Posted in Sales, Shopping trends, Sourcing, Thrift Shops

What I Learned at the Goodwill Bins

During my sourcing trip in Chicago with my sister, we had our first experience at the Goodwill ‘Bins.’.   This one is in Rockford.

  • Bring a huge bag.  I brought one that is actually stores a Christmas wreath.  It is lightweight, has a handle, is two yards in diameter and held 42 pounds of clothes.
  • When they roll new bins out, stop what you are doing, move next to one and be prepared to dive quickly.
  • When sorting through a bin, take full advantage of you are tall, and grab what is furthest away and pull it forward.
  • Grab what looks good and move on.
  • Always get 25# or more, because you get the lowest price per pound.  Ours was 99 cents.
  • Be prepared to meet other resellers.  This was a great networking experience.  We met a Newbie who had sold on Amazon for years that quit his job the week before to be a full-time reseller on EBay.  A partner duo who sold everything from clothes to Nintendo Game Systems.  A 50+ married couple who were full timers.  We all had so much in common, shared ideas and as well as nightmares.
  • Find a nice place in the corner, and go through each item carefully.  While the items are less than what you would pay in a thrift store, you don’t want to waste your money and time repairing or removing stains.
  • Eat before getting there and stay hydrated.  You cannot do your best if you do not feel your best.
  • Bring your keys, ID, PayPal and phone, store them in your front pockets.  Leave the rest in the car.
  • Everyone is there with a different purpose, but I met a guy who doesn’t buy anything there but comes each day.  He checks the pockets of all of the pants and coats for loose change.  By the time he was finished telling me about his awesome finds, I almost began to wonder if I was in the wrong business!


Where everything is Fit for a Queen


Priced For the Pauper!

Posted in New Year, Sales, Virtual Assistant

Weekly Business Summary

If I had to summarize this week in one sentence it would be that we changed a few things and received fast feedback and results.  However, this is a blog so I better say more than that.

First, I took a hard look at what was bringing my business down and caused me stress.  One word – Clutter.  I had items that weren’t in my clothing niche, that had been there a year and I had not sold them.  I made the decision to delete them from my stores and inventory.I will donate them and take the tax write-off.  Who wants to keep looking at mistakes and doing nothing about them?  Not me.

Second, I received my lighting kit, changed my background and added a Tiara to the corner of each of my pictures.  My pictures turned out so much better.  The colors that I had difficulty with (red, purple and blue) came out crisp and true.  There was just one problem.  The tiara.

I had purchased the jewelry to place in the corner to ‘trademark’ myself.  I wanted people to see the photograph without reading the title and know it was from me.  Both of the Virtual Assistants disagreed, had difficulty editing the photos and one was even nice enough to send a video on how to properly photograph.  Anyone need a Tiara?

Both virtual assistants did not Max out their hours.  Sounds like a score.  It wasn’t.  Neither of them listed over the weekend.  Both are 60 listings behind and I am ready to send another 60 by tonight.  One seems to have gone AWOL and the other promises he will have all of his completed, plus what I send him today, by tonight.  Admittedly, I don’t send these listings on a schedule because my life’s not on schedule.  Both do fantastic work on a budget I can afford.  I guess I will need to be more clear on the fact I want these done by Sunday at noon.

32 items have sold the past 7 days.  It is not a record, but it showed me I was on the right track on what I chose to be listed.

Jeans, by far, sold the best.  Tall, Short, Tiny, Huge, Levi’s to Faded Glory it did not matter.  They sold.  A close second was Spring Shirts.  Last were spring and summer shoes.

Looking forward to this week, listing items will be primary.  I am in search for another virtual assistant, USA based, that will cross-post to my Poshmark store.  I will be sourcing from my closet because I will need cash to go on my sourcing trip next week.  Last, I hope to declutter, throw away and donate.

Before I sign off, I want to give a ‘high five’ and gold star to my sister.  She opened her first EBay store on Friday with less than 10 items.  Buy it Now, Best Offer, Free Ship and no auctions.  Within 24 hours, she had accepted a best offer and sold some fabric that had been sitting in her closet.  Within 48 hours, she had listed more items and sold another item!  A new EBay store, 50 feedback, less than 10 items sells 2 items in 48 hours.  No one does this!  Except my sister!!.


Where everything is Fit for a Queen


Priced For the Pauper




Posted in Sourcing

TJMaxx & Plato’s Closet

This BOLO is very time sensitive.  While it won’t be news to my world-wide followers on Instagram, it might be for my regional followers on Facebook.

For the last couple of weeks, YouTube and Instagram have been blowing up with haul videos and outrageous finds.  Since I was going to be in my closest metropolitan area yesterday, I decided to follow-up.

The first is T.J. Maxx is having a Yellow Tag clearance sale.  I believe it happens twice a year and it is the lowest mark down.  The ‘rumours’ I had heard were true.

One example was Prom Dresses.  They had one circular rack with around 50 in different lengths and styles.

I was very close to purchasing a gorgeous chrome halter gown from Laundry by Shelli Segal.  The retail price was $525 and it was marked down to $17.  The dress was in mint condition, the tags were crisp and all there.

I did not buy it because it was a size 6. I focus on larger sizes 14-26w.  There was only one that fit the bill but it had fraying on the hem and missing the original tags.  It was $295 down to $5.00.

Plato’s Closet is having their twice a year clearance.  When I was there yesterday, prices were 70% off.  Saturday, they will be 90% off!

Much to my delight, they had several Plus Size items New With Tags.  They also had a lot of shoes 9-12 sizes.  The best part is that you did not have to go through every rack in the store.  All of their clearance was in the front of the store and on separate racks.  What a concept!

I purchased two items.  The first was Levi’s 580 Tall and Curvy Boot cut in dark blue.  It was New With Tags 18W with an MSRP $54.99 and I bought them for $4.00.  Comps on EBay are $50 so I will price mine at $45 free ship.

The second was not new with tags, but is trending.  It is a jumpsuit by Toxik3 in a size 3X.  It is a button up floral, with straps and ruffles and elastic ankles.  I purchased this for $4.  There are no comps on EBay in Plus Size so I will list it at $40 free ship with best offer.

Let me know if you also went and what you found in the comments section below. I would love to hear from you!

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Where everything is Fit for a Queen


Priced For the Pauper.

Posted in Uncategorized

For the love of Levi’s

I will let you in on a little secret.  I LOVE selling Levi’s!  Okay, but why would I devote today’s blog to this?  It’s called Keeping It Simple Stupid.

As a 50+ year old #reseller, I am familiar with the way the brand has evolved over the years.  It is a brand that has been around long before I was born and there are people out there that will only wear this brand.

I consistently sell them between $25-$30 with free priority shipping ($6.00) in a flat rate legal size envelope.

Here is what I look for when sourcing Levi’s:

  • Big, Tall or Short Sizes.  I don’t sell these exclusively but have found that they will sell quickly (hours or overnight.)  Some memorable sizes have been a men’s 56×30, a women’s 24WP and a women’s 2T.  Better yet, you will find them in thrift stores for 99 cents because they are. Hard to sell.
  • Made In USA.  Finding them is a little difficult, but check small thrift and charity shops as well as estate sales.  Clothing Made in the USA has a following anyway but Levi’s has it’s own little niche no matter what the size.
  • Wear does not matter.  Unlike other clothing items, I have sold them with holes, tears and fading.  People do not care, as long as you have taken great close up shots and have described them well.  Stains are where I draw a line,  and pass them up.  They might sell, but I don’t  want to run the risk a return by someone who thought they might be able to get the stain out.
  • Stick to the basics.  I stay away from anything that is not blue.  I don’t buy carpenter style.  I have sold Levi’s that have a winter lining, but I paid more for them and got the same price as the unlined jeans. I also stay away from baggy, extreme low rise, flare or bling.  I do buy relaxed, stretch, skinny, bootcut and straight.  Skinny is a fad, so make sure that these are in excellent shape.
  • Wash the jeans before selling. Some clothes I don’t, but with all Levi’s I do.  My personal opinion is that the they hold whatever smell they were exposed to.  Tide Pods are my go to brand.  If there are smoke or pet smells, soak overnight in Dawn, Vinegar, Baking Soda and water.  Then soak for an hour in clear water, wash as usual.
  • When listing, the title should begin with Levi’s and I never include the word Vintage.  My opinion is that the buyer is specifically looking for Levi’s and does not care about the age.  Always include the style (501, 505, 512, 519) because most purchasers are looking for their favorite number.  Take the time to measure the waist, rise, inseam and hem circumference so that the customer is confident about the fit.

Levi’s are my bread and butter item for all the reasons listed above.

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JewelsForThePauper can be found on Ebay, Etsy, Poshmark and Facebook.  We are also on Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest.


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