Published on February 18th, 2016 | by Alex Thiel0
New Vintage Shop Makes Thrifting a Community
Morgan Pennington has long had a passion for rummaging through thrift stores, but it wasn’t until recently that this interest formalized into an upstart side business.
“I’ve always loved going to thrift stores, ever since I was in middle school,” she explains. “It’s kind of like this idea of digging for buried treasure.”
“I don’t know why. I’ll do it until my eyes can’t handle it anymore.”
When Milli Haggard stepped in with the idea to start an Etsy store, Pennington’s hobby turned into Telegnosis, a burgeoning local business that matches pre-loved clothes and knick knacks with eager new owners.
“Morgan likes to shop a lot,” explains Haggard. “And she would always buy stuff that wouldn’t fit her, for other people. I was like, ‘you should just buy stuff and sell it, instead of us hoarding all this!’”
Since starting the shop in August of 2015, Milli and Morgan have made a regular habit of scouring local thrift stores and yard sales in search of hidden gems for the discerning Oxford community.
“Anywhere we travel to, we’ll go to a thrift store or antique store,” Haggard says. “You just make it [part of] your daily ritual to go, especially in the morning when they first put stuff out.”
“You can get the good stuff.”
Although much of Telegnosis’s online sales are for buyers in places like New York and Los Angeles, the store is better known locally for the personal relationships forged with regular customers.
“We have the store online, but we also have locals come by and try stuff on,” says Haggard. “Sometimes I’ll find stuff and think, ‘that would look good on [him or her],’ specifically for people that normally shop with me.”
Another unique component of Telegnosis is their tendency to host pop-ups in their home, at which they showcase their wares alongside the works of several Oxford artists. Their last pop-up featured Telegnosis’s vintage items alongside new and original works from such local artists as Lauren Dayan, Frank Estrada, and Claire Whitehurst.
Another pop-up is scheduled for March, and although a specific date has yet to be set, Haggard says that “people just call me or text me, and they can come by and try stuff on on their own time if they can’t make a pop-up.”
The ultimate goal, they say, is to have a regular booth set up in an antique or vintage store here in Oxford. For now, though, Morgan and Milli are content to open up their home to the community and run Telegnosis more informally.
“You can create your own style when you’re shopping for older clothes, because the stuff that you find in thrift stores is all from different time periods,” says Pennington. “It’s amazing that you can incorporate all these things from different time periods to create this timeless look that’s all your own.”
“It’s nice to see people wearing stuff that you’ve picked out,” Milli adds.
Check out Telegnosis’s online selection at telegnosis.etsy.com, and follow them on social media to hear about upcoming pop-ups.