My entire life is about sustainability and shopping locally. I am lucky to live in a place that admires this as much as I do. One of the first things I went about doing was finding some decent thrift store to shop at. I went all over New England and found some of the most fabulous stores to check out if you’re visiting the area. Most of these fantastic thrift stores are in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. However, there are loads of places in Portland, Maine, and Boston, Massachusetts. I have yet to go to Vermont, but I will soon hit the road and check it out.
Some of you may be surprised that there are some high fashion secondhand boutiques to go shopping at. Sustainability can be fashionable, and all these stores support that statement.
Of course, I may be biased because I genuinely love the store owner. I walked in and immediately we hit it off, just chit-chatting away. She works almost every day, keeps her shop open, and her front doors were one of the first open in Portsmouth after the pandemic. This shop is new, but oh my, they have some of the best outfits to go through. This store did not come to play, and she carries some of the best secondhand items I have ever seen. In her store, you will find Prada, Chanel, and Gucci. All of it will be in perfect and pristine condition. If you need to shop for a big brand, this is the place to do it. I know we all love high fashion but shopping consciously is crucial in a time like this. Check out this thrift store the next time you are in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
This is a beautiful store that carries high end, and secondhand designer clothes. This is for anyone looking to stay sustainable and trendy. I initially met the owner at a fashion show in the local neighborhood and hit it off with her cousin. Yes, Portsmouth is a small town, and everyone knows everyone in some way. The first time I walked into this store, I was immediately bombarded with unique vintage clothing that is incredibly hard to find now. I touched the softest leather gloves and saw the cutest plaid jumpsuit. The only way I buy leather is if it is secondhand. This store owner goes out of her way to find some of the most unique pieces you absolutely need in your closet. Stop in to say hello to the people working; they all know fashion and are incredibly friendly. If the store owner is there, she may even have her dog! It is a must to say hello to this friendly little pup with a big personality.
Again, I may be biased because I spend half of my paycheck here. I love going into a sleek environment for a quick shopping trip. They always have the most fashionable displays, and the owner is a busy body! She works seven days a week to keep her customers happy and her store looking pristine. If you’re looking for something specific, just ask the ladies at the front, and they might be able to find you something in the back that is not yet out. You can call and place a phone order or go onto their Instagram and place an order through there. They carry brands like Anthropology, Free people, and American Eagle. It’s super trendy and perfect for the budget-friendly, conscious consumer.
Not only does the thrift store have the most beautiful view of the water in Portsmouth, but they also have exceptional clothes. They carry brands like Givenchy, Michael Kors, and Eileen Fisher. You can call them for orders over the phone or walk in to shop around! The store owner is soon to change on October 1st, so if you want to meet the old owner, the sooner you go, the better! Check out their Instagram for the latest arrivals, best deals, and cutest outfits.
This thrift store is a little farther out from Portsmouth but still relatively close. This is off one of the main streets in Kittery, Maine, and about ten minutes away if you’re driving from downtown Portsmouth. There are days when I just need to go in to see what they have; I will zoom all the way there until I walk inside. This store has many different sections, including jewelry, clothes, dishes, books, and shoes. No matter what you are going for, they will, for sure, help you out.
A thrift store that is once again located outside of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, but also very close. It is in Newington, which is the town over, and located close to the mall. Most places have Plato’s closet, they do have some sustainable practices, but they are not local to the area. All of the kids who work there will be happy to help you look for something you need, and the best thing is if you need some extra cash, they will buy your old clothes right then and there.
This is one farther up in Maine in Portland and is totally worth the visit if you want to discover some vintage pieces and spice up your closet. Depending on the day you visit, hours may vary. I love most about this store because every dime you spend goes to the people who need help in Maine. You are supporting a local economy and the people in the surrounding neighborhood.
Immediately when you walk in, you are surrounded by vibrant colors. There are yellow and blue accent walls, and pictures hanging everywhere. It is a fun and busy environment to go shopping. You will also find some unique pieces that may not be brand names but fantastic none the less. My latest find was a bright yellow trench coat with a lacy collar. They have things that are edgy, feminine, and super spunky.
This store is crazy chic and has the most poppin Instagram ever. They carry all the latest brands plus a few that you have never heard before. There is something so thrilling about walking into their store and finding some of the cutest outfits ever. The best thing about this thrift store is they have a very well put together website. If you can’t make it out of your house, they will ship you the item you want for a small fee! This is totally worth shopping online.
Now, this one is at the other end of New Hampshire, and it is in Boston, Massachusetts. I love this thrift store because Boomerangs donates its proceeds towards aids treatments and prevention. I love when sustainability meets fashion, aimed at helping something important. You can find one of my favorite canvas totes on their Etsy website that says “Shop Thrift Fight Aids” you can show your support and spread the mission with others.
These thrift stores prove that shopping sustainably can also be fashionable. I know it is a bold switch, but it could help save our planet one day. Fashion affects our entire world. It is part of your responsibility as a fashionista to be more aware and conscious about where you shop and the materials you purchase. An easy step in the right direction is finding the nearest thrift store and supporting your local community.
What are your favorite thrift stores? How are some of the way you are becoming a more conscious consumer? Let us know in the comments below and don’t forget to share these thrift stores with your friends!
Currently residing in New England, Kayla Eaton focuses on writing about her local area. Her favorite writing niches are in sustainability, clean beauty, and health. She writes for several online magazines and is a full-time freelance writer. Kayla Eaton wants to share her hometown with you while supporting some of the lesser-known shops and startups in the area. She believes focusing on the environment and the health of her community will create a massive change worldwide.