Avalon: as good as it sounds?


Gabby Abowitz and Taylor Stern, Features editor/Art director and staff writer

Located in the Delmar Loop, Avalon Exchange is a popular resale shop that’s been open since 1988. In addition to the St. Louis storefront, Avalon also holds a presence in Cleveland, Orlando, Pittsburgh, and Savannah. Although classified as a resale shop rather than a traditional thrift store, the store sells a wide variety of clothes, sizes, brands and styles at much more affordable prices than their original selling point.

Because the store operates as a resale store, they buy their inventory directly from the public, so the store constantly holds modern, up-to-date items as well as some older pieces reflective of previous years. If you are interested in selling to Avalon, there are a few important things you should note about their process and requirements. They purchase their items seasonally on a walk-in basis, no appointments necessary, with a state ID in hand. Clothing conditions must be clean, stainless, odorless, and with properly functioning buttons and zippers. 

If your pieces meet this standard, Avalon will pay 30% in cash or 45% in store credit of the resale value. On top of this, there is no minimum or maximum on what you’re permitted to sell on any given day.

Aside from the value of their transactions, the store offers a very unique, trendy vibe and has a super cool environment. Their accessories can be an even bigger selling point than the clothes. Their sunglasses, shoes, and jewelry are sold at very little cost: earrings range from $2 to $8. They also have an extremely large selection and they’re often the first things you see upon walking in.

 We went to Avalon on Friday, Aug. 23, the weekend of Avalon’s semi-annual $1 sale. The sale lasted from Aug 23-25 at the stores normal operating times: 11 am- 8 pm on Monday through Saturday and 12 pm- 7 pm on Sundays. Unfortunately for us, the appeal of everything being $1 was not as enticing as we had hoped.

Only three racks inside the store were offered at the $1 price and even at that, the clothes were worse than the items being sold at their normal value. The sale was less for customers to get a good deal and more of a way for Avalon to get rid of the inventory they no longer wanted while still “having a sale” and drawing people in. We had much better luck finding “worth it” purchases when looking around the non-sale sections, but even that was disappointing because the sale did not apply.

To be frank, the sale that drew us in sadly seemed like false advertising and left us feeling a bit upset. That being said, the store,with its regular pricing structure, is a great alternate place for trendy shopping. The prices are higher than you may find at other thrift stores like Goodwill, but the quality, variety, and environment of the store makes up for it. You get more for your buck and it is a very happy medium price range of very expensive resale shops and classic thrift stores. And, of course, much cheaper than general department stores or normal retailers. Avalon Rating: 7.5/10