Did you grow up in the KW area? Were you a teenager in the nineties? Perhaps you might remember the likes of stores named “Eye in the Sky” or “Surrender Dorothy”. These are the stores of my past, where my love of treasure hunting, and second hand shopping began. When I was a young teenager, and started to develop my own tastes and desires, I realized pretty quickly that my wants did not match my bank account, which was basically nothing. So, it was then that I began to work part-time for money to buy my desired name brand clothes. When I started out at Pizza Hut, the minimum wage was $4.15. And yes, that was per hour! And in earning my own money, realized the value of work and the value of money. In the beginning, instead of trying to make my money go further, I would blow an entire pay cheque on one single pair of Esprit jeans or Aldo shoes, because there was no way I was wearing anything bought from Bi-Way, Towers, or K-Mart which is where my mom would shop for us.
Luckily, it didn’t take too long before I realized that it just wasn’t worth it to be working away at Pizza Hut for two whole weeks, only to have the money I earned gone in less than ½ an hour. And that is when, as a teenager, I developed some resourcefulness to invest the time in finding more for less. Back to those earlier days, there were a multitude of second-hand vintage shops where you could find unique pieces for much less than the regular retail price, and end up wearing something completely unique on civvies day in high school! (Civvies day was the day once a month when we didn’t have to wear our scratchy kilts)
Which takes me to today. I refuse, absolutely refuse, to pay full price for mostly everything. It just doesn’t make sense to me. Now that I’ve had some life experience, which is code word for I HAD KIDS!!, I’ve come to understand the following: 1)KIDS GROW FAST 2)FULL PRICE BOOKS ARE EXPENSIVE 3)NAME BRAND ITEMS DO APPEAR TO BE MADE BETTER, THUS LASTING LONGER 4)YOU CAN ALWAYS SHOP FOR TOMORROW WHEN YOU SEE A DEAL TODAY NOW Right now, I am literally sitting at the front counter at The Children’s Marketplace writing this blog post and my love of second hand is still here. But now, in addition to doing my part to reduce my carbon foot-print and reducing unnecessary things in the landfill, I can also make some of my money back from my still-in-good-condition kids items, while allowing someone else the pleasure of getting use from something I no longer need (phew!) There has never been a more win-win situation.
If you’re not currently a person who consigns or second-hand shops, I urge you to look into it and consider giving it a try. You really have nothing to lose except clutter, and things you no longer have any use for. What you will gain is a new perspective, a way to recycle your kids old toys for newer ones, a way to provide more books, encourage literacy and a love of reading, current clothing, and perhaps even a few extra bucks in your wallet for Starbucks. Need I say more? Mic drop...