How Can I Sell Jewelry I Don’t Want Anymore?

This is a question I am often asked, and one that I’ve thought about a lot lately. I’ve been doing some MAJOR purging the past month or so, in both my closet and my jewelry box. I’ve become increasingly clear on my personal style, and I realized that so much of what I own isn’t resonating with that style. I keep asking myself, “Would I buy this today?” More often than not, the answer is, “No.” So out it goes. I’m striving to have an extremely edited wardrobe, with way fewer pieces that are the best quality I can afford, and things that I absolutely love. I relish having so much space between hangers in my closet, and empty areas in my jewelry box.

While I’ve traditionally used a brick and mortar consignment store for my clothes, bags, and shoes, I haven’t really known what to do with my jewelry, aside from giving it to friends and family. It’s not like I’m getting rid of super fine pieces from Cartier or Bulgari (since I don’t own anything like that!). I’m talking more fashion jewelry, from J. Crew to Tiffany & Co. (Side note: I have sold a couple pieces on Craig’s List, but I don’t like all the work it takes and having to set up a time/place to meet the buyer.) I want to share how I’m going about selling my purged items. First up, I took each piece I wanted to sell, put it in an individual baggie, with a sticky note with the designer and purchase price.


Purged jewelry, all organized
Purged jewelry, all organized

j.crew necklace
stephen dweck necklace
You may wonder how I knew the purchase price of each item. Believe it or not, I’m so OCD, that I actually have spreadsheets of everything I own, with their original purchase price. I update this twice a year. I also keep all the receipts in a binder, in separate sections for each category. (i.e. kitchen items, linens, jewelry, art, etc.)  If you aren’t as nuts as I am, you can easily find out what items sell for with little online search.

So now that that (very long) project was done, where to take them? For the majority of the items, I’m utilizing an online resale site called Threadflip. This Bay Area-based company, which was referred to me by a fellow image consultant, has been a breeze to deal with. Once they received all my items, they went through them, photographed them, and added a detailed description, including a rating of the condition of each item. Then, they are all placed in my virtual “closet,” which I named Amy SF Stylist. Click here to take a peek inside! (And of course, feel free to shop if something is calling your name!)


A snapshot of my "closet"
A snapshot of my “closet”

It’s such a clever melding of social media and consignment, as I get “followers” who like what they see, and then people can also “like” individual items. (Boy, there are certainly a lot of people who’ve “liked” my Mulberry leather bracelet!) When an item sells, or “flips”, I can see where it’s going and track progress. When the sale is complete, money is automatically put into my Threadflip account, which I can then transfer to my own bank. How cool is that? The commission rate depends on the selling price of the item. The more expensive the item, the higher percentage you receive, up to 80% of the selling price for items selling for over $75. I’m only about 10 days into this process, and at this time, I’ve flipped 15 pieces. I assume that the more followers and traffic I get, then the more quickly I’ll sell things. I really enjoy checking in each day to see what’s happening in my “closet.”

Now for my designer jewelry (that with a brand name, such as David Yurman and Tiffany & Co.), I’m giving The Real Real a spin. I don’t have much jewelry in this category, so I just had a few pieces to give them. This site also does a fabulous job photographing the items and writing a description. Here’s an example of one of my Yurman bracelets I sold.



I must say, that my items are selling very quickly on this site. They pay out once a month, via either a check or direct deposit. I gave them my jewelry at the end April, and they were having a special commission rate for jewelry that month (lucky me!), so I’m getting 70% of the sale, instead of the normal 60%. Both of these rates are definitely higher than I’ve gotten in the past from consignment stores.

With both of these sites, if items don’t sell, you can request them back or have them donated. In addition, if there are items submitted that don’t fit their qualifications, you can get them back as well.

While I was purging, I also came across a small handful of old sterling earrings from the 80’s. I decided to head to a local family-owned store, Numis International in Millbrae, and just sell them for their weight in silver.

silver earrings
They were so friendly and efficient. Though my earrings were hollow (therefore they didn’t weigh a whole heck of a lot), I still got about $8.50 in cash, which means a free lunch for Amy! I definitely got a good vibe at this store, and if I have gold, silver or coins to sell in the future, I’ll definitely go back.

So that’s where I am with my current jewelry-selling experiment. So far, I think I’ve earned about $1,100, so that’s not all bad for just over a week! Hopefully sales will continue. Have you had any luck selling your fashion jewelry? Any tips or sites to share? If so, please let me know in the comment section below.

Now…off to take a peek into my relatively empty jewelry box. Fewer things, but things that I actually wear and that bring me joy. Yay!

5 Tips for Jewelry You Don’t Want or Need

I hope the impending start of the new year finds you happy, healthy, and busy in your jewelry box! This is often the time when people want a fresh start, so they clean the house, organize the closet, and purge their homes of what they no longer want or need. But what about your jewelry collection??

I often advise clients to hang on to jewelry, even if they’re not currently wearing it. Not only does it take up a small amount of space, but I often find myself pulling things out from years past and re-incorporating them into my wardrobe. There are times, though, when you really know it’s time to let some things go. Here are some ideas as to what to do with such pieces:

1. Sell or consign your jewelry. There are many businesses that will be happy to take your jewelry off your hands and give you some money in return. Circa is a widely known business for your pricey and name brand jewelry. The Real Real, a company I’ve had great success with for reselling clothing, is also now taking high-end jewelry. I have even used my local consignment store to unload a pair of not-worn-for-ten years David Yurman earrings. Granted, you only get a fraction of what you paid for things back, but a little money in your pocket is better than nothing, right?

2. Repurpose your jewelry. Often, you can repurpose your own jewelry. Turn an old chain/pearl necklace into a new strap for a small clutch. Or clip on some vintage earrings to your pumps for a little sparkle. I also love to pin broaches onto a simple, fabric clutch to really give it some zing. There are also countless jewelry designers who will take your existing pieces and design something “new” and fabulous for you.

3. Give it away. Why wait until you’ve passed away to give some of your precious collection to loved ones? Go for it now and watch the joy in your recipient’s eyes! I can say from experience that it’s quite lovely to be on both ends of this scenario!

4. Donate your jewelry to charity. There are countless women re-entering the workforce, and they deserve to be dressed to the nines! Places such as Wardrobe for Opportunity or the Career Closet, here in the San Francisco Bay Area, are always looking for business-appropriate finishing touches for their clients.

5. Have a swap party. I think it’s a fab idea to have a swap party with your fashionable gal pals. Invite people over for cocktails and nibbles, and have them bring some of their no-longer-worn jewelry. Just because something is no longer right for you, it doesn’t mean that it isn’t just the perfect thing for someone else! Swap away — you might go home with a new favorite!

With these tips in mind, I encourage you to sift through with your collection and see if there really are some pieces that need a new home. Best wishes to you for a happy and sparkling 2014!

Jewelry box
Are there things in your jewelry box that need to go?