A new store in Grande Prairie hopes to make fashion for teens and 20-somethings more affordable and environmentally friendly. Plato’s Closet buys and sells gently used name-brand clothes, shoes, and accessories, differing from thrift stores and consignment stores in that the people who donate items are compensated upfront.
According to Statistics Canada, the average Canadian household spends $3,340 on clothing per year, based on data release in 2019. Owner Lisa Maguire says people’s clothing spending habits have changed and they’d like to be more environmentally cautious with what they buy, arguing buy and sell stores offer a great alternative.
“Being able to wear things a couple of times, then trading it in for something else, or getting money for that clothing item is a huge help,” she explains. “It’s especially helpful for parents out there who don’t have as much money to buy a brand new pair of jeans for their kids.”
Maguire now owns both Plato’s Closet and Once Upon A Child Grande Prairie, which is the same concept, selling gently used clothing and apparel, except for younger children.
“I visited a different Once Upon A Child store in Abbotsford, British Columbia. I loved the layout and idea, so I decided to open my own franchise in Grande Prairie,” she says.
Maguire hopes to see more people open up similar types of used clothing stores across the country. She loves that the city already support thrift shops and consignment stores.
“I shop at Sarah’s Closet and James Tailor and I love what they are doing, their model and their clothes. It’s similar to what we do, except we offer cash same day for their items.”
Plato’s Closet can be found in the Prairie Plaza near the Prairie Mall.