Gardnerville consignment shop expands in first year
July 24, 2012
In less than a year, Gardnerville resident Robin Tapp has proved there is a market for consignment – a big market.
“Every day we get something. It’s a very successful model,” she said. “When people started bringing stuff in that was different, I thought, ‘Why not just take it?’ We have over 300 consignors.”
Tapp, 37, owns Penny Lane in downtown Gardnerville. Her relatively new store stands in walking distance to two other consignment shops, Second Chance Furniture and The Tackroom. Thus her revelation that top-line sales have increased 300 percent since opening last September indicates the consignment market is not only big enough for her incredibly eclectic store, but for several competitors in the area as well.
“I have consignors from Tahoe, Carson, Reno, Bridgeport and Bishop,” she said. “A lot of people just like to come in, and they’re getting the word out. It’s pretty unbelievable.”
When she first opened, Tapp operated about 2,400 square feet in one suite. Last month, she knocked holes in the wall and expanded into two adjacent suites, more than doubling her floor space.
“I would like this whole building,” she said with a laugh.
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Inside the store, one rooms leads to another in a succession of displays. Penny Lane offers second-hand clothing for men, women, and children, fashion accessories, jewelry, house ware, kitchen ware, sporting goods, tools, and prom and wedding dresses.
In selecting her items, Tapp said quality is the main criterion.
“That doesn’t mean I just want to do high-end,” she said. “I want to make it affordable, with a reasonable price, to get the product moving.”
Tapp had been studying to be a kindergarten teacher when she decided to do something else. She has three children herself, ages 7, 9 and 10.
“But I’d rather be my own boss,” she said, “with no one telling me what to do.”
And she still wants to help out younger students. With the sale of donated items, she will give 20 percent of proceeds to the school district’s extended day kindergarten program.
“That’s anything donated to the store,” she said.
Located at 1512 Highway 395 in suites 1, 2 and 3, Penny Lane is open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday.
For more information, call 782-3000.