Clothing Swap Party – How to & why you should

I’ve been thinking about trying to host a clothing swap for over a year now, and this past weekend I finally did it.  I read a lot of blogs first, to get a feel for how things should go, invited some fun girlfriends to swap clothes, and then spent the better part of a week setting up my home like a boutique for our “shopping”.

It was seriously the best party I’ve been to in awhile.  And while I know I hosted it, so I might be biased, I would totally do it again, despite the work to get ready.  Being able to have a glass of wine, eat, & shop with friends for FREE is just plain fun.

So first, before we get to the pictures, how do you host a clothing swap?

This is how I worded my Facebook event invitation:

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What to bring: Go through your closet and collect the items (at least 5 things, but no limit to how much!) that you don’t wear or use anymore. Items should be clean and free of stains or tears. All seasons are OK.
Haven’t worn it in a year? Too small? Too big? Too orange? Tired of that handbag? Those shoes don’t go with anything anymore? Bring it. Anything can be brought: clothes, shoes, jewelry, scarves, purses, belts, WHATEVER!

Time: Start arriving at 5pm & browse, eat, try on until 7pm. At 7pm we will draw numbers, and start picking our top choices. After several rounds of picks, it’s a free for all on the leftovers.

Food: I’ll provide light appetizers & wine/water. No need to bring anything but your pretty selves!

IMPORTANT: Collect your items ahead of time and give them to me no later than 2 days before the party. This gives me time to sort & set up before you all come.

Misc: Bring nice items – that you would give to a friend or consign. Make sure they have been freshly laundered so everything is looking it’s best. I’ll have a couple places set up for changing to try on things. But we can also show off our finds for feedback (shopping with girlfriends at home – does it get any better??).

If you are unable to make the party but would like to still donate some items & purge your closet, you are welcome to! Anything leftover at the end of the party will be donated to a local thrift store.

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A few tips afterwards:  Initially I thought 5 rounds of picking, and then a free for all.  But since most people brought much more than 5 items, we stuck to rounds until we hit about 10.  This was good for a couple reasons – we were able to continue to pick our favorites without chaos and we enjoyed seeing what each person picked (giving advice & complimenting each other).

Also, many girls thought ahead and wore a cami under their top so they could try on tops in the main area with everyone there (for feedback).  I had 2 bedrooms upstairs for changing and trying on clothes, but it worked really well to try on tops downstairs.

So…here are some pictures of our amazing night!

The food:

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The clothes all set up & ready for the girls to shop ’til they drop!

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All of us sporting our “new” finds:

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And our loot all displayed:

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And that, my friends, is how you host a clothing swap party!

Do it.  You won’t be sorry!

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