Monday, July 25, 2016

Boutique Blow Out Bargains

My local quilt guild hosts a Boutique fundraiser as part of our monthly meetings.  Members donate books, magazines, fabric and notions, and the team of Boutique volunteers price them to sell at the next meeting (Books range from $1 to $7, magazines are generally 5 for $1, and fabric just a few dollars/yard).  I always check out each month's offerings and typically pick up some new fabric and/or reading material at a bargain price!
Boutique Sales, Notions Table

On average, the Boutique raises $500-600/meeting (which goes a long way in keeping membership costs down, as well as supporting our philanthropic efforts within the community).  However, not everything gets purchased and several boxes of goodies must be transported back to the storage unit.  Over the course of the membership, the collection of unsold items was approaching 75+ boxes and was quickly filling up the storage unit.  The Boutique volunteers came up with a brilliant idea to host a Boutique Sale at our July meeting, where members bring their own paper or cloth grocery bag and fill it with books, fabrics and notions for the bargain price of $5 per bag!!

It took an army of volunteers to transport and set out the 75+ boxes of goodies onto 20+ large tables!!  Many of our members arrived extra early to get first pick and fill their bags!  

I was sure to bring a bag just in case I found enough items to fill it.  I started to scope out the tables and found a book or two here, and then some fun fabrics over there, then some more books, more fabric, and soon my arms were full and I had a bag's worth of goodies!!   I found four fun books with great inspiration, along with fabric yardage ranging from a fat quarter to several yards including some Kaffe prints, stripes/plaids, novelty and several meters of this wonderful ethnic printed fabric (that one of the volunteers shared was an African Kanga cloth that creates wrap dresses/skirts).  While I have no immediate plans for any of the fabrics, I am on the look out for the perfect project to utilize that gorgeous Kanga fabric!!   
My Bargain Finds:  books, fabric and a Kanga cloth
I was just one of about 200 members that participated in the sales...and by the end of the meeting, the tables were mostly visible as just a few books and fabrics remained, and lots of empty boxes were stashed underneath!  Compared to the 75 jam-packed boxes that were laid out at the start of the meeting, the unsold items fit into 3 boxes total!!  One volunteer filled their SUV with all the broken down empty boxes and bins, and the remaining unsold items tucked in nicely in another volunteer's vehicle!!
Sales Success--Lots of Empty Boxes and Just a Few Books/Fabrics Left
Many thanks to the organizers and all the volunteers that made this sales such a huge success!!  It was truly a win-win-win scenario:  happy members/shoppers, empty storage unit and increased revenue to support the association's activities!!  Let's hope this becomes an annual tradition!!

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