The online student news site of Redondo Union High School

High Tide

The online student news site of Redondo Union High School

High Tide

The online student news site of Redondo Union High School

High Tide

Thrift Mania

Students use thrifting as a way to find themselves.

Shuffling through endless racks of old, dusty clothing can seem daunting, but somewhere in the store is that one item that, with a little fixing, can become the most prized possession in somebody’s closet. 

Students have found their own personal style nestled in between stained shirts and ripped pants in the racks of goodwill, salvation army, uptown cheapskate and countless other thrift stores across Los Angeles. Sophomore Carter Mirabal recalls getting lost during his first visit to a thrift store but over time, the excitement of finding beautiful pieces helped him bond with his mother and friends. 

“[During] my first experience thrifting, I definitely didn’t know what I was doing so I bought some pretty dumb stuff. I bought a pink button up shirt because I was like, ‘Oh, this is cool’ and it really wasn’t, but it made me think ‘Man, I could just buy anything.’ So I started going back with my friends and my mom, who taught me a lot about what fabrics are good,” Mirabal said. “It really gave us something in common because I play a lot of sports and my mom was never into that stuff but now we have our time together thrifting and we have a space where we can share something in common.” 

According to Mirabal, thrift stores are the perfect place to discover new textures and patterns and mesh different aesthetics to find one’s own unique style. 

“It’s opened me up to new designs and especially since it’s cheaper, I can buy things that I usually wouldn’t buy and I can get it at a cheaper price. It gave my friends and I something to do that’s affordable,” Mirabal said. “We used to always hang out and we never really knew what to do but now we’re like ‘Hey, wanna go thrifting?’ and we go and laugh at all the dumb stuff that they have there and we can get a lot of cool clothes.” 

Senior Nikki Reid can attest to the failure that it takes in order to succeed in the thrift store. Social media inspired Reid and, beginning in quarantine, she would  get into her car and drive to her local thrift store. With this, Reid’s closet has grown immensely with eccentric articles of clothing. 

“It’s definitely a lot of trial and error. When you go, you’re not always going to find something and you could walk out with nothing but the whole experience of thrifting is not knowing what you’re going to find,” Reid said. “Every once in a while you find that one gem that makes your whole day better and it’s really fun to incorporate new things and think outside the box to make your closet more unique.” 

For Reid, small imperfections in the clothing she purchases are simply a small obstacle; whether the clothes are too big or too short, Reid can turn almost anything into a wearable and fashionable purchase.

“I usually go for things my size but a lot of the time I’ll buy things five sizes too big and find some hack to make them fit better. Sometimes, I’ll put a belt over it or something because a lot of times the best things you find aren’t really in your size,” Reid said.

Junior Lily Forbes also finds joy in discovering her own personal style through thrifting. Similar to Mirabal and Reid, she uses thrifting as a method of self-expression through which she can make her clothes her own.

“Thrifting is so fun because every piece you get is unique and most of the time you can’t leave it how it is because it’s ugly or not form fitting or it has some sweat stains on it. So you have to cut it up a little bit and fix it and that makes it so unique and it makes it something that nobody else has,” Forbes said. 

For Forbes, thrifting is almost always a rewarding experience and when she walks out the door in the morning on her way to school wearing her thrifted pieces, she smiles knowing that she is wearing a piece of history. 

“Finding those hidden gems in thrift stores is really like finding a diamond in the rough because there’s a lot of ugly stuff at thrift stores that’s not worth your money,” Forbes said. “But when you find those pieces to add to your closet that are just so cool and unique, it’s really a special feeling.”

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About the Contributor
Isabella Kohler
Isabella Kohler, Writing & Copy Editor
Hey! I’m Isabella and i’m a junior jewel (Taylor Swift reference). This year I’ll be a Writing/Copy Editor for High Tide and I couldn’t be more excited! I love singing, writing, hanging out with my friends, and if you ever catch me listening to Kanye west I owe you a dollar (sorry Kanye fans).

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