It's been a busy time in our household, with all three of our sprogs celebrating the addition of another candle to their birthday cakes. My little Nancy Drew wannabe turned nine, my big boy seven, and our baba turned two! Happy birthday!
On to business! There is a saying: Nothing in life is free. Well, I beg to differ! As part of a challenge that I had been set (of which I'll share more on over the next few weeks), I decided to host a clothes swap party at home, inviting all the ladies I know. I had never been to one before, but had been told that it's a good way to recycle clothes you no longer wear, in exchange for something from someone else's wardrobe that they no longer want. In principle, people can participate by bringing clothes they no longer like, want or wear. For every item they contribute, they're allowed to pick something from the stash. I had to work out the logistics of how to manage it without it turning into an end-of-season-sale-grabathon!
We decided that in order to keep things fair in the case of more than one person eyeing out the same item, the relevant parties had to play 'rock, paper, scissors' in order to win it. This would prevent a tussle, and any awkward wrestling activity that might occur. Hee-hee...Thank goodness my guests were all very generous in spirit, and very well behaved! Anything left over at the end of the swap was donated to charity. And the verdict: Great fun, and I gained some lovely new, albeit pre-loved clothes to add to my wardrobe.
Here are some tips to hosting your very own Clothes Swap Party!
- Pick a date! Give people enough notice, as they have to make time to have a bit of a wardrobe clear out. Make sure to tell them to bring only those items that are clean and in good condition.
- Send out invites. Facebook is great to reach all your friends, but a handmade or diy printed invitation is a nice touch. Let your creative juices flow! It's always a good idea to include 'the rules', so people know what to expect.
- You will need: Sturdy clothes stands to hang items on, a table, lots of coat hangers, and a floor length mirror. It might be a good idea to allocate a room as the official changing room.
- Never underestimate the pulling power of food! Ask people to bring a plate of nibbles if you don't want to cater for all of it yourself, and offer drinks. I found it was easier to have a hotpot ready, with tea and coffee and other drinks put out, ready for people to help themselves. It can get quite busy, and you may not get the chance to make drinks and man the swap yourself.
- Make up some fun signs to put around the room.
- Be sure to check if people are willing to donate any unclaimed items to charity. Be organized by clearing these into bags and dropping it off, otherwise your house will look like the aftermath of the Next sale!
- Try to invite people of all shapes and sizes! The more, the merrier, and the better your chances of all round happy customers!
- You can add interest to your party by inviting local charities or thrift shops to offer for sale a selection of their merchandise. Not only will you be doing your bit for charity by allowing them to sell, but you'll also be able to send them back with more donations!