Making a New Story for Old Clothes Has No Limit


Senior Tatum Miller, Megan Lockhart, and Lexi Riehl pose to show off their thrifted outfits. Additional photos labeled for reuse.

Living in a time where embracing your uniqueness and expanding your individuality is encouraged, thrift shopping has been moving up in the fashion industry. Thrift shops provide an affordable and fun way to make your own style different from the rest.

The hype of thrift shopping has been climbing in popularity here at Air Academy as students begin to embark on a different way of shopping.

Thrift stores located on Academy Blvd such as the Arc and Goodwill are familiar to many Kadets, and one can find them packed throughout the week as each store runs sales on their clothes. In addition, further down the road is Plato’s Closet, a second-hand store where students can buy gently used clothes or sell their own clothes to them.

Thrift shopping doesn’t just exist in the stores or in students’ closets. This phenomenon can be brought home and seen online. Website outlets such as Poshmark, Etsy, Depop, or even personal Instagram pages are awesome tools to resell or buy used clothing.

Buying clothes and brands that are in style and reselling them on peer to peer shopping apps such as Poshmark or Depop can produce a large profit. Personal or customized purchases with embroidery, paint, tailoring, or drawn-on items can be resold for a higher price due to the customization. Another way for students to make fast money is to go through their closets and bring their unwanted clothes to a local, gently used, second-hand store and make thirty to forty percent back on their clothes. This money can be used to buy newer clothes or add some extra cash to student bank accounts.

“I sold half my clothes at Plato’s closet one time and I made one hundred and thirty dollars from them, and then with the money I then got the chance to buy new clothes,” said senior Acacia Ryska.

Buying thrifted clothes provides a safe place to express personal style choices and interests. There is no fear in embroidering, painting or tailoring thrifted clothes because they weren’t bought at full price. Making a new story for old clothes has no limit, whether with iron-on patches, fabric combinations, or even freehand drawings.

“I usually find things too big and I will sew the waist in and cut the cuff off my jeans or the end of my shirts to personalize it,” said senior Megan Lockhart.

Thrifting is a win for student’s style and their wallets, but also a win for the Earth. For even more motivation to go out and thrift, consider the environmental benefits.

“Thrifting is the most sustainable way to shop and recycle clothing because it requires no manufacturing. The thrifting industry is an industry of recycling,” said senior Gabriella Robinson.

Even though thrift shops do have name brand clothing, the reuse of “old” clothes minimizes the negative effects of production many large retail companies have on the environment.

According to Sustain Your Life the fashion industry “is the second-largest polluter in the world, just after the oil industry.”

Regardless of the cost-efficiency, a price can not be put on expressing your individuality. Almost every piece of thrifted clothing is unique and one of a kind, just like the person who will be wearing it.