Last updated: February 16. 2013 5:57AM - 2848 Views

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DUNMORE – Emily Burke enjoys the thrill of the hunt.

A longtime fan of consignment shops, the 38-year-old Dunmore resident recalls finding fur coats, purses, and one dress in particular found at a shop in Hawaii that's "the prettiest dress I have."

Since January, she's been offering locals another venue to find their own treasures along with the chance to make money when they clean out their closets.

Burke is the owner and founder of Changes, 1602 Clay Ave., Dunmore. The shop with green apple-colored walls features a wide variety of clothing, purses, jewelry, and antiques – often at bargain rates for lucky buyers.

Opening the shop earlier this year was a longtime dream, Burke said.

"I've always loved clothes. I could play with clothes all day, and I've always loved consignment shops," she said.

Consignment shops resell lightly used items brought in by customers, sharing a portion of the sale price with the original consigner. At Changes, Burke splits sales 50/50 with her customers.

The shop has brought in several high end items including Stuart Weitzman boots, Coach purses, and much more. Those lucky enough to find and fit them left with great deals.

Clothes shopping, Burke said, can sometimes be stressful, and that's a factor she hopes to eliminate at her store.

"I love it when someone comes in, tries something on, and leaves feeling good about themselves and knowing that they're not paying a ton of money for it."

She's also building lasting relationships with her customers, exchanging emails to arrange when consigners can bring items in and sharing special news with shoppers whose size and styles fit the new items that arrive regularly.

"I've had that before with consignment shops, and I remember how that was for me," she said.

The right find on the rack is akin to finding buried treasure among the gently used items, some of which come to Changes with the original tags still on them.

An active business page on Facebook and word of mouth have helped spread news about the business.

"I think it gets better every day. I really love it, and I'm hoping that this continues to get better," she said.

Consignment shops are becoming more common, according to Burke, including the addition last year of the Plato's Closet chain to Commerce Boulevard in Dickson City.

"I think that changed the attitude (towards consignment shops) a little bit," she said.

While it offers folks the opportunity to save on clothing and consigners the chance to earn money back, shops like Changes also keep clothing items out of landfills, an earth-friendly goal that Burke appreciates.

"It's good for everyone."

If you go

WHAT: Changes, a new consignment shop

WHERE: 1602 Clay Ave., Dunmore

HOURS: Tues.-Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.

INFO: www.facebook.com/dunmorepa, (570) 909-9087

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