As more people venture into small scale entrepreneurship in Jamaica, more and more pop-up shopping events have been happening, including pop-up thrifting. When it comes to my shopping habits, I’ll support my friends locally and if an event comes up suddenly and I have nothing appropriate then I’ll buy an outfit anywhere I can find one in Jamaica, but generally I tend to do my shopping in the US.
Over the holiday season I knew about two thrift pop-ups and while part of me thought, “Oh this could be cool”, another part of me wondered if I really wanted to wear things that have already been worn. But, the more I thought about it, the more I realised that clothes I’d buy in stores have likely already been tried on, and as kids I’m sure everyone got clothes passed on from older siblings, cousins or friends, so I asked myself, what’s the real difference?
Before we get into the good stuff, I have to get nerdy on you for a second and give you some numbers. Thrifting has a good history, of not just helping people but also the environment, because less consumption means less resources being used and wasted. In the US thrifting is a billion dollar business, and the 2018 IBISWorld report on the industry indicated the total revenue for the year as $14 billion, with annual growth from 2013 to 2018 at 1.6%. FYI…You know what else happened in 2013? Macklemore’s Thrift Shop topped the Billboard Hot 100 Charts *cue impromptu dance party* I’m gonna pop some tags, only got twenty dollars in my pocket 🎼🎧.
Celebrity Closet by New Wave is put on by a friend of mine, Lindsey Lodenquai, and the proceeds from the December 2018 staging will go towards art initiatives in Denham Town. Mukkle Thrift I only found out about because it popped up on my Instagram feed, and the proceeds from this went to ‘Christmas in Riverton City’ which provides help to kids at the Riverton Meadows Early Childhood Centre.
I got to have a quick chat with the head cook and bottle washer for each of these thrift pop-ups, but rather than have this post be too long, I’m going to feature one now and one next week!
Here’s what Lin had to say about her pop-up, Celebrity Closet:
Why did you decide to do a pop-up thrift shop?
Lindsey: New Wave is all about creating new and unique experiences for our audience, so myself and the team at the time (2017) thought it was a great idea to make the thrifting culture trendy in Jamaica.
How long have you been doing your pop-up?
Lindsey: This is the second staging of Celebrity Closet that we’ve done.
When is the next one being planned for?
Lindsey: Tentatively in the summer, but if not def in December.
What would you say to people who aren’t too convinced about the concept of thrifting?
Lindsey: It’s just another way to explore clothing, most of the things that we have, have maybe been worn once, or even never at all. But it’s a great way to shop and try different things due to the low cost factor. Why buy one expensive item when you can thrift and get several super cool pieces?