When Becky Holsinger opened Pieces in 2006, she had no idea it would be such a hit.
She was working at the Kachina Lodge at the time, having sold her house in Colorado, where she’d raised her kids, and had a little extra money that she wanted to invest in a business that would support her. After getting a reading that suggested a consignment shop might be in her cards, she saw the vacancy sign on the building she now occupies in full, took the middle space and quit her job.
Soon word got out into the community and people started bringing stuff to sell. In no time at all, or so it seems to someone who has been treasure hunting at Pieces since day one, the store had expanded into both adjoining spaces on either side of its original home.
In time another branch would show up in town, but Becky says that didn’t work so she closed it down but the branch on the bypass (in a building Becky now owns), is flourishing. It’s there you can find camping goods, outdoor and gardening tools and furniture, sporting goods and gear and architectural salvage.
The warehouse that houses the flagship store, just past Walmart, heading south of town, is filled to bursting with everything from furniture to bric a brac and clothing with more than you can imagine in-between. It’s a thrift store out of a dream!
But it’s not. Everything in Pieces is consigned and in many ways Pieces supports more than its owner; it supports her long-standing and loyal employees along with many in the community, who come to Becky for payment (on their pieces) when in need of money for a bill or a trip or whatever they are saving for.
“I love the fact that I can help people and keep stuff recycling in the community.” Says Becky. “Keeping things out of the trash and landfill, using only recycled bags and shelving to display items makes me feel good.”
Keeping a small carbon footprint is one thing but having a successful business with zero waste is another story, and Becky has managed the seemingly impossible.
She has 6000 accounts currently, some sell to her for cash, others stack up credit and others donate goods they no longer want. Becky in turn sells and donates items to other thrift shops and charities. The recycling and upcycling is an ongoing wheel in motion.
Growing up with an attorney dad who handled several estates, she’d accompany him as a kid and recalls being fascinated with the items for sale; antiques and china, silver and art that would be sold off, finding new homes after their owners had passed on.
“Treasure hunting appealed to me.” She smiled as she recalled that early awakening. Her degree in Library Science not withstanding, Becky parlayed her love of treasure hunting into a business that also makes fine use of her organizational skills.
Clearly she’s not alone in her passion. These days both with regards to fashion and decorating the home, high low is the way to go. In this age of celebrated individuality, no one wants to look like they stepped out of a catalogue let alone appear to live in one – the days of the cookie cutter Pottery Barn home are long gone!
Places like Pieces have sprung up all around the country – from NYC to LA, second-hand style is haute style.
An avid thrift shopper in my youth with a collection of priceless vintage jackets, coats and bags to prove it, as I got older and my style got simpler and more sophisticated, I stopped buying clothing second-hand (I still wear the coats), but I’m addicted to the thrill of the hunt when it comes to antiques, and if I can discover something in a jumble of other old but not so precious things, all the more reason to go to places like Pieces.
And I do.
These days I shop for others more than myself. Living in a 600 sq ft studio loft leaves me with little room for more than I’ve already collected (quite a few things found at Pieces), which I’m okay with – I’m not a big consumer of stuff – but treasures are treasures and they make for perfect gifts without the headache and heartache of buying new Made in China.
As you can see from these shots, there’s nothing you can’t find at Pieces and nothing makes Becky happier than your purchase enabling her to continue helping others.
In my opinion that’s truly sustainable.
For more information please visit Pieces’ site linked below.
Photo of Becky with Tony Huston and other shots taken in Pieces on my iphone.