Thrift store photo gallery

By Jasper Nahid, 14, New Roads School (Santa Monica)
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WHAT A DEAL. This outfit (jacket, shirt, pants, shoes) cost Jasper $91 total at used clothing stores. Putting together a comparable outfit at a retail clothing store would cost about $570.

I’m not a very brave shopper. I stick to department stores and buy nothing too “out there.” Most of the time my uniform is jeans and a T-shirt. So when I decided I wanted to do something to help the environment, I was hesitant when my mom suggested shopping for clothes at thrift stores. I’d never been to a thrift store so I had an image in my mind of a cramped building that smells like the inside of an old closet, filled with threadbare clothes and weird people wearing stranger clothes than the ones that were for sale. While several of the thrift stores we visited made me want to leave quickly, we found several that changed the way I thought. They showed me that buying vintage and used clothing is a cool, green way to shop that saves money as well.

As a designer, my mother has a natural sense of style, so she always prides herself on picking out the nicest clothes in a store. In fact, she’s a great person to go shopping with. Most teenagers wouldn’t say that about their moms, but honestly she has really good taste—even in clothes that I would wear.

Together we visited five or six thrift and vintage clothing stores around La Brea and Melrose. Two stores, Crossroads Trading Co. and Wasteland, seemed to have already done the searching for you. The stores look and feel like retail stores—everything is hung up nicely on racks and they’re selective when they buy used clothes from people so you’re more likely to find nice clothes. All the clothes are clean and to my amazement, didn’t smell like used clothes. But the merchandise is used, the prices are low and they sold clothes that I wouldn’t be afraid to wear in public.

At Crossroads I didn’t have to do that much searching. Within a few minutes I found a cool pair of Diesel skinny jeans that I bought for $50 that would be about $300 new. I also bought a new Vans wallet for five bucks. My mom couldn’t resist the opportunity to get some new clothes, so she bought herself a dress and a belt.

Wasteland was a really trendy store, filled with hipsters and dimly lit. Their prices are higher than Crossroads but you’re guaranteed to find something in style. I got a pair of red low-top Converse for $18 that appeared to be new. Someone had apparently lost their mind or became allergic to the color red because I couldn’t think of a single reason to get rid of them. That person had also put black laces in one shoe and white laces in the other. You can’t get that at a department store.

I’ve always been aware of the importance of helping the environment but I never really did anything about it. Buying used clothing is one of the easiest ways to help the earth. There is almost no waste because the clothes have already been bought and shipped when they were new. This eliminates the need for a huge freighter coming from China just to bring your clothes. It’s even greener than buying new “eco” clothes because even if they’re made from environmentally friendly materials like organic cotton or hemp, they still have the other downfalls of retail clothing: expensive, wasteful shipping and, potentially, sweatshop labor.

By shopping at thrift stores, you’ll find clothes that were cool enough for people to buy, not what people don’t buy. Plus the prices and the feeling that you are doing something good for our planet make it worthwhile.


7409 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 782-8100
Go to for other locations.

7579 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 655-6769

7428 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 653-3028


1338 Fourth St.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 395-2620

131 N. La Brea Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 938-8604
Go to for other locations in Los Angeles, Long Beach and Sherman Oaks.

1138 Westwood Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90024
(310) 861-7547
The sign outside reads “Nothing over $3.99.” They’ve got cool sunglasses, hats, jewelry and other accessories.

825 N. La Brea Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90038
(323) 939-0528
Search through bins of clothes that sell for $1 at their dollar sale every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the parking lot.