How to Host a Successful Swap

    Top 20 Swappables
  • Bakeware and small appliances
  • Board games
  • Books
  • CDs
  • Children's toys
  • Children's clothing
  • Clothing and accessories
  • Cookies (at holiday time)
  • Coupons
  • Craft supplies (e.g. yarn, fabric, scrapbook materials, jewelry)
  • DVDs
  • Food (prepared in advance, frozen and carefully labeled)
  • Gardening supplies
  • Home decor items (e.g. lamps, art, vases, figurines)
  • Home-grown garden vegetables and fruits
  • Jewelry (costume)
  • Ornaments/holiday decorations
  • Purses and totes
  • Recipes and cookbooks
  • Furniture
  • Four Weeks Before Your Swap...
    Start gathering supplies in a single location:

  • Shopping bags
  • Newspaper/packaging material for fragile items
  • Extension cords and batteries for trying out electronics
  • Display tables
  • Full-length mirror (for clothing Swaps)
  • Measuring tape
  • Rod or clothing line to hang items

  • Two Weeks Before Your Swap...
  • Call your designated charity to arrange pickups if the leftover items are too big to drop off. Here are some organizations to try:

    Vietnam Veterans: / (301) 585-4000
  • Goodwill: / (800) 741-0186
    Salvation Army: / (800) 95-TRUCK
    Also consider local churches, shelters, hospitals and police departments for stuffed toys.
  • Confirm RSVPs.
  • Accept items delivered in advance of the Swap.
  • Buy drinks and snacks. Remember, people will be busy "shopping," so cans of soda and bottled water in a big cooler with ice will do just fine.
  • One Day Before Your Swap...
  • Email reminders to your expected Swappers.
  • Set up whatever you can ahead of time (for example, folding tables).
  • Prepare your display tables and rods or a clothesline for hanging.
  • Make signs for display areas (e.g. boy clothes or DVDs).
  • Speed clean what you can; Swappers will be too busy to check for dust.
  • Tip: Set up your display area like a store by grouping similar items and sorting by color and size. 

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