By Annie Rosemurgy | Photography by Hillary Schave
Pictured (left to right): Cozy Home, Happily Ever After, Good Style Shop
Shop a little greener.
Give items a new life and spare them a destiny in the landfill by secondhand and consignment shopping. Yes, being thrifty is planet friendly, but it’s also an adventure. Hidden treasures abound if you know where to find them. The best part? From vintage to unique to high-end, the fun of secondhand hunting won’t pinch your pocketbook.
Here’s where to hit up in the Madison area to look stylish and save money.
A sister shop to Plato’s Closet (they’re owned by the same company), Style Encore is for the everywoman. Specializing in approachable brands like LOFT, J. Crew, Gap and more, this east side shop boasts sophisticated style without the sticker shock. Tip: if you’re looking for work clothes they’ve got a nice selection here, along with pretty much every other category. Style Encore offers cash for clothes, not consignment.
1735 Thierer Rd., style-encoremadisonwi.com
Upshift Swap Shop
A veteran of the fashion industry, owner Lindsey Leno noticed that what women really want is a wardrobe that evolves with them. Aware that an ever- changing style arsenal can create waste, Leno dreamed up Upshift. Women simply bring in a bag of their old clothing and they can refill their bag after shopping her boutique. Customers pay a swap fee at the end of their visit. It’s a great system of exchange that refreshes your creative clothing canvas.
836 E. Johnson St., upshiftswapshop.com
Beyond just a shop for fresh fashion, Plato’s is an experience. Teens and 20-somethings flock here to pore over the trendy togs, enjoy a fun, free-spirited atmosphere and let their creative style juices flow. Casual clothing is the name of the game here, with plentiful choices by Adidas, Nike and other athletic brands, along with jeans, handbags and everyday wear. If you bring items in, Plato’s offers cash (not consignment) for accepted pieces.
7830 Mineral Point Rd. and 1601 Thierer Rd., platoscloset.com
Green business is good business, believes fashion staple ReThreads. A mix of modern, on- trend and vintage styles, ReThreads allows you to experiment with style without breaking the bank. Shoppers will find a mix of higher-end brands along with mass retailers like J. Crew and Ann Taylor. ReThreads is quite selective in what they accept and offers cash on the spot (not consignment) for pieces they like.
410 State St. and 6664 Odana Rd., rethreadsfashion.com
The Pink Poodle
The Pink Poodle is not your ordinary consignment experience. Yes, the Poodle boasts a robust selection of luxury designer brands that you know and love (think Louis Vuitton and Gucci). But what sets the Poodle apart are the details—handbags, hats, quirky vintage pieces, costume jewelry, watches and sunglasses—those perfect finishing touches.
6676 Odana Rd., thepinkpoodleresale.com
Started by Abigail Barth in 2017, ReFind Style on Monroe Street is a perfect complement to the mile-and-a-half shopping and dining stretch. Barth’s carefully curated inventory boasts name brands such as Escada, Chanel and CELINE—but also Lands’ End, Boden and Anne Klein. “Over 50% of our inventory is curated, high-end vintage. This is important to the shop and our consignors, as I am honored to receive an aunt’s hat collection or mom’s 1950’s couture dresses—with the opportunity to find loving new homes for these pieces that have endured the test of time,” explains Barth. Can’t get to the store? Her online catalog has a beautiful selection of jackets and blazers, dresses, jewelry and more—with new inventory added daily.
1639 Monroe St., refinedstylemadison.com
Got a thing for vintage?
With an ever-changing inventory hand-curated by seven die-hard vintage clothing enthusiasts, Good Style Shop is an obligatory stop on the Madison thrift scene. Don’t let the small footprint of the shop fool you; there are style treasures aplenty here.
817 E. Johnson St., goodstyleshop.com
Happily Ever After Children’s Boutique
“Boutique-quality children’s wear without the boutique price tag” is what this shop delivers. Only the best quality, very gently used items or new overstock meet this shop’s high standards. Brands like Hanna Andersson, Zutano, Janie and Jack can be found here—it’s like kid couture on a budget.
708 S. Whitney Way, happilyeverafterchildrensboutique.com
Once Upon a Child
The golden rule of parenting the pint-sized is that if it’s too big this week, it will fit next week. (And soon, it’ll be too small!) Peruse Once Upon a Child’s stock for this week’s size and seasonal selection and keep up with your munchkin’s growth without emptying your wallet. Brands run the gamut from Cat & Jack to Ralph Lauren. Besides gently-used kid’s clothing, the shop also accepts toys and some baby gear, so if you’re in the market to unload (or reload), you can check here, too. The shop offers cash, not consignment.
Clothing & Home
With a large, well-organized selection of women’s clothing and accessories and a robust array of home goods and furniture, Simply Savvy is a standout in the consignment scene. They accept “better” brands (think mass retailers like Chico’s and similar) as well as designer items. Items are accepted on a consignment basis.
6333 University Ave. Suite 102, Middleton, simplysavvyconsign.com
Rescue Me Boutique
Thrift store, consignment and boutique pet shop in one, Rescue Me is an animal-lover’s dream come true because all of the shop’s proceeds benefit the Underdog Pet Rescue. And, the store’s shop-within-a-shop, MyDinkyDog Pet Boutique, has brand-new designer pet products for your favorite pet. If you want pieces for your own closet, find department store and designer clothing and accessories for sale, along with men’s, children’s and home items.
1661 Deming Way, Middleton, rescuemeboutique.com
Dane County Humane Society Thrift Store
Treasure hunt with a full heart—all proceeds here benefit Dane County’s furry friends. Find men’s and women’s clothing, home goods and of course, pet supplies. Donations accepted.
680 Grand Canyon Dr. #5, giveshelter.org
Agrace Thrift Store
With locations on both the west and east sides of Madison and a new home goods and furniture specialty location on Stoughton Road, Agrace has your thrift shopping bases covered. And, you can easily donate men’s and women’s clothing and accessories and your own home furnishings and décor here, too.
118 Junction Rd., 2402 East Springs Dr. and 1946 S. Stoughton Rd., agrace.org/thriftstore
With six Madison-area stores, this tried-and-true thrift store staple is sure to have an outpost near you.
St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store
“Great values on practical finds and undiscovered treasures” is just what you’ll find at this thrift store standard. Their Williamson Street and Odana Road locations are standouts for their clean, well- organized shops stocked with treasures. Shop seven Madison and surrounding area locations.
The Cozy Home
The Cozy Home’s mission is to provide their customers with the best gently used furniture and home décor in Madison. Their showroom is arranged in attractive vignettes with unique, one-of-a-kind pieces—similar to what you’d see in a boutique selling brand-new items. For a home that’ll showcase your style, try here for treasures.
6330 Monona Dr., Monona, thecozyhomemadison.com
Boomerangs Resale Store
With its clever name, this thrift shop has soul. Find housewares, clothing, jewelry and gently-used furniture. The shop’s proceeds benefit Door Creek Church Ministry as well as other local organizations on Madison’s north side. Donations are accepted, so check their website for eligible items.
1133 N. Sherman Ave., boomerangsresale.org
Still not sold on secondhand? Let Iconi change your mind about furniture consignment. Iconi’s aesthetic combines consigned plus new home furnishings and accessories to create unique interiors you just can’t get from a design catalog. Owner Coni Marotz’s skilled eye and design aesthetic can help you create a truly one-of-a-kind home style vibe at this posh, plush paradise.
540 W. Washington Ave., iconiinteriors.com
Play It Again Sports
Play It Again Sports supports the next generation of Badgers and Brewers by buying and selling used sports equipment, making quality, affordable athletic gear and clothing available to all sports and outdoor enthusiasts. Locally owned by Michelle Kullmann and Peter Schaubroeck, this secondhand shop is great for people who want to explore new activities, or, for parents looking to make cost-conscious choices for their growing athlete.
6674 Odana Road., playitagainsports.com/
SHOP THESE SALES
Annual events are another fun way to hunt for new-to-you items.
L’IL BADGER CONSIGNMENT SALE
Deals on gently used kid’s clothing, toys and baby gear abound.
Visit lilbadgerconsignmentsale.com for more event details.
HALF PINT RESALE
The Madison area’s premier children’s consignment sale.
Visit halfpintsale.com for more event details.
THE ATTIC SALE
A Madison tradition for over half a century, this is Dane County’s largest resale featuring furniture and home décor.
June 5-6, 2020. 8312 Forsythia St., Middleton (held at KEVA Sports Center), atticangel.org/events-news
JUST BETWEEN FRIENDS SALE
This large secondhand kid’s clothing sale is held twice per year, once in the spring and fall.
Oct. 16-18, 2020. 1919 Alliant Energy Center Way, danecounty.jbfsale.com