Calling All Closets
Million-dollar resale shop changes the way Dallas buys designer labels
Chrissy and Mitch Sayare aren’t coy when discussing the money going into the Dallas outpost of their consignment boutique, To Be Continued (otherwise known as TBC). The couple originally budgeted $700,000 to turn the Pavilion on Lovers Lane space, previously inhabited by a toy store, into a luxury resale haven, where once-worn Oscar de la Renta dresses, among other high-end frocks and accessories, go to be reborn.
Yet now that the shop’s build-out is complete, save for the hand-painted gold wallpaper soon to bedeck the ceiling of handbag section, Chrissy confesses that the investment is creeping closer to a million.
“We took it down to the studs. Pretty much everything you’re going to see was custom-made for the store,” she says, referring to elements such as the blush velvet chaise lounges on which shoppers can sit to slip on Prada pumps for size.
TBC’s extravagance gives the Sayares a competitive edge in the growing luxury resale market that includes such concepts as Luxury Garage Sale. “What we’ve found is that it’s actually harder to obtain the merchandise than it is to sell it,” Mitch says. “So we created this sort of ambience to provide comfort to the consignor.”
To their credit, the couple knows a thing or two about business. Mitch served as the CEO of a biotech company that did cancer research, and Chrissy ran her own high-tech recruiting business in Boston before they moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, where they own a ranch resort and, as of 2014, their first TBC boutique.
While researching locales across the U.S. for their second store, the Sayares became so enamored with Dallas that they bought a high-rise condo in One Arts Plaza once they settled on the commercial space. “Dallas seems to us to be Scottsdale on steroids, so it makes sense to be here,” Mitch says.
Having shops in two cities is a big benefit for high-profile clients, explains Chrissy. If a woman doesn’t want to anyone to know she’s consigning the Ann Demeulemeester dress she wore to last week’s charity event, the Dallas boutique will just ship it out to Scottsdale.
“Another concern is, ‘I’m going to this luncheon, am I going to be seen by the person who consigned it?’” says Chrissy. “We never reveal the identity of the consignor, but we give enough information to say, yes, there is a risk or, no, because that came in from Jackson Hole or Paris or Boston. It would be a huge failure for us if someone were embarrassed by buying something here.”
As for the merchandise, the store is split between luxury and contemporary fashions. You may spot an Escada ostrich feather skirt for $495 (originally $2,695) on one side of the shop, while the other side may offer a feather-bottomed Elizabeth and James blazer dress for a cool $185.
Of course, you’ll find Hermès Birkin bags galore ($13,000-$18,500). One Scottsdale client consigned 30 — none of them used. And expect to see a bevy of Louboutin shoes. One athlete’s wife brought Chrissy about 150 pairs. “When I say she delivered a truckload, I’m not necessarily exaggerating,” she says.
And many items have spectacular histories. A cream tweed Balenciaga dress set ($2,495) came from a pro-golfer’s wife who bought the outfit at Harrods in London. She wore it to meet the Queen.
Chrissy believes TV shows of the 2000s (Sex and the City,Gossip Girl) made these designer goods seem accessible to everyone. Then, Facebook and Instagram came along, making us all celebrities in our own worlds, and even high-end labels have become fast fashion. If an outfit gets posted, it’s no longer needed.
“It’s a combination of pop culture and social media that has made this such a hot industry right now, and we all want a piece of it,” Chrissy says. “It feels wonderful to have a Chanel jacket on. It’s no longer for the elite. It’s really for all of us.”