Moms Sale Old Clothes For New Business

Two moms had a common problem. How to live off one income and still afford clothing for their children. Their solution became something that benefits thousands of east Texans.

Families bring in their clothing, toys and furniture. The two moms in charge sell it for them and then everyone splits the profits. But there's a third group who benefits. All the items they don't sell are then donated to charity.

The old items took on new life with the help of a borrowed idea.

"There was a really large one in Little Rock that had over 700 families that participated in it twice a year and I began to get involved in that," says Tess Murphy.

Tess and her family had been living in Arkansas but last year moved back to east Texas. She wanted to use what she learned to bring in a little income.

"Laura and I have been friends for 11 years now. When we moved back I called her and I said there's this great thing you got to know about it," says Tess.

"I thought it was a great idea. Our consignors are able to make cash for clothes their kids can't wear anymore and kids outgrow things when they're young so quickly. And then other moms take advantage of the deal," says Laura Watson.

The consignor gets 70% of the profits while Laura and Tess keep 30%. But the items that didn't sell go to the needy. The New Covenant church and the Crisis Pregnancy Center both benefit. Volunteers there say Laura and Tess's help has made a difference.

"They have donated some baby items, clothing, strollers and it's really a blessing to us because we were at the point where we depend on donations and our closet was empty," says volunteer, Leslie White.

Tess and Laura have these sales every six months. They began a year ago with about a hundred families. Now more than 150 families participate.

The Children's Clothing Consignment sale opens up Thursday morning and lasts through Saturday. The hours are 8 am 'til 6 PM. They're located on the corner of Fifth and Vine in Tyler.

Amy Tatum reporting.