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Retail Tales
by Alana Spraque

Since I know I’m not the only one who spent a little too much this holiday season, I thought to welcome in the New Year I would do a review of the things I love and dislike about the used clothing stores in Charlottetown.

The items that call these stores home were once loved or hated by someone and were brought there for a reason. Whether it never fit in the first place and you held onto it just a little too long, or it got worn out and you didn’t want to just throw it out. So when shopping keep your eye out for stains or something that may need to be mended, do you have the time and desire to really fix the issue? I myself don’t shop used clothing nearly enough. I’m a Mom and I know how quickly children can grow out of clothing. You can find some really great quality items that possibly were never worn.

Here is my pro and con list for five local second hand clothing stores:

Value Village
Pros: This is by far the largest of all stores so you know there is going to be greater selection. All clothing is on hangers so there is no bin surfing which I love and they have a great return policy on items if you don’t remove the tag. 
Cons: Sometimes I feel like I could go to the mall and get a better price on some items then I could here. It is used clothing after all and has been pre-loved by someone else.

Pros: You can find great items for a great price if you are willing to really look around. Even though Halloween is already over, a tip for next year, this is a great place to find accessories and wigs to spruce up your costume.
Cons: Bin Surfing. I don’t know what it is but I just have a hard time rummaging through the bins, there is just something about it that makes me itchy!

Pros: The very friendly staff. It feels more like a retail store in the way they treat their customers, willing to help but not overbearing. There is also a good selection of costume and specialty items.
Cons: Location. It is on the TCH so if you don’t have a car it can be difficult to shop there. You could take the bus if you really wanted to make the trip.

Lou Lou’s
Pros: They do consignment. You can bring items that you don’t wear anymore but hate to just give away and try and get a little cash for them. Also their new location has ample parking.
Cons: Because it is a smaller store you don’t get the variety that you’ll find at the larger stores.

The Green Man
Pros: They are fresh and new and totally cool so that’s always a draw. The clothing has already been sifted through and you are left with the best. You can also find refurbished clothing here that’s Maritime made.
Cons: All the work has been done for you in the rummaging department; you will pay a little more, but not too much.

Tip of the Month: Donate. You know you all have clothing that you haven’t worn in what feels like forever. Well, it has been forever, so bag it up and drop it off. You’ll be better for it.

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