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Henrietta Gwathmey Beightol in her store Indigo Avenue.
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Indigo Avenue in Carytown.
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Kid’s consignment shop clover carries brands including Baby Lulu, Catimini and Lacoste
As the most recent consignment boutique to set up shop in Carytown, Indigo Avenue should feel right at home in the shopping district that's quickly becoming Richmond's consignment central. The upscale women's-clothing shop in Carytown opened as a sister store to its Ridge Road location at the beginning of April.
Carytown's active retail atmosphere and bustling sidewalks provide an ideal location for this type of business, says owner Henrietta Gwathmey Beightol. "It's an eclectic area, and I think it's conducive to consignment shopping."
The new location at 3324 W. Cary St., next to Bangles and Beads and across from the Water Grill, carries designer clothes from brands including Free People Clothing Boutique, J. Crew and Lilly Pulitzer.
"With the economy, people just don't have the money to spend at retail shops," Beightol says. "I think [consignment] is an idea that's catching on."
Ciao owner Cathy Redding caught wind of the consignment-shopping trend about a year and a half ago, opening a boutique above her luxurious hippie-style clothing shop at 3130 W. Cary St.
"We might not be as selective as some other consignment stores in Carytown," Redding says, adding that they sell clothing, shoes and accessories on consignment at one half to one third of the original price.
Ciao's consignment boutique carries a wide variety of items upstairs, including Louis Vuitton bags and clothing from Ciao's Carytown neighbor, The Phoenix.
Also new to the consignment scene is the recently opened It's Hip to be Round location in Cary Court. The revamped maternity-wear shop, opened by owner Christa Donohue on Mother's Day weekend, has a high-end maternity consignment section at the back of the store.
"Lots of women have purchased a beautiful maternity wardrobe, and we wanted to offer an easy option for moms to be able to consign their clothes without a lot of hassle," Donohue says.
The consignment section will carry all of the brands merchandised in the store, including Olian, Ripe Maternity and Japanese Weekend, as well as a selection of upscale brands not sold in the main area of the shop.
A few doors down, clover offers trendy consignment clothing, accessories and gift items for newborns to children's size 12.
The shop, which opened in July 2010 at 3105 W. Cary St., includes a play and movie area at the back of the store, so moms can shop even with a child in tow.
"It keeps the kids busy so that the moms can roam around without having to worry," says store manager Jill DeLo.
Clover's parent store, Clementine , is located just across the street at 3118 W. Cary St. The boutique, voted "best consignment-clothing shop" by the readers of Richmond magazine in 2010, carries jeans from designers including 7 For All Mankind, Citizens of Humanity and True Religion, as well as contemporary women's clothes, handbags and new shoes.
Along with the plethora of new-to-the-block consignment boutiques is The Hall Tree , a Carytown fixture at 12 S. Thompson St. for nearly 40 years.
"We've kind of become an institution," owner Joan Williams says with a laugh.
Although the shop dates to 1972, Williams says it carries only the most recent styles.
"We don't like older couture," Williams says. "People that are shopping here want everything that is in style right now, so we pretty much refuse everything else."
A Consigner's Guide
Consignment shops request that the gently used or new items you bring be laundered and wrinkle-free, with secure buttons and functional zippers. Most stores also prefer items to be neatly folded in a box rather than on hangers.
Ciao (355-1050 or ciaoboutique.com ) — Come in during regular business hours: Sunday, noon to 5:30 p.m.; Monday or Tuesday, noon to 6 p.m.; and Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. No appointment necessary and no fee to consign. The salesperson will sort through items on the spot and keep the items they select for three months. Consigners get 50 percent of the sale price. After three months, items will be donated to a thrift store.
Clementine (358-2357 or sweetclementine.com ) — Call the store to schedule an appointment: Tuesdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. or every other Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. No fee to consign. The salesperson will inspect items while you wait and select items that are in season and in excellent condition. The store will keep items for a maximum of 60 days; after that time period, the items will be donated to charity unless the consigner requests to pick them up. The consigner gets 50 percent of the sale price.
clover (355-3517 or cloverkids.com ) — Call the store to schedule an appointment: Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. or every other Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. No fee to consign. The salesperson will take about 20 minutes to sort through the items and will select items that are clean, current and in season. It could take four to six weeks for items to be displayed on the sales floor; items are displayed for 60 days before being donated to charity. The consigner gets 50 percent of the sale price.
Indigo Avenue (354-0914 or indigoavenueclothes.com ) — Come in during regular business hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. No appointment necessary and no fee to consign. The salesperson will sort through items on the spot and keep the items they select for two months. Consigners get 45 percent of the sale price. After two months, items will be donated to a thrift store.
The Hall Tree (358-9985 or thehalltreerichmond.com ) — Consignments are accepted from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Consigners pay an annual fee of $20. Items selected will be placed on sale for 42 days. The consigner gets 40 percent of the sale price.
It's Hip to be Round (340-1700 or hiptoberound.com ) — Call or contact the store via the website to schedule an appointment during business hours, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. No fee to consign. The salesperson will sort through the items on the spot and select clothes that meet the shop's quality standards and are in season. The consigner gets 50 percent of the sale price, and the shop will keep items until the end of the season.