Standards Used for Grading Items

In an effort to be consistent with most of the major collectibles books that have been published,  What a Character!   uses a condition-based grading system when evaluating the condition of the items that we sell.  One thing to bear in mind as you look through our inventory listings and descriptions, and as you read through the grading explanations/criteria below, is that condition grades are NOT based on an item's age.  That is, an item described as being in mint condition is NOT said to be in mint condition for its age; it is in mint condition, period.  In this manner, you as a buyer can know that a 1930s-era item described as being in mint condition is in the exact same condition as a 1980s-era item that is described as being in mint condition.

Sometimes, condition grading can be subjective, especially when there is something "unusual" or "noteworthy" about an item's condition.   For example, suppose there is a ceramic item in our inventory.  The paint on it is flawless, the original label is intact, and the item has no chips.  This item has one major problem, though:  It was broken in half and then very neatly reglued.   Clearly, with the break, the item does not qualify for "mint" condition, even though it would easily meet this standard were it not for the break.  Just how far down the grading continuum this item should be graded condition-wise is open to debate.  The authors of the published collectibles books do not agree on how to grade this item.  Some would argue that an item that was broken automatically qualifies for no grading better than FAIR, no matter how neat the repair is and no matter how nicely the item displays.  Others would argue that the item could still be graded as highly as EXCELLENT, so long as the repair is not obvious when the item is displayed, except upon close inspection.

For this reason, we recommend that you ask any/all questions you have about an item's condition before making the decision to purchase it.  We always do our very best to describe all of our items accurately, and provide the most accurate pictures of them that we possibly can.  But in order to make sure that you know everything you need to know about an item's condition, we urge you to make any specific inquiries you want/need, in order to know everything you need to know about the item before buying it.   That way, when you get it in the mail, you will be pleased with your purchase, since it will have been described accurately and all of your questions had been answered accurately.

Here are the basic definitions and criteria we at  What a Character!  use when grading items in our inventory:
















09/20/14 04:23 PM