Earth Day 101: All Things Consignment

Clean the city and your guilty conscience

Since the birth of Earth Day on April, 22, 1970, people have committed one day per year to pick up trash, join a recycling challenge, or volunteer for large-scale sustainability events like Earth Day Austin to save the planet and enforce green habits.

If you’re desperately searching for a loophole to clean the city and your guilty conscience sans dirt and heavy lifting, we have one Earth Day word for you: consignment.

Whether you’re spilling out of those acid wash denim jeans or swimming in that knit sweater your grandma made, you might want to think twice before tossing. Unfortunately, anything you throw in the garbage can contribute to water and soil contamination as well as global warming. So gather your closet rejects and head to these consignment stores.

Uptown Cheapskate

Uptown Cheapskate's endless rows of quality clothing pristinely ordered and topped with racks of shoes and accessories makes it easy to save the earth and splurge on a new wardrobe without breaking the bank. [Warning, I’m about to brand drop.] As if in a dream, I came face to face with Steve Madden, Prada, Gucci, and BCBGMaxazria as well as inexpensive brands like Forever 21. [It’s so magical, there might even be a portal to Narnia.] They’ll price your on-trend seasonal items and give you a percentage in cash or store credit. Any items they don’t buy are donated to the American Textile Recycling Service. Channeling Audrey Hepburn, I paired a classic two-piece black and white dress with black suede Steve Madden pumps, a red clutch and wide-brimmed hat. With a new outfit and extra cash in hand, I walked out the door less poor, greener, and more fashionable.

Revival Vintage

Revival Vintage offers a smorgasbord of upcycled vintage thingamabobs including a Bonnie Raitt record amid a generous stack of vinyl, a 1980s dining table and chair set, and knick knacks galore. Lining the storefront sits a woven lawn chair and Pepsi Cola ice chest reminiscent of yard pieces used to watch small town parades. I had to refrain from letting out a “Yeah, baby, yeah!” when I saw a 1970s television and VHS player appropriately screening Austin Powers. If you’re more of an online shopper, check out their etsy page. If your vintage furniture, clothing, or artwork could fill up a booth, you can apply to be a vendor for the monthly Revival Sunday Market. Across the street, Room Service Vintage will buy any approved 50s-70s vintage furniture!

Blue Velvet

Blue Velvet is the perfect place to revamp your look with a heavy dose of vintage. Colorful petticoats and one-piece swimsuits float from the ceiling, and boots of all shapes and sizes border the top edge of the walls. There are enough leather jackets to clothe an entire cast of Grease, as well as sunglasses, hats, belts, purses, shoes, and jewelry. If you're ever in need of a drive-in date night outfit or a decades themed party suit (or a davy crockett hat?), you can certainly find it here. Don't forget to grab a drink at Epochs Coffee next door and stop by Breakaway Records to buy, sell, or trade LPS!

All things considered, there truly isn’t a downside to shopping or selling upcycled clothing. Plus, I don’t know about you, but I’ve never been more motivated to spring clean- and maybe summer, fall, and winter clean too. Stay clean and stay green Austin! Happy Earth Day!

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