Intercept

Intercept

Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

An+employee+at+Community+Thrift+in+the+Mission+District+shows+off+her+unique+outfit.
Back to Article
Back to Article

Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

An employee at Community Thrift in the Mission District shows off her unique outfit.

An employee at Community Thrift in the Mission District shows off her unique outfit.

An employee at Community Thrift in the Mission District shows off her unique outfit.

An employee at Community Thrift in the Mission District shows off her unique outfit.

Audrey Hwang, Staff Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






From vintage leather, rustic house ware to merchandise from the eighties, San Francisco’s thrift shops are scrambled with second hand items. Located on Valencia Street, Community Thrift is the home to many reused goods. Unlike chain thrift stores such as Buffalo Exchange and Salvation Army, Community Thrift has been in San Francisco’s Mission District for over 35 years. They have experienced first hand change in San Francisco’s thrifting cultivation.

Zarin Kresge, 39-year-old general manager of Community Thrift, described his day-to-day customers as “an entire cross-section of San Francisco.”

“The broad cross-section of who’s coming in here has changed. And the quality of stuff I’ve seen increased quite a bit over the years,” said Kresge, who has worked at Community Thrift for 15 years. 

The demographic of the customer population is diverse, and so is each customer’s motive for thrifting.“Some people are shopping out of necessities, some people are shopping for a really unique conversation piece,” Kresge said. 

Used books that are still in good condition await their next reader. Photo by Audrey Hwang

For example, Geo Pineda, a shopper at Community Thrift, expects to find “cheap furniture.” while other customers often look for used books, vintage leather, and merchandise. 

Growing up in Ohio, Kresge has been thrifting since his teenage years and enjoys finding pieces that bring out a sense of individuality. 

“Part of [thrifting] was just like creating our own unique style,” he said. “We didn’t want to look and dress like everyone else at school.” 

Similarly, cashier Tyler Lynch viewed fashion as a form of art. “Thrifting has helped me find myself and my own style and groove when it comes to clothes,” she said. “Everyone can come [to Community Thrift] and find things that speaks to them rather than things that they think is cool just because it’s on the billboards.”

The practice of recycled fashion has benefits beyond self-expression — it is environmentally friendly. Kresge said that it can bring awareness to fast fashion, and can help the environment by recycling clothing, furniture and other daily necessities that are still usable.

 Due to the variety of donations, thrifting in San Francisco can be a unique experience.. Kresge said that San Francisco’s tight living space forces many people to constantly get rid of things. A large amount of donations are often high-quality and in good condition. 

Multiple pieces of women’s clothing crowd the racks at Community Thrift. Photo by Audrey Hwang

“You see stuff that’s been around for 30 years, 40 years and still really great and in good shape,” Kresge said. 

Jesse Parsons, 47-year-old manager of the book section at Community Thrift, said that the simple answer for the change in resale is in two words: “the Internet.” 

Online shopping has taken over the traditional concept of physically sifting through the racks of a thrift shop.Websites such as eBay and Amazon are commonly used for online transactions.. 

Despite the changes of thrifting culture in San Francisco, secondhand shopping has allowed people to find their own style, bring back trends from years ago and find good quality items for an affordable price. 

 

About the Writer
Photo of Audrey Hwang
Audrey Hwang, Staff Writer

Audrey Hwang is a rising high school freshman who attends American school in Taipei, Taiwan. She has brought a fresh perspective to Team Intercept with...

Leave a Comment

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Left
  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    Lifestyle

    Fashion-forward locals talk trends

  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    Lifestyle

    San Francisco bookstores benefit from the Amazon age

  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    News

    A hard truth: homelessness still lives in the city

  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    Home

    The intricacies of change in San Francisco

  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    News

    Salesforce changes the culture and cityscape of SF

  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    Lifestyle

    Fashion-forward locals talk trends

  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    Lifestyle

    San Francisco bookstores benefit from the Amazon age

  • Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area

    News

    Mission residents trapped in a “chasm of income”

Navigate Right
Thrifting Evolves in the Bay Area