MHS Fashion Club hosts second annual Thrift Shop

Freshman Wyatt Adkins browses through a clothing rack at the MHS Thrift Shop.

Josie Lorenz | The Chronicle

The Fashion Club is teaching students to recycle and repurpose unwanted clothes.

The Mason High School (MHS) Fashion Club held its second-ever student-run thrift shop on March 16 during student lunches. Similar to a real thrift store, the shop included racks and tables full of jackets, skirts, and other accessories donated by MHS students. MHS Fashion Design teacher and Fashion Club advisor, Silvia Cattini said the idea was sparked by the need for funds for the club.

“The shop was a way to raise funding while also being a sustainable choice,” Cattini said. “We are promoting our club and cause, but we also are spreading the word of recycled fashion.”

Student event organizer and sophomore, Ayesha Ahmad and her peers came up with the idea of a thrift shop to not only raise money for their cause but to additionally promote sustainable fashion around the school. 

“We thought of starting the thrift store to help put old clothes to new use and repurpose them,” Ahmad said. “It is really cool to walk in the hallway and see clothes that used to be yours being worn by another student.”

The planning for the event began in early December. The board of students had to pick out a date that was optimal for student engagement while also giving the team time to prepare. Ahmad said they gathered donations a month in advance and promoted the shop via social media.

“We used Tiktok and Instagram to spread the word more online,” Ahmad said. “We wanted to creatively promote the thrift store.”

Ahmad said that the club gained a surplus of new members from the previous thrift shop. With new hands on deck, the club met any time they could to prepare for the thrift shop. Ahmad said that the new members’ main jobs were to organize and sort different clothes that were handed in.

Clothing that is mass-produced and considered low quality is called fast fashion. Ahmad knows that teenagers will often turn to fast fashion when looking for affordable clothes, which leads to extreme waste both in the production process and the disposal of the clothes. Ahmad said she hopes the thrift shop can directly combat this.

“We want clothes to be cheap and accessible while also being sustainable,” Ahmad said. “We have the clothing at cheap prices to help students achieve sustainability.”

Freshman Aanya Patel spent her lunch period searching for new clothes with her friends. She said she was excited to see the resurgence of past trends around the school through the array of secondhand clothing.

“It’s really cool to see older styles coming back and people trying new things,” Patel said. “I think it’s nice to see other [people’s] clothes on new people, finding a new home.”

The clothes donated to the shop came from students of all grades, genders and backgrounds. Sophomore Madison Day went to the thrift shop in hopes of finding new and interesting styles she could express herself in. She said she enjoyed looking through all of the different pieces provided from all across the school.

“I have a hard time finding things that I like when normally shopping,” Day said. “I really like going to these thrift stores where I can look for things that maybe aren’t currently in style right now. There is a lot of variety.”

The thrift shop actively provides students with experience in sustainable fashion, marketing and business. With the shop becoming a new addition to the club’s agenda, Cattini is taking it as a growth and learning opportunity for both her and the club’s leadership. 

“Advising this club is teaching me a lot,” Cattini said. “First, how to relate and cheer for the leadership of the young people who will become future leaders. It is also teaching me how to observe and step down from the teaching role and trust these kids. They are doing beautiful things.”

Cattini has high expectations for the future of the fundraiser, hoping it can bring the student body together. She views the shop as an opportunity for students all across the school to involve themselves in sustainable fashion and the club itself.

“My hope is that this is going to be an event that everybody is looking forward to,” Cattini said. “The entire school community is involved. I’m really glad that it is going beyond the club.”

Ahmad cannot wait to see the shop rise in success over the future years. She said she is grateful for the opportunities it has provided to her and her fashionista peers.

“This experience really sticks with you,” Ahmad said. “It’s a learning process and I cannot wait to see the shops improve over the years.”

Photo by Josie Lorenz