New York City-based creators are calling out vintage sellers and flea market vendors for the rising prices of “preloved” items.
On Aug. 20, Kaite Hubler (@gingeraleprincess99) posted a video in which she expresses her dissatisfaction with “the men” who sell “vintage” attire at flea markets on the weekends.
“I’m coming on here, and I’m gonna share my piece, and if you don’t agree, I literally don’t wanna hear it,” she says. “That being said, the men who sell vintage T-shirts at the flea markets every weekend deserve to be taken out back and buried with the roadkill. I cannot do this anymore.”
Hubler references a particular “vintage” shirt that clocked in at $85.
“$85 for a vintage Oregon Ducks T-shirt with the Tasmanian Devil? Get a grip,” she says.
To some degree, it’s possible that the pricing of items may be reflective of the geographical location where they’re being sold. Hubler’s aforementioned tee is for sale at a flea market in New York City, where the cost of living is 80% higher than the national average and housing clocks in at 230% over the U.S. average. So the $85 price tag, while steep, doesn’t seem entirely unfounded.
“Like other shopping venues, the prices at flea markets and antique shows can vary greatly, depending on factors like their geographic location, clientele, and the merchandise they sell,” Architectural Digest reports. “For instance, don’t assume that all flea market prices are great deals, or that, because your local antique store is prohibitively expensive, everything at an antique show is going to be out of your price range as well.”
‘I canceled a date with a man because i saw he was charging $75 for an elton john tshirt on his depop’
Fellow thrifters have taken to Hubler’s comments to weigh in. While many of them seem to share her disdain for “the men” who choose to sell their preowned T-shirts at these prices, some are less bothered by it.
“The ones around me sell them for $100 or more with holes and stains,” @bellafaress revealed.
“It’s like collecting art! Like I’d pay up for something rare! You’re not gonna find that thing just anywhere it’s history,” @nightdividestheday replied.
“I canceled a date with a man because i saw he was charging $75 for an elton john tshirt on his depop,” @cowgirltattoo wrote, to which Hubler responded, “You are doing gods work.”
On July 1, Sumayya (@boring.girl0) chimed in on Hubler’s side about preowned athletic shorts for sale in Brooklyn neighborhoods.
‘Why are we doing this to each other?’
“The residents of Williamsburg and Bushwick, I know times are hard,” they say. “To the small business owners, I know times are hard, but there is no reason you should sell Champion basketball shorts for $55.”
Some small businesses in Brooklyn are struggling both to stay afloat and to recover from the pandemic, which may explain some resellers’ pricing.
According to a survey conducted by the Chamber of Commerce in 2022 via ABC7 New York, “72% of Brooklyn businesses are still seeing lower sales than before the pandemic,” “68% have fewer customers” and “41% still have fewer employees than they had two years ago.”
Still, Sumayya questions a tag of $55 for used basketball shorts.
“Previously owned Champion basketball shorts,” she posted. “They have a bunch. … Why are we doing this to each other?”
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