7 Jan

*Update- Many of the listings were swapped out for others and some of the wholesaler photos have been replaced with her own photos.

Hi, thanks for starting this blog, it makes me sick to see these dishonest sellers on Etsy. I found this seller a few months ago searching for bridal combs. She was selling an unaltered, mass produced rhinestone hair comb you can buy online for about $8 for over $80. I flagged it with links to the online store and it was never removed. I checked recently and she’s now selling jewelry from this site. Here are the comparison links:

‘original handmade’ , $63
mass produced, $4.50:

someone bought this:

‘orignal handmade’ $79
mass produced, $5.50:

‘original, handmade’ $49
mass produced, $3.75
ECO wonders if this might be a new reseller tactic… make it super expensive and nobody would suspect??

UPDATE 1/8/10: Received another email about Portobello-

I noticed seller Portobello has been listing items that she purchased wholesale from 925e.com. How do I know for sure? She is using THEIR pictures!! Someone on etsy kindly pointed me in your direction tonight, and when I went to your blog, I could barely believe that there was Portobello right at the top!! LOL! I know she has been reselling all sorts of rhinestone hair combs and earrings and even a tennis bracelet, but this is a new low!

Her entire “collection” seen here:

can be found at 925e.com (with the same pictures, no less!):

She has 18 items currently listed in her shop that she purchased from 925e.com. Every picture that is shown with the “torn paper” motif is directly from 925e.com’s site. And she is selling her items at 9 or 10 times (or more!) the wholesale price, so it’s a ripoff all the way around. Shameful! AND, 925e has an $800 minimum, which means she bought at least $800 worth of their jewelry with the intention of reselling it at HUGE markup.

She had several other items in this section of her shop, but I guess even she realized that they wouldn’t pass for handmade so she removed them. These were things like a regular sterling braided box chain marked as “handmade”, and things like that.

I’ve flagged each item and sent a link to the exact item on 925e’s site, the exact picture, and nothing has been done. Why is that?

And to mention one more thing, Portobello has not only been reselling, but she misrepresents things all the time as “vintage” when they are brand new items, purchased from brass wholesale companies (that we’ve all seen a thousand times—brass ferns, brass geranium leaves, etc.).

I posted a comment on your blog about this, with links directly comparing 6 or 7 of her items to the 925e catalog. I only just saw your email address!

Thanks so much for your great blog! I’m really glad someone sent me your way tonight.


79 Responses to “Portobello”

  1. Christine January 7, 2010 at 11:25 am #

    There has been a lot of ‘calling out’ in the Etsy forums lately. Maybe if Etsy did a better job of getting rid of resellers once they have been flagged people wouldn’t feel a need to call out in the forums. I’m getting so frustrated seeing all these resellers.

  2. JK January 7, 2010 at 12:07 pm #

    From one of her listings: ‘NOTE: This is an original design, handmade by Designs by Portobello and protected under REGISTERED US COPYRIGHT.’

    So maybe some concerned citizen should email her a link to the wholesale site ‘ripping off’ her designs.

  3. Nicole January 7, 2010 at 12:49 pm #

    Greed, plain and simple. There are metalwork rings and earrings in this store I seriously doubt are either ‘original’ or ‘handmade’. People must see that this store sells high ticket items many of which are hand made and don’t think twice about whether they’re mass produced.

  4. sputnik January 7, 2010 at 1:00 pm #

    Wow that’s really, just wow.

  5. janicejoplin2 January 7, 2010 at 1:03 pm #

    Good job..sickening!

  6. Laura January 7, 2010 at 1:20 pm #


  7. sputnik January 7, 2010 at 1:30 pm #

    It very well could be a new tactic. Those prices will generate a much higher percentage for Etsy and less reason to remove it. Not that I’m saying all Etsy cares about is money, or am I?

  8. Life During Wartime January 7, 2010 at 1:40 pm #

    Maybe some of the items in this shop were made by the seller? There are a few things that are rather simple to make, like a charm and/or a bead attached to a chain. If the seller does make the simple items, it’s harder for admin (why? dunno) to accept that she doesn’t set all those tiny rhinestones in the other pieces herself. It’s a completely different skill than making fascinators or linking charms to chain.

    What is with her going legal in her descriptions? Is this a prompt for the forum cupcakes to titter about ‘the wholesaler must be copying her’ if she gets called out?

  9. Nicole January 7, 2010 at 1:48 pm #

    The seller DOES make most of the items in her shop. Then adds a few mass produced items with a huge markup. I guess it’s easy to see why admin would hesitate to remove three items in a store with lots of other items that the seller can prove are handmade. The items in the blog posting are clearly being resold unaltered. Because most of the items are hand made doesn’t make it any less dishonest to pepper your store with a few mass produced items.

  10. Forum Police January 7, 2010 at 2:07 pm #

    The seller also makes everything for the wholeseller and then sells a couple things in her etsy shop. So it’s wrong to call this seller out because people can sell in more than one place on the interwebz.


  11. Sandra January 7, 2010 at 2:58 pm #




    “TRAILER TRASH” Comes to mind!!

  12. sputnik January 7, 2010 at 3:02 pm #

    Sandra you’re quite insane aren’t you? I think you should step away from the computer for a while, get yourself some fresh air and calm down.
    Good lord, if you don’t like the site, no one is making you come here.

  13. JK January 7, 2010 at 3:31 pm #

    Feeling a little guilty about something, Sandra? I hear confessing makes things better.

  14. Bedazzled VONdom January 7, 2010 at 3:45 pm #


    Sharpie brows been drinking.

  15. Nicole January 7, 2010 at 4:24 pm #

    Wha? Is Sandra the store owner?

    Add fee avoidance to the list, the seller has completely changed the items in 2 of the listings to different items.

  16. Amy Lynn January 7, 2010 at 4:52 pm #

    Sandra, I think a 5-year-old can tell that the items in this person’s shop are the same as those being sold on that wholesale website. If she were hand-making enough of these to sell them for $4.50 apiece with a minimum order of 5, then she must be insane and an insomniac, as well as greedy.

  17. Nobody Understands My Pain Either January 7, 2010 at 5:05 pm #

    Just saw these in time machine: http://www.etsy.com/shop/KirasTouch?section_id=6550116

  18. JajieBo January 7, 2010 at 6:27 pm #

    “Sharpie brows been drinking”

    Laughing my ass off over that one!

  19. Michelle January 7, 2010 at 7:28 pm #

    Hey, crazy Sandra is back. Lovely.

    Sandra, clearly those were not handmade by her. As the wholesale sites would credit the maker, which you’re suggesting is the seller on etsy. Ha! But since these are mass produced by pennies per day workers, no names get credit. And if she did buy them wholesale, which she did, she isn’t allowed to sell them on etsy.

    I wonder if Sandra is a straight reseller, or a “sure, it’s vintage! It looks old” kind of seller?

  20. Arty January 7, 2010 at 7:54 pm #

    Well at least I now know that I don’t have to spend 70.00$ at Etsy for a pair of rhinestone earrings…LOL.

  21. ReasonableSandra January 7, 2010 at 8:13 pm #

    Ok. I know that I lurk much more than I post, but now I have to change my posting name so that people won’t confuse me with you know who. sigh.

  22. Michelle January 7, 2010 at 8:28 pm #

    Thank you Reasonable Sandra.


    There is something NEW for you all to help me flag. A brand new fake Chanel purse, listed as vintage! Swell.

  23. pussdaddy January 8, 2010 at 1:49 am #

    You know, I asked to reclaim my old PussDaddy account since they started allowing you to change your avatar while muted (this is why I left because of the avatar I was stuck with) but this is fucking ridiculous that some one can get so much for this cheap crap and I am better off going to Target as it’s cheaper.

  24. Brian January 8, 2010 at 5:19 am #

    Oh, wait, it gets better. Portobello is selling a line of her “handmade” jewelry here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/portobello?section_id=6676024

    and she purchased ALL those items from 925e.com’s wholesale site, AND she’s using their pictures!! She is charging over 9 or 10 times the wholesale price for each item. Take a look at 925e.com: http://www.925e.com/silver-jewelry-list.php?SetMCID=5&SetCTID=54&Subject=Wholesale%20COLLECTIONS%20-%202010%20Silver%20Collection

    It’s shameful and disgusting.

  25. Lu January 8, 2010 at 6:24 am #

    OFF TOPIC just logged in etsy forums and found this

  26. JajieBo January 8, 2010 at 7:41 am #

    Sandra/Cathy/Vonlady… you’re such a riot!
    We *care* about something, so that makes us “trashy”. Gigglefit, for sure. “GET A LIFE, BITCHES!”. You’re the one who just can’t seem to keep your nose out of our discussions. Maybe you need to consider getting yourself one of those life thingies, as well.
    Or not, because I kind of enjoy reading your brainless ALL CAPS rants. They never fail to crack me up.

  27. Amy January 8, 2010 at 8:09 am #

    The link from Nobody Understands My Pain is a classic! The seller states in the listing ‘This Vintage Style Cocktail Ring is Brand New’. arghH!!! and they have quite a few sales! unbelievable!

  28. Amy Lynn January 8, 2010 at 11:20 am #

    I’m adding names to my annoying-and-prudish-seller list every day when I read these call out threads.

  29. Life During Wartime January 8, 2010 at 11:30 am #

    Amy, I think it is all too believable. The general public doesn’t know what words like ‘vintage’ or ‘antique’ or ‘retro’ mean in terms of the age or origin of an item, so I would not expect much more from the Etsy community as a whole.

  30. JajieBo January 8, 2010 at 2:02 pm #


    “ENZO ANGEOLINI SHOES SZ 7 FROM ITALY NEW AND GORGEOUS”… the tags on that resell are a hoot, as well.

  31. Jerry January 8, 2010 at 4:35 pm #

    This is the wholesale site where Portobello buys her jewelry:
    http://bit.ly/5z9QtC Check out the last pic at the bottom of the page.

    And this is her listing: http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=37899926

  32. Wha? January 8, 2010 at 5:34 pm #

    Michelle Says:
    January 7, 2010 at 8:28 pm
    Thank you Reasonable Sandra.


    There is something NEW for you all to help me flag. A brand new fake Chanel purse, listed as vintage! Swell.
    yay that’s so fun that she is back! that could be a new section of etsy.. “stealing”

    technically its your hand that cancels the sale, stealing money, and making yourself look like an angel.. so it could be handmade..

  33. ohyeah January 8, 2010 at 7:46 pm #

    nice update!

    quick question.. is it allowed to stuff you shop announcement with tags? I found a shop that lists a bunch of keywords at the bottom of their announcement.

  34. Life During Wartime January 8, 2010 at 8:08 pm #

    Great update! So this seller is claiming in her descriptions that the item is her original design and copyright protected…and now we know purchased from a wholesale company. WJW What was it the janitor dude used to say in ARE YOU BEING SERVED? I’m glad I don’t have your nerve in my tooth! This seller’s got brassies for sure.

    Why won’t Etsy act on the flags? If the comment in her shop announcement about press features is real, it will be hard to remove her. Etsy loves them some sellers with visibility, even if their wares are not appropriate for the site.

    I’m curious now. Does she make the fascinators/hair ornaments/hats, scarves and veils? Or is most of her shop just a retail selection of bridal/formal accessories she resells?

  35. Angel January 8, 2010 at 8:38 pm #

    The fact that you just quoted AYBS makes me love you more, LDW.

  36. Brian January 8, 2010 at 10:29 pm #

    I’m pretty sure that Portobello makes some of the things in her shop. But these items she’s recently listed—and there are currently 18 of them, not just 3—have been purchased from 925e.com AND she is using their pictures. I know people can buy a charm and put it on a chain and that’s okay, but she’s not doing that—these are finished items (like rings and necklaces) purchased at 925e.com and re-sold under the pretense of being “handmade”. All of the items found in her store under the heading “Pearls Silver Sparkles” were purchased at 925e.com.

  37. Rachel January 8, 2010 at 10:38 pm #

    I’m flagging this…

    not that it will do any good : (

  38. JonhCocktoasten January 9, 2010 at 7:54 am #

    Another imported hat seller. I guess someone noticed that the other reseller is doing so well, there was room for competition.


  39. JajieBo January 9, 2010 at 8:05 am #

    Angel Says:
    January 8, 2010 at 8:38 pm
    The fact that you just quoted AYBS makes me love you more, LDW.

    Ditto that! : )

  40. Life During Wartime January 9, 2010 at 1:27 pm #

    I’m glad you appreciate AYBS! It was all that talk about ‘getting stuffed’ in the comments to the other post that brought it to mind.

  41. MadeByM**** January 11, 2010 at 11:57 am #

    AYBS is one of my favorites………along with Benny Hill. Oops, a little off topic but I had to agree! LOL!

  42. so cynical. January 11, 2010 at 11:44 pm #

    Perhaps buying all these fraudulent listings up (and not following through with payment) is the only solution. Maybe it’ll get etsy’s attention if they’re suddenly flooded with cancellation requests for questionable listings.

    ..because clearly wishing for etsy staff to do their job is beyond plausible.

  43. ohmeohmy January 12, 2010 at 11:19 am #

    This reseller is absolutely disgusting, pretending she makes all her pieces, saying they are copywrighted designs. Unbelieveable that she buys a piece for $3.25 and then marks it up to $130!


    Etsy makes a lot of money from her shop. Maybe THAT’S why she’s still around.

  44. ohmeohmy January 12, 2010 at 11:24 am #

    I feel like going into the forums and calling her out now

  45. ML January 12, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    it is shocking that she is still being allowed to sell these items. what the hell is wrong with admin!

  46. ML January 12, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    it is shocking that she is still being allowed to sell these items. what the hell is wrong with admin!

  47. resellers_suck January 13, 2010 at 10:48 am #

    Hopefully the EWT will take this more seriously from now on when they vote on new members.

  48. Life During Wartime January 14, 2010 at 1:16 am #

    It looks like the items at some of the wholesale links have been changed. Interesting…

  49. Brian January 14, 2010 at 10:29 am #

    I’ve contacted admin, I’ve sent direct links to the wholesaler’s shop that show the exact item she has for sale, for all 18 items, and none have been removed. What is wrong with etsy’s admin?? Why is she still allowed to do this?

  50. Nicole January 14, 2010 at 1:46 pm #

    Brian- did you email the info to abuse@etsy.com?

    I haven’t reported this store before, but I have reported a seller with links/info directly to abuse and the items were removed.

  51. Brian January 15, 2010 at 12:50 pm #

    Oh, this is fantastic. Portobello now has changed her pictures from the wholesaler’s actual catalog pics, to pictures she has taken herself. The SAME items, of course. Just her own pictures now. I guess either she read this, or something in the forums, but I’m sure no one from etsy administration has contacted her. HEY PORTOBELLO—-you’re still selling crap you bought from Asia and passing it off as “handmade” despite your new pictures!!

  52. ohmeohmy January 15, 2010 at 7:15 pm #

    I saw that

  53. Brian January 16, 2010 at 4:27 pm #

    Nicole, I emailed abuse@etsy.com, flagged everything, and emailed stellaloella directly, all with links to the pictures of the exact items—and still nothing has been done. I got a response from Stellaloella saying she’d pass the information along, but that was on the 11th. Discouraging.

  54. Donna January 21, 2010 at 11:31 pm #

    This is disgraceful to all of us hard working etsy sellers. I have looked at Portobello’s beautiful items for the past year wondering how she was selling some of her items at such high prices while my items at reasonable prices were not selling. It is worse knowing she is a fake and people still buy it.

  55. No January 27, 2010 at 12:05 pm #

    I’m a competitor or Portobellos, and this upsets me to no end. I use the same suppliers, and have known for a long time that she is getting away with insane prices!

    Lets break this one down

    *rhinestone bow with faux pearls: $5 (i have the same one on my desk right now from http://www.sequinappliques.com/store/product_info.php?cPath=79&products_id=9243)

    *2 cheap feather pads: $3 max, if she makes them herself, even les

    *1 hair clip: 50 cents
    Total material cost: $8.50

    Time to make it – no more than 30 minutes.

    Her retail: $139 – you’ve got to be kidding me!

    I know she’s entitled to charge whatever she wants, but it’s clear that she is lying to her customers, about both her value as a designer, and about the origin of some of her pieces, and her behavior in response to these threads (switching items around and redoing pictures once she was called out) is just indicative of her character. It’s sad she’s become so successful with such shady ethics.

  56. Cath January 28, 2010 at 2:45 am #

    Etsy has no ethics either, they would have seen this, they come to this blog and still do nothing……. What a suprise.

    Hopefully someone who has purchased a piece of her non handmade jewellery will leave feedback and when that happens I will convo them with a link to the website. I am sure they will be pleased. Maybe if they contact Etsy as a unhappy buyer something will be done.

  57. Brian February 5, 2010 at 6:53 am #

    I’ve sent etsy links to the actual items on the wholesale site that she’s selling, and they were marked “closed” a couple of days after I sent the email to abuse@etsy.com or flagged@etsy.com. Nothing has been done—why? She was even using the pictures from 925e.com in her etsy shop, and now she’s changed that to her own pictures, but so what? Example: here is the wholesale picture of some earrings that she’s selling (note the hinged clasp—handmade???):


    And here are hers (she changed the picture):


    She’s charging $89 for these. WHO would pay $89 for sterling hoops?? The wholesale price was $13.60—that’s an almost 7-times markup!

    I will also email whoever buys any of these things, and send them a link to the wholesale item. If someone thinks they’re buying handmade, and it’s a fraud, isn’t there a lawsuit there somewhere?

  58. Nicole February 8, 2010 at 8:58 am #

    It’s called FRAUD. I hope Susan Yin/ Portobello is exposed for what she really is, a liar and a fraud. How can this be allowed to happen when the facts are laid out this blatantly? I don’t care what people charge for their items, but deception and fraud are illegal. The high prices she marks up to would lead any person to believe that the seller is pricing for her time and craftsmanship relating to an original design.

  59. etsyfan February 9, 2010 at 8:47 am #

    Hi all i am new to this etsy stuff just have a quick question. If you are a designer with a line of your own designs sewn by a team is this considered wrong? if so why?

    thanks for responding

  60. Brian February 10, 2010 at 9:04 am #

    I see that although Portobello’s shop is still there, none of her items are listed! In each category, there is a (0) next to it. Is it possible that etsy FINALLY has done something about this blatant reseller? Or is it a glitch? I’m not a seller, so I don’t really know how etsy admin deals with resellers.

    There is no shop announcement (such as a vacation or weather problems), and her twitter was updated last night with a quote about overcoming adversity.

    And NOW she is tweeting about items on her own website! I’m guessing this means that it’s over for her on etsy. That said, the wholesale-purchased items she wants to sell are perfectly fine on her own website—so good luck to her there.

  61. Brian February 10, 2010 at 1:02 pm #

    Upate: Too bad. Total disappointment in etsy. She has now updated her shop announcement saying she’s closed due to the weather conditions in “Treasure Island” (i.e., the D.C. area) and will be back after she catches up on orders. Etsy has marked all of my emails to abuse and flagging as “closed” now. So they did NOTHING. This only hurts etsy as a whole, and all sellers should be royally pissed.

  62. Nicole February 10, 2010 at 1:34 pm #

    I would bet my house that she’s had her items unlisted by Etsy- her store would have to be in vacation mode to unlist everything in her store, otherwise she’d have to manually unlist each of the several hundred items in her store. highly unlikely she’d voluntarily do this if she chose to close up for a short time when you can click one button and put your whole store into vacation mode. It does sound like she’s had her wrist slapped and Etsy will probably just make her take of the mass produced stuff.

  63. Nicole February 10, 2010 at 1:36 pm #

    And she’s most likely reading this, because I looked yesterday and the notice was not there… the notice came up after your post about there NOT being a notice about the weather.

    I’m also going to report her store to Abuse because she has an illegal link to her website in her shop announcement.

  64. Brian February 10, 2010 at 3:12 pm #

    Thanks for the clarification, Nicole!

    And if she is reading this, I hope she realizes that any mass-produced items she tries to sell as “handmade” and as her own “original design” will be reported and reported until something is done. And this includes anything from Thailand, and the various rhinestone jewelry earrings and hair combs that were purchased wholesale.

    Also, I reported that illegal link to Abuse as well.

  65. Diane Long February 11, 2010 at 9:18 pm #

    So funny. I just checked her etsy site and she is closed due to weather! Maybe she’ll stay closed.

  66. ohmeohmy February 17, 2010 at 8:12 pm #


    She re-opened and all of the 925e.com stuff is gone. Etsy knows about her and is letting her stay???

  67. Brian April 26, 2010 at 4:12 am #

    I see Portobello has sold yet another pair of the rhinestone pave pear dangle earrings (like the top picture of this post) on April 25. So she may have slightly altered the other mass-produced earrings, but these are clearly the unaltered $4.50 pair she bought wholesale at rhinestonejewelry.com, and probably sold them for $63. I don’t see them listed again in her shop, yet. IF her customer leaves feedback, I will definitely let them know via convo.

  68. Brian April 28, 2010 at 7:01 am #

    Portobello is selling those same $4.50 rhinestone teardrop earrings AGAIN. I guess she thinks that because they are currently sold out on rhinestonejewelry.com, that no one can “call her out”. But I contacted rhinestonejewelry.com and I sent them HER PICTURE and asked when they would be getting more. They responded and said “next week.” She is such a LIAR AND FRAUD and I will contact whoever buys her China-made items and tell them when they leave feedback.

  69. Nicole May 6, 2010 at 1:33 am #

    What an effing joke. I seriously thought that Etsy had taken action. Either she has a huge amount of nerve and is stupid enough to think that no one would notice one pair of earrings being resold, or she’s doing this with Etsy’s complicity.

  70. Brian May 6, 2010 at 7:33 am #

    Update: rhinestonejewelry.com DID get the earrings back in stock, so I was able to send the wholesale picture to etsy. And surprise—as of last night (May 5), all of her items are GONE from her store! Her store is still there, unfortunately, but at least it appears that etsy removed her items. I hope they close her store this time—this would make the second time in 3 months that etsy has taken some action. HEY PORTOBELLO–if you’re reading this, as I said before, I will not let you get away with your fraud and deceit.

  71. Brian May 6, 2010 at 1:10 pm #

    Well, forget that idea—Portobello is BACK, open again on etsy, and her earrings that she bought at rhinestonejewelry.com are still there. So whatever happened, she’s still defrauding the public, same as before!! Good luck to all the buyers that are getting hosed. Boooo to etsy.

  72. Dee June 23, 2011 at 1:12 pm #

    More drama


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