WORTH THE TRIP
Classy consignment shopping
Quality clothes and more at about one-third the retail value
Perhaps it’s the sign of the times, but consignment stores seem to be holding up rather well across Kentucky.
Often these stores thrive because it works for both ends of the deal as well as in the middle. The seller turns the to-be-sold items over to a store, which takes a percentage (usually into the 50 percent range) when it sells, and then the buyer gets a great price in return. For the store owner it’s a way to manage a business without having to outright purchase an inventory.
It only stands to reason that during a slow economy, consignment shops thrive. There also is an often-overlooked role these stores provide. Those that are into the “eco-green” mentality point out that consignment stores have a positive impact on the environment in that they recycle merchandise rather than trash it.
This frugal shopping trend allows Kentucky shoppers to experience a boutique feel while searching out high-brow brands without the high-brow price tags. Current fashions at discounted prices are what consignment is all about.
“We don’t have a mall here in Glasgow,” says Melissa Williams, who owns Little Black Dress. “And that really helps our shop for people who are looking for name brands that are practically new at good prices. A lot of our customers don’t like traveling to larger cities so they come here to find what they want.”
Williams’ downtown shop has been in business for 12 years and she has built up more than 2,500 people who keep her supplied with high-end women’s and children’s clothes on consignment.
“I am never in need of quality merchandise,” Williams adds. “In fact, I am only taking consignments from my current accounts.”
Family Tree Consignment in Frankfort is located in a 100-year-old house, and owner Tammi Tracy displays her inventory of home furnishings, furniture, and women’s clothing throughout its various rooms.
“I want our customers to see certain items and visualize how it would look in their home,” she says. “We even have a kitchen set up.”
Tracy says her shoppers are primarily in their late 20s and early 30s, but regardless of age, everyone is price-conscious.
“During these economic times we’ve got lots of people with items to sell and lots of people looking for good prices,” she says.
With a name like Beverly Hills Bargain Boutique, a store is expected to be fancy. And it is.
Owner John Horner opened his Bowling Green consignment boutique in 1993 to cater strictly to customers who want brand-name designer clothing.
“We are very selective about what we accept and our customers are very selective about what they buy,” says Horner. “We have lots of professional women who want to dress nicely. Some of our customers could afford to shop anywhere, but come here because they can get more bang for their buck.”
Beverly Hills also carries men’s clothing.
About a year and a half ago, Carole Ragle had a nudging in her spirit to come out of retirement and open a consignment store in Richmond. But hers would be different.
“I specialize in women’s clothing size 14-5X and shoe sizes 6-12, she says.
Ragle’s shop is the Queen’s Closet, a name she took from the Bible.
“It’s amazing how many clothes women have in their closets they don’t wear, and that’s where our shop comes in,” Ragle says.
Little Black Dress
130 East Public Square, Glasgow
Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.;
Saturday 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Family Tree Consignment
319 Wilkinson Street, Frankfort
Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.;
Saturday 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Beverly Hills Bargain Boutique
1608 31-W By-Pass, Bowling Green
Monday-Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
The Queen’s Closet
415 Leighway Drive, Richmond
Tuesday-Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Polka Dotted Pineapple
536 Main Street, Shelbyville
Monday-Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m.;
Thursday night until 7 p.m.
Men’s, women’s, pre-teens’, and juniors’
brand-name and designer clothing.
Too Good to be Threw
385-B Violet Road, I-75, Exit 166, Crittenden
Monday, Wednesday, Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Tuesday and Thursday 10 a.m.-6 p.m. are consignment receiving days only. Quality men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing; home and kitchen items. Not all brand names.
My Sisters Consignments & Alterations
2408 Ring Road, Elizabethtown
Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-6 p.m.;
Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Clothing for entire family, including shoes, jewelry, and purses.
730 E. Broadway, Campbellsville
Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.;
Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Children’s, men’s, and women’s clothing; shoes, hats, new handbags, and jewelry.
124 E. Main, Georgetown
Monday-Saturday 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Women’s, teens’, and children’s brand-name and boutique clothing, fashion accessories, gifts, toys, prom formalwear, and tuxedo rental.
222 N. 3rd Street, Bardstown
Monday-Saturday 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m.
Brand names only, men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing and accessories; furniture; 5,000-square foot display.