about the stores

JUNK has two Williamsburg Brooklyn locations - 436 Union Ave & 567 Driggs Ave - the Driggs store is open 9-9, 7 days a week. The Union Ave store is open every day 11am to 8 pm. To reach The Driggs Ave store take the L to bedford & exit on the driggs ave side. For the the Union Ave take the L to Metropolitan AveCheck out our new website: Junk11211.

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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

What is this place

     What is this place? I hear that question at least once a day & it always surprises me  Junk is a second hand store & we sell used stuff.
      What exactly is a second hand store & is it the same as a  thrift store, flea market, or consignment shop? 
       All of these are resale shops (they sell items that have been sold before), but they are not all  the same thing.
       Thrift stores are  run by non-profit organizations.  For example an animal shelter may run a thrift store to help offset the cost of dog food.  The items are donated & salespeople are often volunteers.   Churches & libraries also  frequently have thrift stores to help defray their operating costs. Goodwill & The Salvation Army are examples of  thrift  stores done on a mega scale. 
        Are thrift stores charities?  Not exactly - thrift stores are run by charities - to provide money for their good works (i.e. feeding homeless people or homeless dogs) . Their primary goal is not to supply you with cheap stuff , but to raise funds for  specific causes.  In  ultra simplified terms - The Salvation Army is a charity, that runs stores,  to fund missions (think Guys & Dolls) .
        Second hand, vintage & antique stores are businesses.  They have the same costs & the same goals as any other business.  Merchandise is not donated & the stock usually reflects the personal tastes of the shop owner.
      Flea markets are venues.  Booths (spaces, tables) are rented out to individual dealers. The flea market keeps the rent & the individual dealers keep the proceeds from their sales. Flea Markets may or may not be run by non-profits (a church or a movie theater may decide to rent out unused  parking lot spaces),  but in either case only the booth rent goes to the parent organization.
        Consignment shops are also businesses. In a consignment shops the store owner sells items for other people and keeps a commission.
         These are extremely simplified & non-legal definitions. Some second hand stores accept (or even solicit) donations. Some accept consignments. Some rent out showcases in their shops. Lots of second hand stores call themselves thrifts just as lots of gas stations call the brown muck they serve “gourmet coffee”. That’s just the way it is. 
         But here, in this blog, we will be using these definitions.

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