CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – School bells will soon be ringing in the start of a new school year, and many parents are still looking for those last minute deals on supplies and clothing.

When those costs begin to add up, parents like Coleen Dunn turn to an alternative way of shopping, “Second-hand shopping! It’s beneficial, especially with little kids, it just really goes such a longer way.”

Dunn joins parents across the country who are now shopping at their local second-hand stores, also known as consignment shops, or thrift stores, that sell previously used items at reduced prices, like children’s clothing. This, as families with children in elementary through high school plan to spend an average of $890 on back-to-school items this year.

Not only is second-hand shopping good for your wallet, but experts say its also good for the environment, “The textile industry is the number two worst for our planet,” says Co-Owner of Source, Roy Syriac. “Some of these big companies are producing at such large quantities that if it doesn’t sell its going into the landfill.”

The owners of Source, a thrift store located at 83 Main Street in Easthampton, tell 22News that you can find more sustainable items while on a budget when you shop second hand, and you are supporting small businesses too.

Syriac adds, “The quality of some of the pieces we have in here, just the fact that they are still around 30, 40, even 60 years later, is a tell-all that these garments were made to last.”

The National Retail Federation says you can save those extra few pennies by comparing prices, considering off-brand or store-brand items, and shopping at discount stores.

Local News

Kristina D’Amours is a reporter who is a part of the evening 22News team. Follow Kristina on X @KristinaD_WWLP and view her bio to see more of her work.