It all began a little over a year ago, the idea of hosting a clothing swap. Three girlfriends, Kanesha, Michelle and Suzanne were looking for a way to bring women, who share a common love of style, together. Having recently cleaned out our own closets, we had each been toying with the idea of hosting a clothing swap - but were not sure where to begin. We put our heads together, set a date, divided up duties, and began the planning of our first annual Sip & Swap!
I would encourage you to host this type of event with a friend or two. Pulling it all together will be much easier with the help of friends, and more fun! This type of event will require some time and organization on your part, but in the end for us, it was very little stress, and loads of fun, girl bonding - a huge success! Such a success, we just hosted our Second Annual Sip + Swap, and I'm here today to share a few tips, and get you going towards hosting a clothing swap of your own.
Let's get this party started!
HOW TO HOST A CLOTHING SWAP
- The Evite sets the tone - attach a few guidelines.
- A week prior to the event, have your guests drop items off. I would discourage allowing guests to drop off items the night of the party.
- Plan a time 2-4 days prior to the event, to go through all the donations - this can take hours, depending on how many donations you have and how many guest are coming to the swap.
- I recommend organizing all items by category. We borrowed racks for hanging garments, plus a table for sweaters/tees, and a second for pants/shorts. Shoes were lined up in the hallways. Items should all be in good, clean, current, pre-loved condition.
- Create a Luxury Rack. Select enough "luxury items" to be offered up via a number system, the first 2 hours of the event. The luxury system insures that every guest will leave with at least one awesome piece they love. On arrival they are given a number. Once they select a piece off of the '"Luxury Rack", their number went on a board. After two hours passed, luxury items go up for grabs!
- This year we created a Private Facebook Page to get ladies excited about the party. This was a huge success! Post-event we converted this Facebook page to "The Sip + Swap Post Party", where we are now encouraging ladies who participated in the swap, to share looks they are now creating with all their new-to-them fab finds. This has kept the party going, is loads of fun, and inspirational! I personally love seeing how ladies have found new ways to style items that weren't being loved in their prior homes - how fun is that?
- From start to finish, it was the most amazingly fun, energizing, positive evening for all. You know how fun it is to shop with a girlfriend - one who gives you honest advice and knows your style so well? Now imagine 40 women, sipping wine, offering up their opinions and positive feedback - as you try on fabulous items that you'll get to take home for FREE!
- Note: If this is your first swap, I encourage you to start small. 10-15 women is already a large party. Remember, you have to sort all the donations. 25+ guests will take some time to organize. Yes, you will have more pieces to swap and more variety of styles and sizes - but keep in mind how much time you have to organize - and clean up.
Create Swap Guidelines
Get Organized Prior to the Event
Set Up Your Pop-Up Shop
Create a Luxury Rack
Set Out Some Snacks
In addition to everyone leaving with at least one bag of "new to me" finds, we were able to collect 80 bras to donate to Free the Girls Organization, an international 501(c)(3) non-profit organization devoted to coming alongside sex trafficking survivors with a path to true freedom. Read more (HERE)
A HUGE Thank You to our AMAZING photographer, Bella Baynard who not only captured the fun of this evening, helped out in countless ways over the course of the evening, but also took home a few fun pieces of her own! And to my daughter, and Michelle's girls for endless folding, sorting, organizing...it takes a village!
You can find Bella on Instagram, @BellaBay.Co
Check out Kanesha's website BoldLivingToday.com (HERE) where you'll find daily BOLD tips, ideas and inspiration on becoming your best self and living life to the fullest - everyday!
Looking for more? Check out our First Annual Sip + Swap in this archived post (HERE)
Do you have plans to go a bit greener this year?
Have you tried, or will you be trying to host a clothing swap?
If we each do a little, it adds up to a whole lot!
Let's protect and love this beautiful place, that we are so blessed to live in!
Hope to see you back this Friday...I'll be sharing a week of Second Hand Style, featuring outfits created from fabulous new-to-me finds!
Have a fabulous week!
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