Scouring, digging and searching the aisles, racks and shelves becomes routine for designer-conscious thrift shoppers. The possibility of finding two interlocked C’s, a bag bearing nothing but G’s or anything with the ol’ LV logo staring back at them is what keeps them hunting.
But a new boutique opens Friday that will change all that. Deja Blue is the effort of Goodwill of Southern Nevada. It offers the same gently used clothing at the same budget-friendly prices, but the items here are all brand names.
Goodwill has had success with the same system in other cities, but the ones that have used the name Deja Blue include Denver and the Orange County area. For the local Goodwill, it seemed a natural fit.
“Everyone is looking for brand names,” says Kathy Topp, Goodwill of Southern Nevada spokeswoman. “This is a town where image is important. It’s a way to have brand names and have extra cash in your pocket, too.”
It’s not just the merchandise that’s different here. Step foot in the boutique and it’s clear this isn’t your ordinary thrift store. Hardwood floors and vibrant blue walls greet customers. Items are displayed in “story” format, which means each rack has been carefully thought out with shoes and handbags that coordinate with the clothing placed on shelves above them.
Despite the large 2,800 square feet of space, it’s a true boutique ambience and tone.
Some of the pieces on the store’s racks and shelves include a Diane von Furstenberg summer printed dress for $99.99, Prada buckle-embellished heels for $134.99, Tory Burch open-toe strap sandal heels for $64.99 and a Salvatore Ferragamo white patent leather clutch for $166.99.
Prices are typically set at 33 percent of the piece’s original price. That said, there’s also a Chanel quilted tote for $19.99, and a Louis Vuitton messenger bag for $39.99. That’s because Deja Blue doesn’t just carry authentic pieces. Knockoffs are also sold here.
To determine the authenticity of an item, the store carefully evaluates things such as logos, lining and leather but for the tricky pieces that are harder to distinguish, they refer to shopgoodwill.com. This is the ecommerce site where upscale pieces are sold from Goodwill stores around the country. Experts here are trained to find key identifiers that separate the real from the fake.
And, the term “brand name” doesn’t just include luxury designers. Everything from True Religion to Bebe to NFL (a Chicago Bears Brian Urlacher jersey sells for $14.99) are sold here.
For shoppers who actually look forward to the treasure hunt that is thrift shopping, not to worry. Goodwill stores throughout the valley will continue to feature brand name items because it’s “the thrill of the find” that makes it so rewarding, as Topp says.
A few contributing factors have upped the popularity of thrift shopping. “No. 1 is the economy,” Topp says. “No. 2 is the emphasis on being green. Instead of throwing things away, we can give them new life.”
Of course, a rapper rhyming about how great the concept is in a hit song called “Thrift Shop” doesn’t hurt matters, either. “We love Macklemore,” says Jessica Milazzo, manager of community affairs for Goodwill of Southern Nevada. “We have the edited version of that song playing in some of our stores. It makes it fun.”
Deja Blue, at 10300 W. Charleston Blvd., opens Friday at 9 a.m.
Contact Xazmin Garza at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0477. Follow her on Twitter @startswithanx.