Today’s post is written by fabulous funky Antje, a good friend and long, long time supporter of the YLF community. While catching up last week over tea and cup cakes we started talking about organizing another clothing swap event for Seattle YLF’ers. One thing led to another and we decided to take it global.

Have you ever attended a clothes swap and scored a fabulous item that quickly became a closet favorite? Then this blog post should excite you.

Have you never attended a clothes swap but have sometimes wondered what it would be like and whether you might be missing out? Maybe this blog post will entice you!

Or have you attended a swap in the past but came away disappointed? Then this blog post might nudge you to try again.

I am so excited to announce the first “YouLookFab Global Swap Event”. Several brave YLF members have already stepped forward to host an event in their city, from Seattle WA to Austin TX, and from Norwalk CT to Mesa AZ. Who else wants to put a clothes swap on the map? We’d love to see many more YLF swap events take place all over the world!

But let’s start at the beginning: Why a clothes swap? Here are the top reasons I love a good clothes swap:

  1. It’s a great way to refresh your wardrobe. I typically come away with items I never had on my list of things to look for and that I might never have proactively shopped for in a store. I love them exactly for that reason: They are unexpected finds, bonus clothes, “extras”. Since the items are free, I can take a risk and grab something that’s a little less typical for my style and just experiment with a new color, a new cut, etc.
  2. It’s a super way to clean out your closet. Angie writes a lot about the importance of “closet editing” and not holding on to clothes that you know (deep down you know you know!) you will not wear again. Many of us are too busy or just feel hassled by the thought of consigning our clothes, and sometimes it seems a shame to just drop them off at Goodwill when you know a fashionable friend would really dig that item. Clothes swaps breathe new life into clothes that are still in great shape but don’t fit you anymore, were bad impulse purchases you instantly regretted but never took back to the store, are just “not you”, or for whatever reason have become closet orphans.
  3. It’s truly “green”. The most eco-friendly clothing is recycled clothing. Rather than buying a new sweater, try scoring one at a swap. And I can tell you from experience that it is so rewarding to see someone else trying on an item you brought (because it doesn’t fit, isn’t “you”, etc.), loving it, and walking away with it as their new favorite wardrobe addition.
  4. It’s fun! Allowing yourself to socialize for an hour or two with other women who enjoy clothes and fashion is a treat. I have fond memories of past clothes swaps, the giggles in front of the mirror, the compliments as well as the kind but honest advice to steer away from an item, and the delight at meeting women in person whom you previously only knew online. You will likely find that you have lots to talk about and might walk away with a new friend. Bonus!

If you still need convincing, check out the report from the first YLF clothing swap in Seattle, almost two years ago.

This time, in honor of YLF’s global spirit, let’s extend the event and host clothes swaps all over the map! To get this started, we already have plans for swap events during the weekend of January 22, 2011 in four different areas of the US:

  • Seattle, Washington (yours truly will host and Angie will be there)
  • Austin, Texas (Sarah and Patience are hosting)
  • Mesa, Arizona (Kyle is hosting)
  • Norwalk, Connecticut (near NYC! April is hosting)

We’re looking for additional hosts! Please let us know if you would like to host a YLF clothes swap in your city (ideally on or around that same weekend) by contacting us on this email address: Don’t worry if you have never hosted or even attended a swap before: We will publish a how-to guide for hosting a clothes swap on the YLF site in November, and I will be available to support hosts with info, resources, and tips as needed.

And for those who are excited about the swaps already being planned in your cities: You will hear more about the planned events soon, including dates and times, location and what to bring. We’re also working on a blog post about “How to get the most out of a clothes swap” for first-timers.

This will be so exciting. Let’s swap clothes in style, all over the map, and make new friends!