Although Shanna Hageman and her husband, the Rev. Michael Hageman, had grown up in Kansas — he in Abilene, she in Manhattan — they had never lived in western Kansas. But when it came time for a transfer from Florida, they chose Garden City.
As soon as she saw the city, Hageman knew it would be perfect for a high-quality thrift store, similar to ones she ran for more than a decade. Because of the area’s prolific tumbleweed, she named the store, which opened last fall, Tumbleweed: A Thrift Boutique. Just off of Main St. at 115 W. Grant Ave., the boutique features name-brand, gently-used clothing, shoes and jewelry.
“Buying secondhand clothing is more popular than it ever has been,” Hageman said. “In the next few years, secondhand clothing as a market will outpace fast fashion in the average woman’s closet.”
Fast fashion is trendy, inexpensive clothing sold by large retailers. Tumbleweed, like those large retailers, has comfortable dressing rooms and sized and sorted clothing. Each item is steamed when it arrives, neutralizing any odors.
Tumbleweed is not a consignment store; they pay the seller outright for each garment. By doing this, the client receives the funds immediately.
“The cash payout of our purchase of clothing gives $45,000 back (each year) into local customer’s (pockets) in the community,” Hageman said. “That money stays here in the community.”
Along with the consumer value, Hageman said there is an environmental benefit to recycling clothing. And because the customer can see, touch and try on the item, as opposed to an internet sale, they know exactly what it looks like and if it fits. In addition, the money stays in the greater Garden City area.
“The community does embrace small businesses and shopping local,” Hageman said. “They understand the value of keeping dollars local.”
In addition to her thrift items, Hageman has a small selection of vintage items, as well as new clothing for sale. She tries to keep the new items trendy and below $30.
Along with a tumbleweed lamp, the store’s decorations include several vintage sewing machines, a chicken coop and an old school desk.
“We’ve had a healthy start to our business,” Hageman said. “Buying secondhand clothing is more in vogue.”
Go to www.tumbleweedthrift.com for more information.