At first, Kaycie Morwood just wanted to get rid of her old clothes before starting college.
That was the origin of her online store on Poshmark, a marketplace platform for buying and selling clothes and home goods. During her first semester at California State University, East Bay, she made only $400 in sales. But after studying trends and sellers’ strategies, she learned how to flip clothing from thrift stores and made her casual side hustle profitable.
Since launching her store in June 2016, Morwood has earned $30,000 on the platform, according to documents reviewed by CNBC Make It. For five years, she saved those earnings. Last August, she spent $17,000 of them — plus a $2,000 gift from her parents — to cover her entire wedding.
“It felt really good to have the extra money, some wiggle room in my budget,” Morwood, 24, tells CNBC Make It. “I didn’t have to stress about my wedding putting me in debt.”
Morwood says her savings from Poshmark made her dream wedding possible: Less concerned about money, she could invite more guests and splurge on decorations.
Irina L. at Classic Photographers
Today, Morwood is a full-time biomedical researcher with a salary of $55,000 per year. She commits two hours per week to her side hustle, earning an additional $7,000 from it last year. “It takes about two minutes to set up. Then I’ll go watch Netflix, work out or go to my actual daytime job,” she says. “Then at night, when I’m laying in bed, I just answer questions, edit listings and do easy maintenance work.”
Morwood has also found success selling different items on other platforms, including Facebook Marketplace and Mercari, resulting in an additional $8,000 of savings, she says.
Here’s how she uses data to navigate those reselling markets, and what she plans to do with the rest of her savings.
A very lucrative pink puppy
In her side hustle’s early days, Morwood says she spent months casually selling clothes she already owned and silently stalking other users’ stores to figure out how to expand her own. She also needed a fashion education: Wearing school uniforms through eighth grade left her out of the style loop, she says.
“I wore the same outfit every day for nine years, so I wasn’t in tune to fashion,” she says. “I quickly learned people really are biased toward brands.”
In March 2017, she had her first big break with an $8 Victoria Secret PINK Princess dog. Another seller was trying to get rid of a set of the logoed, magenta stuffed pups. Based on prior research, Morwood figured she could buy the largest one from the set and resell …….