Getting Real About Consigning

I outlined my consignment strategy in this post last year, but there was one resource I left out: The RealReal.  I did this on purpose, because at the time I had just sent in my first shipment and wanted to see how everything went before I publicized a recommendation.

You may have heard of The RealReal: it’s probably the most visible destination for luxury consignment online.  And wow, there are some serious details to be had on a variety of authenticated couture clothing, shoes, accessories, and yes, fine jewelry if you’re on the shopping end!

For those of us consigning, the process is quite easy.  If you have ten or more items to consign, a Real Real consultant will come to your home to eyeball your pieces in person and take them away for you.  I had just eight items to sell, so I didn’t get the white glove service.  Instead, they sent me a mailing label with free shipping that I could attach to the box or package of my choice.  Be sure to check their designer list before sending in any items – it is limited both in terms of label and vintage.

My items were received, sorted, priced, and listed within a week.  Seven pieces were accepted, one rejected.  I was not, by the way, surprised that my pink Burberry raincoat from 1999 was rejected even though it was in great shape – I just had to try!  Said raincoat was neatly packaged in a logo garment bag and shipped back to me at no charge.

My sales on therealreal.com (not the complete list)

As you can see from my listing, the actual sales do drag on – the last pair of shoes finally sold more than eight months after I originally sent in my shipment.  And good deals for shoppers and 60% commission for consigners mean that I didn’t make a huge chunk of change compared to what I originally spent on the pieces I sold.

The bottom line?

The RealReal is for you if:

  • You have a lot of true high end designer pieces you want to get rid of
  • You’re short on time and want to get it done easily

The RealReal might not be your best bet if:

  • You only have a few pieces to consign
  •  Your items are well used or you’ve owned them for quite some time
  • You want to make as much money as possible on your items

Now that I know the best kind of consigner for The Real Real, I’ll certainly be recommending it to my clients who fit that description! 

LMW