Tall Women’s Clothing Swap Experience

Tall Clothing Swap for Tall Women

On March 3, 2018, I attended my first ever Tall Clothing Swap in Oakland, CA. I purchased the mix, mingle and swap tickets for $15 each. This was an amazing event and was created to swap tall clothing that you no longer wear for some other tall clothing or accessories (5-10 pieces). I met so many beautiful and wonderful tall women. For the first time in my life I felt like an average height. It was hosted and sponsored by Alicia Jay from TallSWAG and Carly Bialosky from Consciously Connected.

Importance

There are several reasons why I thought this was a brilliant idea. However, below I outline the three main reasons why this event was so important to me.

Sustainability

As the world’s population continues to increase and as climate change progresses we need to be more conscious now than ever at achieving more sustainable clothing sources. There are so many controversies at what is sustainable when it comes to the fashion industry. But I am not going to go over them now because that is a whole article in itself. Most importantly, there is no argument that the most sustainable source of clothing is to reuse existing clothing. Therefore, a clothing swap easily achieves this sustainability goal.

Eliminates Thrift Store Blues

I have nothing against wearing previously owned clothing because after a good wash and press the item can seem like new. However, I do have a problem with spending hours going through massive amounts of clothing to come out completely empty handed. I call these the “Thrift Store Blues” because the issue of finding clothing long enough for me. I am sure from time-to-time you can find some nice garments that fit but at this point I avoid thrift stores when it comes to clothing. A tall swap takes that piece completely out of the equation.

Meet other Tall Women

One of the best features of this clothing swap was the social aspect. At the beginning of the event while your items you brought to swap were being set-up in the back, we were able to mingle with each other with food and drinks. I always feel like automatically connect to other tall women because we share similar struggles and challenges when it comes to our height. It was nice to have the opportunity to connect and chat about our similar experiences especially towards fashion.

There was also a panel discussion of successful tall women which included Alicia, Carly and Tray from The Conversation Piece. The discussion included some of the struggles and challenges that they faced with confidence, dating, fitting in and how they learned to embrace their height. The discussion was so inspiring and I wished I had experienced this when I was much younger.

From left to right, Tray from The Conversation Piece, Alicia Jay from TallSWAG and Carly Bialosky from Consciously Connected.

Giveaways:

I almost forgot to mention that they had a raffle for two Doubs Clothing gift certificates,  a Long Tall Sally gift certificate, two beautiful jewelry gift sets from Candid Art and a pair of Warrior Basketball tickets.

On our way out there were gift bags for all the patrons to take home.   In them were these adorable canvas bags as shown in the picture below.

Other Options

There’s a good chance that you are not going to find a Tall Clothing Swap in your local area. But if the first two options above are still important to you then there are online options to purchase or trade tall clothing. There is a Facebook Group called “Tall Women USA: Clothes to buy/sell/trade” this does give you to opportunity to buy or trade tall clothing with tall women around the world.

Another option is to try renting clothing. I have not tried this option yet so I cannot vouch for it but Gwynnie Bee offers tall clothing that you can borrow by paying a monthly subscription fee. Click here to learn more.

What I Did Right During the Swap

Seasonality

Before I attended the event I did some planning ahead of time. I thought about what season we are going into and what I need more of in my closet. Since the event occurred at the beginning of March I knew that spring was right around the corner. Therefore, I thought it would be nice to find skirts and dresses that would easily transition from spring to summer.

Colors

Additionally, I know I have way too much black, white and gray in my closet so my main goal was to come out with some bright colored items.  Moreover, as I was browsing through the clothes I was trying to think about what I had in my current wardrobe that would compliment each piece.  I only brought in five items so I was able to obtain five items during the swap.

Here is what I found.

From upper left to right – Lime Green Shirt, Floral Skirt, “No Climbing Allowed” T-shirt, Floral Maxi Dress and Maxi Skirt

Here is what look like in the  lime colored shirt.  I absolutely love the color especially when pairing with my navy blue trousers.  As you can see the the arm length fits me perfectly.  However, I am big busted so with many shirts I wear, I have to wear a camisole underneath otherwise everyone will get a peep show.

I fell in love with this dress at first sight.  It was far from being black, gray or white so I achieved my color goal here.  Since it gets extremely hot where I live in the summertime this dress will be perfect for those hot days.

This is a maxi skirt from Long Tall Sally.  As soon as I saw it I had to grab it.  I haven’t had too many maxi skirts in my life that I could wear as a maxi skirt instead of midi skirt.  Actually, this is only the second maxi skirt that I have owned that actually fits.  My first maxi skirt was one that I just recently purchased from Amalli Talli.  I love that maxi skirt too and I will need to share that one in a seperate blog.

They also had these t-shirts there that said “No Climbing Allowed.”  I thought it was hilarious and I can’t wait to wear it.

What I Did Wrong During the Swap

Passed on VIP

For an additional $10 you could purchase VIP tickets which gives you extra time to shop before the main crowd. I easily saw that the best items were picked over by the time I was able to browse. After peeping at some of the VIP participants I found, I saw that the extra $10 was well worth the price.

Passed on Trying On

I am normally really good about trying on clothes but fitting rooms weren’t offered and the bathroom stalls were already packed with other women that got there first. Therefore, I passed on trying on items and the floral skirt didn’t end up fitting me.  As you can see below it puckers at the hips.  I did love the floral colors for spring and I had the perfect lilac top to go with it.

Didn’t look at Fiber Content

I was not paying enough attention to fiber content of the garments as I should have been. I know my body doesn’t breath very well in polyester but I can normally handle a polyester blend.  Since I was so enthralled by the floral maxi dress I did not realize it was 100% polyester. However, I still love the way it looks and I am not going to give up on it just yet.

To Conclude

I tried to plan ahead as much as possible about what I need in my closet but my swapping experience wasn’t perfect. I know for next time to take advantage of the VIP, try things on on and read the tags! Overall, the experience was priceless and I hope there will be more of these events going forward. It would be great to see these swaps start around the country.  To see footage of the event via TallSWAG’s Instagram page click here.

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