Friday, January 20, 2012

Increasing Income- Tips for selling at Plato's Closet

Normally, I would write this kind of post on a Thursday as that is my "go out and make some money day", but our schedule got a little wonky it is just one day late. Hope that's cool.

One of my biggest secrets for extra cash is selling to Plato's Closet. For those of you who don't know, Plato's Closet is a clothing consignment store. They buy and sell gently used clothing, accessories, and shoes, then turn around and sell them for 2-3 times what they paid you. Now, I know that there are other consignment shops around town, but I have had so much success with PC that I haven't bothered going elsewhere. This week, I went in on Wednesday with 2 bags, sold 8 items, and left with $27.20 in cash. That's a heck of a lot more than I would've gotten on Ebay or at a garage sale.

Since I have sold there several times, and have chatted with the employees, I thought I'd give you some pointers.

1. Bring good stuff- Don't bog down your transaction with stuff you know they won't want. Save that for a clothing exchange party or donate it to Goodwill. They will only buy things that are somewhat current (like in the stores within 1-2 years), and still fashionable. So leave the '80's Cosby sweaters at home.

2. Bring clean stuff- Even if you haven't worn it since the last time it was washed, wash it again. PC employees do not want to sort through bags of musty, dusty clothes that smell stale. For shoes, use a magic eraser, microfiber cloths, or slightly damp towel to clean and buff. Don't even think of taking in your funky Birkenstocks, mkay? Mkay.

3. Bring your stuff in a nice bag- I like to put my stuff in gift bags or non-plastic shopping bags. I'm not really sure if this helps sell my stuff or not, but if I worked there, I'd rather buy something out of a gift bag than a trash bag. Think about what kind of message you're sending about the value of your clothes.

4. Bring separated stuff- Shoes in one bag. Clothes in another bag. Accessories in another bag. This is just common sense, but I see people sling it all up there together and it drives me nutty. Also, how long is that going to take to sort out?

5. Bring the right amount of stuff- Limit yourself to 1-2 bags. This will get you in and out more quickly and increase the percentage of items bought.

6. Buy good stuff- As a mommy whose weight has fluctuated up with baby and down ever after, I have been conscious of past and future size changes. So, instead of investing in long-term pieces, I've been buying less expensive clothes that I know they will want to buy when I shrink out of them. Then, the second it becomes too big on me, I sell it! For a full list of brands they like to buy, visit Just remember that this list does not guarantee that they will buy it from you later, so buy what you like.

  • Don't get upset when they don't buy what used to be your fav sweater, it's all about current stock and what's hot right now. They are taking a chance with every purchase and are simply buying pieces with the best chance of selling. I've actually had them tell me certain items are great and to bring them back in 6 weeks because they are overstocked. So I'll just chill on that item until then.
  • Don't sell more than 3 times in one month, or their computer will red-flag you and you won't be able to sell for another 6 months.
Hope this has encouraged some of you to clean out your closets and make some extra cash!

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