10 Tips on Reselling Your Used Clothes

10 Tips on Reselling Your Used Clothes

Everyday someone comes into my store and says something like, “well, I guess you’re doing well because I read that due to the bad economy, everyone is shopping for used clothes.” The truth is, I’m seeing more people wanting to sell their clothes than shop for new ones. My calender for appointments is booked out a month rather than the usual week. And many are with new consignors who have never tried to resell their clothes before. So I thought now is a good time to offer some advice on the art of consigning clothes. Here are 10 tips.

1)      Do your homework. Research the consignment stores in your area. Find out what kinds of clothes they take and what their policies are. Do you need an appointment? Should clothes be on hangars? Don’t put you and a store owner in an awkward situation by just walking in with a bag and expecting they’re ready to see you.

2)      It’s common to go through the closet, pull a bunch of things and just throw them in a bag. First, put things in piles on your bed: donate, give away to a friend, throw away and potential resale. What do you really think has a resale value?

3)      Is it in season? Is it in style? If it’s fall and you’re pulling out tank tops and sundresses, no reasonable consignment store is going to take them. Divide your piles and be discriminating.

4)      Once you’ve got a batch of clothes you think are worthy, then check them over to make sure they’re in perfect condition. If there’s a button missing, or a tiny rip in the underarm….don’t bring it to a store and expect that they’re not going to think that’s not a big deal! Fix the problems or put that item in the ‘donate to your favorite charity’ pile.

5)      Now…wash those clothes! Bring them to a store smellling fresh. I can’t tell you how many times someone has called me to say they’ve had this bag of clothes in their trunk for six months and have got to get rid of it! Yeah…but not here!

6)      Do not remove the labels…even if they bother your neck. Some stores won’t take clothes without the labels. I will sometimes, but it definitely cheapens the item.

7)      If you’re a smoker and you smoke in your home…forget it. The clothes will have absorbed that odor and chances are you don’t even realize it.

8)      When calling a store to make your appointment, avoid using terms like, “I have a TON of clothes’. That does not excite us. It just sounds like a lot of work. Less is better.

9)      Don’t take it personally when your clothes are not accepted. There are lots of reasons a store may not take some of your items: they already have too many things like that on the racks or they’ve tried items like those in the past and they didn’t resell. But ulitmately, it is the taste of the owner of the store and if you don’t agree, then you should open your own store. Seriously….if you owned a consignment store and you had the choice or working with a consignor who berates you for not taking clothes they’re getting rid of…vs. the one who is really grateful for whatever you took and offered to try to resell….who would you welcome back and want to work with again?

10)   Continuing on that vein of developing a relationship with a consignment store that you want to continue…show a little gratitude. Saying something like….”is that all you got for that?” is a terrible way to say thanks for sellling something I was done with.

11)   Shop where you consign. Best way to be a favorite consignor is to also spend your money there. Store owners appreciate it and are more likley to want to keep you as a customer and a consignor!