Spending Strike: Day 7 - Get the Most From Your Consignment Experience

Have you entered the giveaway to win a copy of The Spending Strike and The Spending Strike Workbook? FOUR lucky winners will get a copy of BOTH, but don't delay. The giveaway ends on January 11th. 

I'm a full week into this spending strike, and am so proud to say that I haven't broken my promise to spend $0! I mean, if I act like I don't have it, I can't spend it, right?

One thing you know I do regularly is consign clothing and household items we no longer use. I am a neat freak and hate a cluttered home. When we purchased our home a few years ago, it was larger than any space we'd every lived. Naturally, we filled every room and every closet, thinking it was the right thing to do.


Now I'm purging things that don't hold special meaning or value in our lives. The extra cash we earn by consigning things we no longer use is such a nice cushion for entertainment and 'fun money'.

In September I posted some tips for making the most money possible consigning clothing and household items, and think now is the perfect time to share those tips again:

Get the most from your consignment experience

1. Your goods have to pretty much be in pristine condition. That means clothing with NO stains, NO tears, NO wear marks. It makes sense - I wouldn't buy someone else's clothing that doesn't look new, so why would I try to sell it.

Funny story: So I was taking in a BIG load of clothing to a local high-end consignment shop, which included some really nice quality yoga pants from Victoria's Secret. {The pants had the fold-over top, which I am not a fan of. Just sayin'.} Anyway, the lady picking over my clothing was annoying as all hell.

Don't judge me. She just was. {I could be a bit biased - this lady did ask me if I was pregnant, like, the second time I consigned with her. I wasn't pregnant. In fact, I was in pretty good shape back then. Bitch ruined my day.}

Anyway, she picks up these VS yoga pants - which I had maybe worn 3 times, no joke - and grabs the crotch of the pants and says, "We can't accept these. There is pilling in the crotch. You know, from where your legs rub together."

Now, I wasn't offended that she basically told me that I have thunder thighs. I was offended because there was no pilling on those damn pants. I barely wore them and they were in great condition. Bitch, please. I took them back a month later to a different girl, and she accepted them (see #5) - without insulting me.

When this particular lady answers the phone when I call to make an appointment, I hang up. For the sake of my self-esteem and mental health, I cannot make consignment appointments with her. Hate me if you want.

2. Fold, iron, or hang your clothes. And, it should go without saying that clothing should be freshly laundered. The two consignment shops that I consign at most often have two different preferences for how clothing is presented. One wants everything neatly folded - even if the item should be on a hanger. The other wants everything on a hanger - even jeans.

Regardless, make sure you are catering to the shop's preference, and all items are wrinkle-free. A great item in good condition won't be accepted if it's wrinkled or has deep fold marks.

3. Jewelry should be clean, and put in a small baggie. I love getting jewelry from a consignment store, especially necklaces and bracelets. I find I can switch up my wardrobe on the cheap with accessories. To make the most of your accessories at a consignment shop, polish up your jewelry and make sure all clasps are in working order, restring the beads that are loose, and then put it in a neat, clean baggie.

4. Dust off housewares, and touch things up as needed. If you have some awesome photo frames, but the paint is chipped, whip out your can of black spray paint and give that baby a fresh coat of paint. You would also be amazed at what a rag and some all purpose cleaner would do for a dusty old vase, or other knick-nacks around your house that you want to get rid of.

5. If something is not accepted, and you think it's good quality, don't give it to Goodwill just yet. Put it back in your consignment stash {I keep two large Rubbermaid totes of consignment items} and take it in the next time you have an appointment. You might get a different person going through your goods that might accept it next time. If something doesn't sell, and I think it might later, I just store it in one of my totes, and re-iron it before taking it in a few months late.r

6. Regularly consign! Not only do you get to keep your goods in rotation {and help guarantee a constant cash flow}, but you will get a better idea of what they are accepting and what sells the best.

I take things to consignment shops about once every month or two. The limit on how much I can take to the shops is usually two totes. This includes housewares, clothing, sporting goods stuff; basically anything that will fit in the tote.

7. Follow the consignments shop's guidelines for what they are accepting, or what is currently in season. Oftentimes they will begin accepting spring and summer items in March, or fall and winter items in July. This will also give you a nice opportunity to clean out your closet or do some spring/fall cleaning and purging. Win-win.

It's also a waste of your time, and the shop employee's time to try to consign a tube top in November.

8. Be SUPER nice. {Even when the worker is being a bi-otch. See #1 above.} These consignment shop employees will remember you. And they will remember your stuff. If you greet them warmly, remember their name, and are genuinely a nice person, they just might be a little better to you. No, they won't necessarily take your worthless shit that no one else wants, but they might tell you that if you treated the stain on that top, they would accept it next time. Or to save those boots, because in two months they'll accept fall footwear.

Here are the numbers -

Money Spent Today: $0
Running Total: $0
Money We Didn't Spend: $0


  1. I admire your spending strike. I think we're trying to spend less unofficially. I don't care if a woman appears to be nine months pregnant, I NEVER say anything unless she says something first. Thanks for the consignment tips. Never tried to sell to one before.

  2. I like this idea for The Spending Strike! Thanks so much! We only made it for a week before, my hubby was right back out spending to get gas $$$ from Hyvee store. We still had plenty in pantry, fridge & freezer, but he had to get the gas 'cause he's hooked on the free gas deal. I love him for his frugal ways. He tries hard & it's a long drive to his work. Tyvm again! <3


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