The hidden treasures of thrifting

Ashtyn Sakamoto, Opinion Editor

You’re shuffling through dozens of sweatshirts, your eyes eagerly searching for the perfect find. Several tense seconds pass, and then you discover a cool Gonzaga quarter-zip, hidden among the others. Victory! The next day at school, when someone asks where you got your new top, you can proudly say it’s thrifted.

In a time where many people are unaware of their consumption, we are experiencing something fascinating: a resurgence in thrift store shopping. If you don’t thrift, you probably have friends that do. Thrifting is an inexpensive way to find different pieces to fill your wardrobe. Where else can you get unique apparel at a fraction of the cost? While thrifting is a great way to save money, it is also a way to actively save the environment.
“It’s another way to sustainably shop because you are buying second-hand. Even if you buy a fast fashion brand at Goodwill, you’re putting the item through a second life,” junior Natalie Crouse said.
Local second-hand stores like Goodwill and Value Village have all kinds of clothes, accessories, and vintage items, just waiting to be found. At Goodwill, some items are marked down on certain days of the week, giving bargain hunters an especially good deal. These stores can be great places to find one-of-a-kind attire for occasional events too.

“I found a really cute hat one time just for a spirit day. That’s usually where I go for spirit days,” freshman Alisa Fine said.
According to the National Association of Resale and Thrift Shops, the U.S. resale industry generates 17 billion dollars in revenue per year and experiences significant annual growth of around seven percent. The trend is supported by the increased popularity of fashion apps such as thredUP and Poshmark. These apps allow users to resell their unwanted items, as well as shop for second-hand clothes themselves. Some estimates predict extraordinary growth for the resale industry, with the secondhand market reaching 51 billion dollars in five years, according to thredUP’s 2019 resale report.
With millenials and Gen Z driving the secondhand boom, the trend has struck Liberty. For Patriots that want to try thrifting but haven’t had the chance yet, Crouse has one recommendation in particular.
“You always want to go into thrifting with an open mind. I like the discovery part of it,” Crouse said.
Junior Marco Murillo agrees that thrifting can be rewarding because you never know what you are going to find.
“The best part of thrifting to me is being able to be surprised and going into a store without having any idea of what you want. It’s almost like a development of your own style. The surprise element of thrifting is really cool,” Murillo said.