PITTSBURGH - Consignment sale season is upon us and it’s a great way for parents to get gently used items needed for the spring and summer at fantastic prices.
There are many consignment sales in the Pittsburgh area and a lot of savvy moms, dads and grandparents like to visit all of them.
Wpxi.com talked to the owner and creator of one of the North Hills’ biggest consignment sales to get an “insider’s view” on how to find the best deals when shopping consignment.
Lesley Bruns started The Sunflower Sprouts sale after moving back to Pittsburgh from North Carolina.
“I found my first children’s consignment sale just after moving to North Carolina when my daughter was 9 months old. I shopped, consigned and volunteered with that sale in 5 years. Then when we moved back to Pittsburgh and I found myself lost without my beloved consignment sale and saw a need for more sales like that here,” Bruns said.
With her retail management background, Bruns and friend Jenn Hill stated Sunflower Sprouts in Aug. 2010.
“Our first sale had just 71 consignors and we rented out a small 6,000 square foot place in Wexford. This spring’s sale will be our 8th sale and we will have 400 consignors with over 55,000 items for sale in a 60,000 square foot location. We are also the longest running sale in Pittsburgh. We are opened to the public for five days over two weekends which gives shoppers lots of opportunities to shop,” said Bruns.
WHY SHOP CONSIGNMENT:
Many may wonder what the difference between shopping consignment sales versus shopping at stores like Plato’s Closet or Goodwill is. Bruns said it’s simple: independent pricing and quantity.
“What is unique about seasonal consignment sales verses stores is that our consignors price and tag all their own items. We don't turn away items simply because we don't have space like many stores do. We only turn away items that are worn, stained, broken, out of season or have been recalled,” Bruns said.
For example, Bruns may receive five “Cozy Coupe” cars for this year’s sale. But because they are individually priced by consigners, the prices could range from $5 to $40.
“This gives our inventory a vast array of prices and choices because it comes from so many different people. Some consignors price to sell and others price higher to try and recoup their initial investment. There is always a diamond in the rough and if shoppers take their time they will find many great deals. Typically a shopper will save about 80% from buying new. You can't find such a selection from so many different brands anywhere else but at a children's consignment sale,” said Bruns.
Since consignment sales are becoming hugely popular, it’s important for shoppers to be prepared.
- Come with patience. “The lines get long, which is to be expected when a sale of this magnitude is held for only a few days,” said Bruns.
- Bring a laundry basket with a rope or necktie strapped to drag while you shop. It can be cumbersome to carry several items in a bag, especially if you’re buying many things.
- Come prepared with sizes. You can draw foot sizes on a piece of paper. Bring a tape measure marked with each child's lengths.
- And if you can, leave your children at home. “While we never turn away children at our sale, it can be a bit overwhelming for some children. There are so many great things that they ‘have to have,’ Bruns said.
SUNFLOWER SPROUTS INFO:
Sunflower Sprouts Facebook page >>> CLICK HERE.
Sunflower Sprouts website >>> CLICK HERE
Location >>> 8000 McKnight Road (lower level of Northway Mall, old Value City)
Thursday March 20: Early Bird Public Sale 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. ($10 Entrance Fee - Cash Please)
Friday March 21st: Open to Public 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday March 22nd: Open to Public 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sunday March 23rd: Open to Public 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Closed Mon-Wed March 24th-25th
Thursday March 27: Open to Public 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Friday March 28: 50% off Day to Public 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday March 29: 50% off Day to Public 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.