The Thrill of Thrifting

Julia Epling, Writer

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While it may seem as though the latest trends in fashion are out of your price range, many students have found a way to wear what they want, and save money doing it.

    Thrift shopping is often subjected to being only for the less fortunate; however, with the popularization of thrifting in the past few years, it’s viewed more as a way to save money for people of all ages.

    “I’ve been a thrifter my entire life because my grandma loves thrifting,” Zoe Moore (12) said. “Whenever Goodwill has half-price days or special colored tags, my grandma loves going to those…and I always tagged along. It just stuck with me and now I do it on my own.”

    Fort Wayne has over 19 popular thrift shops such as Goodwill, Salvation Army, Dove’s Nest and Treasure House.

    “[The] Goodwill…on Brooklyn, really small but has a great selection, the Goodwill [on Jefferson,] and the Salvation Army right in the center of Downtown…are probably my top three favorite [thrift stores],” Moore said.

    While many students agree with Moore, others don’t enjoy thrifting because they think it’s unsanitary to wear used clothes. These critics don’t have anything against the people who go thrifting, they just wouldn’t go themselves.

    “I couldn’t imagine buying something someone has worn before,” Anon said. “I see my friends do it all the time, but it’s just not something I’m comfortable doing.”

    However, with selective shopping and a single wash after purchasing, thrifted goods are good to go.

    “I think [thrifting] is really creative because you can express yourself by customizing your purchases…no one is likely to have what you get at a thrift store,” Emma Messer (9) said.

    It is understood some things found at a thrift store are not high quality and have had their fair share of wear; however, some items can be renewed after a few alterations.

    “It is super easy to find brand name things and make alterations by cutting them,” Natalee Mcquillan (9) said.

    Mcquillan argues thrifting is fun and something different to do with friends and get new clothing you might not find in the mall or in a department store. While she hasn’t been thrifting in a long time, she says she would like to go soon because of the experience she’s had with it so far.

    Thrift stores typically have the best inventory between December to March. That’s because because many people donate their clothing around the holidays to declutter for the New Year.

    “[When thrifting], go with an open mind and don’t be in a rush,” Moore said. “Everything is different and you really have to look through the entire rack to find that diamond in the rough.”

    If you’d like to avoid spending time thrifting in stores, it has expanded to online as well. Unfortunately, big thrifting chains such as Goodwill have not expanded to online shopping; however, new websites such as Poshmark and Depop have recently been created.

    “There’s an app called Depop…that you can sell clothes on and buy other people’s clothes,” Moore said. “Usually you get great prices. Some stuff will be only worn once or twice and is on-brand…so I sell on there and buy on there.”

    Thrifting doesn’t only save money, it also helps save the environment. People throw away 60-80 pounds of unwanted clothing annually and when you thrift your clothes, it lowers your carbon footprint by preventing the manufacturing of new clothes. It also decreases landfill waste.

    Before you change or keep your opinion on thrifting, make a trip out to one of the many thrift stores or check it out online. It will benefit your wallet as you’ll get more clothing for the same price as most retail stores!


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