Archive for Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Community closet: Lawrence group fills void in kid-centric consignment sales

Ragan Hubbard, 8, left, and her sister, Sally, 5, right, help tag and sort clothes that their mother, Sandi Hubbard, Lawrence, will sell at the Kid’s Closet Connection Sale. The consignment sale is Thursday through Saturday at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds, 2110 Harper St.

Ragan Hubbard, 8, left, and her sister, Sally, 5, right, help tag and sort clothes that their mother, Sandi Hubbard, Lawrence, will sell at the Kid’s Closet Connection Sale. The consignment sale is Thursday through Saturday at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds, 2110 Harper St.

August 25, 2009



What: The Kid’s Closet Connection Consignment Sale

Where: The Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds, 2110 Harper St.

Schedule: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Thursday and Friday; 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday.

Additional info:


In the world of kids’ clothing, Kid’s Closet Connection is the equivalent of having your cake and eating it, too.

The business is a semi-annual consignment sale that allows mothers to not only sell off clothes, toys, furniture and other goodies that their children may have outgrown, but also allows them to pick up used, brand-name items at discounted prices.

“The general economy is tanking, but I found Hollister, American Eagle, Abercombie and Aeropostle brands in the juniors section at the last Kid’s Closet sale. The name-brand things are there and at a price that is budget-friendly,” says consignor Michele Schneck of Lawrence. “I clean out, and my kids get much of what they need (or) want.”

In a consignment sale, the sellers are called consignors, and they get a percentage (at Kid’s Closet, it’s 70 percent) of the money made off of items they register, tag and bring in to the sale. The items are used, but like second-hand stores, the quality is checked. At the end of the sale, if a consignor still has items unsold, those items can either be taken home or given to charity. The twice-yearly sale is also being held for the first time since Second Chance Children’s and Maternity Store closed its doors at 847 Mass., giving Lawrence residents a shot at the same sort of merchandise without having to drive to Topeka or Kansas City to go to a kid-centric consignment store.

Lawrence’s fall sale is Thursday through Saturday at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds. The sale is free and open to the public and includes something for anyone with little ones, says Tammy Patrick, owner of the Lawrence franchise of Kid’s Closet Connection, which is a Lenexa-based network.

“We have clothes up to size 14. We have loads of toys, books, computer games, shoes, strollers, high chairs, playpens, exersaucers, swings, cribs, toddler beds, bedding, blankets, potty chairs, diapers — anything baby- or kid-related, we have it,” Patrick says. “But, we may only have two of them, so get here early.”

Mother-owned, mother-approved

After shopping consignment sales for three years, Lawrence mother Tracey Kastens first became a seller last spring. Flush with items from her three children, she had quite the bounty to share with other moms.

“I first consigned last spring, and since I had seven years’ worth of outgrown clothing to get rid of, it was quite a time commitment preparing my items. Ultimately, though, I sold about two-thirds of what I tagged, so when the check arrived, it was clearly worth the effort,” Kastens says. “I’m busily tagging items again for the upcoming sale and am excited to be part of something that helps both my family and others save loads of money.”

Sandi Hubbard of Lawrence has done resale shopping since her oldest, Ragan, 8, was a baby. She says buying used is helpful not only on her pocketbook, but also on her stress level as she won’t have to worry about a new, expensive outfit shrinking or getting dirty.

“When I go to one of these sales, I know how the clothes wash. You can tell whether or not stains come out of it easily because it’s been used. So instead of buying something from the store and bringing it home and washing it and it shrinking or unraveling, or anything else, I already know how it wears,” Hubbard says. “And my kids, too, are wearing it to school, wearing it to play outside — they’re just going to trash it anyway.”

She says buying second-hand also allows her children to try on new activities without eating a huge hole in the family budget.

“It’s a great way to get the play clothes, just kind of things like leotards — kids wear them once a week for a semester and then they decide they don’t want to be a ballerina anymore, they want to be a basketball player or whatever it may be,” she says. “It’s a great way to get second-hand equipment without spending huge amounts so that your kids can try new things.”

Quality control

“New things” is also a theme of sorts at this year’s sale, says Patrick. Unlike at previous sales, sellers will be bringing new items daily, so return customers will be able to see new merchandise.

Not new, but quite important, too, is the fact that because consignors volunteer to help out with the sale, they also may act as quality control, vetoing items they might think aren’t good enough to be included in the sale, keeping the quality high.

“This is my sale, along with the other consignors,” Schneck says. “I bring my best items, and I hope you bring your best items, too. This is not a garage sale, it’s consignment. If you wouldn’t buy it if it was offered by someone else, don’t bring it!”

Patrick says she’s proud to have more than 100 consignors and counting contributing to the fall sale — triple the number that sold at Lawrence’s first sale last fall. From her point of view, more goods mean more families benefiting on both sides of cash register.

“I am very proud of the fact that we are a mom-owned business,” Patrick says. “All of our owners are moms that are trying to contribute to their household income and still have the flexibility to be at home with our children.”


mwilburnaj 8 years, 10 months ago

I also heard that the popular Just Between Friends consignment sale now has a location in Lawrence. I just visited their website ( and it says that their sale is coming up September 17-19th. These sales are so awesome. It is a great way to take care of your kids and watch your money at the same time. What a blessing! You can consign at the Just Between Friends sale coming up and make up to 70% on your items. You also get to shop early if you have some time to volunteer! Can't wait! I love bargains!

Julie Jacob 8 years, 10 months ago

I wish they would offer larger sizes. I have a 5th grader who is in size 16 kids which bops os out of the Kidzcloset sale.

Now anyone wanna tell me why the Lawrence JBF sale is charging $3 admission when none of the other Kansas sales seem to be? I see that they might have junior sized stuff to fit my daughter, but I'm not going to pay $6 for us to find out.

ksarmychick 8 years, 10 months ago

The prices for this event last year were outragious. I could have bought the same items at the store new for cheeper than what some of the consigners were selling them for. I also bought my daughter a toy that the seller claimed to work and it just needed batteries only to take it home and it didn't work. I won't recommend going to this sale, it really was just a bunch of over priced junk. I plan to stick to garage sales where I can find clothing for 25 cents an item.

the jbf sale only charges admisson on the 1st day and by going to thier website you can print off a coupon for free admission.

amurkin 8 years, 10 months ago

Yes, JBF Lawrence does charge admission on the first day, only open to the public. The admisson on Friday, Sept 18th is $3.00. If shoppers bring two (2) non-parishable food items, admission is $1.00, this goes to benefit Lawrence food pantry "Just Foods". All money collected from admission charges will be donated to Women's Transitional Care Services, a home for battered and abused women and their children. Children get in free.

There is a free Coupon listed on the website ( and on craigslist as well.

tmurkin 8 years, 10 months ago

The JBF sale has always been an outstanding way to earn money for my daughters clothes. I also LOVE shopping at it. Volunteering is a great way to get into the presale and get even better deals. As far as the charging for admission, I don't mind at all since it is all going to charity. If you don't want to pay it, it is very easy to get a free admissions ticket. I highly recommend checking out the first ever Lawrence JBF sale!!!!

SouthernBelle 8 years, 10 months ago

Does it really all go to a local charity Ms. Murkin? From the looks of the website, it doesn't seem that way.

amurkin 8 years, 10 months ago

SouthernBelle, Yes, all of the admissions collect will be donated to WTCS, and all foods collected will be donated to Just Foods. It is part of the JBF mission that our communities benefit from our events. All JBF franchises work very closely with charities, either by donating unsold clothing/toys (donated items are designated by the consignors), or by monitary donations. My hope is that as this community event grows, so will the donations to local charities.

You are correct, there is not a page on the that is dedicated to our Charities. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I will have the issue taken care of my by the end of the week. Please feel free to check back.

sunflowers 8 years, 9 months ago

If you really looked, KCC carries boys clothes through 16 and young mens. They also carry teen girls clothes. It all depends on what comes in. The earlier you shop, the better the selection. As far as outrageous prices, I don't think so! If you're unhappy, don't shop there but don't trash a sale so many of us like. Go to the Kids Closet website and read all about it. You don't have to "volunteer" to receive 70% of the sale price. Everyone gets 70% all the time...for every sale!! I see these other comments were posted before the sale even opened so, you really don't know what was at the sale, do you??

kidsclosetlawrence 8 years, 3 months ago

Consignors & Shoppers! Feel free to still leave comments on this page. It is still attached to my website so people will still see your current comments! Thanks so much Lawrence families for making Kids Closet such a Great sale!! Don't forget to pass the word about our easy transfer program! You can transfer to another KCC sale with no fee! We now have Closet Cash! You earn even more money for every dollar you spend at Kids Closet! Have a great weekend & I can't wait to see you in April! Tammy

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