How to Host an Awesome Clothing Swap

Monday, March 13, 2017


I like to call myself a scared impulse buyer.  I will see something that I love at the store, but I am almost always afraid of spending the money on it, for fear I will get home and instantly regret it.  It has been a huge blessing in our marriage, and for our bank account.

But I do love getting new things (admitting that makes the minimalist inside cringe), and have found ways to make this possible on a very small budget.  One of my very favorite ways of getting new things is via clothing swaps.  And almost every time I mention them, someone asks me how they work.

I figured I would share it here, in case you want to try one with your friends.


A few ground rules that I have:

1.  Hold it in a home with a largish space, where clothes can be spread out on tables or couches and can be easily sorted through.

2. Invite friends with somewhat similar clothing styles as you.  I would also ask people who are around the same size as you.  While not everyone needs to be exactly your size, if you invite someone who is a very different size than you, I would also invite a few other friends similar to the original friend's size.  Otherwise it is lame for everyone.

3. Invite friends about 3-4 weeks prior to your event so they have time to sort through their closets and find a few things to bring.  Don't forget to remind them a few days before.

4. Ask each guest to bring 8-10 items.  I typically include shoes, jewelry, hats and purses in this number.

5.  Invite 8-15 people (I think 10-12 is a sweet spot).  Many more and you will have an insane amount of clothes, many less, and you might not find many treasures to take home.

6.  Bring a small treat.  I think a whole spread is unnecessary, but a small treat is always welcome when gathering with friends.  At my last one, I brought a pan of my favorite brownies.

7. Donate extra clothing to a local women's shelter or the Salvation Army where they will get put to good use.  Make your fun girl's night a way to serve someone else, too.

Am I missing something that you have done that worked splendidly?  Leave your ideas in the comments!



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3 comments

  1. I love clothing swaps! I'm in one that's organized via Facebook group and it makes it sooo easy. We meet up quarterly and people bring all kinds of stuff in addition to clothes (jewelry, nail polish, perfume, etc). It's a great way to get a few new things without having to spend money on them, and it means that I almost never buy clothes new anymore, which I love both for my wallet and for the environment!

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    1. That is the coolest! I hadn't thought of doing one via Facebook! What a fun idea! I don't buy many new clothing items either, and it is GREAT!

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  2. hahaha I am a scared impulse buyer, too! I fall in love with things all the time, but I very seldom buy them. That's why I shop most of my clothes second hand. I can love something for a while and get tired of it without feeling like I wasted my money. And I help the environment with all the reusing and upcycling, which definitely is a bonus for me

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