I love clothes. Shopping is a competitive sport for me, one that gets my blood pumping and my eyes gleaming. I am an excellent clearance shopper-not just cheap clothes, but fashionable, no-one-would-guess-I-only-paid-a-dollar-for-it kind of stuff. I don't necessarily consider myself a "trend setter" but I do love to put together different outfits. However, all this shopping causes one problem: extra stuff.
I have been on a mission to declutter and simplify my house. I am not ever planning on having six shirts and two pairs of pants or anything drastic like that, but I did decide I wanted to get rid of everything that was too big for me and most of what was too small (the dreamer in me couldn't get rid of a few choice items!), and anything I just didn't care for. So I purged:once, twice, three times! And I had a ton of things that I couldn't wear.
I have tried selling my clothes. On Craigslist, at yardsales, to consignment stores. I had a girl on Craigslist who bought my jeans and then decided she wanted to return them. I have marked tons of stuff for yardsales only to return home with 3/4 of it. And I have taken it to consignment stores to be offered $10 for three pairs of jeans (two Gap, one Lucky), never worn New Balance shoes (given to me by a friend) and 6 tops! Ummm, no thank you!
So, what's a girl to do? I could have donated my things to Goodwill. I am a big fan, and I think they have a quality program. But I am friends with lots of non-shoppers. Who often comment on my taste in clothes. So finally, one day while trolling the internet I decided I wanted to have a clothing swap! It would be a great way to give things to people who would appreciate my quality clothes, grab a few new things for myself and have a party! I love a party, too.:)
First, I sent out an Evite. I set the time and date. I also included that each guest should plan on bringing at least 10 things to swap. They were welcome to bring more, but I felt like that would be a good starting point. Believe it or not, I had a few friends who had trouble coming up with that many things! It could include: pants, tops, dresses, shorts, sweaters, jewelry, scarves, accessories, purses, shoes-basically anything you could wear.
A few people were worried that we weren't all the same size, but since most of had clothes that were too big, too small, and also just weren't "right", we had a variety of sizes from 4-12. Definitely something for everyone!
my birthday party, so I could reuse the paper lanterns and tablecloth. The party was in the afternoon, so I went with simple food: crackers, cheese, salami and pepperoni, chips and dip, veggies and these delightful cookies! My friend supplied the red velvet cupcakes.
I also made a really tasty punch. I used 3/4 of a bottle of cranberry-cherry juice, added 1/4 cup lime juice and one-third of a two liter of ginger ale. I made the ice cubes in a muffin tin and floated lime slices on top-thanks, Pinterest! Punch just says "party", doesn't it?
Everyone took their time looking through the items, trying things on, and finding things for other people. They tied the ribbon either on the hanger, on on the belt loop, or wherever. Once everyone had used their ten ribbons, anything else was free game to take. Anything with multiple ribbons we held a drawing for, and I tied up all the leftovers for Goodwill. We had a great time eating, chatting and swapping, and several people said they hoped it would be a semi-annual event! Maybe, but for right now, my closet is pretty clean!