Did you know that the average woman has $500 of unworn clothing, shoes, and accessories in her closet? What if there was a way to reclaim your closet, make money to take a vacation, make a nice purchase, grow savings, or get rid of debt?
Consignment is the way to go.
Today I have a very special guest, Sarah McAffry. Sarah is a mom, wife, and photographer. But she is also the founder and #bossbabe of Statemint, a weekend-long consignment event hosted in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Statemint is happening this September 8th – 10th. So I reached out to Sarah to get the low-down on consignment and turning unlikely purchases into treasure so that you have time to get in on this awesome chance to reclaim your closet, make money, and give back to your community.
I hope this interview inspires you to clean out your closet and make money from unwanted items no matter where you live.
The Origins of Statemint
B: First of all, thank you so much for doing this with me. I’m super excited and really honored to have this chance to talk with you. I want people to know about Statemint, about you, and to give people the chance to de-clutter their closets.
S: Wonderful! That’s great. Thank you. I’m glad to be talking with you.
B: Can you give me a little bit of a background about you and how you decided to get into consignment?
S: Yes! So it all started after I did a consignment event for my kids’ clothes. Knoxville was full of kids consignment events and it was my first time doing it. And you know I made a couple hundred dollars and could not get over how simple and well organized it was. I decided we needed something like that for adults. I thought about how many of my friends had closets full of things that I would love to wear. I thought it was something that needed to happen. So it kind of started from there.
B: That’s awesome. Had you ever consigned clothing for yourself, like in different shops?
S: No. I had never done that. It was really a new thing for me.
B: Wow! So you first started at a children’s consignment event?!
S: Yeah. It was a Picky Chick. And then I realized that I went to church with the owner and so she was really incredible and helpful. And it just kind of grew from there.
B: So it was a little bit of luck and a little bit of hustle?
S: Exactly. Yeah definitely. A combination of all that and I mean it was totally a leap of faith. I was thinking about it and I tried to push it away first and thought there’s absolutely no chance for me to do this. This is just one of those ideas that you have but you just can’t act on it. And I really thought it was just kind of a God thing that kept coming back. I felt like it was really something that I needed to start.
B: How did you find all the people to start consigning?
S: I literally made a list of names of people who I thought would be interested and I made phone calls, which is the old school way of doing things. But that’s how it started. I decided handpicking people was the best way to ensure the quality of everything in the beginning. Now, it’s open to the public. It’s so much word of mouth that it continues to attract great people with amazing clothing.
What To Expect at Statemint This Year?
B: Do you see that Statemint keeps growing every year?
S: Yes. That has been really exciting. Our last event was the biggest one and I had to increase the number of registrations we could accept. So that has been really exciting. And also hearing all the ways it’s impacted the community. It’s really encouraging.
B: Are you still taking consignors for this September?
S: For sure. The public sale opens a little less than a month from now on September 8th. Consignor spaces are limited and will typically fill up fast. So be sure to sign up as soon as you can.
Why Is Consignment So Awesome?
B: What are some of the benefits of consignment?
S: Oh gosh. There are so many! #1 is reclaiming your closet. It’s part of our mission statement to take back your life and I know that’s what you do Bri. You help women clean out their closets so you get it. Getting things organized, clearing the clutter, and just being able to enjoy a wardrobe that’s full of only things that you love.
S: Another huge benefit is to earn money. Our consignors have done things like fund adoptions and go on family vacations. A lot of people use their money for Disney World or for a big splurge item like a Louis Vuitton bag. One cool thing that’s limited to cosigners only is that they get to shop our sale before anyone else. So that’s huge.
How Much Money Can You Make From Consignment?
B: How much does the average consignor make?
S: A couple of hundred dollars or more. And our top consignors, who come back every season, have made over $1000!
B: No way! Well, I think that’s awesome. Tell me a little bit about the benefit of shopping at Statemint. What’s it like?
S: OK, so for our shoppers we have these huge Ikea bags…you know the iconic Ikea bag. A lot of shoppers have had really incredible stories, like weight loss stories or moms going back to work. I just love hearing the shopper stories as they check out. At Statemint, they can fill their closet with an entirely new wardrobe on a budget.
B: I know Statemint has an ethical component to it as well.
S: Yes, absolutely. We make sure that we’re impacting our community. We always partner with local organizations that receive a donation from the charity pre-sell every time. And the full entry fee of that pre-sale goes straight to the charity. We also work with local organizations that receive unsold items. Consignors can either pick up their things that don’t sell or they can donate them.
B: This year you’re partnering with a specific organization?
S: We’re partnering with the Wesley House, a community center that provides after-school care and summer programs for inner-city kids. They also have a program for elderly women in the inner city area.
B: Oh my gosh! That’s amazing.
S: Yeah, it’s really been exciting.
If You’re Interested In Consigning At Statemint
B: So if someone is thinking about consigning at Statemint, what would you say to them?
S: I consign at Statemint every year. For me, it’s like hitting the refresh button on my wardrobe. It’s my chance to look in a mirror and try on everything and say, I love this. Or actually it’s just taking up space and I haven’t worn it in six months.
S: Consigning forces me to think about those things and make those decisions on what to keep, what to get rid of. It also gives me permission to shop and find a few new things that are exciting to wear and that make me feel confident. About half of my wardrobe is from shopping at Statemint.
B: I love it. I love consignment. Close to 100% of my wardrobe is either used, from a discount store, or thrifted. So I’m unbelievably excited about consigning and shopping at Statemint. To think that in a couple days you’re going to make at least a hundred dollars, probably more than that…I mean the average American woman has about $500 of unworn clothing in her closet.
S: Oh wow! That’s just that’s fascinating.
B: Yes. So for me doing closet clean outs, I try to work with my clients to get them to see that you can clean out but you’re going to make money back. You’re going to have more space, and you’re going to have more cash to buy the things that you really want.
S: Absolutely. And for consignors who really want to maximize their money, they can volunteer. And the more they volunteer, the higher the percentage they keep from their earnings. So that’s a great advantage for people who might have a little bit more time to commit to the event.
B: Every little bit helps. How many volunteers are you looking to get this year?
S: We’re totally volunteer run. So it’s me and our consignors who run the show…we really depend on that. Most consignors do one shift and then our regulars come back for several more shifts. We’ve got these friendships and we only get to see each other twice a year at Statemint. It’s a fun way to hang out and visit while you volunteer.
B: How much is it to register?
S: It‘s $20 to register and then consignors keep between 60 – 75% of their earnings depending on how much they volunteer.
B: Before we wrap up, just a couple of more things I wanted to ask. When is the final cut off for registration and how many shoppers do you expect to get this year?
S: We expect to get about a thousand shoppers. We don’t cut off registration until it fills up. On a side note, we also offer a tagging service for our busier consignors. So if there’s anybody that wants to clean out their closet but doesn’t have time to enter the inventory, we have a tagger who will split the profits and do all of that work.
B: That’s so nice. So if someone wants to get more information about how to participate and how to shop, where can they go?
S: They can either go to our website statemintconsignment.com or if they have questions that aren’t answered there, they can e-mail us.
B: I’m really excited for you. I love what you’re doing Sarah. Thanks so much for your time. And I look forward to seeing you at Statemint!
S: You too! Thank you so much for all the great questions.
If you’d like to learn more about Statemint, pop over to their website. And if you’d like to have your closet cleaned out in time for Statemint, contact me now! I’d love to do all the heavy lifting for you.