Have you ever gotten to the stage where you just can’t look at your wardrobe anymore? It’s so loaded with crap that the site of it makes you want to grab its contents and throw it out a window.
About a month ago, I was at that point. I don’t know how it happened, but my walk-in wardrobe was overflowing with crop tops, hot pants and pleather jumpsuits. These were things my underage self rocked but I wouldn’t be caught dead in today.
Struggling to pull half the shorts over my ass, I decided it was time to clear out my closet. Shelf by shelf, I critically examined each piece of clothing, putting the majority of it in a garbage bag I would later dump at St Vinnies’.
As I went through it, I realised there were old Sass and Bide skirts, Levi jeans and Kookai dresses in the mix. I had spent a small fortune on each of these items and would be an absolute idiot to throw them out without compensation.
Thankfully, I am friends with a thrifty fashion student who told me to go to Camberwell Market and make a killing from my trash. She was damn right about that and also by my side, folding tables and selling hand-made items on the day.
What is the Camberwell Market?
At 6:30am every Sunday morning, a carpark at the back of Burke Road turns into a giant trash and treasure market where stall holders sell their second-hand goods for bargain prices.
From records to rings, buttons to boots and toys to type-writers you can find just about anything here.
How do you sell?
The process is super simple.
- You register an account on their website and book a 5m x 3m stall for $65.
- You turn up at 5:30am with a car full of bags and set up shop.
- You buy a coffee and some hot jam donuts and watch your stall make bank.
Where do you get the equipment from?
You can hire trestle tables and clothes racks on the day.
- Trestle Table: Length 1.8m – $ 9
- Trestle Table: Length 4m – $10
- Clothes Rack and 2 Sandbags – $15
- Sandbags – $3 each
If you intend on becoming a seasoned seller, you can buy these items from Kmart and store them in your garage ready for next time.
Recruit a friend
I would have died without Kristen there to man the stall while I ducked out to take a pee. She was all over how to set up the clothes rails and was absolutely bomb at winning hearts at our stall. Recruiting a friend means there is someone to split the costs with and double the stock on each rail. It also means you have someone to back you up when people try to steal your stuff.
MAKE A LIST OF WHAT YOU NEED TO TAKE
Whether it’s a screw driver, spare change, plastic bag or booking form, you are bound to forget something on the day. The best way to avoid this is to be organised and create a Google Doc with everything you need to remember. Kristen and I both had our bags packed and in the car the night before, because 4am is no time to go on a scavenger hunt for clothes hangers.
TAG YOUR CLOTHES
It’s important to tag everything you bring and price stock $5 more than you expect to be paid. Having that price point makes it easier for people to peruse your stock and it means you don’t get screwed when they haggle. From a marketing perspective, swing tags make your clothes look retro and your store look more professional.
FLAUNT YOUR MOST IMPRESSIVE STOCK
The first item on your rail makes a statement about what the rest your store contains. Even if you don’t think it will sell, chuck a painted denim jacket at the front to catch people’s eye. It’s a good idea to have things like jewellery, handbags and sunglasses on the table because those bright and shiny things are tangible and typically invite traffic.
HAVE A VARIETY OF PRICE POINTS AND SIGNS
Kristen and I had a rule – nothing over $30. We put this on signs all over the stall to draw people in. We also had two $5 baskets that people could rummage through. Again, these indicated that we had put some effort in and made the stall far more consumer-friendly.
MARK DOWN AT THE END OF THE DAY
The less you have to pack in your car, and take home with you, the better. As you approach the last half hour, get a red texta and mark down your shit. The people left wondering around 12:00pm are looking for a bargain and as one of the last sellers standing, you’re bound to win the last $5 note in their purse.
Ultimately, you never know who you are going to meet so make conversation with your customers and have a laugh with your neighbours.
Be yourself and you’ll kill it out there!