Have you ever experienced the thrill of finding a super cute outfit or perfect toy at just the right price? Or have you enjoyed the extra closet space by letting go of items you no longer need? Mothers & More members have experienced the value of swaps and community resale events for years. It’s a win for everyone: giving extra life to gently used children and maternity items, helping families save and earn money, raising money for chapters, being involved in the community and giving moms an opportunity to learn about how they can connect with local moms.
For the Oswego Area, Illinois Chapter of Mothers & More, the Spring and Fall resale events are its most successful way of introducing moms to the benefits of joining its incredible community of mothers. Kimberly Allgaeuer, Chapter Leader and Resale Committee Member for Oswego knows this first-hand. Kimberly said. “I joined the Oswego Chapter after attending the resale and was able to make a lot of mom friends since most of my friends at the time didn’t have kids.” For Kimberly, the camaraderie is important. “We’re all trying to raise these little humans to be good people. I like talking with and relating to other moms.”
Kimberly didn’t know about the resale when her daughter was born, so she was thrilled to save money on her son’s clothes. Now she joins a committee of 10-12 members and numerous volunteers who organize two sales per year. Even though there are other sales in the community, there is plenty of interest in the Oswego sale, which is unique because it allows items that were tagged for other sales as long as the tags have key information.
Each resale is set up a little differently, but most give sellers a percentage of what is sold. Dupage County, Illinois, chapter uses the proceeds of their resale to subsidizes events for members throughout the year, including the holiday party, Mother’s Day celebration, various gatherings and playgroups. Oswego shares the proceeds from the one dollar entrance fee with the school that provides the space for the sale.
By offering incentives such as tickets to a pre-sale and higher selling percentages for members, committee members, volunteers and sellers, resales are able to have good participation. Oswego for example has approximately 54-50 sellers in the Spring and 65-70 in the Fall, with as many as 400-500 shoppers attending each event! Volunteers help with planning, promoting, checking the items to be sold, sorting items before and after the sale, managing payments and so much more.
Resales are extremely popular with mothers, because as Kimberly noted, “everyone is looking for the best deal possible.” Big ticket items such as strollers and high chairs fly out the door, and everybody enjoys the selection of clothing items.
Like any event, promotion is key, especially through Facebook. “We have a Facebook page that’s only about the resale with contests and opportunities to like and share posts, get jump-the-line passes, pre-shop passes and more,” explained Kimberly, “but we also hand out flyers at daycares, schools, libraries and other community kid-friendly places of business.”
Resale events are one of the best ways for some of the Mothers & More chapters to reach out to other moms. As Kimberly can attest, these efforts work!
The Maplewood/South Orange, New Jersey chapter of Mothers & More has a Spring Swap for its members. This is also an excellent option for groups that want to offer their moms good deals without coordinating a full scale community resale event. Check out some of these chapter resale and swap events located in Illinois, Pennsylvania and New Jersey: