Fashion and Clothing Archives - 500 Ways

12 Unique Ways To Make Money With Secondhand Clothing

© Copyright 2013-2022, Jeff Napier

Table of Contents

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Getting Clothing

Garage Sales

Professional Thrift Store Buyer

Craigslist and Reputation

A Buying Website

A Clothing Exchange

Donation Boxes

Selling Clothing

Garage Sales, Flea Markets and Co-ops

Your Own Retail Store

Consignment Stores

Your Own Consignment Store


Route Sales

Modifying Clothes




Pet Clothing

Celebrity Clothing


Genuine Bits


Doll Clothes


Buttons and Accessories




The Final Bit

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Dealing with secondhand clothing is rewarding in many ways. First, you are treading a light footprint on the earth. You are eliminating the need for the manufacturing and transportation of new clothing, with its attendant energy waste and pollution. This also eliminates the waste of disposing of clothes that still have life left in them. The other side of the coin is that you are helping people who couldn’t otherwise afford to put themselves and their children in good clothes, and dress fashionably.

Most of these business ideas can be started with little or no money, time or experience. Some are great partnership opportunities, so you can get your friends, your family, your church or group involved in the fun and profit.

The profit can be what you want. You can just dabble, making some rainy day money, or build a business into a clothing empire. These are not get-rich-quick schemes. They are get-rich-slow schemes.

Just to give you an example, one business I started was a clothing exchange, which I’ll explain in full detail later in this book. I made a profit while giving away free clothing. I was especially happy when low-income parents came in and got literally boxes of clothing for all their children and themselves, and didn’t have to pay a cent. I remember one woman drove up in a beat-up 1970s station wagon with a broken exhaust system, and running on 7 of its 8 cylinders. She and her four children came in, and picked out their own full wardrobes. They left without having to pay one cent, which I doubt they had anyway. That month, and every month, I gave away $44,000 in free clothing, and made $5,000 for myself in the process. I only ran the business for four months because I’m a business writer, not a ‘clothing exchange guy,’ but I did have fun while the experiment lasted. There is room for at least one free clothing exchange in every community in the world.

If that doesn’t float your boat, read on, because I’ll talk about all sorts of creative ideas from custom tailoring to eBay sales. You may want to read this ebook in sequence, even if some of these ideas aren’t for you, because in each section, you will find many useful and effective business tips you can use in whatever business you take up.

You may want to use these ideas directly, or use bits and pieces in a business of your own invention.

Have fun & prosper! – Jeff Napier

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Naturalist – Naturist

These two similar words can have vastly different meanings. A naturalist is one who studies or appreciates nature. A naturist can be nearly the same thing: One who appreciates beauty in nature. However a naturist can also be one who enjoys going without clothes whenever proper opportunities come up. There can be a sexual side to naturism, but more often it is practiced as a way to be more ‘natural.’ Naturism can be a very freeing experiece for one who has spent most of life covered in cloth. Many claim health benefits, feeling a reaonable amount of sunshine over one’s entire body is more beneficial than exposing only some portions of the body to the sun’s ultraviolet radiation. A growing body of evidence suggests most of us don’t get enough vitamin D. However, some scientists are now saying as much exposure as one can get to sunlight will not give us optimum vitamin D. On the other hand, too much tanning can be bad for one’s health also. Go figure!

Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

Splitting the World’s Largest Diamond

The diamond cutter who had the honor of splitting the world’s largest diamond, about 5 inches long, was Jacob Ascher. On the afternoon of February 10, 1908, he cut a groove with another diamond (since only diamonds can cut diamonds) in just the right place, as carefully as he could calculate, then he laid a blade in the groove and tapped on it. The diamond broke, and Jacob immediately fainted. When he recovered, he discovered that the diamond had broken just right, exactly as he had hoped.