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A spirit that is not afraid

The Thrifty Lizard opens in Auburn

Exterior of the soon-to-be-opening Thrifty Lizard on Sept. 12th, 2022.
Exterior of the soon-to-be-opening Thrifty Lizard on Sept. 12th, 2022.

The Thrifty Lizard has come to Auburn.

A new thrift store opened Sept. 21 and is here to stay. Thrifty Lizard is not a retail or thrift store, but the best of both, with a selection that has the quality of a typical retail store with the prices of a thrift store.

Paul Wilson, founder, and owner of the Thrifty Lizard, has opened a second location in the old Kinnucan’s building on College Street and South Donahue. 

Thrifty Lizard originated when Wilson started a thrift store for a charity. Soon after his daughter informed him that the name of it was boring. His response was “Well if I ever start my own thrift store you can name it.” In 2012 the Thrifty Lizard was born.

Ten years after the first opening in Wadley, Alabama, their team decided to move in on the downtown scene of Auburn because of the booming clothing market and an opportunity with the building that was too great to pass up. With the thrifting scene becoming increasingly mainstream, the market has become extremely competitive. 

Thrifty Lizard has stayed true to its roots: high-quality clothing at affordable prices. What sets the Thrifty Lizard apart from other competitors is they purchase everything they sell in the store; no donations are accepted. While the target audience for the store is everybody and anybody, Wilson is keenly aware of the importance of a good Auburn gameday outfit and has made that a focal point of the new location. 

The college demographic is perfect for Thrifty Lizard because of the vast variety of styles the store offers. Thanks to Wilson’s professional and personal relationships with clothing sources, he has been able to get an influx of new and gently used items that they then handpick for the Auburn location. 

The general price range is between $5 and $12 with higher-end pieces being upwards of $30. An example he gave was a burnt orange, genuine leather, jacket that retailed for $150, he is selling it for $30.

If they get it for less, they price it for less. 

Thrifty Lizard not only strives for unique, high-quality pieces but also plays its part in helping the environment.

“At the heart of this is the sustainability side. We know we cannot solve all environmental issues, but we feel like we are doing our part. We get upcycle clothing and give it more life,” Wilson said. 

Billboard campaigns, mentions on local radio stations, becoming active on social media, and randomly giving clothes on opening day are just a few ways the Thrifty Lizard has marketed their grand opening. 

It is estimated that they will have several thousand pieces ready to roll to the floor and expect to supply the store with around 1500 items per day. As things go off the rack, the empty spots will be filled in real-time. With the inventory to expand and the love for the craft, Wilson is seriously considering opening more stores if the right opportunity comes along after the success of the new Auburn location. 

At the core of what they want to do is to provide locals with a great shopping experience through their product and customer service. 

“We just want to be a part of the community through the work we do and in turn blend into the Auburn family,”, Wilson said.

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Bri Johnson | News writer

Bri Johnson, sophomore in journalism, is a news writer at The Plainsman.

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