or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Archives › Buying and Selling (Archive) › B&S Archive › Wholesale/bulk purchases for resale
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Wholesale/bulk purchases for resale

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Hopefully someone here will be able to help me out with this, because I've had little luck elsewhere. I'm interested in buying small to medium-sized lots of designer clothing (previous-season). I'd be able to spend up to $600 to start out with, but would hopefully purchase more later on. I'd like to get at least 15-20 pieces for that amount. This will be to resell on ebay. I'd be interested in designer brands only, i.e. no Tommy, Gap, Nautica, etc. Anyone know a source for me to buy from?
post #2 of 18
VM- I think this belongs in the Buying and Selling area. Good Luck.
post #3 of 18
Vman - I've been through the same thought process... the problem is that so have 30000 other people. To get small lots sometimes you can on Ebay - we recently bought a large lot for around $3k on Ebay to resell but it's a dicey proposition. Dicier still is the advertised 'pallet loads' of stuff from high end store overstocks. You can wind up with lots of pantyhose in them :-) No easy solution, I know the problem - it sure would be nice to have 30 of the same thing so you can do one ad, right? ...it just doesn't always work that way. keep being hungry and be creative. You can get large lots - we do from manufacturers sometimes on last season stuff they HAVE to move cheap but you are talking $20grand worth, not a few hundred. Take that 600, find ten things at $60 you can sell for $150 and keep going that way. Patience, grasshopper.
post #4 of 18
I agree with Carlos -- it is an opportunistic business. And risky if you do not know what you are buying sight unseen. I have found bulk deals on eBay, bought them, and then turned around and flipped them back on eBay as individual sales and more than doubled my money. It is indeed do-able. Selling on eBay is easy. Sourcing the goods is the hard part. Don't forget about upscale outlet stores -- find a store manager willing to wheel and deal to get inventory moved off of his floor...
post #5 of 18
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies, guys. I figured that there would be no real source for someone looking for a bundle less than $1000. I've been hitting up places like Marshall's and TJ Maxx (past-season retailers), looking for items selling below 'market value' to flip back on ebay. I picked up a nice pair of Hugo Boss pants and a pair of high-end ski pants to resell, as well as a few shirts from consignment shops. I've had marginal success with that: I purchased a Kenneth Cole jacket at Marshalls a few weeks ago on clearance for $20. Retail was $120. They had been going on ebay (same style and size) for $65-80. I only got $30 for mine, so I broke even after fees. My feedback is only 10+ so I think I need to build that up before I can make bigger profits. Logan, Do you think a manager at a store like Marshall's or TJ Maxx would be willing to deal with a younger person like me? Problem with those stores is that by the time clearance is being cleared out, the only stuff left wouldn't sell on ebay. Lots of Dockers, Tommy, Gap, stuff like that. I live about an hour and a half away from Chicago so Filene's Basement is a possibility. For some reason I doubt they would want to sell to a 19-year-old.
post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Funny side note about Marshalls: I'm in that store at least once a week. They get new stuff in all the time so you need to check back constantly if you want to grab it. I've gotten high-end things like a pair of Diesel jeans, a Diesel sweater, PDC jeans, a Theory sweater...I passed up a Bruno Magli leather jacket for $200 and I am still kicking myself over that... Anyway, I'm in there so much that the secret shopper always follows me around. Dead giveaway - I was watching him, and he was checking clothes in the small, medium, and XL racks....he was probably a large in actuality. He also followed me over to the shoe section and even to the women's clothes when I was looking with my girlfriend. This guy isn't great as a secret shopper because he's so recognizable, you spot him every time. He's a white guy and always wears huge FUBU jerseys, baggy jeans, and has a tattoo going up his neck and face.
post #7 of 18
Vman - store managers don't deal with people, they deal with quarterly numbers. A young hand with cash in it is more credible than an older empty one. Keep pluggin kid... 99% perspiration and very few shortcuts out there :-) ...but I do dream of finding that sale rack of $20 Brioni suits anyway :-)
post #8 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Vman - store managers don't deal with people, they deal with quarterly numbers.  A young hand with cash in it is more credible than an older empty one. Keep pluggin kid... 99% perspiration and very few shortcuts out there :-) ...but I do dream of finding that sale rack of $20 Brioni suits anyway :-)
Carlo, Thanks for the support. I'm planning on heading down to Chicago within the next few weeks, and was definately going to make stops at the two Filene's Basement locations (not sure if you are familiar with them - they are retailers of past season high-end goods). They have a few clearance racks with stuff like Zegna dress shirts (nice colors, pretty conservative) for $27 and some other nice things. I was planning on picking up a few of them, but then I got to thinking of your point "A young hand with cash in it is more credible than an older empty one". In your opinion, would I offend the store manager if I walked in there and offered to make a bulk purchase of items on the clearance rack for lower than the tagged clearance stickers? If I offered him, say, $1000 for $1300 worth of goods, or $500 for $700 worth of items? If I was him, I'd be happy to get rid of stuff that has been sitting on the 70% clearance racks for ages, but I don't know if others would view that differently.
post #9 of 18
Versaceman, I've been to the Chicago Filene's a few times. There's generally not that much stuff there which you could turn around and sell for a good profit on Ebay. There are some Bruno Magli shoes(though not cheap), but not much else of much potential resale value. I would recommend the Michigan Avenue Neiman Marcus and Saks, and the Neiman Marcus in Northbrook is a hidden gem at which you might find some end-of-season bargains since it's removed from downtown Chicago. The Northbrook Neiman Marcus probably has a better overall selection of menswear than the Michigan Avenue store. You might also try Nordstrom at ~500 N Michigan Avenue.
post #10 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Versaceman, I've been to the Chicago Filene's a few times.  There's generally not that much stuff there which you could turn around and sell for a good profit on Ebay.  There are some Bruno Magli shoes(though not cheap), but not much else of much potential resale value.  I would recommend the Michigan Avenue Neiman Marcus and Saks, and the Neiman Marcus in Northbrook is a hidden gem at which you might find some end-of-season bargains since it's removed from downtown Chicago.  The Northbrook Neiman Marcus probably has a better overall selection of menswear than the Michigan Avenue store.  You might also try Nordstrom at ~500 N Michigan Avenue.
Thanks for the tip. Where exactly is the northbrook NM? Do you think there would be any end-of-season bargains going on within the next week or two, or is that all gone?
post #11 of 18
The Northbrook NM is: 5000 Northbrook Court Northbrook, Illinois 60062 tel: 847.564.0300 I haven't gone there since the beginning of January, when they had some decent deals. I didn't buy anything, though. At this point I somewhat doubt that they have much(if any) clearance merchandise left. But find out when the summer Last Call is, and you might make some nice discoveries.
post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 
Banks, Thanks for the info. Are you from the Chicago area or the Midwest? Last time I was in Sak's and NM I was completely shunned and felt like trash. True, I didn't have the money to go on a shopping spree at those stores and I would rather have spend my money at Filene's and get three times the amount of clothes for my money. However, in the future I'd definately have more money to spend there...plus I don't see a problem with walking around and checking out current styles. It's not like a salesman was actually even trying to work with me, I didn't get a single 'hello' at either store.
post #13 of 18
Vman, At your age, yes, it might be hard for some salespeople to take you seriously. It could depend on how you dress when you walk in the store too. Do you look like a serious business person able to strike deals on the spot? One way you could get around the image problem -- when you have more money to invest in inventory -- is to fax a nice letter to a bunch men's stores near you. Tell 'em what you do. Tell 'em you're willing to listen to any offer they are willing to make in selling their residual inventory to you for CASH. At the end of a quarter, you may just get some calls. Buy only what you know you can flip for a profit on eBay. Lather, rinse, repeat. It's just an idea and may be worth a try. The phone might work too if you have a mature-sounding voice. Maybe if you form a professional first impression via a fax or telephone call, they'll take you seriously in person during their second impression.
post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Vman, At your age, yes, it might be hard for some salespeople to take you seriously. It could depend on how you dress when you walk in the store too. Do you look like a serious business person able to strike deals on the spot? One way you could get around the image problem -- when you have more money to invest in inventory -- is to fax a nice letter to a bunch men's stores near you. Tell 'em what you do. Tell 'em you're willing to listen to any offer they are willing to make in selling their residual inventory to you for CASH. At the end of a quarter, you may just get some calls. Buy only what you know you can flip for a profit on eBay. Lather, rinse, repeat. It's just an idea and may be worth a try. The phone might work too if you have a mature-sounding voice. Maybe if you form a professional first impression via a fax or telephone call, they'll take you seriously in person during their second impression.
Logan, Awesome tips, thanks. I don't think I'd have any problems dressing to show the managers that I am serious - I like to think thats something I do best. There are a few local stores I could try, they are smaller men's specialty shops. However, that may be hard for several reasons. There are maybe five trendy shops close to campus (Diesel, PDC, Seven, Lindeberg, etc) that cater to the younger crowds. They have 'clearance' sales of 25-30% off. I never see nicer brands on clearance. No PDC. No Seven. Sometimes Diesel, but usually only shirts. The only stuff that makes it is smaller-brands such as 4You. There are men's stores that cater to older men (40+) that sell Canali, Zegna, Jhane Barnes, Armani, etc. but the problem with their sales is the same. I wonder what smaller stores like that do with all their excess? I think a research trip is in order tomorrow. I think it was you that suggested to me before to focus on a few brands, and get to know what sells and for what price. Good advice. For now I've been doing dirty-work: combing thrift stores and consignment shops. Truely the cheapest place to obtain merchandise, but not exactly stable. This is definately at the bottom of the barrel when it comes to reselling. However, I can tell that MANY others have the same idea I do. When I make it to Goodwills and Salvation Armys on Saturday afternoon, the lots are literally packed. Some of the newer buildings have parking lots that can hold 100+ cars. They are always full. And full of BMWs, Benz's, Audis. Not exactly people that need budget clothing. Plus, the people carrying huge piles of clothes in all sizes are a giveaway. Once they go through the store, the going is tough. However, it helps to know some lesser-known brands. I was behind a woman grabbing big-name bands, and I stealthily snagged a Dunhill dress shirt, Donna Karan signature shirt, and a Lorenzini shirt that she passed over.
post #15 of 18
Quote:
Are you from the Chicago area or the Midwest? Last time I was in Sak's and NM I was completely shunned and felt like trash. True, I didn't have the money to go on a shopping spree at those stores and I would rather have spend my money at Filene's and get three times the amount of clothes for my money. However, in the future I'd definately have more money to spend there...plus I don't see a problem with walking around and checking out current styles. It's not like a salesman was actually even trying to work with me, I didn't get a single 'hello' at either store.
Yup, just north of Chicago. I agree with your assessment, that the NM and Saks salespeople in general know how not to be very helpful, and in some cases(such as the man with glasses in charge of the Kiton and Oxxford "boutique" at Saks) know how to be downright condescending. If you know what you're looking for, though(it seems you do) I'm sure you will manage just fine at both NM and Saks. Logan, whom I will certainly defer to especially since he is an established Ebay seller, has a good idea. You could contact these people ahead of time by impersonal means(not face to face) by phoning or faxing. You could also try Saks Off Fifth and any NM Last Call locations. The Saks Off Fifth at Old Orchard in Skokie is pretty bad.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: B&S Archive
Styleforum › Forums › Archives › Buying and Selling (Archive) › B&S Archive › Wholesale/bulk purchases for resale