With school underway & football season is just around the corner, so let’s get going before the chaos sets in. I suggest picking one night out of the week, once the little ones are in bed, to sort and start tagging. Yes, START NOW! But I have until September 7! I have found that if I begin sorting clothes and toys a few weeks in advance, I am more likely to consign more items, match more outfits and find things I forgot I had to sell.

This upcoming sale is for Fall & Winter, so reach into the back of those closets and grab those Halloween costumes, overalls, jeans, winter coats, Christmas picture outfits, etc. Once you see how much stuff you want to sell, make yourself a realistic goal of entering and tagging,- and doing it all before Labor Day! (It can be done and it sure makes consigning much more enjoyable when you aren’t entering items at 11:50pm the Saturday night tagging closes!)Take the time to wash everything, even if you have already,-because it helps to have clothes smelling sweet! Separate sizes and match outfits together (clothing sets such as a shirt with matching skirt and hair bow or collared shirt with matching overalls and socks seemed to always sell, and sell fast)! Press over the clothes and snap and button everything up. Pam and Jennifer personally inspect almost every item when it is dropped off, and boy do they have an eye for it! No stains, rips or tears (from a buyer’s standpoint, I especially love this policy)!

Take a cleaning wipe to those toys and start gathering all the parts/accessories. Wait until your little ones are asleep or at school before sorting through toys…. as I have learned this lesson the hard way).

2. DON’T PRICE YOURSELF OUT OF MAKING A SALE. I think this is the trickiest part of selling items for the first time. In the beginning, you aren’t sure what to charge. I asked Pam, co-founder of the sale, what her advice was on pricing items for the first time. She recommends asking yourself “self, what would I pay for this?” and not “what did I pay for this?” Those are two completely different questions. Take away the sentimental value and think practical. If it is something that actually is sentimental such as a blanket made by Aunt Alma or a personalized outfit for your daughter’s first day of school, then don’t sell it! But remember this, – clothes hanging up that no longer fit are not making you any money in your kid’s closet just sitting there taking up space. Pam also said that her and Jennifer have no problem at all offering specific clothing pricing advice to sellers, so don’t be afraid to ask.

3. FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH THE SUPER-SIMPLE ONLINE TAGGING PROCESS. Entering your items online is simple, even for the most computer illiterate. Like I said, you can enter a few at a time, one at a time, or 100 at a time. When you have entered everything and you are ready to print your tags, just click the magic button (I call it the magic button because formatting of the tags requires no effort on your part, the tagging program ‘magically’ does it for you!). Insert card stock paper in your printer and the only thing you do is cut out the tags attach them (and, if for some reason a few things don’t sell at the first sale, you don’t have to reenter it again to sell at the second sale just two and a half weeks later, you just click a ‘reactivate’ button)!

3. NAME BRANDS ONLY! No Target, Walmart, Babies-r-us or Kmart brands. Let me explain it this way; once you wash, iron, tag and hang a $4 Target shirt, you have almost spent more time on that shirt than you would make, and chances are, it wouldn’t sell anyway. Keep these items that are in good condition to donate to Goodwill, Salvation Army, Disabled Vets, etc.

What do I mean by name brand? Best-selling ones are Polo/Ralph Lauren, Gymboree, GAP, Kelly’s Kids, Lilly Pulitzer, Matilda Jane, Mini Boden, Mulberry Street, etc. (A complete list in on this site.)

 4. KNOWLEDGE IS POWER (AND PROFIT)! What do I mean? Go ahead and do some research on the bouncy seat you want to sell. Check and make sure it isn’t under recall first (you can do that here: www.cpsc.gov) Go to the manufacturer’s website and print out the instructions that came with it. I recommend also going to sites such as Amazon.com that sell both new and used items, and print out a comparison of what the item is selling for used online (and price yours for less, of course!)

Are you still unsure about consigning? Then I recommend attending the first Weetrade sale at their San Marco location as just a buyer. Look at the clothes on the racks; what brands are people standing in line to buy? What price are they paying? Or even better, volunteer to work a shift or two at the first sale. Volunteers receive early shopping privileges (the best selection before the public comes in) and an up-close look of how the sale works.