Style Q&A: Vancouver thrift shop offers curated fashion, home finds

‘We are always on the lookout for quality and timeless pieces and focus on mostly natural materials,’ says Gather founder Lauren Lee

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If you love the idea of shopping vintage, but are reluctant to get elbow-deep in preloved pieces, the Vancouver-based business Gather may be for you.

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The online and in-store boutique aims to offer curated vintage — and a few new — finds spanning fashion and home decor. We caught up with founder Lauren Lee to learn more.

Q. For those who aren’t familiar, what is Gather? 

A. Gather is a small shop in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood of Vancouver. We offer curated vintage, preloved clothing, slow fashion and vintage homewares. We also sell a selection of products from both sustainable and local female-owned local brands.

Q. What makes it unique? 

A. Gather is unique in that we specialize in contemporary vintage that is highly curated. Along with vintage, we offer preloved modern consignment that fits a similar aesthetic. We are always on the lookout for quality and timeless pieces and focus on mostly natural materials like linen, silk and wool, depending on the season.

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Lauren Lee, founder of Gather.
Lauren Lee, founder of Gather. Photo by Nicole Carter Photography

Q. What made you want to open a boutique of preloved pieces?

A. I have always loved vintage clothing and furniture. I began thrifting more when my son was born about five years ago. I became more environmentally conscious and interested in the circular economy in general. Kids clothing is so lightly worn, it can be crazy to buy it all new. I started my business online and then I made the jump to brick and mortar. It was a dream of mine to have a store front, I also wanted people to be able to experience in-person shopping as well as online.

Q. Who is the target customer? 

A. Someone that is looking for unique clothing and values curated vintage. They enjoy the hunt but also don’t want to dig through clothing to find a treasure. My customers tend to shop secondhand frequently, but I have many people walk in that have never bought something secondhand before — and I love that.

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Q. What can you share about where how you source the unique pieces available in the store? 

A. I do a lot of thrifting at local shops. I have some places I frequent about three times per week and sometimes I source goods from online marketplaces. Gather also accepts consignment of both preloved and vintage clothing.

Q. What is the price range for your products? 

A. I am careful to have something for everyone at every budget. There is a mixture of higher and lower-priced goods. The price can be dependant on the brand or, in some cases, the rarity of the piece.

Q. And, lastly, where can people check them out? 

A. You can shop online at gathertheshop.com, although all of the vintage and preloved clothing does not make it online. You can visit the shop in person at 109 East Broadway for the full collection.

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