Rummage Spotlight: Michigan Avenue Department

JBurch2.080629Rummage Sale Spotlight:
A Conversation with Michigan Avenue Department Manager, Jennifer Burch

Question: How did you come to manage this section of the Rummage Sale, and what brings you back each year?
Answer: After several years of coordinating volunteers and working in the Book Department, I was asked to help in Michigan Avenue, a department full of high-fashion ladies wear.  What a thrill it was to tap into my prior work experience in business and fashion merchandising to raise money for Outreach! That was four years ago, and each June I cannot wait to get started again.

Q: What makes Michigan Avenue unique?
A: In addition to enjoying time together as a rummage community, the goal of rummage is to raise money for our Outreach organizations. Michigan Avenue is full of hand-selected pieces from top designers such as St. John, Vince, Akris and Missoni. We also carry mid-tier brands such as J. Crew and French Connection. Filled to capacity with a premier selection of pieces that are as good as new, we strive to equal the shopping experience of stores like Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom with unbelievable price-points.

Q: Who shops your department and why?
A: Ladies who shop Michigan Avenue know that they will find nothing but the best quality, name brand clothing.  They know what it is worth and are excited by the fabulous deals. Each year we see many familiar faces as well as new shoppers.  That is the best sign that we are doing something right.

Q: What particular kinds of clothing donations do you wish you had more of to sell and why?
A: The items that sell the best are cocktail dresses, skirts, tops and sweaters.  We can never have enough of these items! We encourage people to dig deep into their closets. I, myself find pieces in my closet that I do not wear, but hold onto because they are beautiful and I paid a lot of money for them. I know that someone else will enjoy them and that the money raised is going to help our Outreach organizations. It makes the pieces easier to part with and creates space in my closet for new possibilities! Each year it amazes me how generous people are with their donations.  We receive items that still have their original tags, party dresses that were worn once, and hundreds of pieces that will make your eyes pop!

Q: Can you give readers an idea of the price range for items in Michigan Avenue?
A: Items range greatly, from eight to over a hundred dollars.  We work hard to make the most of generous donations, while making sure that all of it is still an amazing deal for our shoppers.