by Ellie Butterfield
Your guide to thrifting in the new Gilded Age
WELCOME TO THE roaring 20s – again! As a fresh start to the decade, more people are changing habits to improve the world around them. Following the trend of secondhand, here are ideas for a more affordable, sustainable and ethical year of shopping.
Here’s where you’ll find the biggest bang for your buck. Whether they are common chains or local spots, you can find the most affordable pieces here. Thrift stores are a main entry point for donated clothing, which means they are filled with sustainable items up for grabs. When you thrift, embrace the time spent sifting. Finding a piece that you love for only $4 will be that much more worth it. Don’t forget about books, housewares and miscellaneous sections filled with collector mugs, groovy lamps and frames and at least five Stephen King books per store.
Pro-Tip: Ask about weekly promotions, like half-price Mondays and color-specific sales for an even better steal.
The closest secondhand option you’ll find to a mall, resale stores bring contemporary,name brand items to those who want to be both on-trend and ethical. Rather than donating, locals bring their lightly worn clothes, shoes, and accessories to resale stores to sell. Employees carefully select pieces that are likely to sell quickly, so you’ll find a frequent rotation of items.
Pro-Tip: Only about 20% of items donated to thrift stores are sold, meaning the rest are sent off to landfills and recycling plants. Selling your pieces at resale stores helps ensure they will be given a new life.
Turn to consignment stores for more of a boutique feel. They acquire goods from people who receive a percentage of payment after it’s sold. Consignment stores have higher quality options with a price point much below retail and higher than thrift. Most consignment stores are local-owned and several have unique twists. Finders Keepers has a furniture-only location in addition to its boutique clothing consignment.
Pro Tip: To figure out the best time to find newer items, ask the owners which days they get the most donations. Learning the
store’s usual schedule helps you get first pick on fresh pieces.
When you just don’t have the time to thrift-hop around Atlanta, take to the internet to get your secondhand fix. ThredUp offers more than two million women’s and children’s pieces, and even has personal shoppers who can send a Goody Box. Selling apps like Depop and Poshmark blend secondhand shopping with a growing platform for business – social media. Sellers develop aesthetics and brand themselves by selling consistent styles and fabrics, all strategically modeled in natural light and funky backgrounds.
Pro-Tip: With many online sellers, you can bundle individual items you love to get an even more affordable price. Just ask.