Zoe Cruz, Columnist
Macklemore made thrift shops trendy in 2012, but does anyone remember their initial purpose? It seems like now, everyone goes to the Salvation Army or Goodwill to buy a pair of high waisted jeans or a vintage sweater, but thrift stores aren’t meant for the stylish middle class.
TV series like the “Carrie Diaries” are bringing back the 80s and the trends we thought were gone for good. We can either flock to the department stores or take the cheap route and go to our local thrift shop.
According to the Salvation Army website, William Booth created Salvation Army to help “the poor, the homeless, the hungry and the destitute.” Booth felt compelled by God to serve these people because they were looked down upon by society. He gave the inopportune opportunity and we have started to slowly take it away.
I know I’m writing a column that’s going to be read by “broke college kids”, but are we really broke?
According to a study done by Citigroup and Seventeen Magazine, “nearly four out of five U.S. students between the ages of 16-24 work while in school”. I am one of those four out of five, and I made the decision to save all of my money to join a sorority; others saved it to go to the Ariana Grande concert.
We all choose how we’re going to spend our money, and I’m admittedly guilty of bringing home bags of clothes after a day of “thrifting” and being proud of my purchases. However, I work and have the ability to buy clothes full price.
We’ve all seen a person not dressed by “today’s standards” or wearing something that doesn’t seem posh, but perhaps that shirt you think is hideous was one of the ones you snickered at along the rack where you found your sweater.
Many people wonder, “Why would I pay $40 for a fake vintage sweater when I could pay two dollars for a real vintage sweater?” The answer is that someone actually needs that vintage sweater to be warm. You just want it to look fashionable, and that’s really what this boils down to.
We want to be in with the newest trends, and because they come and go faster than we can swipe our credit cards, we don’t want to pay full price for something that will be out in two unfashionable seconds.
We shouldn’t continue sorting through thrift shop racks without a care in the world when there are people with heavier burdens than our desires to stay fashionable.
According to the U.S. Census Highlights, 47 million people in this country meet the qualifications for poverty. We can’t singlehandedly solve this problem by not shopping at thrift stores, but think twice about whether you need to add those jeans to your wardrobe.