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Rating Berkeley's thrift stores

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JULY 17, 2022

Soft crewnecks, vintage t-shirts and jorts — what do these items have in common? They can all be found at a good thrift store. Oh, and they’re also summer essentials!

For your convenience, here’s a guide to Berkeley’s best thrift stores.

Anastasia’s: 9/10

Price: $$

This expansive vintage store is located on Telegraph Avenue, a hub for vintage and eclectic clothing since the 1960s. Anastasia’s always delivers, and as you walk through its shell-decorated walls, you know you’re going to find some cool items. 

Anastasia’s is a go-to for me when looking for cool bags. At every corner, there’s an old designer bag or an amusing tote. If I haven’t already gone and scooped up all the cute tote bags for the beach, there might be a few left for you. 

This summer, crocheted pieces are totally in. However, don’t be tempted to buy fast fashion — there are plenty of crocheted shrugs and cardigans within arm’s reach at Anastasia’s. Not to mention crocheted totes. Need oversized t-shirts? Jorts for summer hikes? They’ve got plenty of options for those, too, in both women’s and men’s styles.

Anastasia’s is pretty affordable, as you can usually get a pair of jeans or shorts for under $20. Need to get rid of your old clothes? They buy vintage, too. 

This store is my favorite because of the range of options, affordable prices and sheer size. Take a look for yourself this summer!

Slash Vintage: 7/10

Price: $$$

Slash Vintage has two parts to its store: one inside and some clothing racks outside. I’ve found that you can find the best things in the bins and racks outside, where there are more options and cheaper prices. Most of the jeans they sell are leftovers from the 90s and early 2000s — clothes that stores didn’t sell at the time that have just been sitting in warehouses ever since. Because of that, there are some pretty cool finds. Brown Dickies for $25? Pretty good, if I do say so myself. I also found low-rise corduroy Levi’s for the same price. 

It’s no question that overalls are taking storm this season, and Slash Vintage may just be your go-to. I haven’t seen a greater variety of overalls at any other vintage store. If this excites you, take a trip to Elmwood and check out what they have to offer. 

Although a great place for jeans, it can get pretty pricey if you want to buy multiple pairs, compared to other thrift stores. The quality is great, though, and will most likely last you a lifetime.

Slash Vintage, although on the more expensive side for a vintage store, still scores pretty high for me because of the quality. So if you’re ready to spend a pretty penny on a nice pair of jeans, Slash is definitely worth it. 

Out of the Closet: 5/10

Price: $

Located on the corner of University Avenue and California Street, Out of the Closet is a great equivalent to your local Goodwill, with cheap prices and surprising finds. 

Although this is not my go-to thrift store, I like to occasionally browse and can be surprised by my finds. There are many funny t-shirts, probably belonging to a dad or grandpa at one point. It’s a vibe I love channeling in my t-shirt game. 

If you love that colorful, vintage look in your t-shirts, you can get a bunch here for just a few dollars. There are tons of options and you can spend hours sifting through the clothing on the racks. It’s even more fun with a friend.

One more thing to add for all the students who can’t wait to decorate their dorm space — buy vintage! There are tons of cute accessories to find at Out of the Closet: little jars, old books, candlesticks and more. 

Even though it’s difficult to find things right away at Out of the Closet, it can be done. You just might not come away with things every time. That’s why it got a 5/10 this time around.

This summer, let’s not fall into the clutches of fast fashion. Instead, spend a weekend roaming Berkeley’s eclectic vintage shops and find some gems the sustainable way.

Contact Sophie Horvath at [email protected].

JULY 17, 2022

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