On the morning of Feb. 11, Sue Thomas was getting ready to open up shop, as she does every Thursday.
Thomas is the manager of Clothes Closet in Butler, a used clothing store located in the annex of Three Crosses United Methodist Church. The store offers gently used clothes for children and adults at discount prices.
Thomas said Clothes Closet has been in operation for eight years and, though items are meant to help people on a limited budget, anybody can stop in and shop. All proceeds go to help the church and the local community.
“Customers can get a bag of clothes for $5. You can’t go to Goodwill or anywhere else and get a deal like that,” Thomas said. “We put out quality items at a good price. That’s what keeps people coming back.”
She said the store gets its fair share of regular customers, many of whom are 50 years old or older. The store relies on donations, Thomas explained, and a handful of other volunteers, such as fellow Three Crosses church member Pam Swank, who help with the intake and display of clothing.
Visitors to Clothes Closet will notice that, among the thousands of articles of clothing for sale, there are plenty of winter clothes on display.
“We’re not rushing spring,” Thomas said. “We’re still keeping our winter stock out. We’re not putting it away like a lot of stores do.”
Thomas said Clothes Closet brought in about $2,700 in 2015. On average, the store generates about $200 in sales a month. The church gives $50 a month to the Bellville Neighborhood Outreach, and $50 a month to the Butler Clear Fork Adult Center. Proceeds have also gone to Holiday Happiness, a local project in which area churches, businesses and individuals helped provide parents in need with the means to buy their children Christmas gifts. She added that profits also went to help pay for the booth fee for the Women’s Comfort Station at the Bellville Street Fair in 2015, which provides women with a comfortable, private area for changing and nursing babies.
Clothes Closet is open every Thursday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., as well as one Saturday a month. The Saturday opening day could fall on the first, second, third or fourth Saturday of the month, as it varies depending on the monthly schedule. This month it will be open Feb. 20.