Saturday, July 25, 2009

From Trash to Treasure--Need Help!!!

Happy Weekend, bloggin' buddies. I need some help. Seriously. Even if you do not normally feel comfortable commenting, this bargain hunting momma needs some tips... I'm begging for it!

Look at this loot that I racked up for Addypillar today at the Encore consignment sale in Franklin:

Sadly, I left off her emergency vehicle bus from the picture... she was riding on it!

Mom and I headed out this morning for the "first time mom's" admission to this great consignment sale. I've never seen so many women on a mission--it was take or be taken, and I had to get more aggressive than I am comfortable with. I feel like I came away with some good buys and useful items, many of which I plan to move from the guest bedroom to our attic closet to store until her birthday.

I realized, however, that I am a true consignment novice. I didn't have much of a plan. I didn't know where to start, what to look for, how to compare. Thank goodness I had Mom to help! Today's sale marks the beginning of consignment season for me, and before I hit my next one next Friday, I need some tips from you savvy shoppers out there. What do you look for at a sale like this? How far ahead do you buy? How do you decide what quality, price, amount is acceptable.

I really felt overwhelmed in the clothing department. I only came away with some things to take to the Eagle's Nest at school with me this fall for "accident back ups." The one on Friday in Westhaven, I have heard, is geared toward fancier clothes of the smocked variety, and that even overwhelms me. What should I look for? Comment away...

After we left Encore, Mom and I headed to The Hill Center and into the open arms of my beloved Anthropologie to help Lindsay find some 10-year-reunion attire. Eye-popping, mouth-watering me immediately began pulling items from the rack, begrudgingly handing them over to my cute sis since dear Anthro didn't make it into my summer budget. Oh, how I miss you, sweet friend... Seriously. I walked past this piece of eye candy and thought of "O the Places I Could Go" in a dress like this:A date, a show, a party... you know the normal events that fill my social calendar! Ha! But, alas, Patrick and I are home doing some much-delayed baby-proofing thanks to some recent wake-up calls. It's been a good day, and I think we are going to end it by cozying up to a movie.

Can't wait to hear your great advice, friends!

12 comments:

J said...

Oh girl, I'm always so overwhelmed in those consignment sales. I usually hit clothes first---and basically just buy what catches my eye and what I think would look cute on Luke (I don't buy much, if anything for Jake since he gets all the handmedowns. I know that's awful, but he doesn't know!). After that, I check out the shoes. Shoes are the biggie---maybe I should hit that first---okay shoes first from now on, then clothes. Last I look at the toys and try to get a good deal. I don't know if this helped at all. Bring a clothes basket with you when you go. If you don't, your arms get tired. Also, wear light clothing. Most consignment places are burning up. Love ya!

Supabloggasuprememama said...

girl i am addicted too. not good on advice cause im a late blooming newbie so ill be reading!!!

Anonymous said...

oh, i had to laugh when I saw your email a few minutes ago. i was just googling the nashville area consignment schedule and thinking about my next plan of attack.

these sales totally overwhelm me too... but i'm a sucker for a bargain. i think consignments can be hit or miss, but it sure feels good to walk out with loads of gently loved items for a small fraction of retail.

i racked up on fall school clothing for jack today at encores (and a few things for knox too, couldn't resist!) basically, i only look for quality pieces, brands i love and know will hold up. once you know what you're looking for, you can easily spot them on the racks and breeze through the rest. generally, i've spent about $1-$3 on pants, $2-$3 on solid shirts, and up to $8 on a pant/shirt set if i really loved it.

i'm sure shopping for girls is a little different though. i have no idea how dresses are priced.

i took my mom today too, couldn't have done it without her. i think it helps to have someone help sort through it all, especially if they understand what you like and need for your kiddos.

happy hunting! maybe i'll see you at the next one...

happy camper said...

kristy, the last comment was from me. andrea

Dana said...

Kristy,

I usually take the large bags from IKEA. They have large straps that you can hang over your shoulder. And if I have to take my kids (which I try to avoid at these particular events) I can hang the straps on the stroller. I set a budget for myself ahead of time. I go through and pull the things I'm interested in, not really worrying about price. After I've pulled everything that I think I might possibly be interested in, I find a spot to the side and go through everything and pick and choose what I like best that will fit in my budget. This really helps me decide what to pay for each item. There may be an outfit that is really cute for $10 but, I have to weigh if paying $10 for one outfit is worth sacrificing 5 outfits that are $2 a piece.

After, I've done this, I go and place the items that I decide not to buy back where they belong. I try to keep in mind that it's a mom like myself that is trying to make a little bit of money that is selling the clothes and if I don't put them back in the right size, they are much less likely to sell. Also, because of other people pulling things in this way and not putting them back in the right places, I have found that a lot of stuff doesn't find it's way back to the right size until the end of the sale when a lot of them have the half priced items. The last sale I did, I only went on the half priced day and I did just as well as I've done in the past going the first day.

I don't know if you noticed it but I have a link to consignment sales by state on my blog.

Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

I am SO not the one to ask about this. I have bought some things at sales around here, but have been to chicken to actually sell stuff there. I have NO clue on pricing, etc. If/when we decide about whether there will be more children in our house I will sell Turner's stuff so at some point I may have to get into consignment. i am just clueless now.

I do shop there though...

If you are shopping, look for anything made by Amanda Remembered and I would pay up to $20 for a clean, quality piece. Anything Kelly's Kids, Bailey Boys, Peaches and Cream, Miss-Tee-Vee-Us too. That's usually the brands I am shopping for at those things. Shoes - good not worn out pedi-peds (usually $30 full price) I'd pay half price for. Also, Stride Rite sandals...same thing.

As for how far to order out...I purchase things one year in advance, and there are several things that are 4T in Turner's closet that mom just couldn't resist. ;) I usually purchase a year out and it works pretty well....Addison looks to be "normal in size"...Turner's legs are so chunky sometimes pants get tricky. But dresses I always buy ahead and it's been fine.

Don't know if that helps.....

Holly said...

My only thing about buying at consigments is watching the over-priced items. Even if something is cute, I will look at it again and think, "What would this cost brand new?" Sometimes folks overprice things, I guess since they are splitting 60/40, or because they figure it could go on 50% off day, so they still want to get the most they possibly can... whatever... the point is, just make sure it's not close to what you would pay brand new. Also, I think Dana's comment was great. She's a true bargain shopper!

Tiffany Norris said...

I'm more spontaneous at these things--just kind of going with what I like and what appears to be in great shape. Good luck!
Meanwhile, loved your walk down memory lane. Insightful thoughts!

Amy said...

Hey! Sorry, i'm late on the badwagon-- BUT I love consignment, E-bay, and Craigslist. I do it all and have found great buys doing all of this. I usually just shop for the name brands- and for the smocked- I try not to pay more that $20- maybe a little more if they still have the tags on them. I don't really buy new toys anymore for the kids because you can get great deals on gently used items. Looks like you stacked up. Wish i could have gone too!!

Kelley Brown said...

I don't think I have any new tips other than what's been given. When looking at clothes, you can always check the buttons to see if they can be moved up or down in case Addison has a growth spurt. I wouldn't pay more than $20 for an outfit either. I've found that I have to get there really early or all the good stuff is gone. :)

Oh, and be ware of some shoes as they can conform to a child's foot, especially in the arch. That's more of a concern when they're really walking. You can kind of look at the shoe to tell if it has changed shape or not. Make sense?

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