Colchuck Consignment makes the outdoors accessible through their store


Owners Laura and Brian open Colchuck Consignment store in Cashmere Photo by Erin Mullins

Getting into new outdoor hobbies is fun, but it is also expensive, which is why Colchuck Consignment offers second hand outdoor gear at an affordable price. Colchuck Consignment was founded in 2020 as an online business but since has transitioned to a retail only business located at 5643 Sunset Hwy. in Cashmere, said Laura Patton, co-owner of Colchuck Consignment, an outdoor consignment shop.

The store accepts new and used outdoor gear and clothing in great condition from the last decade. In the cases of retro gear, gear older than a decade is accepted. Items for a variety of outdoor activities are accepted, ranging from biking to hiking to skiing to climbing to kayaking gear.

When consigners bring in gear to Colchuck Consignment, they receive a portion of the profit once the gear is sold. The percentage of profit depends on item price. At a minimum, for items under a hundred dollars, consigners get 50 % of profits. At a maximum, for items $451 on up, cosigners get 80% of profits.  If consigners choose to get in-store credit as their profit, they get an extra 10% of proceeds.

The business was started because Laura Patton and co-owner Brian Buckley felt that there was a gap in the market for outdoors gear and get rid of cost-barriers for those who cannot afford to buy new outdoor gear.

“We wanted to bridge the gap of all the gear that exists in this valley,” Patton said. “This gear that exists in this valley that needs to find a new home and then all of the people in this valley that are wanting to get into outdoor activities in an affordable way.”

The business is getting more consignment now then they every have before, so they are implementing a ten-item limit, Patton said.  Eventually, the ten-item limit may be lifted, but Patton said it is exciting how much quality stuff they have that they are able to sell in the store.

“We are definitely a little bit picky [with new items],” Patton said. “We want stuff that is good quality, a good brand, usually. It helps if the brand has a good warranty or a good repair program because that way, we will know that the gear is built to last. So, we won’t take just like some generic stuff. Or some department brands we won’t take. But if it is in good working condition, we will take it.”

Buckley said that trying a new outdoor activity is very expensive if you are buying new and that the cost is a barrier that stops people from trying new things.

“Most of our customers that come in they are either trying the sport for the first time or they are getting back into it after a long time and the gear that they have for it is no longer up to date,” Buckley said. “So, a lot of our customer base are like, oh, I want to try skiing, but it’s expensive to rent and the ticket prices are already so much. I think that need [for used gear] is growing.

The retail location is big enough to hold both summer and winter gear at the same time at about 2000 sq. ft., Buckley said.  Currently, the location is selling mainly summer items, but they have already sold skis and snowboards this summer. As items age, there is a system where the price decreases over time, which Buckley said has really helped get items off the shelf.

Because of the large variety of items that are sold at Colchuck Consignment and the fact that every secondhand item is unique, online ordering is currently not an option, Buckley said. There may be an item with a repair that the buyer needs to see in person, and it is hard to write accurate item descriptions online for each unique item.

Patton said the shop is in Cashmere because it is a more affordable place to rent than Leavenworth and because Cashmere is centrally located relative to the demographic of shoppers that they get. The store receives customers ranging from Merritt, Lake Wenatchee and Plain to “all the way out in Malaga”, she said.

She said that most people who shop at Colchuck Consignment are locals, but they are starting to get more tourists. Buckley said that some customers’ friends who are local recommended the store, so the customers visit on their vacation. He said that they have not done any formal advertising and new customers have been driven by word of mouth.

Besides the co-owners, the store currently has one employee, Luke Dixon. Patton said it was a big leap to hire someone.

“Building up the business, it’s so close to your heart and stuff, it is really hard to share it with someone else and to know if they’re gonna care as much about it as you do. But we are lucky with our first employee that he had the perfect level of experience in just about every facet of the business.”

The biggest goal for the business is to expand hours and days that the store is open, Buckley said, as well as hosting more community events like movie nights or a speaker series. In addition to their retail space, Colchuck Consignment is currently a free co-working space, with no purchase needed to do personal work there.

Colchuck Consignment is currently open from noon to six Thursday through Monday.

 

 

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