A woman on TikTok is putting a kaleidoscope business on blast for failing to fulfill her $109 order after 14 months.
Lizbeth (@liznzad) says that she placed an order from Satoriscope, an enterprise by an artist who handcrafts kaleidoscopes, in October 2021.
The business states on its website that “delays can happen,” but she never expected that it would take over a year when she placed an order for a friend.
In an interview with the Daily Dot, Lizbeth said that the delays left her feeling like a liar. To absolve her guilt over the delayed gift, “I ended up sending [my friend] so many different gifts to make up for the missing kaleidoscope,” she said.
In her viral video, which had been viewed more than 383,000 times by Thursday, Lizbeth shared a series of emails between her Satoriscope. The first email from 2021 showed her asking about the status of her order’s delivery and tracking information.
She sent a second email three days later after she still hadn’t received a response.
“Hey, I hate to be a bother but, I haven’t gotten any updates on my order,” she wrote. “Could you just let me know what’s going on? Are they special order? If they are, can I know your usual shipping times? So I can tell the person expecting this? I’d really appreciate it.”
After radio silence, she contacted Satoriscope again to request a refund. Satoriscope states on its website that it has a no-refund policy.
She eventually received an email from Satoriscope providing her with general shipping times. The email stated that it typically takes 14 to 16 weeks to ship its custom-made kaleidoscopes.
Liz responded that she was grateful for the response and information. But once the wait time for her order began nearing 12 weeks, she felt no choice but to reach out again and ask if her item was close to being shipped. “We are now nearing 6 months since I purchased,” she wrote.
It wasn’t until a month later that she heard from Blaine Schroeder, the artist behind Satoriscopes. In the letter addressed to the “loyal customer,” Schroeder apologized for the delay and thanked Lizbeth for her support while waiting for her order.
He also acknowledged his poor communication. “I’m working hard to make changes to how I’ve poorly handled keeping you updated,” he wrote. He then explained that a recent health diagnosis left her order half-finished “for a while now.”
“Somedays are better than others and I am doing my best to get back on track, but please bear with me while I work to manage my work/life balance,” he continued.
Schroeder signed off his email by reassuring customers that they would receive their kaleidoscopes soon. He also invited them to follow along on order progress by checking out his TikTok videos and live streams.
Lizbeth’s response was emphatic, as she wrote that she wished him the best. But since she was at the seven-month mark of waiting for her order, she asked if she could receive a refund.
After no response, she reached out to the Satoriscopes again to state that it had been over a year since she first placed her order. She also shared that the friend she had bought the gift for had since moved addresses.
In another email, she stated that she was considering filing a claim against the company. She was appeased briefly by an email that said that the kaleidoscope would be shipping out via First Class Package.
But this proved only to be a false hope as there was soon an error with delivering her order.
Lizbeth’s video ended with her showing that she requested a refund from the company.
Schroeder shared his side of the story in an interview with the Daily Dot.
He explained that he shipped Lizbeth’s order on June 27, 2023—almost two years after Lizbeth says she placed her order. After seeing her viral TikTok on July 2, he immediately issued a refund of $110.
But Schroeder said there was an issue with the refund because Lizbeth asked him to send the refund payment to a business account. “With business accounts, PayPal automatically goes with the ‘goods and services’ option,” he says. Lizbeth says that this resulted in over $3 being deducted from her refund.
“That wasn’t me trying to pull a fast one—it’s just how PayPal’s system works,” Schroeder wrote, adding that he’s been unable to contact Lizbeth about the refund because she blocked him on all social media platforms.
“I’ve sent her product, given her a refund, and am ready to sort out any other issues,” he says. “I just need her to communicate with me.”
In the comments of Lizbeth’s video, people couldn’t believe how long the order was taking to arrive.
“14 months!?!?” this user wrote, tagging the shop’s account. “That’s absolutely unacceptable! Refund and apology needed!”
Another encouraged her to file a claim against the company. “File that claim girl!!!! Arrogant dude needs to learn he can’t take advantage of people,” they said. Lizbeth told the Daily Dot that she filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.
Another commenter complimented Lizbeth’s patience. “You were so understanding and willing to compromise too,” they wrote with a crying emoji. “Dude should’ve refunded you monthssss ago and stop taking new orders like ???”
Someone who had planned to purchase from the shop was grateful for the warning. “Oh nooo I was planning on getting one for my brother. So glad you posted this. I’m sorry this happened,” they wrote.
Lizbeth replied, writing, “Definitely save your money.” She told the Daily Dot that one woman reached out to her privately to say that she’s been waiting since March 2022 for her order that she spent $250 on.
Lizbeth also posted a few updates since then, including an apology she received from Schroeder. “I dropped the ball and there’s no sugarcoating it,” he wrote to her.
@liznzad Replying to @lovia ♬ original sound – liznzad
“She eventually got the kaleidoscope and it was the most underwhelming thing I’ve ever seen, it fit in the palm of your hand and doesn’t look handmade,” Lizbeth said. “Definitely not worth $110 and the 20 months it took to actually be delivered.”
As for Schroeder, the entire experience has been humbling for the artist who admits that he has stumbled with his business.
“I won’t deny it—I’ve made mistakes,” Schroeder wrote to the Daily Dot. “But I’m owning them and learning from them. Every day, I’m shipping out kaleidoscopes, keeping my promise to deliver each piece that was ordered, while also trying to keep a handle on my mental health.”