I was delighted to be invited to a private clothes swap party earlier this month and I was so impressed with the concept that I thought I’d share some tips about how to organise a successful one yourself.
Clothes swaps are the perfect way to rejuvenate your wardrobe and pass on things you can’t use to someone who can. I was so delighted to see how happy the other ladies were with the clothes I brought along.
Invite around sixteen people if you are holding it in your home, you could invite more if you have a larger space. I think that around sixteen people seems to be a good number of fruitful swapping. Also it works well is the invitees are around the same couple of dress sizes.
Arrange one room for the actual clothes swap for example your dining room and another room for trying on clothes and socialising. It is also a good idea to have a space where people can put their non swap things such as handbags and jackets.
Arrange the clothes by categories to make swapping easier. As each person arrives that can add their things to the relevant piles or racks. If you have a cheap clothes rack (like this from Ikea) or somewhere to hang the clothes, especially coats and dresses, it makes it more of a ‘shopping’ experience.
Suggest each person brings at least one bag of good quality clothes etc to swap.
The items to swap don’t have to be just clothes. You can expand it to toiletries, make up/nail polish, craft materials and books.
Make sure there are couple of mirrors for people to check out how they look and some more private spaces for people to change, as not everyone is happy to get down to their undies with others.
Ask people to bring a dish and/or drink to share with the others. As the host make sure there are non alcoholic and alcoholic drinks available. Take a break part way through for some food, drink and socialising.
Don’t worry too much about how much people take unless they turn up with a van outside! Most people will leave with less or more or less the same amount they arrived with.
At the end of the swap, pack up decent things for next time and donate the rest to your local charity shop, women’s shelter or refugee centre.