Ah heirlooms... That new class of items that can be traded between all your characters on the same account and faction. Heirloom items also are peculiar in being the only items that can be equipped from level 1 all the way to 80, with scaling stats.
Until recently, one could only buy heirlooms with badges from raids. I don't know exactly which ones and I don't care. I never considered heirlooms until a recent patch when they became purchasable with Champion's Seals.
Initially, shoulders and some weapons were available. In the patch that I mentioned, chest pieces were introduced and also a few more weapons, I believe. The beauty of the shoulders was that they offered 10% XP bonus while leveling. When chests were introduced, they also offered 10% XP bonus. People were asking if the two bonuses stack. The short answer is Yes! They do stack. More on that later.
Since my Hunter Main became exalted with the right factions recently, he was offered access to the heirloom vendor. I had about 170 Champion's Seals and I had several options of how to dispose of them.
- Regular items - not worth it, unless you're a fresh 80 and want to gear up quickly with some ilvl 200 items. In fact I got my Silvery Sylvan Stave a long time ago and I don't regret it.
- Vanity pets - I bought a single pet with Seals and afterward I regretted it. Why? Because these vanity pets can be "cheaply" bought at the Auction House. To me, gold is more easily made than the Champion's Seals.
- Argent Pony Bridle - this is one of those very expensive items (costing 150 Seals) that can add some great utility to your character. In this case, it gives you access to your bank, mailbox and a vendor, anywhere. Very nice but since I maxed out my Engineering I have enough gizmos that offer me the same utility.
- Heirlooms - now we're talking.
I plan to level a Worgen Mage in the next expansion and I'm also in the process of leveling a Priest (currently just level 15). Not only that, but my level 73 Warlock can also use those pieces. So I bought a Tattered Dreadmist Mantle and a Tattered Dreadmist Robe. That cost me 120 Champion's Seals.
When I get the next 120 Seals, I will use them to buy the leather pieces: Stained Shadowcraft Spaulders and Stained Shadowcraft Tunic. And that's because in Cataclysm I plan to level a Worgen Feral Druid and currently I'm leveling a 72 Rogue.
And that's my suggestion folks: if you've got excess Champion's Seals and the right reputation, give heirloom items a chance (if you haven't already). Try to plan in advance which of your current and future characters might be able to use them. The more that can use the same piece, the better. Heirlooms aren't just an item that you buy now and a few levels later replace with something better. The 2 pieces that give experience will actually help you level 20% faster! I won't even discuss the heirloom weapons. Those are very good also but I would rather buy all the armor I can, before spending any Seals on weapons.
Speaking of experience, the 10% from each armor piece does stack. I tested that on my priest by killing 3 level 14 mobs. 1st try I didn't wear any piece and got 210XP (rested). 2nd try I wore 1 piece, got 232XP. 3rd try I wore both pieces and got 252XP. 20% total baby! Level in style! As an added bonus, your crummy level 15 character might be mistaken by some for a level 80. You can tell them you're an 80 in disguise!