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A New Way to Look at Old Clothes

Who would have thought that an alternative spring break to Biloxi, Mississippi would result in some interesting fashion finds?

This past March, I traveled down south along with 11 other Slippery Rock students to volunteer our time on environmental projects along the Gulf Coast. But, as the skies turned grey and rainy, we found ourselves in a variety of different locations. One of these was a thrift store.

This thrift store is not your everyday Goodwill, but instead, it has multiple purposes for the community. Instead of just recycling clothing, the money earned from items purchased goes directly into the Humane Society of South Mississippi. The two organizations are connected in one building and the directors founded the thrift store in order to increase funds for the animals they take in. Talk about a way to make recycled clothing even more useful!

Our group put in several hours one afternoon sorting through bags, boxes and containers of recycled clothing from the locals. Everything from outerwear to shoes to baby clothes is accepted in donations. By the end of the day, we had cleared out a large portion of their storage room and made space for the new donations that come in on a daily basis.

Now, where is the fashion aspect in all of this?

As we finished the sorting, I noticed two or three of our volunteers toting a few items up to the register. Capris, a jean vest and a boho kimono cardigan were amongst the purchases made. Recycling clothing has often been seen in history as a taboo thing, but it truly is a new trend in and of itself, even with the designers.

That week in Biloxi inspired me to see SRU students not only volunteering their time, but even engaging in eco-friendly fashion while they did it. I certainly found a new way to look at old clothes!

(See photos below)


Maria Heintzinger

CDR Contributor

Year: Senior 1

Major: Public Relations, Business Admin. minor

Personal Style: I love to dress professionally, but I tend to purchase boho's like my new thing!

Lover of: Scarves (I have a serious collection), sheep (it's weird, I know, but they are so cuddly!), organization (my planner is my LIFE)

Post-grad plans: Work at either an agency or corporation doing PR work and eventually, go back to grad school.

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