Eric Lancaster – Grandpa’s Thrift

Public Relations


Grandpa’s Thrift is a vintage clothing store that focuses on getting unique and fashionable items into the hands of local thrift enthusiasts. Many people enjoy vintage clothing but either don’t have the time to go thrifting themselves, or don’t know what to look for. Grandpa’s Thrift can help with both! We sell high quality items at affordable prices, as well as events or resources (such as our monthly newsletter) that can help you start finding your own items!

How it started

Grandpa’s Thrift started because many people had told me that I dressed like a grandpa. They would always ask me where I found my unique clothing items. I always found them thrifting, as its a hobby of mine. I am constantly going to thrift stores and flee markets in search of hidden gems (sometimes daily!) I decided to start selling my items and create a community and brand around a love of vintage clothing. It was slow starting out, but as more and more people heard about it we saw many people from the community show interest in the items I had found.

First steps

As someone who wasn’t very active on social media, I knew my strongest tool for starting Grandpa’s Thrift was through word of mouth. We set up a day early in October to visit different thrift stores in Salt Lake City. I made a post, reached out to friends, and invited all to meet me at these stores so we could do a “city walk” of local thrift stops! It was a huge success as we had close to 15 people arrive. We would find items, trade what we found, and had fun exploring some hole in the wall places. After a few hours people left, but many said they wanted to do it again, and wanted to bring more friends. This was exactly what I wanted Grandpa’s Thrift to be. I wanted to have a tightly knit community around a love for thrifting. These events are perfect for creating friendships and long lasting customers.

Social media

While social media wasn’t my strongpoint, I knew it was a necessary tool to work with Grandpa’s Thrift. As people began hearing about my store, people began following my Instagram page and Depop (online page for selling clothes). Usually after events I would see both my pages have huge jumps in followers, which in turn helped items to sell. I have already had multiple people purchase clothing through my social media, and as my base grows I expect to see those numbers rise.

Monthly Newsletter

Grandpa’s Thrift has started a monthly newsletter that is posted on social media, and is sent out with every purchase. The newsletter discusses modern fashion trends, as well as gives advice to people who want to start thrifting themselves. The newsletter is also a great place to see new and upcoming items that will be hitting the store soon.

Events and gatherings

Because Grandpa’s Thrift focuses on community and building relationships in the thrifting scene, I knew that events would be fantastic opportunities to sell and build brand awareness. I recognized that I was selling a good amount of items to high school students. With this information I went to my old high school and spoke with some of the faculty there (including some of my old teachers). They allowed me to set up a few small tables and put up flyers in classes and around the building. The event was a “thrift exchange” where people could come and buy, sell, or trade any items they had with other students and me. I was surprised to see about 40 students come and go during the two hours I had. After the event I saw my Depop and Instagram page jump in followers as well.

Flyer for Grandpa’s Thrift exchange

In Summary

Grandpa’s Thrift was an amazing exercise in verbal and digital communication. I was able to create flyers, newsletters, websites, business cards, and so forth. The store had much more success then I was expecting, and during the senior showcase I had so many students who wanted me to keep running Grandpa’s Thrift, so they could buy items. I plan to keep running events and selling items for them. I met so many wonderful people and made great connections while running Grandpa’s Thrift, and I look forward to seeing just what we can do.