When I discovered Plato’s Closet, I was obsessed. I find so many of my favorite brands for clothing and accessories there with huge discounts. Plato’s Closet is a consignment clothing store franchise owned by Winmark, meaning that each store is owned and ran by different people, so each store is different. But, they do share some similarities, which I’ll tell you about you here.
It’s a great place to sell the clothes you’ve fallen out of love with, or just never wear to get some money back. And heck, with all the looming shortages this year, buying secondhand is not only a good idea for the environment, it’s an awesome way to get high quality designer clothes at bargain prices. And seriously, what teenager wouldn’t want a Gucci belt for Christmas (for the price of a Walmart one)?
Here are the best ways to sell and save:
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1. Shop Plato’s Closet 90% clearance sale at least twice a year.
Plato’s Closet usually has clearance sales at the start of spring and winter (Boxing Day Sale Dec. 26), but depending on their inventory, may have more. Also, each store holds their own sale events, since they’re franchises. For example, the Plato’s Closet in Lafayette holds a Back-to-School tailgate sale event every August.
2. Clearance items are marked with a yellow sticker and at least 50% off.
Clearance prices change regularly with their sales. They are usually at least 50% off their regular prices, but can also go up to 90%. They usually will have a rack dedicated to just clearance, but it’s always a good habit to double-check the tag to make sure it wasn’t misplaced.
3. Look on Plato’s Closet Facebook for what they’re buying.
Plato’s Closet puts on their Facebook page what they want to buy. Things I always see: Boots, Sneakers and Denim.
The good news is that they’ll pay you on the spot for what they want. The bad news is they’re picky about what they accept. If you’re selling your clothes, make sure to launder them and make them look nice before bringing them in to increase your chance of selling.
4. If they buy your clothes, it will usually be around 30 – 40% of the price you bought them at.
They sell your clothes for 70% off retail prices, so in order to make a profit, they don’t want to spend much to buy them. They’ll buy basic things like T-shirts for around $2.
5. They won’t buy clothes that are ripped or worn.
You have a much better chance of selling your clothes if they look new or nearly new. But heck, if it’s a Burberry coat, they’ll for sure make an exception, but you won’t get as much money for it.
6. Plato’s Closet typically buys girls’ clothes size 0 – 30 and boys’ 28 – 42 waist.
Though this can change depending on the store, but this is what I found at my store. Plus, Plato’s Closet states these sizes on their website and Facebook page.
7. Save up to 15% on gift cards at Gift Card Granny or Raise.
One of the easiest ways to save a little money is by finding discounted gift cards on Gift Card Granny or Raise. Plato’s Closet cards go fast, so you might want to set up an alert so you know when to buy!
8. It takes about three weeks for Plato’s Closet to put items on clearance.
If you see something you’ve just got to have, I’d grab it ASAP. But if you aren’t too worried about losing it, come back in a few weeks to see if it made its way to the clearance rack.
9. Join their loyalty program to get up to 20% off your purchase.
Join the FIVESTARS loyalty program and you will earn 1 point for every $1 sold or spent.
So if you bring in a bag of clothes to sell and they decide they’ll give you $20 for a few of the items, you will receive 20 points.
- Earn 200 points and receive $5 off your purchase
- Earn 300 points and receive $10 off your purchase
- Earn 400 points and receive 20% off your purchase
10. Take 25% off your purchase by picking up a part-time job.
If you shop there enough, you might as well just work there and get an employee discount. Just so you’re aware, employee discounts are different between locations.
11. Join the VIP Email List and follow Plato’s Closet on FB for the best deals.
Not only do you receive exclusive offers by signing up with your email, but you get a heads-up on when the sales are. Facebook is also a great place to get notifications about their upcoming sales.
12. Students and military get 10% off, depending on location.
Unfortunately, my Plato’s Closet doesn’t offer military or student discounts, but some locations do. Call your store to find out if yours has them, and when they are.
13. Unless there are special perks (check your store), get cash instead of store credit when you sell your clothes.
You can get in-store credit when selling your clothes, but, at least for my store, there aren’t any perks. So unless they tell you about a better deal by getting in-store credit, stick with cash so you can use it anywhere.
14. Shop Plato’s Closet on Fridays and Mondays — avoid Saturdays.
Stores tend to stock up new items right before their busy weekend and right after to restock the picked-over shelves, so Thursday/Friday and Monday usually are the best time to find the new stock.
Saturdays are their busiest day of the week. If you’re able to make it on a weekday, you can count on a shorter wait, especially if you want to sell clothes.
15. Scoop up accessories and basic wardrobe pieces for around $2.
Even when you aren’t having any luck in the clothes section of Plato’s Closet, the accessory section is a must. Most items are priced at just around $2. At that price, it’s a pretty great deal. Just be sure to sanitize earrings before using them!
16. Just because it’s cheap at Plato’s Closet doesn’t mean it’s a good deal.
I know that $8 pair of Hollister jeans looks like an awesome deal, but don’t buy them without a second thought.
Because they carry so many brands — and sizes vary between brands — it’s hard to know how everything is going to fit. Use the dressing rooms before you buy, or that’s gonna be $8 on something you’ll never wear.
17. Take your time to browse all the racks.
Because it’s a resale shop, they don’t have repeats of many items and don’t have the same stuff in every size. Make sure you look through every rack, though, before giving up. It’ll be worth the time you spend.
18. Be sure to check out grand opening sales for free gift cards.
Because Plato’s Closet is a franchise, new ones open all over the U.S. Get on the email list and they’ll telling you when a new store is opening and where. Each time a new store opens, shoppers line up because there are always freebies and giveaways. Some that I’ve seen:
- Hazeldean, Alberta, Canada: Customers in line got free donuts and coffee, played trivia for prizes, and were entered to win a $500 shopping spree
- Cookeville, TN: The first 25 people in line opening day got. $10 giftcard. Everyone who came to opening day was entered to win a designer backpack/purse.