♠ Hey! Can I borrow all of your inventory?

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Original Post

Yep. Can I borrow all of your inventory for a month? Of course, YOU have to bring it over here to ME and I'm going to show it to all of my friends and let them try it on and stretch it out and stuff - my friend Lucy might get some of her red lipstick on it, but I'm pretty sure it'll wash off when I give it back to you. Lucy's friend Michelle has sticky fingers sometimes and things tend to disappear around her but I promise I'll watch her real close if she's standing by any of your stuff. AND - guess what?! If my friends like something and want to buy it I'll give you 60% of the price you usually sell it for. I'll just go ahead and keep the remaining 40% for myself.
And, oh, not sure yet - but I may move two states over in a couple weeks but I'll for sure remember to get your stuff back to you somehow because, of course, you won't know where to find me after I move with all of your stuff.
So can I borrow all of your inventory? I'm looking to make some money but I don't want to actually spend my own money to do it. I just wanna use your stuff instead. Lemme know!

*************************************
Sounds kinda silly, huh?
This is basically what consignment is.
Just switch around the words "friends" to "customers" and although it's very tongue in cheek - that's basically what shops are asking of you when they want to do a consignment deal with you.

I get approached by boutiques all the time asking if I will participate in consignment with their shop. And why wouldn't they ask about consignment before asking about wholesale? They reap all the rewards with consignment with no money down. I sort of relate it to fishing - they drop the lure and see if you will bite.

Personally - I don't participate with consignment. Just not in my business plan. I always respond nicely and tell them although I don't participate in consignment I do offer wholesale. 99% of the time they go ahead and place the wholesale order and pay up front for the items.

Just wanted to throw that out there that consignment is usually only the FIRST step in negotiations of getting you items in boutiques & shops. Don't be scared to take it to the next step and negotiate back with wholesale where you get all of the money up front.

Anyone have any consignment stories they would like to share?
(I know consignment works really well for some people and I would love to hear your success stories here too!)

Posted at 2:10pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

Responses

hellome says

Yes, for all the reasons you've mentioned I haven't "bitten" on any consignment offers. That and theft and other loss. As soon as I start asking about insurance, off they go lol.

Posted at 2:13pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

I agree. With my jewelry and glass works I never do consignment. First of all remember when their shop is full of inventory that they have had to purchase which do you think they are going to try to sell first to recoup their money.

With consignment pieces, you are stocking their shop for free and they have the attitude if it sells it sells.They have nothing to lose.

Posted at 2:16pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

Haha! Good points.

Posted at 2:17pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

So very accurate.

However I am giggling at the thought of your friends wearing my miniatures to cover their modesty - could make a small fortune with the photos LOL.

Posted at 2:19pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

Yes, I agree with you. But, I am in NYC and ocasionally I will get something and make more than I would online. For example, I had an Anna Sui jacket it sold for quintuple what I paid for it. I would not have been able to get that much online (even with the consigner's percentage taken out). If you don't have an established clientele - and need the money - they have one.

I think it makes the difference that I live in NYC, where there are lots of serious consignment shoppers.

Posted at 2:23pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

Yup. Exactly why I don't do consignment.

Posted at 2:25pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

Quiltdream says

I know people that have had heirloom quilts ruined because of consignment arrangements. I won't do it for all of the reasons you mentioned in your post.

Posted at 2:28pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

Amen, sister! Love the analogy, but you are right on. I don't plan to ever do consignemnt. If they truly love what you make they will do wholesale.

Posted at 2:32pm Jan 29, 2010 EST

Starzstylista says:
Yes, I agree with you. But, I am in NYC and ocasionally I will get something and make more than I would online. For example, I had an Anna Sui jacket it sold for quintuple what I paid for it. I would not have been able to get that much online (even with the consigner's percentage taken out). If you don't have an established clientele - and need the money - they have one.

I think it makes the difference that I live in NYC, where there are lots of serious consignment shoppers.
________

Consignment for designer stuff is quite common, even outside of NYC (we're not all backwards in the rest of the country). Designer pieces are generally a personally owned item, and not money in the form of inventory, that is tied up in someone's business. Huge difference.

Posted at 2:33pm Jan 29, 2010 EST