Yes, you have to make an appointment. Six years ago, when my husband and the retail doll market died at the same time, I closed my shop and moved it to my home. Although I am very flexible, I am not home 24/7. I work part time X-Ray, do my own house, yard and garden work and am owned by a very possessive Basset Hound and a gray tabby cat and a new husband. You can call and leave a message or email me pictures of your doll for a general idea of cost of restoration. But in order to give a true estimate, I have to see the doll. A lot of people ship me their dolls (call first so I'll be expecting them), and I email or call with the estimate. If the work is not done, I send the doll back - at your expense.
Yes, there is always a backlog. Minor repairs are worked in as quickly as possible, average repairs can be 1-3 months and extensive restoration can take 6 - 12 months. Anything to be done for Christmas needs to be in the shop as soon as possible - at least 3-6 months before.
If you are shipping a doll, please take it to a UPS packing station, let them pack it and insure it. If there happens to be a claim, they prefer to pay it if they packed it.
Yes, I do water and fire damage of collections through insurance companies. This has to scheduled.
Yes, sometimes I buy dolls. It depends entirely on what it is, the condition it's in, and the price you are asking. Condition doesn't always matter.