Sunday, February 8, 2015

A Current Look at Consigning Women

I first posted a review of Consigning Women in East Harwich back in May of 2008 (Are You a Consigning Woman?).  My review wasn't overly favorable as I felt their prices were too high for a consignment store.  However, my readers felt otherwise and shared their thoughts and finds with me. This led me to post a secondary review of Consigning Women the following month (Consigning Women Part Deux) in which I praised the store for having great quality seasonal apparel from some of my favorite brands.
Well a lot has changed for Consigning Women since 2008.  For  starters, the store moved from their old space on 1 Auston Road (next to Subway) to the other side of the plaza (next to Dunkin Donuts).  Their new location boasts 7,000 square feet of clothing and home decor.  When you walk into the store, the home furnishings are on the right and the clothing is to the left.  Clothes are sorted by type, with blazers, skirts and sweaters on circle racks in the front of the store and long racks in the back with shirts, pants, dresses and suits.  Within each type of garment, clothes are sorted by size and then color.  Purses can be found along the perimeter and shoes are in the back.  They also have an extensive array of accessories, including jewelry and scarves.
Consigning Women also opened a second store on Route 6A in Brewster within the past year or so, but I have not yet visited this location.  If any of my readers have been here, please feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section for this post!
I have been shopping at the Consigning Women in Harwich periodically for the past five years.  The main driving factor for me is their large selection of work apparel.  I am in one of the few professions here on the Cape that requires me to wear a suit most days. Fun fact: try walking into Stop & Shop in Orleans during 4th of July week wearing a suit, nylons and heels and you will get many a raised eyebrow.  Oh yes.  Anyway, it can be very difficult to purchase affordable business attire on the Cape.   I used to shop in the suit section of Macy's at the Cape Cod Mall, mostly because I have a Macy's card and could secure some decent deals during sales.  Unfortunately, their suit selection has dwindled so much over the past few years to the point that when I last visited, I had to ask a sales associate where the suits were because the section had disappeared.  It's been relegated to 3 racks near the down escalator.  So finding clothes for work is a problem.
Now one of the fun things about shopping at thrift or consignment stores, in my opinion, is that you never know what you'll find.  You can't go with the expectation that you'll find say, an Ann Taylor black pencil skirt in size 6, because you may never find it.  I have found that Consigning Women, however, continually offers a great selection of business attire in my size that's in style and in great condition.  I've shared some of my finds with you from over the years at the bottom of this post.  Now bear in mind that I usually provide prices, and I will if I remember, but some of these pieces I've had for awhile.  My rule of thumb, though, is to never spend more than $20 on one article, unless it's a more expensive item such as a suit.
Two more things I'd like to mention quickly.  They still offer "Comeback Bucks," which are $0.50 coupons for every $10 you spend.   It's also fairly easy to consign with them.  They will accept new consignments Monday through Saturday from 9-4 at both locations.  If you visit their website, they offer more information on what they accept (Consigning Women - How to Consign).  I have consigned with them in the past and I will note that they are VERY selective about what they choose.  The consignments must be in like new condition with no odors (think moth balls or cedar closets), in style and in season.  If you visit, you'll see some unfavorable reviews about the consigning process.  I think they set strict guidelines because as a shopper, you come to expect high quality, and customers would complain if clothing didn't meet their standards.   So I encourage you to visit both of their stores and to share your experiences with me.
Happy Thrifting!!

Dress, Maggie London, $20

2-piece grey suit, Calvin Klein, $45

Pink argyle sweater, Talbot's, $18
Brown pencil skirt, Ann Taylor, $15

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Long Overdue Update

I can't believe that it's been nearly 5 years since I last updated this blog!  It's about time for me to start sharing my Cape Cod thrift store adventures with you again.  Many thrift stores have come and gone, and I'm so excited to see how the thrift store landscape has changed on the Cape since I've been out of the game.

But first, a few quick updates:

  • To celebrate the revival of my Cape Cod thrift store blog, I've given the design a facelift.  I hope you enjoy the new look!
  • I had to close the previous email associated with this blog and by doing so, I unknowingly deleted all the pictures from my Picasa account as well.  So if you're perusing old posts, you'll notice that none of the photos are visible.  I saved the pictures to my Mac, which has also met its demise, and so I'm not sure I will be able to fix this.  However, I promise many new photos with my awesome headless mannequin in future posts.  How exciting!
  • If there are any thrift stores that you would like me to review, please feel free to reach out to me and let me know!  I love hearing from my readers, so please share your thrift store adventures with me. 
My next post will be another review of Consigning Women in Harwich.  I have done a fair amount of shopping there as of late, and I'd like to share some of my finds with you.  Happy Thrifting!!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Using Thrifting to Make Money

Everyone is looking for ways to earn a little extra cash during this Great Recession.  It seems as if prices for everything from bread to gas keep going up while our wages remain stagnant as companies try to curb expenses.  As we all try to whittle down our spending to make ends meet, I sometimes wonder if buying clothes to fill my already full wardrobe is a little frivolous.  So to justify my spending, I have found a way to use thrift shopping to make money: reselling my finds on ebay!  

The key to successfully selling things on ebay is to know your buyers: how old are they?  How much money are they willing to spend?  How do I attract them to what I am selling?  In my case, I try to buy and sell clothes to women of my age demographic (18-35) because I know what types of clothes are in style and what their approximate resale values are.  Once I have figured out who my buyers are, I have to determine how to reach them.  This usually involves doing research on ebay for articles similar to what I am trying to sell.  For instance, if I am selling Gap jeans, then I will search for Gap jeans on ebay to see what they are selling for and what the demand is (i.e. how many bids).

Over the winter, I visited a thrift store during a bag sale and walked away with a shopping bag full of clothes that only cost me $0.25/article.  This is another key component to making money on ebay, you have to make sure you will make a profit!  Case in point, the ugly Christmas sweater that I previously blogged about.  I bought it for $4 and sold it for $9.99, but after all the ebay and paypal fees were deducted, I only made about $4.  Yes, I made a profit, but was it worth all the work?  So the lesson I learned was, buy cheap!  At least that way you know you'll make a decent profit when the item sells.

Of the items I bought at the sale, I was able to sell two so far:

This is an Abercrombie & Fitch mini skirt that I sold for $16.

These are a pair of Ann Taylor Loft cropped pants that I sold for $9.

In summary, I spent $0.50 on these two articles and grossed $25 for a pre-fee profit of $24.50.  In the words of Martha Stewart, "That's a good thing!"

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Our Lady of the Cape Thrift Shop

I haven't been to Our Lady of the Cape Thrift Shop in years and I was pleasantly surprised when I visited yesterday.  I was doing some quasi-Christmas shopping and decided to stop in to see what they had to offer.  They were advertising a Christmas Boutique, which runs through December 23rd, and I was curious as to what that entailed.  They had a plethora of Christmas decorations (as does every other thrift shop on Cape Cod), but they also had a table with brand new, gift-worthy garments on it.  One that caught my eye was a beautiful orange cardigan twinset by French Laundry.  Unfortunately it was a size Large and I couldn't think of anyone I could buy it for.  I continued on, perusing the racks for clothes that I could give as gifts.  I didn't find anything, but I was impressed with all the top name brands (GAP, H&M, XoXo).  Everything was in great, gently worn condition and the prices were very reasonable, as a savvy reader previously mentioned to me (prior post).

So I was unable to find any gifts, but I didn't walk out of the store empty handed.  I was browsing other thrift-related blogs the other day, and I came across Things I Found at the Thrift Store.  The most recent post mentioned that the author was able to score some cash buying ugly Christmas sweaters at thrift stores and then reselling them on ebay.  And lo and behold, he was right.  There is a huge market for them right now, and some sell for upwards of $60.  Apparently, some people have contests at their holiday parties for who can wear the tackiest garb, and most find their ensembles on ebay.  Anyway, I found this atrocious sweater and put it on, seeing how it would do.

So far, no luck.  But it only cost me $4, so I might hang onto it and try to sell it next year.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Orleans Community Exchange *SALE*

The Orleans Community Exchange Thrift Shop, located in Post Office Square, is having a 50% off sale today through Friday.  They are trying to reduce inventory as they will be closing on Saturday and reopening February 9th.  Hurry in for the best selection; I've always found great clothes here.