SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) – Along with almost everything else on store shelves, the price of clothing saw big increases in 2021.
The price of clothes increased nearly 6%, according to Market Watch. And according to the 2022 State of Fashion Report by the Business of Fashion and McKinsey and Co. Foundation, two-thirds of industry executives expect to increase prices by 3% this year. That is a big reason why thrift stores and second hands shops are seeing more business.
“We actually see an average of ten to fifteen new people, who have never been in the store, every week,” explains Ann Compton, Manager of Next to New in Springfield.
Compton says Next to New saw a roughly 20% increase in sales over their normal numbers when the store reopened in 2020, and that number hasn’t slowed in the last several months. It’s not just there. Allure Thrift Store in Springfield has seen a 20% increase in sales in the last four to five months.
“When we talk to customers, they’re letting us know that prices everywhere are ridiculous right now,” says Gladstone Morrison, co-owner of Allure Thrift Store. “They want to be able to manage a little bit better on finances. It has just dramatically affected everyone. For a business owner like me, we tend to minimize or marginalize our prices so everybody’s satisfied.”
The Plaid Door Boutique, which is run by the non-profit Junior League of Springfield, has also seen more people interested in its resale supply. Allison Robertson with the non-profit says if you are in a situation where you have to watch what you spend, that doesn’t mean you can’t look good and feel good about what you wear.
“When we think of resale, we think that you’re compromising and you’re getting someone’s leftovers or someone’s second hand,” says Robertson. “But, it doesn’t have to be that way. You can still have fashion, brand names, and things that are in line with those that are shopping at really fancy stores. So, they don’t have to mean the same thing.”
According to Textile Exchange, demand for recycled clothing is around ten percent of the market. But there are some other reasons shoppers may be going the resale route. A 2021 Resale report by ThreadUp shows 51% of consumers are more opposed to eco waste and 60% are more opposed to wasting money than before the pandemic. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, more than 11 million tons of clothing hit landfills in 2018.
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