If you’re looking to shave some fat from your Spring clothing budget, why not give secondhand shopping a second thought? Consignment shops these days are courting customers from all income brackets with top notch presentation and pristine pre-worn items. You can save some serious cash without sacrificing an iota of style if you hit the right spots in our two towns.
Maplewood in particular is a Mecca for second secondhand shops. On Ridgewood Avenue alone you’ll find three offerings that offer fashions to fit most everyone in the household, and the town's newcomer to the category, , is holding its own on Springfield Avenue.
First stop, - this charming flagship shop of the Milk Money franchise makes clothing rapidly growing children a lot less painful on your wallet. You’ll find new and nearly new basics and posh picks from designers like Ralph Lauren and Lilly Pulitzer to higher end chains like Gap and Gymboree for newborns to tweens, boys and girls.
The store is picky about items it takes in on consignment and it shows in the high quality good condition garments, shoes, accessories and toys you’ll find on the racks and shelves. 410 Ridgewood Rd, Maplewood, NJ 07040 (Next to Cupcake Corral) | 973-313-1061
West Village Clothing Co. – a great place to find trend without a lot of spend. This hip little boutique courts the female teen scene and the young at heart and is more interested in style than labels. Scouring the racks with an open mind will pay off at the register and the mirror, too! Known as a great spot for date night tops and steals on stylish jeans, also make sure to peruse their purse section; I scored a brand new Banana Republic leather bag for $12 last season. 410 Ridgewood Rd, Maplewood, NJ 07040 | 973-762-1700
– this Ridgewood retail pioneer is run by charismatic siblings Nancy and Jean. The sisters are Maplewood-born, South Orange-raised and set up their 25 years ago. The two level shop favors traditional luxe, chic ladies fashions and furnishing for those looking for signature style. The gals also pride themselves in procuring pieces on request. If you crave it, they’ll try to find it – all at prices that won’t spoil your appetite – or budget.
Shoes, boots and bags are a big draw here, but so are the sparkling array of jewelry you’ll find buy the register. Keep an eye out for frequent themed sales and special clearance racks. 410 Ridgewood Road | 973- 761-7450
– this little-known gem opened on the corner of Springfield Avenue and Ohio mid-July and has been turning heads with its creative window displays ever since. If you’ve been in this unique resale shop you’ll agree it lives up to its name; you’ll never know what you’ll find in this surprising place.
Knock offs nestle next to the real deal here and everything has passed by the eye of Nancy, the glamorous owner who prides herself in customer service with fierce stylist savvy. An open mind is your best shopping companion at this category defying boutique. 1945 Springfield Avenue, Maplewood | 973.763.SHOP (7467)
Now, to Millburn:
- this is THE first-rate secondhand shop in the area. The labels here read like a ‘who’s who’ of fashion’s finest - Gucci, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana – just to name a few. DoubleTake is a boutique frugal fashionistas frequent to keep their look cutting edge and their closets less cluttered (thanks to the consignment option).
And customers have had an insatiable appetite for the DoubleTake formula – the boutique’s flagship Short Hills shop met with instant success when it opened in 1992 and has grown to four locations and even offers online shopping.
“We serve a really wide demographic,” explains DoubleTake’s, CEO Marci Kessler. “We get everyone in, from ladies who own multi-million dollar homes to their babysitters. Personal shoppers come in, too. People shop with us because they know they’ll find great displays and merchandise with personal, attentive service for ¼ of the original price.”
The bargains you’ll find here are relative (a $2,500 bag for $400 still sounds steep to those of us who aren’t exactly connoisseurs of Couture), but those in the know say it’s THE only place to go when it comes to top tier threads at serious savings. Luckily, lower end labels- and prices - are to be found here, too – especially on the sale racks and seasonal clearance events.
“We offer our shoppers the personal service they expect at a high end boutique,” explains Kessler. “People want great quality at a great price and DoubleTake offers both with great service.” 774 Morris Tpke, Short Hills, NJ 07078 | 973-564-6464
Happy shopping - and savings!