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Local resale shop helps community and environment through second-hand clothes

Photographer / Amy Garro

When walking into Selective Seconds, the first thing you’ll notice is the plethora of stylish items at a fraction of the retail cost. Vena Holden, owner of the resale boutique, has worked in the resale business for 22 years. Within that time, the business has expanded due to changing mindsets about what it means to shop resale and creating a positive impact on the community and the environment.

In 1997, while being a single mom working at a law firm, Holden took $1,000 and rented an 800-square foot house in Mooresville and launched Selective Seconds. By 1999, the shop was bursting at the seams. Multiple expansions later, Selective Seconds relocated to Greenwood in 2008. Currently located at 1140 N. St. Rd. 135, the shop is a hub for those who are looking for gently loved, name-brand fashion.

“Resale is a win-win,” Holden says. “Not only are we helping people make money from their gently loved items, but we’re also helping people save money and we’re saving the earth.”

Environmental conditions are a big part of the recent change in resale mindset. By shopping resale, consumers promote recycling. Fast-Fashion—inexpensive clothing produced rapidly by mass-market retailers in response to the latest trends—has been a big cause of the issue.

“It takes about 1,800 gallons of water to produce the cotton in a pair of jeans and 400 gallons to produce the cotton in a shirt,” Holden says.

Instead of purchasing a brand new shirt or pair of jeans, resale is a good opportunity to buy chic threads without contributing to the environmental crisis.

There is also the benefit of saving money. You can save 50-90% on the same items you could pay full retail price for. Selective Seconds takes in approximately 1,200 items per week, so there is always something new to browse through from brands like Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, Anthropologie, American Eagle, TOMS and others.

Although retail stores like Payless and Charlotte Russe are starting to close around the country, resale stores are growing steadily. Along with Selective Seconds, you can shop at Style Encore, Abby’s Closet, and Copper Lace here on Indy’s south side.

Online resale market places like ThredUp, Swap.com, and Poshmark, have been growing steadily as well. ThredUp predicts that the resale market will grow to be 1.5 times larger than fast-fashion by 2028. Millennials and Baby Boomers are currently the biggest resale shoppers, but it is predicted that one in three members of Gen Z will by second-hand this year.

Holden believes that her success comes from networking with other resale shops, having great employees, along with the support, friendship, and knowledge of others. Holden has always been a risk-taker and loves the creativity of running her own business.

“This business brings people together that truly love resale,” Holden says. “It’s a good feeling knowing this business is all about doing good.”

And doing good is what it is all about. Buying resale isn’t only good for the wallet and the environment, but for the community. When you bring your clothing into the shop to resale, you have the option of receiving cash on the spot, consigning, or putting the proceeds from your items into a charity account through Selective Seconds’ Fundraising Program. Holden also donates clothing and accessories to nonprofit organizations directly.

“When I started 22 years ago, people were ashamed of shopping resale,” Holden says.   “Now, people love it. The mindset has shifted. Plus, the option to buy resale has become more readily available.”

To learn more about Selective Seconds and its mission, visit selectiveseconds.com or call them at 317-888-2300. You can also follow them on Instagram and Facebook. It’s open Monday-Saturday from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. and from 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. on Sunday. Selective Seconds is located at 1140 N. St. Rd. 135.

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