A new facelift to the Regina YWCA’s Encore Market is giving used items a new life.
On Tuesday, the renovated second-hand shop reopened with a new look. The bright and cheery shop on 1940 McIntyre Street is lined with racks of clothing for all ages and some kitchen items. Everything in the store sells for about $2 to $5.
“Second-hand stores don’t need to feel like a second rate experience,” said Alexis Losie, senior director of operations with the YWCA Regina. “This reminds people that they’re worthy of beautiful, wonderful things. So it doesn’t matter that our price point is kept low, we want to keep the shopping experience dignified and something that makes you feel proud.”
Joan Beanlands was homeless before she moved into the YWCA three years ago. Starting with nothing, the store was part of what helped Beanlands rebuild her life.
“This is where I first got my first pots and pans to start a new life all over again,” she said. “When I came here I only had three pieces of clothing.”
It was addiction that sent Beanlands’ life spiraling out of control. Finding a home at the YWCA has helped her turn her life around. She shopped at the store for a new wardrobe.
“This has been my little clothing boutique,” she said. “I come in here all the time, it’s fabulous now that we’ve redone it. It’s more like a store. Before everything was in boxes, it wasn’t laid out the way it is now.”
Beanlands helped fundraise for the upgraded store and is proud of the work she did and how the store can help the community.
“It’s cheap so everyone can afford a little something whether they’re starting over or something to make them feel nice and pretty one day,” she said.
All of the items are donated and volunteers help run the shop. The revenue goes to the YWCA’s programs.
Losie wants to encourage everyone to come on a shopping spree at the store.
“I myself am wearing a pair of pants I bought from the store,” she said. “We have so many items that are still coming in with original tags still on them so we can boast that we have a wonderful selection.”
The store’s hours are Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.