just bought $7k worth of high end dresses...how to get rid of it?

35 replies
hey guys!

So, I just purchased a jobout for $7k of bloomingdales dresses, roughly 50, ranging from $200-$3,000 retail. I usually sell on Ebay but want to try and sling them locally in LA.

What do you guys think are some good ways of doing this? I'm thinking advertise to the beverly hills folk for a weekend sale
#$7k #bought #dresseshow #end #high #rid #worth
  • Profile picture of the author RobinInTexas
    Give Craigslist a shot. The price is right, nothing to lose.
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    ...Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just set there.
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    • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
      Go to Amazon and look at joining fulfillment try and sell them thru there. or build a local web-site. The e-commerce section can be of great value to you in this forum
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  • Definitely agree with going to the eCommerce section here.

    You can try building your own website through Salehoo and other places where eCommerce is the goal.

    A regular website won't do. You need a site that will literally have PayPal buttons, images, templates, and many good ways to organize the dresses you are selling.

    Since you don't have too much dresses of a single kind, you can really make your site original because you are only offering several or "one of a kind" for a single type of dress.

    This can help create SCARCITY!
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  • Profile picture of the author SandraLarkin
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    Craigslist. It is honestly better than ebay getting rid of things.
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    • Profile picture of the author sladeryan
      Cool thanks for the replies. I figured craigslist would be too low quality to post at but it appears I am wrong! Awesome...will also create a site as I have to anyway since I tried registering for amazon but I need a website in order to sell on there
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  • Profile picture of the author ATAC
    I would think that you do not want to sell them one buy one and would like to sell them all in one shot if the price is right! Right?

    If so I would go to your local thrift stores in your area and try to work a deal with them. They will even do a consignment deal if you want. In other words take your dresses and sell them in their store and pay you when they sell.
    So there is many options with a thrift store..

    I will tell you one thing if I had them that they would be gone in a day without question.
    So you should not have a problem unless you are asking too much ..
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  • Profile picture of the author NewParadigm
    social media. have a designer dress party. supply wine. sell.
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    In a moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing. The worst thing you can do is nothing. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

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    • Profile picture of the author John Sullivan
      Write a press release and include a video of some of the dresses and optimize for the area. May get some buzz if you have a good offer.
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  • Profile picture of the author sladeryan
    Great minds think alike! I called a very social girl I know in LA about hosting a wine party for the dresses as I know she's done it with jewelry before. Left a message for her. I'm thinking 10% of sales I'll give to her what do you think of that price point?

    @ATAC - I was thinking of your idea as well. Approached one store but they want 50% of sale price not factoring what I paid so that's out. However another store called wasteland does deals so will be visiting them tomorrow. Ideally yes I'd like to sell the lot in one fell swoop.

    When you say you'd have them gone in one day is that because of your area or you've done this a bunch of times or what? Expanding on this would be much appreciated
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    • Profile picture of the author NewParadigm
      Originally Posted by sladeryan View Post

      Great minds think alike! I called a very social girl I know in LA about hosting a wine party for the dresses as I know she's done it with jewelry before. Left a message for her. I'm thinking 10% of sales I'll give to her what do you think of that price point?
      yep, sounds about right.
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      In a moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing. The worst thing you can do is nothing. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

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  • Surely they are worth more selling them single unless you really do need a quick sale.
    A couple of years ago we promoted a dressmaker who made wedding gowns.to promote her dresses We had a mock wedding photoshoot of the bride and groom and we had bridesmaids handing out flyers and business cards........in a shopping mall!! Not sure about buying a 3k dress through an ecommerce store. Its a very personal thing when buying wedding dresses..and our lovely ladies do like to take their time choosing!
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  • Profile picture of the author cash89
    Ebay
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  • Profile picture of the author XenG
    Locally in la.. Then I'd suggest you open up something like a yard sale. What do you think?
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  • Profile picture of the author sladeryan
    Not so sure about a yard sale...who's bringing $500-$1000 to a yard sale?

    I like the Pinterest and Instagram idea as I've never used them before so didn't think of that thanks!
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    • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
      Originally Posted by sladeryan View Post

      Not so sure about a yard sale...who's bringing $500-$1000 to a yard sale?

      I like the Pinterest and Instagram idea as I've never used them before so didn't think of that thanks!
      Have you considered a consignment shop?

      Terra
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  • Profile picture of the author Randy Bishop
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    • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
      Originally Posted by Randy Bishop View Post

      LOL, don't bother.

      Put them in with the garbage!

      You have already failed!.... WHY? Well because any competent and mentally sound business person would have had the answer to that question BEFORE making any such purchase.

      7K on "dresses"? What is this?... Where are we. Are you for real?

      I'd cut my losses and sell them off for $1 a piece... that's the only way you're going to see any revenue from this.. you can forget about a 'profit', there won't be any.
      That's not very bright at all!

      She never said she didn't think about how to sell them before she bought them, but rather hadn't decided which way would be best.

      To throw away $7,000 worth of gowns is ludicrous!

      To sell a $3,000 gown for a buck is plain stupid!

      I'm thinking you just want to be mean and condescending or you have a bullying mindset where if you belittle others, you feel important and smart. :rolleyes:

      Or is it maybe you know where she lives and want to pick her garbage?

      Being helpful will get you much further than being downright mean and condescending, by the way.

      Terra
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      • Profile picture of the author Randy Bishop
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        • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
          Originally Posted by Randy Bishop View Post

          Errrm yh... I would throw them in the garbage.

          She doesn't have even the slightest clue.

          I certainly would never buy anything without knowing which channels I'd use to trade... How naive, how senseless, just how incompetent do you have to be to embark on a venture without at least planning something as vital (yet simple) as "HOW WILL I MAKE MY MONEY BACK"...

          This just defies the basic laws of logic.

          And I will express my opinion
          As will I.

          Okay, read this very slowly...

          She stated she normally sells on eBay which means there is already one avenue she has established for selling. There's a clue. However she was thinking about trying a different avenue for these. See? That's not without a plan. If worse comes to worse, she'll sell them on eBay.

          If she doesn't make back her initial investment, it's more than the nothing she'd get by throwing them away and better than the $50 she'd get for selling them for a buck a piece.

          She also was asking for other opinions on some different avenues she could take in selling them. Asking for opinions from experienced people isn't bad business either.

          And quite honestly, if you would just throw them in the garbage as you stated you would, willing to take a $7,000 bath, then actually you have less business sense than she does.

          Terra
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          • Profile picture of the author Randy Bishop
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            • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
              Originally Posted by Randy Bishop View Post

              Too long, didn't read

              Randy
              Haha!

              Why doesn't you reply surprise me?

              Terra
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              • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
                Originally Posted by MissTerraK View Post

                Haha!

                Why doesn't you reply surprise me?

                Terra

                Listen to this Lady. We don't call her "Terra The Terrable" for nothing around here!
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        • Profile picture of the author sladeryan
          Originally Posted by Randy Bishop View Post

          Errrm yh... I would throw them in the garbage.

          She doesn't have even the slightest clue.

          I certainly would never buy anything without knowing which channels I'd use to trade... How naive, how senseless, just how incompetent do you have to be to embark on a venture without at least planning something as vital (yet simple) as "HOW WILL I MAKE MY MONEY BACK"...

          This just defies the basic laws of logic.

          And I will express my opinion

          LOL...gotta love Mr. positive over here. What are the odds he's divorced? I feel bad for whoever has to live with him day in and day out

          Anyways, I'm a guy so lets just clear that up real quick haha. And yes, my normal avenue is ebay, but don't want to list them on there just yet as I want to experiment with different avenues. I don't know if anybody on here does consignment, but the couple shops I've talked to want 50%, which I'm definitely not going to do as ebay is definitely better than that. Is that the normal rate for consignment?

          I checked out liquidation.com and they want 15% of SALE price which is not appealing. Almost signed up with Bstocksupply for $99/month, but the buyer pays 10% of sale price so that's going to affect my price point too much as well.

          I have one slightly interested shop who wants to see all the clothes (I just picked them up today) so that's a possibility. If that's a no go I'll try other high end shops as these clothes are awesome! If I do sell them wholsesale whoever gets them will def be quite happy and make out like a bandit.

          If no shops are interested I'm going to go the website route and try and rank that bad boy super fast churn and burn style with my good friends seonuke and magic submitter

          @bizgrower - that's an interesting idea. If you have personal experience with that could you expand on it? What do you mean by society pages kind of event?

          Also, to you ladies reading this, is there a major difference in instagram photos on manikins as opposed to actual women? I'm thinking having the clothes on actual women would garner a lot more traffic, but want to hear your thoughts

          thanks
          Ryan
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          • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
            Originally Posted by sladeryan View Post


            Also, to you ladies reading this, is there a major difference in instagram photos on manikins as opposed to actual women? I'm thinking having the clothes on actual women would garner a lot more traffic, but want to hear your thoughts

            thanks
            Ryan


            My vote is for real women models as well.

            I had my own lingerie and women's fashions business for 3 years. I held fashion shows for all of my pieces. The way I did my business was very much like the home parties women have for jewelry and purses, except my shows were in businesses rather than in homes. Although, I did hold some in homes as well as on some college campuses dorms.

            My marketing brand/motto was from the board room to the bed room. I sold women's business fashion suits with the lingerie for the under pieces of these suits. Also had the accessories like jewelry, purses belts, and even skin care products and all natural supplements.

            So I had some of the women host the fashion shows in boardrooms, rented Hotel conference rooms, classy clubs, etc. I did themes for Valentines Day, Sweetest day and bridal showers.

            Anyway, I said all of that to say that I did indeed use real women as models and even had to model some pieces myself as the size extra small is hard to find models for. It worked well for me.

            Hope some of that helps you out or causes your creative juices to flow.

            Terra
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  • Profile picture of the author ronrule
    Originally Posted by sladeryan View Post

    hey guys!

    So, I just purchased a jobout for $7k of bloomingdales dresses, roughly 50, ranging from $200-$3,000 retail. I usually sell on Ebay but want to try and sling them locally in LA.

    What do you guys think are some good ways of doing this? I'm thinking advertise to the beverly hills folk for a weekend sale
    Why did you buy them if you hadn't already thought of how you were going to sell them?
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  • Profile picture of the author DrMoney
    You should put your products up on an ecommerce site, then see how well you sell in about 1-6 months time. If your time spent is profitable, outsource your work buy more dresses and scale it up.

    Cheers
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    High end consignment shop in the wealthier/chic part of town.

    At an auction for charity? (A society pages kind of event.)
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    "If you think you're the smartest person in the room, then you're probably in the wrong room."

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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    I'm not a lady either, lol, but I'd vote for models over manikins.
    I had a lingerie shop client. Much warmer effect with models.

    As for the charity auction event, I did some volunteer work for a Habitat for Humanity
    fundraiser. We did not have dresses, though. What I mean by Society Pages event
    is an event that would be covered in the Society Pages of the print newspaper (perhaps a blog or website now or neighborhood forum). Any way something the wealthy people in the area would be involved in. You could pick a likely charity, such as one for cancer or diabetes, or what you prefer and find out what they have planned and who organizes them. Figure out people in your area who organize these kind of events and see if you can do something for each other.

    Another way would be for you to pick a charity and set up a fashion show/auction at a popular night club or other venue.

    If you don't make a lot of money this way, you might meet some interesting people for your business (if you provide marketing/consulting services).

    These would likely be individual sales versus selling the whole lot at one time.

    Dan
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    "If you think you're the smartest person in the room, then you're probably in the wrong room."

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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    Another idea would be to contact high end women's clothing stores - not consignment shops and see if they want to make a deal on some or all of your lot.
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  • Profile picture of the author iLinkedin
    1. Ebay
    2. Etsy
    3. Your Facebook, Twitter ...
    4. Tell your friends (Girls, ofcourse) , and it'll go viral soon.
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  • Profile picture of the author malia
    This is an area I know very well as I have been in this industry for years.

    Let me tell you what will not work

    Consignment
    Thrift stores (Seriously?)
    Advertising to people in Beverly Hills (Seriously?)
    Craigslist
    etc

    Bloomingdales stock is great but it also varies. Do you have popular brands or a lot of INC or other Macys private label? Who knows.

    I would try the home party route. I would hook up with someone who is very well connected, maybe did home parties for another product and pay them 15-20% (10 is just too low). The other option is to have a boutique co-host a sale and give them a cut.

    The last option is to try to sell to boutiques but the retail climate is tough and the one thing you have to keep in mind is if you have a job out, it's already out of season and for a store buyer, you are 18-24 months behind. Fashion is shown up to a year in advance (sometimes more) so by the time you get job out merchandise, the trend can be very very old to their eyes.

    You will most likely not be able to sell this on Amazon because this is gray market and Amazon is cleaning up clothing and accessories sellers buying outside of normal distribution channels because of the risk of having counterfeit goods in their catalog. You would have to have UPCs on the products or get a UPC exemption, also your images would have to meet their quality guidelines (which are strict for clothing and accessories, Amazon is not eBay). All being told, you could be looking at over a month to get everything approved by Amazon and still not be able to sell the specific items you have. Amazon also has agreements with certain brands and you can't list them. Period.

    I am an approved clothing and accessories seller on Amazon, so I say that from experience.

    I get where you are. I started out selling on eBay and grew tired of that. I then moved into my own ecommerce site and did very well with it. I eventually got out of the off-price market, but am still in the apparel industry, I just don't buy off price anymore.

    Long term, I would have my own ecommerce website and also sell to other retailers (broker the merchandise). You are physically in So Cal and a lot of people are not, they want to buy these deals (being in the industry it's really not difficult for me to know where you got your mdse), but they cannot justify traveling, so there is a benefit to buying from someone who understands the end user and can filter the merchandise for them. In the past I even helped someone set up that exact business so I know the ropes.

    BTW, the real way to sell this mdse to retailers is to sell it in the midwest and south, not in LA. Maybe even Mexico, but not in LA.

    Anyway, good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author malia
    Let me also say this:

    Social media is a great idea. This is the issue though: (and the one thing that made me get out of off price mdse)

    You don't have all sizes and colors, therefore you end up individually replying to people about availability. This is why a straightaway listing (like an ecommerce store) is better and you can use social media to promote it. This will also be an issue if you do a home party or a sale hosted by a store, however, women are used to shopping in-person and dealing with limited size and color availability.

    I know someone mentioned press releases, you'd have to do it w/o mentioning the brands. You have no claim to use those trademarks in advertising and promotions and you can get hit with cease and desists, DMCA takedown notices, or lawsuits, if you do. It does not matter that you acquired the merchandise legally and legitimately and while I am sure others will claim the contrary, this is my wheelhouse and I know what I'm talking about.
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  • Profile picture of the author sladeryan
    Thanks for the tips malia. I have all UPCs so I should be good for amazon. Brands include kors, collezioni, St. John, etc...all still has Bloomingdales tags on them. Why the Midwest and south? Are they more behind trend wise so it's an easier sell? Any tips on narrowing down a list of targeted retailers to contact?
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  • Profile picture of the author malia
    Why the Midwest and south?
    They don't have the same access to merchandise as the coastal cities. Most brands selling off merchandise don't like it being resold in their major metro markets.

    I have all UPCs so I should be good for amazon.
    I highly doubt that you do. Bloomingdales barcodes are not the same as UPCs.
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  • Profile picture of the author malia
    I say reduce your asking price, and prepare to pocket less than a third of your original outlay. (they do say that you should: learn from your failures) - well this is certainly one of them... try not to make the same mistake again
    I get where you're coming from, but you're wrong about this industry, although I usually agree with you on other topics.

    And you are right about the "street hawker" thing.

    If she purchased store stock, properly, she already purchased it at a significant percentage off of WHOLESALE price so she doesn't need to sell it for one third of her cost, that would be like selling a $600 Burberry jacket for $30-$40 (give or take) -- it is NEVER that bad. That is a real example, I didn't just make those numbers up (and I know she said she is selling dresses).

    Sladeryan, I think the WF has a lot to offer, but this is a circumstance where asking people who don't understand the industry will lead to a lot of comments that are off base or not applicable. Why don't you just go back to your supplier and ask them for advice?

    I don't know WHICH company you purchased from but some of the companies in that market are run by people with 20-30 years in the industry while others are a little more upstart (less experienced). If you are fortunate enough to have purchased from one of the more experienced jobbers, they have a wealth of information to share as long as you don't approach them like a fly by night idiot (and I say that with no offense to you, just the truth about this industry). With the right approach they will help you out and give you a few pointers.

    ETA: Had you come to the offline forum with a clear strategy for selling the mdse, and just needed tips on how to reach your market, the offline board could have been some help. Instead you just threw your cost out there, asking for answers, and as such people can't get past why you spent THAT MUCH money if you didn't already have a plan.
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    • Profile picture of the author happybunny
      If they are high end dresses, get in touch with wedding planners, here in the UK we have wedding fairs all over the place, pitch your stall and sell :p
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    • Profile picture of the author sladeryan
      Originally Posted by Randy Bishop View Post

      I say reduce your asking price, and prepare to pocket less than a third of your original outlay. (they do say that you should: learn from your failures) - well this is certainly one of them... try not to make the same mistake again
      hmmmm...interesting thoughts randolph....but wait wasn't I supposed to just cut my losses and sling them for a $1???

      Originally Posted by Randy Bishop View Post

      I'd cut my losses and sell them off for $1 a piece... that's the only way you're going to see any revenue from this.. you can forget about a 'profit', there won't be any.
      hmmmm....I'd say by the looks of things randolph I'll be in black with your next post.....maybe something along the lines of: (enter randolph) "any idiot with even an ounce of intelligence should just sell these for a tiny profit and consider it a gift from God!" (yells to wife) "Betsy wheres that god damn tv dinner and beer?! I got no food on this here tray woman!"

      What do you think randolph am I close? LOL

      Anyways, I'll try and clear things up again one last time so we can end this thread. I guess my title leads on that I was all in on these clothes. This is not the case. This is a portion of what we sell.

      We had a VERY GOOD IDEA of what we would get for these items on EBAY. However, we wanted to TRY something NEW, whether it be wholesale, local shop, website, social media, craigslist, etc.

      Hence the point of this thread in the first place. There is no rush to sell the clothes, no missed mortgage payments if we don't make a profit, no late nights worrying what's going to happen. Just to put everyone's fears at ease we put ONE dress on Ebay 3 days ago and it sold for a 70% profit.

      We are thinking amazon and our website can do 100%+ though as we don't think we got the best value for the item, which anybody who sells on ebay in volume would most likely agree and at some point wants to get out of that avenue.

      Originally Posted by malia View Post

      I highly doubt that you do. Bloomingdales barcodes are not the same as UPCs.
      Yes I do in fact have the UPCs

      Originally Posted by malia View Post

      If she purchased store stock, properly, she already purchased it at a significant percentage off of WHOLESALE price so she doesn't need to sell it for one third of her cost, that would be like selling a $600 Burberry jacket for $30-$40 (give or take) -- it is NEVER that bad. That is a real example, I didn't just make those numbers up (and I know she said she is selling dresses).

      I don't know WHICH company you purchased from but some of the companies in that market are run by people with 20-30 years in the industry while others are a little more upstart (less experienced). If you are fortunate enough to have purchased from one of the more experienced jobbers - No jobber - direct contact well below wholesale

      Instead you just threw your cost out there, asking for answers, and as such people can't get past why you spent THAT MUCH money if you didn't already have a plan. - It's not that much/ebay was always the back up/there was no rush to sell/it's fun to get a little uncomfortable (unless it's cold calling which I loathe!)
      Thanks for the tips though malia and everyone else we got some good golden nuggets! Our current plan is using real models/video marketing based on photos/ecommerce site/amazon/and instagram - we'll slowly put more and more items on ebay if items aren't selling but we think they will.....and for profit too can you believe it randolph!!!

      - Ryan
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  • Profile picture of the author MrStanley
    You can build a site for them.
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