With motivational quotes tailed along the walls of the shop, an ice box with free beverages and handmade price tags, Tightwad Thrift is a new addition to San Antonio’s secondhand clothing community.
The owner, a University of Texas at San Antonio graduate, wanted to reinvent the idea of secondhand clothing at Tightwad Thrift located south of downtown.
Owner and Houston native Victoria Silva has been shopping at thrift stores since she was young.
“(Big thrift stores) don’t feel personal at all,” Silva said. “I’m not sure why, but the clothes lose their sense of customization and personalization. I definitely wanted to change that.”
Silva gets the clothing she sells from Houston. Prior to display, all clothes are washed and then sanitized daily.
Despite having some clothing with original tags still attached, she keeps each item at a set price: $6 for sweatshirts, $8 for bottoms and $5 for tops.
“It’s easier to keep everything the same price,” Silva said. “That way you know if you’re going to come here and you’re looking for pants, you know exactly what you’re going to spend.”
On a separate rack, she has clothing priced for a dollar. All proceeds from these purchases are diverted back into the community.
Within the first month of being open, Silva collected $180 from the dollar rack and prepared meals she distributed in the downtown area.
Tightwad Thrift has a variety of clothing sizes, including kids and plus size.
Silva said creating a comfortable shopping experience for customers is important to her.
“If I see that I’m running too low on some sizes, I’ll go and pick stuff that I know I’m missing in the store,” she said. “That way everyone has something to shop for when they come in. There’s no need for it to be any other way.”
In addition to clothing and shoes, Tightwad Thrift also sells handmade pillows and jewelry.
On one side of the shop, Silva has a wall of clipboards dedicated to other local business owners’ cards.
“It doesn’t cost me anything to have people display their (cards) here,” Silva said. “It’s just helping people see what San Antonio has to offer.”
Shopping secondhand is a different experience than buying fast fashion online, she said.
“I understand the convenience and attractiveness of the prices online,” Silva said. “(When you shop secondhand) you’re doing good as far as using recycled clothing… A little change like that can go a long way.”
Silva said she hopes Tightwad Thrift changes the expectations of those who are skeptical of recycled clothing.
“People would be surprised (about what they can find),” Silva said. “Good used clothes can feel new… I want customers to feel confident and proud in something they got from me.”
3322 S Presa St.
Hours: Tues – Sunday 12M – 8PM
Closed on Monday