Swap ’till You Drop

Swap ’till You Drop

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We all have those articles of clothing that looked good on the hanger, but not on you. Or that handbag that looks cute but doesn’t go with anything in your closet? Instead of letting these items suffer a slow death of loneliness, get your girlfriends together for a swap party. It’s a great excuse to clean out your closet and get together with your girlfriends to swap your unwanted items with your latest gossip.


So swapping clothes won’t actually get your closet any emptier, especially if you have had your eye on that cute skirt in your girlfriend’s closet. But at least you’ll be cleaning out what you don’t wear any more! And if you have anything left over, don’t put it back. Instead, donate it to a charity. Here’s your step-by-step guide to throwing your very own clothing swap party.0208GIBBERMAN.gif


Get your girlfriends together. The first step for planning a party is letting everyone know about it. Send out simple e-vites or, if you’re the crafty type, make some chic invites to send out the old fashioned way. Be sure to give your girlfriends at least a few weeks notice so that they can have time to clean out their closets too. About 10 attendees is usually a safe amount. You want to have enough “merchandise” but not have to spend your entire day refereeing your friends. 


Get your clothes together. Go through your closet and look for those items that you keep glossing over each morning. Why aren’t you wearing them? If it’s because they’re worn out or out of fashion, toss them or give them to charity. If it’s because they don’t fit you right, they probably will on someone else so they are swap party worthy! Just remember to make sure all your swap party items are still in fashion and look like new. After selecting your swapping clothes, make sure your clothes are all clean and pressed — no one wants a dirty, wrinkled blouse! 


 0408OAKLEY.gifSet up your showroom. Here’s the fun part! You can set up your living room just like your own boutique. Place your refreshments somewhere out of the way and set up your merchandise. Consider getting a rolling rack to neatly display more pieces of clothing. RookieMoms.com offers labels to help you organize your clothing swap party. You will also want to make sure there is a place for your friends to try on their new outfits, and you should have plenty of mirrors for them to use. You can make a semi-private areas with folding screens or make a bedroom or bathroom available to them.  


Lay down the rules. Warning: Chaos could ensue if you unleash a group of chic women on a pile of cute clothing. So, at most swap parties, the host has to set ground rules. For example, you can roll dice around the circle and the woman to get the highest roll gets to pick first, the second highest picks second and so on. For that set-up, each person only takes one item on each round to ensure there’s plenty of good stuff for everyone!


Photo: Neysa Ruhl Photography
Location: The McAlpin
Models (left to right): Jeanne Hines, Emily Schellenbach and Julie Dolbier
Makeup Artistry: Cecily Claytor, Zoë Custom Cosmetics