Sabrina Sampson, UVA Office for Sustainability Student Employee
Second-hand stores offer a sustainable, fun, and often more affordable way to shop while mitigating waste and promoting a circular economy. If you’re in the market for school supplies, clothes, furniture, home goods, vintage items, accessories and masks, outdoor gear, and more, check out Charlottesville’s many second-hand stores!
*Please follow physical distancing guidelines and wear a mask when shopping. Make sure to stay home if you are feeling sick or experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19.
ReThreads is a local consignment store offering used clothes and shoes, local jewelry, handmade masks, greeting cards, and gifts. The store has a cozy atmosphere with several rooms including a room with only vintage and dressier pieces. I particularly enjoyed browsing the displays of local, handmade goods throughout the store. They also offer online shopping and shipping services for those who don’t want to shop in person.
Twice Is Nice
Twice Is Nice is a local donation-based upscale second-hand boutique offering clothing, accessories, decor, furniture, and collectibles. Proceeds benefit programs supporting senior citizens in the greater Charlottesville area. I love being able to find wearable and funky vintage items for very low prices. The accessories and shoes section is always so clean and the items are great quality and feel like new. A great find was a pair of leather cowboy boots and a psychedelic patterned skirt from the 70s. There are actually two different stores located almost across the street from each other, so make sure to check out both!
Local, family-run shop Circa has several rooms full of furniture and shelves of antique home goods, decor, jewelry, books, and more. Because items are handpicked and almost all are vintage or antique, prices tend to be higher than a typical thrift store but the variety and quality of items makes Circa a must-visit. You can spend hours making your way through the rooms of furniture and compact displays of decor, glassware, dishes, vintage postcards and posters, books, vintage electronics, jewelry, and more. I made several winding passes through the store and kept discovering new pieces. I bought a vintage gold pin with a locket to dress up a fluffy black coat I found at the Salvation Army thrift store.
High-Tor Gear Exchange
If you love the outdoors and active recreation, High-Tor Gear Exchange is a great spot to check out. High Tor is a locally-owned and operated business offering a variety of clothing, shoes and hiking boots, backpacks, camping supplies, aquatic gear, and more. They also provide rental gear for camping trips, a great option for students who are unable to purchase or store items like tents, backpacks, and sleeping bags.
The Habitat Store
If you are looking for used furniture, home decor, and rugs and want to support a great cause, the Habitat Store is a great option. They also offer light fixtures, sinks, toilets, hardware, and building supplies. With two floors and a spacious open floor plan, the Habitat Store has a huge inventory of furniture for every room, as well as a selection of framed art and mirrors. They also have locally made face masks. All proceeds from sales benefit Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville.
UVA ReUSE Store and ROSE
The UVA ReUSE Store and the Reusable Office Supplies Exchange program are both located on Grounds and are operated by UVA Facilities Management. The ReUSE store sells a wide variety of surplus furniture for affordable prices, currently by appointment only. ReUSE offers primarily office furniture like desks, desk chairs, filing cabinets, as well as some bedroom furniture such as wardrobes and drawers. They also have some miscellaneous items like poster frames and mirrors.
ROSE offers a variety of used office supplies and assorted items like books, mugs, and vases, all for free. ROSE also accepts donations; call UVA Recycling at (434) 982-5050 if you are interested. Both the stores are located at the end of Leake Drive. ROSE is part of the UVA Recycling warehouse across from 1490 Leake Drive and the ReUSE store is located at 580 McCormick Drive.
Salvation Army and Goodwill
The Salvation Army and Goodwill are two well-known, conventional thrift store brands. While not locally-owned, these are great options for finding used goods at very affordable prices. Both offer clothing, home goods, decor, entertainment, and items for babies and children. My roommate and I were able to find some board games and puzzles, a classic, fun quarantine activity that doesn’t involve screen time. I also found a cute unbranded shirt that says “ice cream” with foxes circling the text. There are also lots of books and cookbooks to look through. I found one that had a focus on using local, in-season produce.