Written By Angela Coleman-Talbot
If the thought of paying top dollar for designer brands causes you to grab hold of your purse strings but you have nightmares at the idea of showing up at an event in the same dress as your next door neighbor, then consignment might be for you.
Fashion is said to always be repeating itself. What’s old is suddenly new again. In the world of consignment this is definitely true.
A consignment customer can expect to save from 30 to 50 percent off the retail price, and like major retailers, markdowns take place daily. There is no limit to the treasures you can find. Most consignment boutiques carry a wide range of merchandise. You can find basic everyday items, designer apparel, shoes, handbags, and some shops even carry items for men and children all under the same roof.
Lois Cozart, owner of My Girlfriend’s Closet in Apex, describes the shopping experience at a consignment boutique as “a place where women can come to escape the stress of everyday life.”
“It is a fun environment for shopping and socializing,” Cozart added.
If you are new to the experience, many boutiques hold workshops that specialize in ways of incorporating consignment pieces into your existing wardrobe. Boutiques take pride in providing the latest and most popular fashion looks. Throughout the year, clients are invited to attend workshops designed to showcase trends of the upcoming season.
Consignment boutiques may also carry items by local artist and designers making it a great way to strengthen your local town by recycling money back into your community.
“Consignment is a haven for vintage and couture pieces that are no longer sold by major retailers,” said Liz Johnson, owner of Revolver Consignment Boutique in Raleigh.
Johnson adds that jeans are a major attraction for consignment shoppers.
“Women are always growing in and out of their jeans, and consignment can offer a lower cost alternative for those who like designer jeans but don’t want to pay top dollar,” she said.
Dedicated consignment customers know that frequency is the key because new items arrive daily. For some customers it’s all about finding that one perfect item. Nancy Alinovi, owner of Adore Designer Resale Boutique in Cary, refers to this as “the thrill of the hunt.” Looking for that one special item and finding it can be a real thrill ride, an unexpected present for yourself or someone you love.
Consignment boutiques are usually local businesses that have small marketing budgets. Alinovi sites this as a unique plus for consumers.
“Consignment speaks to you on an individual level. The items are not marketed to you through a major marketing campaign like they are in the malls,” she said. “When you fall in love with something at a consignment boutique you know it’s the one.”
Clothes from My Girlfriend’s Closet:
Cache cheetah print dress, $38; S Paradise East jacket in tan, $28; Vidorreta bronze floral peep toe espadrille, $140; Tommy Bahama purse in brown, $42; gold necklace with stone, $25; gold circle bracelet, $34
Clothes from Adore Designer Resale Boutique:
Bill Blass jacket, $23; BCBG pants, $28.99; Arden B top in red , $17.99; Burberry scarf, $74; Nine West red pump, $23.99; Louis Vuitton “Neverful” large purse, $495; Geneva watch in navy, $16.99
Clothes from Revolver Consignment Boutique:
Hunter Dixon dress, $88; Galliano cardigan in lavender, $188; Gucci shoes in cream, $168; Sandra Roberts handbag in tan and cream; Good Girl Studios gold bracelet with charm, $38
Where to Shop
Adore Designer Resale Boutique
4226 NW Cary Parkway, Cary
My Girlfriend’s Closet
104 W. Chatham St., Apex
Revolver Consignment Boutique
124 Glenwood Ave. #2, Raleigh