“…They Hurt My Feet”

I’m assuming that some of you stumbled onto my page because you’re in debt…a lot of debt.


I’m also going to make a prediction that a few of you have spent countless hours awake at night by the light of your cell phone under your covers (so as not to wake your significant other) googling things like “how to pay off [insert ridiculous amount of money here] as fast as possible.” Some of you may find yourself in that exact scenario now as you read this sentence.

My goal is to help curb those feelings of impending doom brought on by the one thing that makes the world go ’round: Money.

Photo: commondreams.org

Photo: commondreams.org

Until August 2015, I was that person pulling pointless all-nighters looking for a solution to destroy the $130,000 worth of student loan debt that I’d accumulated after 6 years of higher education. One time, I actually created a plan that would actually allow me to work for 24 hours straight (I mean hey, I wasn’t sleeping anyway!).

Well one night at the end of June, I finally stumbled upon the solution (at around 3 am) that has allowed me to pay off $34,697 in 5 months!

It was so simple I almost started kicking myself for not thinking of it sooner…

Selling second-hand clothing, shoes and accessories.

Now halt those automatic negative thoughts and quit making reasons for why you could never do what I’m doing…at least for a quick second.

At first I wasn’t a believer myself. I read a post about a girl who successfully paid off $100,000 in student loan debt in 3 years using resale apps such as Poshmark. My first thoughts were mostly that reflexive negative talk about why I couldn’t do what she did, but still, part of me was intrigued. I decided to give it a shot. What did I have to lose anyway? I was already $130,000 in debt…and climbing.

After downloading Poshmark, I went to my closet to look for something I could live without. The first thing that I ever posted was a pair of unbranded, teal, open toe flats. I picked these because they hurt my feet and they were just sitting in my closet.


My first ever sale was this pair of well-worn, brandless, open toe shoes, but somebody bought them!

They were far from perfect, had a small mark on the back and had been worn. I posted them — I didn’t even do a great job with my photos as you can see above — and forgot all about it for the next month. I even deleted the app!

On August 3, 2016 I got an email from Poshmark congratulating me on my $7 sale of my not-that-special, painful-at-times, teal flats. I made $4 after the minimum $2.95 commission, but let me tell you something — it was the best $4 I ever made in my life. After that, I was completely hooked.

Over the next few months I started to scour the racks at the Goodwill on my one-hour lunch break. My phone was constantly in my hand and I started to educate myself on popular brands and what was on trend. I’m the middle child in a family with 6 children so it’s safe to assume that I wasn’t wearing Little Marc Jacobs growing up. No, no, I was literally starting from scratch.

The first lesson I learned: Educating yourself is key. Without consistently looking up brands, I would have definitely skipped over that $14.99 Zilli Calf Skin Leather jacket at Savers and I would not have resold it for $550…but more about that later.

Where to start you ask? Two words: START SMALL.

You don’t want to get overwhelmed with a big pile of thrift stores clothes in the middle of your floor. That’ll just leave you more frustrated and anxious than you were before. And then you’ll hate me. I don’t want you to hate me.

Start with a few things that you know. For example, Under Armour. You can easily buy an Under Armour Heatgear shirt for $5. What’s even easier is that you can definitely sell that shirt for $10-$15 (let’s stay one the safe side with $10 for now and pretend there’s no site fees). If you buy 5 Under Armour shirts at $5 each, you’ve spent $25 total. If you sell each of those shirts for $10 each, you’ll now have $50 with $25 of profit for that week. Multiply that by one month and you have just made $100. Who could use an extra $100 a month? I bet you could, that’s why you’re reading this post…am I right?!

To get a little “Social Worky” on you for a second, think of it as taking steps on a ladder. Set small goals for yourself (e.g., an extra $100 per month), build your confidence and proceed from there. You need to crawl before you can walk and walk before you can run!

Photo: www.amandabrazel.com/

Photo: www.amandabrazel.com/

My hope is that this blog will serve as a safe place to ask questions, encourage/empower each other and motivate you to take control of your financial future. The time is now! There’s a way to relieve your financial anxiety. It’s knocking on your door! Will you answer it?

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Welcome to Debt Free Dawn! I'm a social worker by day and second-hand clothing flipper by night (and weekends) trying to pay down $130,000 of student loan debt as quickly as possible. Please comment below with any questions and thanks for visiting my site!


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  1. Tinkerbell

    This is an excellent blog! It is very informative and I will be a consistent follower. Keep the tips coming!

  2. Sarah

    Dawn you are an inspiration! Thank you for taking the time to share your experience and encourage others to be debt free!

  3. Patti

    Well done and well said Dawn. I will continue to follow and hope I can do well at it myself. Thank you Dawn!

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