Used-merchandise sellers seeing uptick in business

Is your closet full and your wallet empty? Want to update your style on a tight budget?

Consignment shops in the Grand Valley have had more customers who are working to cut back on spending and earn extra cash in a struggling economy.

“Not only can they get more value for their money, they can earn money with consignments,” said Mandy Barnes, owner of Encore Shoppe and Gallery, 2493 U.S. Highway 6&50, in Cottonwood Mall.

Barnes said consignment shops are good not only for the wallet but for the planet because goods are recycled. She said business has increased compared to a year ago.

“I feel people are beginning to shift their focus with the recession,” Barnes said. “We are growing with new customers and new consignors every day.”

The only requirement for consignment at Encore is the tag value must be greater than $2.99.

The consignor receives 40 percent of the sale price for items sold for less than $100. When items sell for more than $100, the shop splits the sale down the middle with the consignor, Barnes said.

Housewares and women’s clothing are the top selling products in Barnes’ shop. Crock pots, microwaves and other small appliances go quickly.

The shop also takes furniture, great for college students and newlyweds who need basic furnishings.

“Quick money if it’s in good shape,” Barnes said.

Barnes encourages residents to stop by her 10,000-square-foot shop.

“I think if they walk in once, they will be pleasantly surprised,” she said.

Sales at Uptown Again Boutique, 588 25 Road, have remained strong, even with periodic road construction near the shop, owner Karen O’Connor said.

O’Connor said she has a few new customers and gets about 10 consignors a day.

“Some of those are repeat customers from a long time ago, coming back to revisit because of the economy,” O’Connor said.

Consignors at Uptown Again Boutique receive 40 percent of the sale price, she said.

Consignment items are displayed 45 days at the shop and then donated if they aren’t sold.

Uptown Again is known for its sidewalk sale, where customers can find deals as low as 99 cents on the three or four racks stocked outside. O’Connor also sells high-end labels she gets from connections she has in Aspen and Denver.

O’Connor said jewelry and women’s tops are some of her best sellers. Decorative housewares also are popular.

She said the shop is a fun place to work and shop.

“Good vibes and energy,” she said. “A lot of customers are our friends.”


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