As the youngest in a family of three girls, I grew up wearing my sisters’ clothes. Whether it was a prom dress, dance costume or a pair of Peter Pan Getaway Boots (can you believe we wore those?), I never questioned my mother when she insisted that I share clothes with my sisters. For that reason, shopping at consignment stores comes very naturally to me.

Fast forward, and here I am with three girls facing the same dilemma – so many functions, homecoming dresses and styles to keep up with. If you’re always buying brand new, it can quickly drain your bank account.

So, when I recently discovered the Clothing Bar Boutique, I knew I had to take the girls and show them just how smart consignment shopping really is, for a variety of reasons:

  • you can buy popular brands at reduced prices; consumer typically saves at least 60% off retail prices
  • there is only one of every item, so it’s highly unlikely you and your friend will show up wearing the same thing
  • it’s a great way to freshen up your closet and make money by selling your clothes. (At the Clothing Bar, consigners receive 40% of the sale price)
  • you can experiment with different trends and go outside your comfort zone because the items are relatively inexpensive

The Clothing Bar consignment store offers great deals, while showcasing local talent

The Clothing Bar is one of Calgary’s newest and coolest consignment stores. It’s located in Marda Loop and Katie Evans is the female entrepreneur behind the Bar. Her store is a hidden gem, but it probably won’t stay hidden for long. Instagram fans are loving her daily posts (@clothing_bar_YYC)  featuring trendy items that are dropped off daily.

Katie graciously hosted us at her store recently;  she remembers what it was like to be a teen with a limited budget.

“When you have to start paying for your own clothes, it gets really hard to figure out your own personal style while trying to live up to ‘mall’ standards,” says Evans. She was happy to help the girls pull together a couple of different outfits and discover their unique sense of style.

The first look is fun and casual and features these great YYC tees by Local Laundry. The Clothing Bar collaborates with local companies to showcase homegrown talent and products.


Gap flannel ($18), Divided sneakers ($18), YYC T-shirt ($38)


Distressed Ellison overalls ($42), Splendid sneakers ($64)


The second look Katie helped them pick out is a little more “chic” and features a faux black leather jacket (love this!) and a classy blanket scarf.


Black faux leather jacket ($24), Club Monaco sweater ($32), gold necklace ($12). Black turtleneck ($18), scarf ($24).


Grey blanket scarf ($24), black knit turtleneck ($18)


Hunter boots ($84) and Korks black booties ($56)

Needless to say, we could have put together countless outfits on this day. The girls loved what they wore and had a blast shopping this “community closet.” It was a real eye-opener for them, as they become much more discerning about how they spend their babysitting dollars and allowances.

Evans is surprised by what some people give away

The Clothing Bar has a large assortment of clothing and accessories and features brands such as ZARA, Aritzia, TopShop, Urban Outfitters and more. The Hunter boots pictured above would normally retail for about $185! Katie has a great sense of style and only takes items that are in good condition and on trend.

She is open Tuesday to Sunday and you don’t need an appointment to drop off clothing. She’ll even come to your house and clean out your closet for you!! Her new closet clean-out service is turning out to be very popular for busy people who don’t have the time or simply dread the task of cleaning and organizing their closet. Items that aren’t suitable for the store, are donated to the Women In Need Society.

So, next time your daughter wants to go shopping, take her to a consignment store where you BOTH can shop for less.

I’d like to thank Katie Evans at the Clothing Bar Boutique for partnering on this post. Click here to learn more about Katie and how she got her start in the consignment biz!

Leave me a comment and let me know your favorite find at a consignment store or resale shop!



Author Michelle

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