Until the end of February, bag vintage clothes at great prices—and do something great for entrepreneurial teens at the same time.
Free spirits have always scoured thrift stores for distinctive apparel, but it took one in particular to make used clothing fashionable: Kate Moss. Moss, whose perfume line includes scents called Vintage and Vintage Muse, has appeared in recycled items from jeans to jackets and boots to ballgowns.
One of the newest and most economical Vancouver sources for retro and good-quality consignment clothes for men and women is Velveteen Vintage. Every item in the store is less than $20 and most are $5.
Velveteen Vintage was started by Sandra Todd, who creates training programs to teach youth to work in the retail industry, but the store is managed and staffed entirely by teens. “I stand back and let the kids do it,” says Todd. “They own the business. Because they’re not 19 yet, I’ve got the business licence in my name, but the whole idea of this is to pass it on.” The goal is to set the youth up with skills for their future that they can share with the community they live in as adults.
Nobody hires teens, says Todd, especially for decent jobs. She is looking for a permanent retail space in East Vancouver, hoping to raise $30,000 through the IndieGoGo crowdfunding site (VISIT www.indiegogo.com) to cover rent, insurance and a used van to pick up merchandise.
Everything Old Is New To Someone
Without a permanent space, the clothes are sold at festivals, yard sales and pop-up stores. Until the end of February, Velveteen Vintage is in the former Cantu building, now owned by developer Rize Alliance, at 196 Kingsway on the corner of 10th Avenue across from Kingsgate Mall, its third time in the space. They will be holding bag sales selling anything in the store for $10 on Saturdays but are hoping to open Tuesday to Friday as well. “I don’t want to push too much because it’s very kind of them to give us the spot,” says Todd.