If you love high-end fashion, but can’t manage the high-end prices, then the perfect shopping opportunity in Springfield has just opened for you: Clothes Mentor. This upscale resale shop in the Springfield Shopping Center (785 West Sproul Road) holds row upon row of gently used clothing and accessories for women in sizes 0 to 26, along with maternity and petite.
I do not have the patience to search the racks of most discount clothing stores, and I don’t seem to have the eye to find the hidden gems at Goodwill. At Clothes Mentor, the tough work has been done for me. The clothing is grouped by type (pants, shirts, dresses, jackets, etc.), arranged by size, and even grouped by color.
The first thing I saw when I walked in the door was a large selection of Vera Bradley bags and other accessories, many under $20. I saw athletic clothing brands including Nike, Champion, Under Armour, and Adidas, also under $20. While Old Navy and Merona are well-represented, I also found many pieces from Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren, Ann Taylor Loft, and Banana Republic. Where a Merona dress might be tagged at $10, a Jones New York or Calvin Klein dress might be marked $25. Many clothing items still have tags attached, as a testimony to their great condition. (For example, I purchased a dress tagged at $48, and spent only $12.) Fun names like Lily Pulitzer, Boden, and Laundry were also represented.
Need a colorful new scarf? You likely will find one for $3.50. Fancy a new chunky necklace? $6 will cover it. Find a new pair of jeans for $14, attractive dress pants for $20, and a professional suit jacket by Tahari or Anne Klein for $22. Shoes seemed to run mostly between $10 and $14. (Certainly, prices will vary based on the pieces you pick up, but these are representative samples of several pieces I looked at.)
The clothing racks are topped with the store’s ample shoe selection, clearly labeled by size. Round turnstiles at the front of the store are topped with boots without a scuffed toe among them. The end cap space is dedicated to color-coordinated bags and purses in every size and style imaginable.
The store is clean and the staff is attentive to customers. At the back, I found several ample-sized private fitting rooms, and a rest room. Fitting through the rows with a stroller might prove a little tight, but the store appeared to be a generally kid-friendly place for moms shopping with their children in tow.
Besides building your wardrobe and feeding your need to shop, Clothes Mentor gives you a chance to earn some money for your own gently-used clothing and accessories. If you bring your things in a bag (no hangers) and freshly laundered, the staff will sort through them and present you with an offer for what you have brought in. If you accept the offer, they will give you cash on the spot; you are also free to reject the offer and take back your things. Specific information about what they will and will not take is available by talking to an associate at the store, as well as on their web site (www.clothesmentor.com). Plus, as a shopper, they offer a rewards card that you get stamped for every $10 you spend and when it’s filled you get a 20% off discount.
I am a budget-conscious woman who likes to spruce up my wardrobe with a few new pieces every once in awhile, but I am not someone who fancies “used clothing” at yard sales, thrift stores, and consignment shops. Having said that, I can tell you with confidence that I will be making a return trip to Clothes Mentor; now that I have a Michael Kors blouse in my wardrobe, I think it might be fun to have a few more fancy names in my closet!
About our guest contributor, Andria: Andria Kaskey is a wife, mom, writer, and artist living in Springfield, PA. She chronicles her creative pursuits on her Drawing Near blog (http://andria-drawingnear.blogspot.com) and explores topics of faith, prayer, Bible study, and Christian fellowship and service on her Living Stones blog (http://andria-livingstones.blogspot.com). Her day-to-day life as a stay-at-home mother revolves around meals, laundry, crafts, trips to school, a living room full of toys, family phone calls, church activities, reading, journaling, and exploring her creative side.