Shopping at Your Local Resale/Consignment Shop
by Dorisanne Gibson
When you shop at your local resale/consignment shop, everyone wins. And you, the customer, will be the biggest winner of all…
• You will be able to buy clothing for the entire family, toys, sports equipment and houseware at prices that are up to 75% off retail.
• Best of all, you will be able to shop in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere where the shop owners and clerks will undoubtedly know your name.
• Many of today’s resale/consignment shops have designated play areas for your children to enjoy while you browse.
• You may also expect to find clean spacious dressing rooms for your convenience.
• Credit cards are accepted at many of the shops and layaways are available at selected stores.
You win as a consignor: There are so many benefits to recycling your gently worn clothing, especially infant and maternity clothes. In addition to receiving cash for your items, you will feel good about knowing that garments still in excellent condition are continuing to have a useful life.
The store manager will be able to give you information about the store’s consignment policy. You can generally expect to receive 50-60% of the selling price after the merchandise has sold.
Naturally, you will want to present your items in absolute tip-top condition, which means they will be freshly laundered, dry cleaned if necessary, pressed, free of torn seams, rips and missing buttons. Zippers must be in working condition, labels intact, and shoes polished. Store employees are free to refuse to take any merchandise they deem to be unsalable.
Some stores will buy your merchandise directly from you or use a combination of direct buying and/or consigning for large ticket or seasonal items.
First time mothers and working mothers-to-be find shopping resale invaluable: Where else can you build a new wardrobe from casual attire to business wear for such a reasonable amount of money?
Employees of maternity specialty shops will be able to help you with your fitting questions. Plan enough time to be able to try on maternity clothes. You may not be sure of the best styles for your figure and will want to try a variety of different looks.
You will probably be able to stock your nursery with basics from sleepers to cribsheets at the same time in the same shop. Don’t forget that Grandma, Grandpap or your child caregiver will need some things for their home, too. Ask your store manager if they have gift certificates, which are handy gifts for baby showers.
Consider when shopping with toddlers:
• having your little girl wear a leotard or body suit to facilitate trying on clothes in public if there is no dressing room available.
• eating snacks before you come into the store. Some shops have no eating/drinking policies.
• inquiring about the return policy. There are vast size discrepancies among the various manufacturers, not to mention allowing for shrinkage. If returns are not allowed, you will want to try everything. Some people carry a tape measure and sizes recorded in a small notebook.
• Bring someone with you to help you watch your little ones and keep them safe while you make your selections.
Above all, resale shopping is FUN. In today’s clean, spacious, well organized shops you will find a world of treats for your whole family. The excitement of getting a designer label garment at a fraction of the original price is a real thrill. Reselling/Recycling is a definite win/win situation.
Editorial provided by Dorisanne Gibson who has owned The Baby Loft located in Plum Borough, Pennsylvania for 14 years.