The notion of a wardrobe flip has proven so popular among Torontonians that it has spurred the openings of consignment shops throughout the downtown core. Flipping your wardrobe for fall (think of it as spring-cleaning, only in colder weather) will not only allow you to make room for heavier pieces to come, but also score you some eco-friendly points while you re-vamp your look.
Unlike vintage stores, consignment shops can carry old and new pieces, from Levi’s to Louis Vuitton. What they take and what they offer varies from shop to shop, but most often you can get rid of gently pre-loved items from your wardrobe in exchange for cash or credit. Whether you plan to put cash back into your bank account or walk out with a new outfit, just remember: one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. So grab those shoes you’ve worn once, the jeans that still have tags on them and the shirt that doesn’t fit quite right, and go out and flip them for something you’re really going to love.
Here’s our guide to flipping your wardrobe at three of Toronto’s top consignment stores.
What they want: Trendy and fashionable items for men and women that are suitable for the current weather season at time of sale (i.e. they won’t buy your sundresses in mid-October). Premium brands, designer and vintage are all accepted but must be only lightly worn, clean and free of stains, rips and odours.
What they’ve got: A handpicked selection of new, used and vintage clothing and accessories offered at low-prices for men and women. Items are presented in clean and well-organized environments at their Queen East and Queen West locations.
What they offer: A 25 per cent cut of Common Sort’s determined retail pricing of your items, giving you cash or check for what they take on the spot. To double your money, you can opt for the 50 per cent store credit and trade in your old duds for new ones.
How it works: Go into one of their locations with your pre-loved items (and a few minutes to spare) and one of their buyers will go through your pieces and determine what they’ll take. Note: If you want cash, you must be at least 18 years of age to buy or sell and show valid ID.
Donations accepted? Yes.
Common Sort, 1414 Queen St W., 416-463-SORT
What they want: Contemporary designer clothing for men and women, footwear and accessories, especially vintage or new luxury handbags by Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Gucci or Balenciaga from anywhere in the world (Fashionably Yours will pay shipping cost)
What they’ve got: An extensive selection of luxe handbags and accessories from all over the world by Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Tiffany & Co., Gucci and Hermes. Runway apparel from Alexander Wang, Marc Jacobs, Chloé and Christian Louboutin, plus designer brands such as Marc Jacobs, Hugo Boss and Michael Kors. New and used designer sunglasses.
What they offer: Consignment prices are agreed upon between shop and consigner, based on style, condition, original price, age and demand. Consignment split or purchase outright is negotiated per item; however, a 50 per cent cut of sale proceeds is custom.
How it works: Consigners should book an in-store appointment or visit the consignment area of the online store. For consigners with large selections of high-end items, Fashionably Yours will arrange a house visit.
Donations accepted? Rarely, but items that don’t sell and aren’t picked up are regularly donated to various charitable organizations.
Fashionably Yours, 632 Queen Street West Toronto, 647-802-9687
What they want: Gently used designer and vintage ladies clothing and accessories that are in season at time of consignment. All items must be in excellent condition, clean and pressed, on hangers or folded neatly — no garbage bag drop offs here!
What they’ve got: Women’s vintage and contemporary labels such as Marc Jacobs, DVF, Jeremy Laing, Topshop, YSL, ACNE, Wilfred, Alexander Wang and more.
What they offer: Consigner receives 40 per cent of proceeds from sold items. LAB sets prices and determines markdowns; consigned items are sold at appraised price for up to 30 days and marked down by 20 per cent for an additional 30 days, and another 20 per cent for the following 30.
How it works: Interested consigners must email email@example.com to receive their guidelines and contract; no walk-ins allowed.
Donations accepted? No, however, donations made if consigner has not picked up items after 90 days.
Lab Consignment, 15 Ossington Ave., 416-302-6739