Aug. 17 is National Thrift Shop Day. Check out these 10 Milwaukee-area thrift stores.
On social media, college campuses and in high school hallways, “thrifted” outfits have skyrocketed in popularity in recent years.
In fact, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that 62% of Gen Z and millennial consumers said they look for items second-hand before buying new. The Census Bureau also shared that First Research estimates the U.S. resale and second-hand market will grow from $53 billion in 2023 to $82 billion by 2026.
With Aug. 17 being National Thrift Shop Day, here are 10 Milwaukee-area second-hand and thrift stores where you can hunt for a bargain, vintage pieces or other stylish finds.
Goodwill’s Retique boutique in the Third Ward offers high-end items at bargain prices
190 N. Broadway, Milwaukee
Goodwill’s Retique boutique in Milwaukee’s Third Ward says it “specializes in high-end men’s and women’s apparel and unique home goods at bargain prices.”
Though much smaller than your typical Goodwill store, Retique sources its curated selection from Goodwill donation centers in southeastern Wisconsin, northern Illinois and the Chicago area. The boutique is known for carrying heavily discounted name brands and is a favorite of Yelp! users who say they’ve found labels like Lululemon and Banana Republic at the store.
Like all Goodwill stores, profits from Retique help support training and employment opportunities for people with disabilities and other disadvantages. Retique accepts walk-up donations of clothing and small household items.
Retique is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Plato’s Closet has two Milwaukee-area locations: Brookfield and Greenfield
Plato’s Closet buys and sells gently used clothes, shoes, handbags and accessories geared toward “girls and guys in their teens and twenties.” You can find brands like Free People, Lululemon, Urban Outfitters, Nike, Gymshark and Target at up to 70% less than regular retail prices at Plato’s Closet stores.
You can also bring in your no-longer-needed items to Plato’s Closet in exchange for cash on the spot. No appointment is necessary to donate. However, it’s important to note that Plato’s Closet does not accept all donations, only on-trend items in good condition.
Plato’s Closet Brookfield is open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Plato’s Closet Greenfield is open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
All Goods sells vintage t-shirts, streetwear and sneakers in West Allis and Bayshore
1411 S. 72nd St., West Allis
5709 N. Centerpark Way, Glendale
All Goods is a local second-hand and vintage retailer focusing on vintage t-shirts, streetwear, sports merchandise and sneakers. It has locations in downtown West Allis and Bayshore.
All Goods was started by Ali Acevedo, a Milwaukee native who sold second-hand items for a profit on eBay from a young age. This passion evolved into a business selling vintage and streetwear t-shirts online and then eventually into All Goods when Acevedo opened the West Allis store in November 2019.
Shoppers can find band t-shirts, Wisconsin sports teams’ merchandise, cartoon and superhero items, Disney and Star Wars merchandise, and various name brands in All Goods’ constantly changing selection. All Goods also purchases vintage t-shirts, streetwear and sneakers, as well as a wide variety of branded items, from donors at its West Allis location.
The West Allis location is open Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. and on Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. The Bayshore store is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday.
Alive and Fine is a quirky, artsy vintage shop in Bayview
2652 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., Milwaukee
Alive and Fine is a vintage and second-hand store in Bayview that specializes in vintage men’s, women’s and children’s clothing, furniture and oddities from the 1940s through the 1990s.
Yelp! users say they like the shop’s curated collection and quirky trinkets, art and atmosphere. The shop showcases elaborate and constantly changing holiday-themed window displays, as can be seen on their Instagram page. Alive and Fine has a particular love for horror art and aesthetics.
Alive and Fine also occasionally serves as a gallery space for local artists. Past events have included a kids’ art show, a Nickelodeon-themed show and a horror art show.
Alive and Fine is open from noon to 6 p.m. Monday and Wednesday through Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, according to the shop’s Instagram page.
Bandit MKE on Brady Street sells vintage from the 1950s to the Y2K era
1224 E. Brady St., Milwaukee
Bandit MKE is a trendy, high-end second-hand clothing and accessories retailer selling vintage and modern items on Brady Street. The shop opened in 2021 after the owners put on several successful vintage pop-up events across Milwaukee and the Midwest.
Bandit sells items from the 1950s through the early 2000s, and it also has an online Etsy store with pieces from a variety of eras. Bandit’s owners told the Journal Sentinel in 2021 they strive to promote inclusivity by not including size or gender labels on their in-store clothes.
The Brady Street store is open Tuesday through Sunday from noon to 8 p.m.
Plume in Bayview showcases vintage pieces and items from local artists
3001 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., Suite #2, Milwaukee
Plume is a “vintage and modern boutique” in Bayview selling unique vintage merchandise sourced from all over the country while also offering products from local artists and small businesses. The shop says its objective is to “showcase the timelessness and beauty of vintage clothing in a modern space while emphasizing the importance of supporting local talent.”
You can find men’s, women’s and unisex vintage clothing, shoes and accessories, small furniture and house wares, beauty products, print materials and handmade gifts in the store. A self-identified former fashion editorial producer on Yelp! said Plume offers a “well-curated and on-trend selection.” Plume also has a large online Etsy shop where you can find more vintage pieces, categorized by decade.
Plume buys select vintage pieces from donors to sell in the store or online. You must send an email with photos and descriptions of your items to have them considered for purchase.
Plume’s Bayview store is open Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.
Value Village offers shoppers 50% off the entire store on Saturday and Sunday
Value Village is known for its daily deals, especially “1/2 Off Weekends” ― all items in the store are 50% off on Saturday and Sunday. All clothing is 50% off Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at the Milwaukee location and Monday, Tuesday and Thursday at the St. Francis location. All furniture, jewelry, household and miscellaneous items are half off Tuesday and Friday at the Milwaukee location and Wednesday and Friday at the St. Francis location.
You can donate items to Value Village at its store locations or schedule a donation pick-up at your home. The Milwaukee and St. Francis locations are open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
Proceeds from St. Vincent de Paul thrift stores support meal programs and services for those living in poverty
Revenue from the stores benefits SVDP’s mission of “eliminating poverty and hunger” in the local community through meal programs, home visits, workforce development and other services.
The SVDP thrift stores have lots of recurring deals, including 10% off Monday through Thursday for students, seniors and military service members with a valid I.D. at the Greenfield and Milwaukee locations.
The SVDP Society accepts donations of clothing, furniture, toys, electronics and more. In-store donations are accepted at all locations during limited hours, and you can also schedule at-home pick-up in Milwaukee County.
The Greenfield thrift store is open from Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Milwaukee location is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. All three Waukesha County locations are open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Habitat for Humanity ReStores sell furniture, building materials and appliances well below retail prices
6939 S. Riverwood Blvd., Franklin
4150 S. 108th St., Greenfield
3015 N. 114th St., Wauwatosa
2120 E. Moreland Blvd., Waukesha
Habitat for Humanity ReStores sell new and gently used furniture, building materials, appliances, and home accessories to the public at 50-to-75% below retail price. There are four ReStore locations in the Milwaukee area in Franklin, Greenfield, Wauwatosa and Waukesha.
ReStore profits raise hundreds of thousands of dollars each year for Habitat’s mission to build safe, affordable homes for local families.
ReStore accepts donations of a variety of items from appliances to lawn and garden items to vehicles. ReStore will even come to your home to pick up large donations. You can also donate in store at all three locations.
The Franklin, Greenfield and Wauwatosa locations are open for shoppers and donors Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Waukesha location is open Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Goodwill has nearly 20 locations to shop and donate in the Milwaukee area
There are nearly 20 Goodwill store and donation center locations in and around Milwaukee. Most are open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
All regular Goodwill stores offer shopping and accept in-store donations. Goodwill’s Milwaukee outlet store at 6055 N. 91st St. sells unsold items from traditional Goodwill stores at bargain and by-the-pound prices, including up to $1.59 per pound for clothing, home goods, shoes and purses. The outlet store does not accept donations.
Goodwill purchases benefit Goodwill’s mission to provide “training, employment and supportive services for people with disabilities or disadvantages who seek greater independence.”
Here are the Goodwill locations in the Milwaukee area: