5 Tips to Shopping at Repurpose Project

By Chelsea Carnes

“So much stuff, it’s overwhelming!” I often hear customers say as they enter our brimming little warehouse. The new customers’ eyes bulge, then waver and dart warily around our retail items, which are seemingly stocked, stuffed, and stacked into every crevice of the store. Boxes of assorted hardware line the floor of one aisle whose middle section is fatly furnished with hand tools, screws, bolts, nuts, tacks, and other more obscure attachables. On another shelf, unidentifiable metals mingle in an endless parley with electronics. Back aisles house enough mini blinds to shade the Biltmore, and enough tennis rackets, golf clubs, and hockey sticks to arm an intersport league. It’s easy to see how one could get overwhelmed, or even lost, in our store. But there is a method to our madness and the trick to shopping at Repurpose is to understand it. Here are five helpful tips to keep in mind as you cruise our perusables.

#1 Ask the clerk. Our small 5-person staff are intimately familiar with every neighborhood of Repurpose-town. Our exhaustive knowledge of every nook & cranny of this maze will amaze you. If there is a specific thing you are looking for, ASK US! We are the Virgil to your inferno, the Steve Irwin to your croc-infested swamp, take advantage of our wisdom and let us guide you through the madness to your prize.

#2 Look up. Our volunteers designed some very helpful signs that give their reader an idea of what to expect on each row. With so much to look at, some customers do not even notice these helpful cues! Also, glance heaven-ward when you are walking through an aisle. When we have an overstock of items that don’t fit on the shelves (which is always), we box them, label them, and store them towards the ceiling. Need 200 cassette tapes, 10 celing fans, 3 boxes of VHS and a truckload of foam for your art installation? You’ll probably find it near the ceiling.

#3 Don’t be afraid to make an offer! I’ve sensed that while some love it, other customers are intimidated by our bargain-based pricing policy. When you find an item that you would like to purchase that is not priced, don’t be scared to name a number. Our clerks are nice, some would even call us friendly, and we will not debase you if you bid too low, we’ll simply suggest a higher figure. If you have absolutely no idea what something is worth, ask our opinion and we’ll work to find a pleasant price that is agreeable for all parties.

#4 Be a thoughtful donator. If you want to get on the RP staff’s good side (and you do), don’t donate rando boxes of moldy, soiled, roach-infested, stinky, stuff. Even us dumpster divers at RP have to draw the line somewhere. We want your junk, but we don’t want your trash and recycling. If it’s recyclable, recycle it at home, you save us time and money. If it is nasty, throw it away, or launder it before you bring it to us. There is nothing we love more than saving donated goods from the dump, but don’t bring us trash that is truly garbage. If you have questions about what sort of donations we accept, stop by and ask before you bring your stuff inside!

#5 When you are done shopping, go grab a slice at Satchel’s Pizza next door! Shopping can be tiring and there’s no better place in town to refuel your blood sugar than right next door to RePP! Repurpose Project is proud to be part of a blossoming art & leisure community in east Gainesville. We are #soblessed to have terrific neighbors that include Satchel’s & Lightnin’ Salvage (food & live music!), Otter & Trout (herbs & tinctures!), and The Ole Barn (beer & honky tonk!), among others (these are just some of my personal favorites.) Do yourself a favor and support local businesses in East Gainesville! Enjoy your shopping experience and as always, thanks for supporting our store.

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