June 2, 2005

No more room in the closet? Tags still on garments you bought, but haven’t worn? Do you have designer duds you once loved that you’ve worn a few times and want to replace with new ones?

Chances are, somebody would love to buy your clothes, shoes and accessories. Just make an appointment to consign those items at Second Time Around at 574 Washington St., and they’ll takecare of all the details.

Open since April, Second Time Around accepts women’s designer clothing that’s in season, in pristine condition and not more than two years old. The store will pay the consignor 50 percent of the seffing price if the merchandise sells within a 90-day consignment period.

Don’t want it back if it doesn’t sell? No problem. If you don’t pick it up within a week, they’ll donate it to charity.

Owner Jeff Casler said that he knows Wellesley has consignors with great taste, so his store’s merchandise will attract customers with great taste.

He said consigning clothes is a great way for people to recoup some of their money on items that arejust sitting in their closet.

“We want Second lime Around to be a choice when you go shopping — not to be thought about as a used clothing store,” said Casler. With its pale yellow walls, good lighting, roomy dressing rooms and merchandise attractively displayed in the 1,000-square-foot space, he wants shoppers to feel that they’ve stepped into a boutique. Only the prices are different.

Second Time Around actually has a combination of gently worn and brand-new designer merchandise. The new items sell for approximately half-price, while the used items sell for approximately one-third their original retail price.

Casler obtains a lot of merchandise from retail stores that are clearing out, and he also buys from the same ‘suppliers that big, off-price stores buy from, he said. He points to a boucle jacket with the Yim label. He said Barney’s price is $380, while theirs is $186.

Second Time Around appeals to a wide audience, Casler said, from the Dana Hall student who wants a pair of Seven jeans to the Wellesley grandmother who’s looking for a Chanel suit. The store also carries maternity clothes.

“We want to carry the hottest fashions that are in the other stores,” Casler said. At Second Time Around, the shopper can find boutique labels, such as BCBG, Theory, Lilly Pulitzer and many others on both new and used items.

Among his brand-new items are ribbon belts for $28. Casler said the belts are just half a season off, but to his customers, they’re a great find.

He takes a multicolored striped Autumn Cashmere sweater off a rack. It’s new and retails for $229. Second Time Around’s price is $95.

A chiffon Rozae Nichols skirt, also brand-new, sports a price tag with an original retail price of. $510. When it first arrived at the store, Casler priced it as $250. Later, he marked it down an additional 20 percent, bringing the price down to $200.

Hot items include designer and knock-off handbags. So there is no confusion, they’re displayed in separate locations in his store. new Prada messenger bag priced at $600 at Second Time Around. Casler said it probably retails for around $1,000.

The Wellesley store is one of five Second Time Around clothing stores. Casler also has a Second Time Around Living store in Harvard Square that carries fine furniture, fashion and home decor.

His mom, Dottie Casler, opened the first Second TimeAround clothing store in Newton Highlands about 35 years ago She really was if I can say the pioneerm this [consignment] business,” her son said. She still runs the Newton Highlands store.

Casler said another very important part of his business that sets Second Time Arounnd apart from every other consignment store is that when someone becomes a consignor, they can see their account online. So, if stimeone brings in 50 garments, for example, within 24 hours, they’ll be able to see everything the store took in from them, how everything was priced and whether it’s sold or is available. He said there are more than 5,000 registeted users and that some people check their account every morning.

And lots of consignors are also shoppers We have a very very loyal customer base Casler said We have customers that go to three of our stores in the same day all the time. They’ll go to Newbury Street [where he has two stores], and then they’ll go to the Harvard Square store. They’ll go to the Newton store, and then they’ll come to this store. Customers who like to shop like this can’t get enough.”

Kim Hutchings, who is an associate at the Wellesley store, had shopped at both Second Time Around stores on Newbury Street. When she heard that Casler was opening the new store, she asked if he needed any help. With her previous experience as a buyer, it seemed like a perfect fit.

Her daughter, a Dana Hall student, recently purchased a Coach bag at the Wellesley store. Also appealing to young people, Hutchings said, is the wide assortment of sunglasses the store carries. In addition, she said, there are all sorts of short skirts in small sizes that will fit even the junior high school-age shopper.

Hutchings said the store carries great watches, having recently purchased one for herself. A display case holds an array of jewehy and watches, including top brands such as Invicta.

Casler said a lot of people know the Second Time Around stores. “Once you become a Second Time Around shopper, you’re hooked, he said. Not hooked in a bad way. This is where you do your shopping because it’s very hard to match the value and the selection. It really is.”

Second Time Around 574 Washington St., Wellesley, 781-283-5880. Hours: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, noon to p.m. Visit www.SecondTimeAround.net; e-mail [email protected].

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