Old is Never Such, and Thrifting Says So
According to Urban Dictionary, thrifting means “visiting several different thrift shops, second-hand shops, and vintage clothing stores in the hopes of buying several items of cheap and unusual clothing and other items“. The practice of thrifting has become a hobby and for some people even a full-time job over the years. The fashion industry profits from rebranding and launching old trends, especially from the boldest decades like the Eighties, Seventies, or the Early Thousands.
Trey is a thrifting connoisseur based in New York City. Through his social media platforms, he curates this passion of his by giving suggestions, tips, and news on thrifting. His Tik Tok counts more than seven thousand followers, with more than 200 thousand likes. We asked Trey his views on thrifting and this passion that many fashionistas have.
What’s so cool about thrifting?
I personally like the thrill of thrifting. It’s fun not knowing exactly what I might find! On a good day, I could come across some really nice vintage pieces. However, there are days when I walk out with one thing or nothing. It’s all about consistency. I also enjoy the fact that I’m participating in helping the environment by purchasing second-hand clothing. Thrifting really does go a long way!
Where the most interesting and affordable places to visit in NYC?
I feel that each thrift store has its own personality. In NYC, I think the most interesting ones are L Train Vintage, Crossroads Trading, Buffalo Exchange, and Beacon’s Closet because they’re so popular and have multiple store locations. The most affordable one out of the four is L Train Vintage, but I think you could find some steals at Beacons Closet too. Trust me on that one. I’ve found limited edition and rare pieces at Beacons Closet so I always tend to take a peek in their stores every time I’m around one. I have also been discovering some new thrift stores around NYC. My two favorite new thrift stores are Tired Thrift and Thrift Lab! Tired Thrift has a lot of great vintage pieces for women and I love their store aesthetic. Thrift Lab is only open on weekends, but their vintage selection is definitely worth checking out. In addition, there are flea markets around NYC that are fun to explore too! The two best ones in my opinion are Hester Street Fair and Green Point Terminal Market. At those places, you could search for some nice clothes from small business owners, jam to music, and get some food!
Being creative in the city can be exhausting but also very much rewarding if that’s the path you’d like to be in. What are the best ways to embark on this journey?
As a creative, the key is enjoying the process. It could be exhausting at times but if you love what you’re doing it makes everything worth it! I try to be open to new experiences, get more sleep, eat healthily, and take time for myself. When I feel my best, I can create my best! My goal is to be an entrepreneur who sells vintage clothes or work a creative job at a fashion company. I always wanted to start my own fashion brand, so maybe that’ll happen one day.
Tips to purchase good fits in a thrift store: what are those? Are there any accounts people can follow on social media (besides your platforms)?
Good fits are what everybody wants when entering a thrift store and I do have some tips:
- Try envisioning yourself in a piece when you see it. Think about the clothes you already have and what could possibly go with the piece you’re interested in buying. If you come up with a good outfit in your head, that piece might be worth the buy!
- Be open to trying something new. If the price is right, don’t be afraid to try those trendy flare pants you always wanted.
- Colors! Colors! Colors! One thing I like to do is look for colors that I don’t have in my closet. That makes it easier to pick clothes out.
- Always check out the accessories! There are always some pretty cool shades, rings, bags, hats, and necklaces around at thrift stores. Accessories could really make your outfit if styled right!
A lot of thrift stores actually have social media accounts that you could follow! Tired Thrift does a pretty good job on Instagram (@tiredthrift) with giving their followers outfit inspiration and they do sales in their story posts. Thrift lab on Instagram (@thriftlab) keeps you updated on what’s new in-store and engage with their customers. Following the flea markets on social media are great too because you get updates on when they’re opening/events. Two flea markets you should check out on Instagram are @hesterstreetfair and @greenpointterminalmarket
How long does it take to become and feel empowered in your art (as a job or as a hobby)?
I think I start feeling more empowered in my art when I see positive results. It encourages me to keep creating! Even if the results are negative, I learn from the negative to make a positive. Everybody has different paths, so I never try to compare my walk with anyone else’s. It’s always best to figure out a pace that works for you!