IF YOU HAVE ITEMS TO SELL OR CONSIGN...

Here are the guidelines:

• Fashionista sees clothing by appointment only. (More about that later.)

• We are interested in vintage clothing, that is, men’s and women’s garments and accessories from the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s and 1970s in excellent condition, clean and pressed.

• Nothing before the 1930s, please, it is too fragile for our store. Also, although 1980s clothing is technically vintage, we are very selective about ‘80s pieces and will only choose items that are wild – punky, poppy, arty, extreme.

• We generally buy estates. That is, large numbers of items at a time, which usually come from stylish retirees who are downsizing; a relative who has gone to the great vintage store in the sky; or a vintage collector who is liquidating his or her collection.

• If you have only a few items of interest to Fashionista, chances are we will not purchase them outright but rather work out a trade, or offer you store credit.

• Size matters. People in the olden days were much smaller than modern humans. Therefore we won’t choose items that are very small by today’s standards. Women’s clothing must have a waist measurement of at least 24”; shoe sizes of 6-plus; hats and gloves of average (modern) size. We look for larger, longer men’s clothing as well, on a per-piece basis, and are especially interested in men’s vintage shoes size 10-plus.

• Everybody loves accessories. When deciding what you’d like to sell, don’t forget:

eyeglasses and sunglasses (with or without prescriptions) wigshatsbeltssuspendersshoes & bootsbowtiesshirt studscummerbundsumbrellaswalking stickscufflinksglovespurseswalletsbathing capswristwatches & pocket watchesfur collarsscarvesmonoclescigarette holders & casessheriff’s badgesapronssweater guardspipes...and similar accessories.

• Yes, we want your jewelry. Fashionista loves costume jewelry from any era – even modern stuff – as long as it’s not petite and tasteful. We like our jewelry big, bold, beautiful, foreign and/or weird. And no, we do not buy gold or precious gems (although we do buy sterling silver jewelry).

• No career wear, please. We don’t care how much you paid for that women’s power suit in 1996: If it ever helped you or anyone else get a job (after 1979) or if it might help someone get a job today, we don’t want it. Unless that job is as a carnie or geisha.

• Certain items are always in demand at Fashionista. These include:

bathing suits, especially women’s, from the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60sday dresses from the 1950s and ‘60smink stolescrinolines authentic hippie garb (embroidered shirts, tunics, etc.)real dashikiscowboy bootsriding bootsold cowboy shirtsuniforms of any kind (cop, waitress, chambermaid, military, Catholic school, etc.)leather vestsfedoras, top hats, bowler derbies – almost any men’s hatsfringed suede jacketsmotorcycle jacketscorsetscapes1970s platform shoes (men’s and women’s)tuxedos and tuxedo shirts1950s and 1960s prom gowns

• Fashionista does a brisk rental business for theater companies, burlesque shows, rock bands, drag queens & kings, “decades” parties, and of course Halloween and masquerade parties. As such, we’re keenly interested in dramatic, outspoken pieces – “costumey” items – as well as actual costumes from any era, but especially if they’re older or vintage.

• Fashionista does not buy or sell tee-shirts, jeans or sneakers. (We may, however, make exceptions for highly collectable items.)

HOW DO I SELL MY STUFF TO FASHIONISTA?

You must make an appointment with Todd and Nancy, the owners. We typically schedule appointments on Wednesday evenings and Sunday afternoons (however, we can discuss other times, if necessary). You bring the items to us; we’ll discuss in advance what kind of pieces you’ve got, and how many, so we can schedule an appropriate amount of time. In general, during the month of October, we only schedule appointments for costume items.

WE PAY BOTTOM DOLLAR

We will look over your items (by appointment) and if we decide that some or all of your pieces are likely to do well in our store, we will make you an offer. You will be shocked at how low that offer is. You may even be insulted. We can’t help it.

We want you to be compensated fairly, however we have to follow a formula that considers our overhead and takes into account that your beautiful 1940s ball gown may fall to pieces the first time someone tries it on... or that great suede jacket may fit funny and sit around in the store for three years.

We have to look at your stuff with a hard eye, devoid of sentimental value. (We do, however, love to hear stories about its previous owners, which might end up on one of our hand-written tags.) If you are interested in getting the highest profit from your vintage clothes, Fashionista probably is not a good fit. The best way to do that is to sell them on eBay or Etsy. It’s a lot of work, but that’s the trade-off.

Think of Fashionista as a giant orphanage that finds loving homes for unwanted clothes. As one of our favorite sellers said upon accepting our low-ball offer for her grandmother’s clothes: “Great! I’ll take my family out to dinner with this money and we’ll raise a glass to Nana!”

When you say yes, we write you a check on the spot. If there are leftover items, you take them away with you or put them in the Fashionista free box outside the door, where they will be snatched up and enjoyed by starving students and young mothers on a budget.

CAN I CONSIGN MY STUFF AT FASHIONISTA?

Rarely do we take on a new consignor; however, you may be the exception if:

• You have a huge amount of stuff that you can bring to us seasonally (usually two to three times a year);
• You are liquidating a particularly large estate and need to bring clothes to us in batches – again, seasonally and throughout the year (e.g., no furs in May, no tennis whites in December.);
• You are a rock star with impossibly cool threads that you wear once or twice on stage or in videos, then turn them over to us so others may enjoy.

IF I DO BECOME A CONSIGNOR, WHAT DO YOU PAY?

Sixty percent of the sale of your items goes to us, 40 percent goes to you, which is standard these days. It will take about two months for you to get your first check in the mail; after that, checks are mailed monthly. If your sales are very low in a particular month (under $20), we will roll that amount over to the following month.

We tag and price the items once they’re in the shop. We do our best to maximize profits; however, we are not in New York (where vintage prices are outrageous); we try to keep our prices student-friendly.

Fashionista is not like a standard consignment store in that we don’t mark items down on a time schedule. However, we reserve the right to put your items on sale (on a piece by piece basis) if they’ve been with us for more than three months without any action.

IF YOU ARE A VINTAGE HOUND, YOU MIGHT CONSIDER...

Consigning for store credit. This is a great deal – a 50/50 split – and rather than get money for your goods, you build up credit in the store to be spent on anything you want (except gift certificates). Again, it takes two months to activate; after that, you just walk on in and ask whoever’s at the tiki bar/desk how much credit you’ve got. She’ll look it up, and you go shopping. It’s much easier to become a consign-for-credit person than a full consignor; even if you don’t have a boatload of stuff, we’ll consider signing you on.

So, if you made it this far, and have some interesting stuff for us to look at, give us a call (or send an email) and we'll set up an appointment.

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