By: Winter Groothuis
Do you have a love for fashion? Do you want to make a few extra bucks? Do you want name brand clothes for cheap? You should consider heading down to Uptown Cheapskate on 4693 Wilson Ave. The exterior is small, but welcoming; with some of the brands they carry listed on the doors. When you walk in, someone welcomes you immediately. As you walk around, there are a variety of colors and styles. All clothes are color coded with a color wheel starting at white and ending at black. Uptown is very organized. Their shoes; which are also color coded, have all their sizes labeled on the end of the isles. Their clothes sizes go from xs to xxxl, using different colored labels for each size.
“Our top priority is to make sure it’s an enjoyable experience for the customer”, Bri, the assistant manager says. The philosophy of uptown is ‘Make a difference: Consume less. Reuse more. Choose used. This is a smooth and upbeat philosophy that represents this business. Uptown has been around for only a few years, and has only one location in Michigan. The store is owned and managed by Johanna and Matt. Matt plans to open another location in Michigan within the next year. They buy clothes from anyone willing to sell, and anything that is overstocked goes into a storage unit to be brought out later.
This is by far my favorite second hand clothing store. One of the things I love most about it is that there are sales going on almost all of the time. Everything is very accessible. Different clothes have their own sections, like jeans, hoodies, and dresses. Customer service is amazing. If you have a lot of clothes in your hands and are struggling to carry them all, they will start a bin for you and hold them so you can shop more. On top of that, they don’t count the number of items you are trying on before you go into a dressing room. This saves time and it is more efficient. Most of the time customers don’t even have to ask for a fitting room. The workers there keep their eyes out for people heading towards the dressing rooms and go ahead and unlock a door for you. When customers are ready to check out, you can sign up for a customer card which gives you points and rewards over time. For every ten dollars you spend, you get one point. After a certain amount of points you get a coupon, which other stores similar like Plato’s closet or goodwill, don’t do.
There were very few negatives to this experience. One of the only things that shoppers should know while shopping is that they only carry one size of a specific product because they are second hand clothes. For example, if you find a sweater that is size small, but you are a size medium, then you are unable to size up. The only exception to this is new product items. These are the more expensive items, and they are new, so they usually come in different colors and/or sizes. The only other negative is if you want to do a return or an exchange, Uptown does not do cash back, only store credit. This could however, not be a huge deal if you try the item on first and like to shop there.