What our attendees have to say...
If any shopkeeper above the level of hobbyist misses Conference for any reason less than a birth, marriage, or death... s/he is doing her/himself a terrible professional disservice. In fact, I'd go so far as to state that "Conference Week" should be an inviolate block on the business calendar. There is no better way to rejuvenate yourself, your staff, and your store than gathering with hundreds of other resalers—some JUST like you, some incredibly-interestingly different—at NARTS Conference. The range of experience and focus is exceeded only by the warm welcome of your peers. There are 312 business days per year, if you're open 6 days a week. If you utilized even half of the great ideas from Conference, you'd be taking in over $31,200 a year more the day you got back from Conference... Everything from good ideas from the bus tour shops, to suggestions at the workshops, to hints given to you over scrambled eggs at 8 a.m. or the beverage of your choice late at night... there is no way you could FAIL to turn attendance at this event from FUN to PROFIT.
Kate Holmes—Too Good to be Threw—Recognized as an Industry Icon
Conference is a must for all resale owners to bring their staff. I had to close my store in order to bring my employee. The cost of myself and my employee on top of closing was a HUGE deal financially, but worth every dollar for the education. Thank you NARTS!
Connie Hansel—Classique Closet—Sioux City, IA
Attending NARTS Conference is ALWAYS a TREMENDOUS learning and sharing opportunity!!! It is the best investment in yourself, and your business to grow and succeed in our FABULOUS industry!!! I have met and made many treasured lifelong friends through NARTS!!!
Ellen Didion, President—Chic to Chic—Gaithersburg, MD
I have never been so inspired to take our business to the next level than after this conference. I am ready to bring our customers a new shopping experience that will have them coming back for more! After attending this year's conference, we added an Furniture consignment store to our Family consignment store. This was just the motivation needed to start a new adventure in consignment!
Angel Dewbre—Bargain Lady Clothing—Ardmore, OK
I have been attending NARTS conferences for years and always take away great new ideas! I love the networking opportunities with other store owners. I learn so much from them! Attending NARTS conferences keeps me on the cutting edge of the consignment industry. Definitely, this is something I look forward to attending every year.
Glenda Polak—CapriceWest—Edmonton, AB, Canada
This conference was Great! So many wonderful people with amazing ideas and thoughts. This is my seventh conference and this has been the best! The classes, the atmosphere, the people...all amazing!
Kimberly Smith—Retail Therapy—Houston, TX
I learn things at the conference that make our company thousands of dollars. We cannot afford to miss conference. I see it as a priceless learning experience for myself and my staff. Thank you!
Sue McCarthy—The Vault Luxury Resale—St. Louis, MO
This was my 1st NARTS Conference. I wish I hadn't waited four years to attend. I have already implemented several changes my first week back home. I plan to implement more over the next few months and year. It is well worth the investment. I will be back!
Stacy Regan—Agape Chic Consignment Boutique—Brandon, FL
In our specialized field, NARTS is the ONLY way to truly grow and learn amongst fellow business owners that understand what we are going through.
Kirsty Roefs—House of Consignment—Unadilla, NY
After five years in this business, the 'new' was beginning to wear off. It was getting a little tougher to maintain my energy and enthusiasm as day-to-day challenges became routine. It seemed that I struggled with a few persistent issues over and over without finding a really good solution. I was beginning to think that, since I was now an 'experienced resale professional', that I would just have to accept the status quo. Not True! At Conference I had several 'aha' moments that allowed me to see those challenges in a whole new light and provided me the tools to finally resolve many of them! I feel renewed, energized, and ready to take my business to the next level!
Lisa Gaynor—Design It With Consignment—Austin, TX
It's so rewarding to network with other NFP managers who are facing the same problems that I deal with. Not only do I get new ideas from them, but I get validation that I'm on the right track with the way I do things. Together we can do so much!
Dorothy Toney—Hospice of Yuma Thrift Shop—Yuma, AZ
It is sure a breath of fresh air to come to conference and talk to so many other members in this industry. Each and every meeting that I have attended, I come back with a new outlook on things. It's kind of a kick in the pants to get things done and bring my businesses to the next level! It is hard to believe that each year can be better than the last but it always is!!!
Chris Swanson—One More Time family of stores—Columbus, OH
The conference offered a chance to learn things that for-profit stores and businesses use to increase revenue. We are non-profit but want to be the best stewards of items donated to us by getting the most dollar value for the items.
Lisa Mills—Sheriffs Ranches Enterprises—Live Oak, FL
Our organization is blessed (and unique) because we want to share and help our competitors grow and make resale the best it can be. New ideas are necessary to thrive and grow with customer's changing needs. NARTS has been key in providing the networking and education for my success over the last 20 years.
Vena Holden—Selective Seconds—Greenwood, IN
Such an enlightening few days! It was wonderful being in the presence of so many knowledgeable resale professionals. Made the decision to join NARTS just two days before conference, closed shop, and brought my two employees! We truly came away inspired!
Paula Leger—Glory B's Consignment & Resale Boutique—Nederland, TX
This was my second year attending conference and it was just as good and better than the first! This year I was able to be the expert for a handful of people because my store recently switched over to buying outright. Business aside, NARTS has empowered me to find more confidence in myself and believe that I too have valid points to share and enrich others with. I am so grateful for this organization that allows me the help needed to better my business as well as myself. Thank you NARTS.
Bailey Handsaker—MODAO Resale—Vancouver, WA
NARTS Conferences have been a huge key to our success at MCB Thrift Store. Learn new information and ideas every time we come in contact with NARTS meetings and members. The opportunity to work with all of these professionals every year and keep in contact with them through out the years has been incredible. Thank You to everyone that pours their heart out to make this organization happen.
Rick Orr—NCB Thrift Store—Springfield, MO
Membership in NARTS with attendance of Seminars and the Annual Conference is the single most important thing I do for my business. No matter how great I think my business is... there is always a better way, a different idea, a newer level, or an ah-ha moment! And more importantly... there are new friends to make, old ones to embrace, and life to be shared. I have learned techniques and utilized ideas that have made/saved me countless hours and dollars. And more importantly, I have made friends to last a lifetime.
Terry Chesky—Consignment Cottage—Moon Township, PA
My store was only opened for 3 months when I decided to take the financial plunge and register for conference. I am SO glad that I did. What I learned is far more valuable than the expense of airfare and the conference. To be surrounded by the wisdom of so many consignment store owners was in itself amazing! Each one that I spoke with was more than happy to share. And it wasn't all pretty---they were honest and also shared the mistakes they had made and learned from--which will also help me to avoid such mistakes. I hope that I am able to attend NARTS every year!!!
Suzy Pineda—Suzy's Consign & Resale—Avon, IN
My store has been open for 5 years. We are successful and are doing great! For those 5 years I never understood why people go to conference when there is so much information available on-line via Facebook groups, forums and websites. Then I FINALLY decided I should go because we have been thinking about opening a second location. The energy, networking and rejuvenation I have for my business from attending conference is amazing! The ideas that I came away with will more than pay for attending! I am already planning our next years conference trip! PS: It also showed me I NEED to be a NARTS Member!!
Jessica Melson—Village Kids Consignment Boutique—Ada, MI
As a first time attendee I was overwhelmed with the quality, content, and professionalism of this conference. I am so glad that I was able to attend and had the chance to meet and network with such a diverse and experienced group of Resale Professionals. Thank you for providing this highly beneficial conference.
Robin Murray—Catholic Charities Resale Store—Decatur, IL
Attending a NARTS conference is the best thing a new business owner can do. If I would have known about NARTS before I started my business, I would have saved myself lots of time, effort and money and been more successful much earlier!
Wendy Sjogren—Clotheshorse—Denver, CO
I truly believe that if I didn't go to the NARTS convention most of these past 18 years I would not have the successful business that I do now. I feel that when I do miss a year, my business does not grow! I used to only go to the west coast locations, but 6 years ago I started going to every one. As a result, my business has grown more in these past 6 years than it did the first 13.
Lisa K Ibias—Alaskan Dames—Juneau, Alaska
I purchased an existing business that was pretty well established. Prior to coming to the conference I didn't have the confidence that I wanted or the real love for resale. But after leaving I am ready to rock and roll. I feel like the professional I have always felt for the retail business and have the confidence to succeed with high standards. And assured that I can make the income I want for my staff and myself. I will plan to come to conference every year!
Cassaundra Henderson—Style Plus....A Plus Size Resale—Houston, TX
If you are serious about getting your business to the next level, you absolutely must attend the NARTS conference. I have been going for 3 years and every year I come back with a refreshed look on my business. Going to the NARTS conference keeps me from getting stale and doing the same things over and over. I have made giant leaps in revenue and profits in the 4 years I have owned my store and I acknowledge that I can attribute this growth to what I have learned at conference. I always go in with the attitude that I will put to use at with a different way of thinking that pays for it ten times over. Bonus... it is a lot of fun and you meet some amazing people who are all willing to share their stories and their successes with you. I highly recommend you put conference at the top of your budget line so you don't miss out.
Gail Kincade—Act II Consignment—Littleton, CO
It is so important to learn what not to do as well as what to do. You can save yourself so much time, revenue, and worry by learning from each other. If you want to maintain a successful business you can't afford to miss the conference. 'If you think education is expensive, try the cost of ignorance.'
Howard L. Manning—The Dorcas Thrift Shop—Cary, NC
This was my first conference, at the end of each Workshop, I couldn't wait to get to the next to continue the adventure. It was like reading a great mystery novel you want to know how it ends but hate for the end to come. Thanks for the adventure!
Ellie Barber—Lutheran Thrift Shop—Tucson, AZ
I can't believe I waited so long to attend Conference! WHAT was I waiting for??? It was a great experience to take time to really look at my business from arm's length and analyze what's working and what can be improved. I will never miss another.
Chris Gauger—Here We Go Again—Portland, OR
I was a bit nervous when I got to conference because this was my first year and I'm not an owner, I'm just a manger. But then I quickly learned I'm not just a manager I am THE MANAGER and I need to own my position and be able to better myself, the store, staff and the owner. I met so many other managers who had the same concerns as myself and we were able to discuss and put a plan together to push forward! An absolutely amazing feeling and group of people you have here!
Jessica Copeland—The Sassy Peacock—Erie, PA
After attending NARTS Conference, my business has almost tripled in sales and I have become more professional and confident.
Billie Beasley—It's All Good, Benefitting PACN—Conroe TX
I wish I had come before I opened 3 years ago - I would have saved myself from learning some things the hard way. I always get enough new ideas to pay back my conference expense!
Nancy Angrove Urekar—ChicàBOOM Consignment—Caledon Village, ON, Canada
Because of a new marriage and using our summer time off for major vacations, I had missed two conferences. I honestly forgot how wonderful these conferences are and how dependent I am for motivation and new ideas on them. I won't let that happen again. Maybe we will just vacation along with our NARTS conferences. Incidentally, my husband caught the excitement this year and has really encouraged me to step out and try buying outright since coming home. He's all in and particularly loved the bus tour. I thought that was awesome. He's so proud that we are members of such a professional group! I could talk forever about it. It is definitely the major key to our success through the years.
Lina Beth Catalano—Lina Beth Fine Consignments—Ocala, FL
I guess if I could write a love letter to NARTS, this would be it. My experience at conference was life changing, heart-opening, hope-inspiring, and rejuvenating. I crawled out of my little black hole of despair and discouragement and came out swinging in defense of my business and the reality that it can be successful. I wonder how many other people were in my shoes over the last few days. I certainly hope not many, but the people I did meet and talk to are all responsible for my renewed outlook and positive movement forward. Today I can't imagine NOT staying on touch with the women I met because not only are they my new friends but my new family. I cannot express in words truly, what this conference means to me and how it will carry me through the tough days and be behind the awesome ones. Thank you from the bottom of my ever-so-grateful heart for being the people and organization that you are. I would love to write an article for the newsletter may be from the perspective of a struggling, discouraged new business owner and how the interaction with others in our industry have made such a difference. Thank you again!!!