss.

Merry Wind Farm said...

Hi, Tammy,
Honestly, some people can be so stupid! Who on earth would put an antique quilt top in the washing machine?? Unbelievable! So, no, I definitely don't think you "owe" her a refund for her stupidity. However, you need to think about whether she could cost you more money than the quilt top was worth in the long run by bad-mouthing you to other potential customers. Just something to think about..

Tammy ~ Country Girl at Home ~ said...


I cringed at the thought of putting an antique quilt top in the washing machine! Oh my! But no, you don't owe her a refund. However, I know if it was me, I'd probably end up giving it, just because I'd want the highest regard for my reputation (even though I did nothing wrong) and then I'd make sure that I put a disclaimer or did whatever I had to do to cover any issues like this happening in the future. I'd be unhappy about it, but that's probably what I'd end up doing.

You do what YOU feel is the best for you, Tammy. But no, you don't OWE her a refund!

Oh the washing machine!!!! :(


Kim said...

Tricky. I would say no refund. Seriously, a washing machine? Duh!
Sorry for your loss.

janzi said...

ABSOLUTELY NO REFUND- especially after she asked you all those questions... no one in their right mind would use a washing machine for something so delicate because of age... these people are not very nice after doing this which is their own mistake... tell her she has to live with it, its her fault for not considering the age... Online customers can be tricky with feedback, but you can add a remark yourself if its negative.. I had a really pushy one that gave me a lot of grief even after I did the refund... so stick to your guns... Sorry to hear about your loss, hope the hurt will fade a little within the embrace of your family... Hugs from across the pond.. J

Cyn said...

I would not give a refund. I am sure you feel bad but you sold her a piece that was exactly the way you posted it. She can't ask for a refund on something SHE did to it. And what does she mean ruined? She messed it up..she needs to take the blame off of you and put it on herself. Why on earth would she put it in the washing machine. UGH!

Carol Stuck said...

I am a bit unnerved because she had the gall to ask you for a refund. She damaged the quilt. If she wants a refund then the quilt needs to be returned in the same condition that she received it. BESIDES, who in their right mind would wash an antique quilt in the washing machine. I would say she needs to eat the cost on this one.

Stand your ground, sweet Tammy. It is my opinion that you owe her nothing.

Felicia said...

My deepest sympathy on your loss Tammy.

The other ladies feel the way I do. NO REFUND. When the quilt became her property she was responsible for what happens to it.

If you feel you want to give her the refund I think I would appeal to her common sense (if she has any after washing a quilt in the washer) and offer her half the refund.


Felicia said...

My deepest sympathy on your loss Tammy.

The other ladies feel the way I do. NO REFUND. When the quilt became her property she was responsible for what happens to it.

If you feel you want to give her the refund I think I would appeal to her common sense (if she has any after washing a quilt in the washer) and offer her half the refund.


Cindi said...

Tammy, I am so sorry about your loss, stay strong in God. Sending prayers.
Be blessed,

Dog Trot Farm said...

Tammy, I am sorry for your loss. I am a people pleaser, however, it is my opinion that you do not owe this customer a refund. I would agree that placing a disclaimer on your selling blog might be a good idea. Some customers do need verbal as well as written clarifacation. Sending blessings, Julie.

Danice G said...

Prayers for you and your family with your loss. About the antique quilt top: I totally agree with you. It is not your fault that this customer obviously knows little about antique textiles. It is sad, but it is her fault. Sometimes we just have to learn by a bad choice, and this is one of those times for her. Blessings :)

Pamela@ The Sampler Makers Farmhouse said...

No refund. I can buy a lamp and tip it over too, should I get a refund? Because it was "a tipsy lamp" you get my drift, heaven's, I think someone is angry with themselves for washing it,...hee hee, well, that's life. It sucks, but we live we learn.

Sandi @ The Primitive Skate said...

Sorry for your Loss. My thoughts and Prayers are with your Family.

Marilyn said...

I am sorry for your loss. second i am not a seller of old anything, however, i certainly KNOW you don't machine wash an old material of anykind especially a quilt. she posted she is happy with purchase, that covers you for sure. just my opinion.

Robin at The Primitive Hutch said...

No Refund ~ it's not your fault she's stupid.
So sorry to hear about the loss you and your family went through.
Will be thinking about you.
Prim Blessings

*Kountry*Porch*Primitives* said...

~Sorry for your loss~
NO REFUND!! if she emailed you with various questions prior to purchasing it she KNEW the condition and obviously had concerns over it being vintage...which meant she understood how fragile it could be. Then she MACHINE washes it???? She deserved to have it fall apart for mistreating something she was concerned about to begin with! definitely HER stupidity!!! ~Kriss~

Jean Barker said...

I agree with the rest of the ladies~ NO REFUND! The quilt top arrived in the condition you disclaimed and she was not intelligent enough to know you do not wash vintage in the washer! If you decide to refund for your own sake ~I'd say only half the cost of the quilt top. But I'd stick to my guns and not refund. I am a people pleaser, but on this I would not feel liable for someone else's mistake.
Thinking of you in your time of loss.

jess said...

Take good care of yourself and don't let anyone take advantage of you like that.

My DH once washed a mostly wool, antique quilt top, and even dried it. (cringe with me a moment... ) It wasn't totally ruined and it's actually in use by the kids now. I can't imagine going after the seller for that. I wouldn't want to admit to it- it would sound to cliche, "Oh, DH did it..." they'd never believe me. lol

((hugs)) you're in my thoughts, Tammy.

A Primitive Homestead said...

Sorry to hear of your loss. Lifted a prayer for you. I have not been up to blogging since my loss. A lot of things just don't matter anymore. No refund. Blessings!

Jan - Life on Buttermilk Hill said...

So sorry for your loss, Tammy. As far as the quilt...I would agree to the refund on the condition it is returned in the same condition she received it. We all know THAT can't happen. You don't have to be a genius to know vintage pieces are more delicate. A fellow vendor sold a handpainted silk scarf to a lady who promptly washed it in a machine with bleach. Some people are just born that dumb.

Ruth said...

I agree that you should not refund the item. I am also an Etsy seller and would like to email you privately about a situation that I recently had. I wasn't given any help from the Etsy people.

Wanda said...

No you should not offer a refund and it's not your responsibility to idiot proof everything for your buyers either. Just imagine if you had sold them a candle and they burned their house down?

I to sell online, have had horrible experiences with ebay, had someone ask for a refund because of a 1/2" measurement off one time. Had a buyer try to scam me into his broken cell phone. Sorry but some people prey on sellers like us trying to make a living, feed our families, and then the nerve of someone wanting us to take responsibility for their mistakes. Enough said!