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Belmont student relaunches online thrift store

Belmont sophomore Zoë Kidwell launched the latest version of her independently-run business — an online thrift shop specializing in vintage-style sweaters and shirts called Crewies — on Nov. 1.

Originally launched in May, the homegrown business is entirely self-operated, with Kidwell doing all of the graphic design and photography for the site.

She also thrifts all of the items available on the site herself.

“This past summer, I was at a Goodwill in my hometown, and I realized that it was a gold mine for cool clothes,” Kidwell said.

After buying a large number of sweaters and other tops, she realized that she could make a business out of selling them.

“I thought about selling the clothes on a resale app or website, but I wanted it to be more of a personal thing,” she said. “I wanted to just kind of have my own fun and make it my own.”

Kidwell called the site “Crewies” because she originally sold all crewneck sweatshirts, and the name “just kind of stuck,” Kidwell said.

Near the end of summer, she took a break from Crewies, taking down the site as a way to recharge before the fall semester.

“I didn’t even think I was going to do it when I got back to school, but I just missed it so much,” she said.

The relaunched site now allows shoppers to pick one of three different charities that Kidwell is passionate about. 10 percent of each purchase will go to the charity the shopper chooses.

“I felt like letting people donate to just any charity would’ve been overwhelming for me, so narrowing it down to three helped to keep it organized and made it so that there was enough money going to each charity to make somewhat of a difference.”

Kidwell hopes to have her company do more to directly impact the charities and to eventually partner with some of them in the future, she said.

Although Crewies is very much a DIY business, Kidwell also has some help in the form of her friends, who model many of the items she sells.

She did a great job making her friends feel comfortable in front of the camera during the shoot, said Summer Pittman, a Belmont junior and friend of Kidwell who modeled for the site.

“She made it feel like we were just doing a fun thing with friends.”

Crewies is designed for people interested in retro-style attire, especially college students looking for reasonably-priced clothing.

“So many people love vintage and thrifted clothes, and with Crewies, you don’t really have to do the work of going through everything to find the good stuff,” said Claire Foth, a sophomore at Belmont who recently purchased items from the site.

“Crewies allows me to do the things that I’m passionate about and share my love for thrifting and charity work with others,” Kidwell said. “Doing something bigger than me is what it’s all about.”

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This story written by Drew Pearce. Photo courtesy of Zoë Kidwell. 

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