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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Blink and you’ll miss it: Seasonal market offers antique treasures

 Gather: A Vintage Market, located in downtown Tucson. (Carter Berg 2022) 
Carter Berg from El Inde Arizona

 Gather: A Vintage Market, located in downtown Tucson. (Carter Berg 2022) 

Gather: A Vintage Market is a four-day event that aims to provide those with antiquated taste a chance to find hidden gems to add to their wardrobe, home or garden. 

Once a month, Gather at 300 S. Park Ave. opens its doors for anyone seeking to explore a bona fide vintage boutique without the smell of mothballs.

Located within the Lost Barrio in a former lumber warehouse, Gather is a unique seasonal shopping experience that re-styles its entire floor plan each month to better fit the current season’s aesthetic. Gather’s upcoming theme, which will be centered around Christmas, debuted at 5 p.m. Nov. 9.

What started as a shared hobby between three friends has rapidly evolved into a collective passion project for a community of age-diverse vintage enthusiasts. Simon Carson, one of three owners, said Gather recently experienced a small boom in popularity. At last month’s event, more than 150 people waited to get in.

“It’s become a destination. Vintage is the key buzzword at the minute,” Carson said. “Five months ago, I would have said that our crowd was people who have disposable income, maybe 45 to 70. Now, that demographic has totally changed. Nobody at the age of 20 wants to buy new furniture; they all want old vintage.” 

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One shopper, Karli Schmidt, said she discovered Gather through her grandma, with whom she shares a common interest in vintage clothes. 

“I really like to thrift,” Schmidt said. “I came here with my mom today looking for a pair of jeans, and I found some shirts, jeans and a dress, so I’m pretty excited.” 

Vintage apparel appears to be on the minds of many shoppers as well as workers, many of whom say the job feels more like working with art rather than clothes and furniture. 

“It just keeps getting better and better every month,” employee Jeannie Jett said. “It’s really not like a job. It’s just fun to be around other creative people.” 

Jett says the upcoming Christmas theme will be one of Gather’s biggest yet and is expected to include 12 or 13 different trees of varying styles as well as a collection of vintage winter clothes. 

Gather’s October theme, centered around harvest. (Carter Berg 2022)
Gather’s October theme, centered around harvest. (Carter Berg 2022)

Since many of the pieces being sold are several decades old, the process of collecting, cleaning and verifying authenticity is thorough and delicate. Carson said all the clothes sold at Gather are closely inspected before being put on display. 

“We have a niche in the Tucson market and many of the pieces we bring in are exclusive,” he said. “We vet every piece that comes in so it’s not looking like a thrift store or anything else. Everything is set up as if it was your own living room or apartment.” 

The winter market runs through Nov. 13. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. The dates for the December opening are Dec. 8-11.


 *El Inde Arizona is a news service of the University of Arizona School of Journalism.


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