Unique shop offers
parents new options
By JEAN GORDON
Daily Courier Staff Writer
SPINDALE – For years, Amy Tanner Revis had been talking about “WeeRuns” with her former high school and college friend, Deane Belk.
Belk, of High Point, encouraged Revis to join her in the business of selling children’s clothing, toys, equipment, furniture and maternity clothing on consignment.
When Revis’ children, Lauren, 3, and Evan, 1, were born, she became serious about Belk’s offer and decided to join the business as a sales manager.
“I wanted to stay home with the kids and this allows me to be able to work and make some money,” Revis said from the WeeRuns shop at Spindale Corners on U.S. 74-A Spindale. The shop is in the former Duke Power office.
The semi-annual sale is Saturday, Sept. 15, and Sunday, Sept. 16 and again on Sept. 22 as 100 sellers from Rutherford County, Shelby, Belmont and Spartanburg, S.C., have brought their items and have put them up for sale to the public.
Unlike many consignment businesses, WeeRuns conducts just two sales per year – one in the spring and one in fall – and reaches an untapped market here.
“People who may want to give away their clothing, (sic) can now sell here. You buy something and you get something in return,” she said.
This is Revis’ fourth semi-annual consignment sale and is also the largest. The spring sale that was held in the Tri-City Mall featured 57 sellers. Over in High Point, Belk, who just completed her second sale of the year, had a record 500 sellers.
The more sellers, the more buyers and those factors results (sic) in economic benefits.
“As tight as the economy is here with lay-offs and plant closings, what a great way to save money or make money. And the money that you can save here can go for other things,” Revis said.
In addition to the hundreds of clothing items – sizes newborn to 16 – toys, children’s furniture/equipment, maternity wear and a line of women’s clothing, on-site vendors will be present.
Vendors will include Daisy Enterprises, Icing on the Cake, Party Planning & More and Creative Memories.
Because of the vendors being present on sale days, it’s more than a consignment sale. “It’s an event,” she said.
At the shop last week, Alicia James of Spindale was putting tags on items she brought to sale.
“I made enough money at a recent sale to pay my month’s rent,” James said. The mother of two sons, she brings clothing her boys have outgrown as well as their toys.
The average seller makes $97 although at the last sale, one woman made $440. The only work involved for the sellers is they bring the items, tag them and put them in the proper place. Sellers receive pay checks one week after the sale.
The more items a person brings, the more money they (sic) make and also the greater selection for the public.
Sellers receive 60 percent of the profits with 40 percent going to WeeRuns.
Items that are in good shape will be sold at one-half to one-third of the original price. Some new items that still have the price tags attached are also for sale.
A new red Christmas sleeper for a 12-month old still has a $35 price tag on it. At WeeRuns it will be sold for $10. Another Christmas sleeper – white – and with the new price tags on it will be sold for $8.
Children’s clothing that are (sic) for sale on consignment includes brand names such as Jamboree (sic), Oshkosh, The Gap, Kelly’s Kids, Little Me and The Children’s Place.
“Someone might buy things at a discount store that are $1 or you can buy Jamboree (sic) clothing here for $7 and $8,” Revis said.
The clothes, however, do not have to be brand-names to be offered for sale.
This sale also features a line of women’s clothing.
“We decided to do this because there are a lot of mothers who are leaving the workplace who do not need this wardrobe and then there are mothers who are entering the workplace and they do need this,” Revis said.
The last day of the sale, Sept. 22 will feature half-price on most items. The half price sale is from 8 a.m. until 10 a.m. and 2 to 4 p.m. The shop will not be open during the annual Baby Fair.
Each of her opening-day sales have begun with long lines of people waiting to get inside. “This is a very competitive thing,” Revis said.
Because of the continued growth of the sale, she is adding more cash registers this year.
Revis needs helpers on the sales days to assist with customers and check-outs. In exchange for working four hours, the WeeRuns Helpers (sic) will be invited to a Helpers-Only Sale Thursday, Sept. 13 from 6 to 8 p.m. This sale will not be open to the public. If interested in helping call 288-0025.
When Revis decided to become a part of WeeRuns, she developed her own mailing list of 1,500 people in Rutherford County that she collected from church directories, word-of-mouth and from groups such as “Mother’s Morning Out.”
Postcards and information were sent to prospective buyers and sellers.
James said an attractive feature of the sale is that all the merchandise is organized. “It’s together, easy to find, separated, very clean.”
All the clothing items are displayed on racks or shelves. The toys are on one side of the room and furniture on the other. One room features maternity clothing and the other, the line of women’s clothing.
“Here we are selling the items that might bring a quarter at a yard sale.”
“We’re pretty picky about the quality of the clothing,” Revis said.
When a seller brings items in, the person prices the items and then arranges them. If they need help, Revis gladly assists.
Even some of the tags are interesting, she said.
“One note says, ‘this (sic) is a 5T, but fits 2T better,’ another says, “(sic) You’ll love these snow boots.”
“And we have four catalogues that list recall items,” she continued.
If an item is brought in that might be in question, the Recall Catalogues (sic) are consulted.
Someone brought a playpen in recently that had exposed hinges. It was sent back.
A basketball goal was brought it (sic) without its net. Revis has a toll free number so parents can order the net.
Although the sale is only three days – excluding a private sale and a helper’s sale – Revis is on-site for one month, getting WeeRuns up and ready for the public.
“Thank goodness for landlords who will rent short term,” she said.
The last two sales were held at the Tri-City Mall and her first sale was held in Rutherfordton.
Typically, she rents space for one month.
Husband Joey Revis – who has taken two weeks off from his job at Hospice to help with the event and the couple’s children – helped her transport all the fixtures for the sale from Hickory to Spindale just last week.
Sellers who don’t want to take their items back home after the sale donate them to WeeRuns who in turn donates all the items to a charity. Donations will be given to the Hospice Resale Shop. In the past items have also been donated to the Yokefellow Service Center.
Contact Gordon via e-mail at email@example.com
Reprinted from the Tuesday, September 11, 2001 edition of The Daily Courier, pages 1 and 6.