4th grade spelling bee champion - the second hand man

i think style is personal. while i dont like all thrifted styles , i always have an appreciation for individuals that do it well. such is the case with zachary gray. he is a fellow tweeter and thrift store shopper. this is my conversation with him.
MRGWH: a young man you are, just 20, so when did you start thrifting?

TSHM: it all started in high school when i got my first car and i would stop at thrift sroes on the way home. i was into vintage jackets and throwback basketball jerseys at the time. i realized things were so cheap and that i could spend some of my gas money to buy things i knew no one else would have.
MRGWH: so you have been doing this for a while. i would say you are seasoned for the most part. so tell me, what is the difference between new thrifters and seasoned thrifters?

TSHM: passion. i think passion is what sets them apart. that's what makes us good at what we do.
MRGWH: since i have been exposed to a larger audience to share my love for second-hand shopping, i have definitely seen an increase in thrifters as well as thrift stores. even so much that some are doing the wal-mart effect. moving from old locations and building new structures. have you seen an increase in thrift stores in your area?

TSHM: this past year i've seen more and more thrift stores being built around kansas city. times are getting harder these days and people are looking for ways to save money. thrift stores should be resources for the community. (so yes) i think there is a surge and its a great thing.

MRGWH: your style is a bit different from mine. however, i think we use the same principals when shopping.
TSHM: i'm mostly inspired by the 60s-80s. i do appreciate high fashion, like margiela and rick owens, but realistically that's stuff i can't afford right now and couldn't pull off. im not a big fan of black clothing. i dont want to wear a kilt. i don't want to dress like a ninja. i'm not the only one who doesn't want to follow trends. so of course i like to get creative. vintage will always be my forte'. give me some dr. martens and a leather jacket and i'm good.

MRGWH: hold up. no black? really? you sure?
TSHM: yeah until last month i hadn't really bought anything black. so i'm slowly incorporating more into my wardrobe. i just associate black with funerals and weddings. maybe it's just me.

MRGWH: ahh i see. black is a standard for me. i love exploring colors, but black grounds everything.

TSHM: black suits you well (no pun intended). maybe i can get to your level eventually. me? i love white sneakers and bleached denim.
MRGWH: bleached denim eh? i only have 3 pairs of jeans and my newest pair is a lucky brand. wasn't sure why it wouldn't stay on my waist then i finally read where it was low rise. epic fail on my part. i can't justify spending a lot on jeans.

so i know you don't thrift 24/7, so what is it that you do?

TSHM: haha, i go to class and have track practice every day, so my schedule is pretty busy. by the end of the week i am pretty worn out so i just like to relax on the weekends. i'm a night owl, so i get most of my work done at night and find time to blog and get on ebay here and there. i don't drink, but i do have my fun! haha

MRGWH: yea man your blog is very inspirational. i really enjoy reading it. i did read where you can actually sew? that is a skill some believe i have and my mother who has been sewing for well over 35 years believes i should acquire. eh i'm lazy.

TSHM: i picked up a machine over the summer and have been teaching myself since then. i'm no pro, but i hold my own. i mostly alter things i find that are a little too big and i've hemmed and tapered my own pants. i'd like to get into tailoring one day.

MRGWH: you most certainly have acquired the proper skills for accentuating buying clothes second hand. which i can  certainly see as a great business move for you.

TSHM: the goal is to continue to grow and develop TSHM into a brand. i plan on working on some reconstructed pieces for TSHM, but that's all i'm gonna say about that. you can follow the blog to stay updated. it should be a big summer.

MRGWH: that i shall do.

if you enjoyed this interview with zachary gray, you can follow him on twitter, be a facebook fan of his and or read more about him and his awesome talent on his blog. all photos are courtesy of the second hand man.

if you would like to be considered for an interview, please email me.