Chattanooga Consignment Boutiques are THE Place for Great Deals

By Molly Farrell

With the holidays looming, shoppers are looking for ways to save money, especially college students. Consignment and resale shops are the answer to financial woes for those who are looking for an inexpensive way to wear the season’s hottest trends”

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (UTC) — For many students and other bargain hunters, consignment and resale shops are the best place to find name brand clothes at a fraction of the selling price.

Chattanooga is home to a number of these popular places. Plato’s Closet, a young men and women’s store that sells gently worn items, is a popular place for students to find inexpensive steals on the latest styles.

Whether it’s a night out or a change of season, consignment clothing stores are a favorite for Alexandra Gellis, UTK junior. “I love Plato’s Closet because they have a little of everything; if I am in a hurry to find a dress or something to go out in, I always look there first.”

For the more designer-conscious, Encore Consignment, owned by Sherry Gravitt, has a plethora of top designer clothing at unbeatable prices.  Encore also has a great selection of women’s suits and dresses for those with a more subtle attire.

If vintage is what you’re looking for, Collective Clothing, located in the heart of St. Elmo, is the perfect place to find unique pieces.

Sondra Aten, owner of Collective Clothing, says her purpose for opening the store was to give Chattanoogan’s a unique shopping experience. ” I wanted to give people in Chattanooga an opportunity to be able to purchase [vintage clothing] without having to drive to Nashville or Atlanta.”

Sondra explains the driving force behind resale shops is availability. “I try to find more unique things that are timeless, rather than ‘fast fashion’, that just comes in and out.” Consignment shops thrive on customer participation like bringing in new items to sell.

Plato’s Closet, Encore Consignment, and Collective Clothing are just some of the resale shops Chattanooga has to offer.

Who: Plato’s Closet                                                                    

Where: 2200 Hamilton Place Blvd, Chattanooga, TN

Sells: Gently used young men and women’s clothing, shoes, and accessories

Hours: Monday-Friday 10 am-9 pm, Saturday 10 am-10 pm, Sunday 12 pm-8 pm

Plato’s Closet of chattanooga offers consignment clothing at great prices.  The store is organized by racks of jeans, shirts, jackets, and dresses in a variety of colors and sizes.

They also sell a wide selection of gently used shoes and accessories for both men and women.

Plato’s takes name brand clothing items that are gently used (no tears, holes or stains) for a reasonable cash payout. Most stores take clothing year round, not just seasonal clothing.

Positives: Great selection of clothing for both genders, new merchandise arrives daily

Negatives: Pays customers only a fraction of the selling cost for consigned clothing, does not recognize designer brands

Who: Encore Consignment Boutique

Where: 11500 Hixson Pike, Suite C, Chattanooga, TN

Sells: Upscale ladies apparel and accessories

Hours: Tuesday-Friday 10 am-6 pm, Saturday 11 am-4:30 pm, CLOSED Sunday and Monday

Encore Consignment carries primarily upscale ladies apparel, including dresses, suit pieces, and designer accessories. The store has been awarded by the Chattanooga Times Free Press as “readers choice” since 2002.

Encore only takes clothing that is of a designer brand and in excellent condition, and primarily buys from consignors.

Positives: Great selection of high fashion designer brands, pricing is very reasonable

Negatives: Store is very small and crammed, most clothing is geared towards an older crowd

Who: Collective Clothing                                                                

Where: 3933 St. Elmo Ave, Chattanooga, TN

Sells: Vintage/Unique clothing and accessories

Hours: Monday-Friday 1 pm-8 pm, Saturday 11 am-8 pm, CLOSED Sunday

Collective Clothing has something for everyone. The small store is crammed with vintage pieces mixed with new, trendier clothing.

Collective offers a wide selection for both men and women, and the clothing is organized into type and size.

The back of the store features a small room of accessories, and shoes from every decade can be found along the walls. The vintage, thrifty feel of the establishment is a far cry from most clothing stores.

Positives: Great selection of vintage pieces/ unique styles

Negatives: The prices are on the high side for older pieces, some clothing shows signs of wear


Local Accessories to Give a “Hoot” About

By: Laura Kelton

Chattanooga, TN (UTC/The Loop) – One UTC student is watching her dreams come true before her eyes as her eco-friendly accessory line OwlEyes’ Accessories takes flight.

UTC junior Rebekah McCallie is the creator of OwlEyes’ Accessories, designing felt and feather pieces to compliment any outfit. McCallie says her inspiration comes from “watching countless hours of Project Runway, movies and books about renowned fashion designers, and old Audrey Hepburn movies.” But she comments that anything and everything fabulous, pretty and unique inspires her designs. “I just enjoy creating adorable accessories and hopefully adding to someone’s already fabulous outfit.”

Rebekah in the "Brown and Red Indian" headband. $10

Rebekah in the "Brown and Red Indian" headband. $10

As McCallie runs her own business, it has allowed her a lot of leeway in design of both products and the brand itself. She derived the brand name from her own love of owls. She says, “Well, it’s no surprise to people who know me, but for those who don’t: I have a serious obsession with owls. There are probably 20 owls decorating my room, and you will rarely catch me without an owl necklace on.” As far as the product, she takes custom orders at no extra charge. Up and coming Chattanooga fashion blog, Jank is Swank, says that this is their favorite part of OwlEyes, “You can special order any design you desire, from hair pins, to clips and of course headbands.”

Her product line began with felt and feather headbands and earrings, and has expanded to hair clips, pins, brooches, and even a few miniature hats. McCallie says she was motivated to start her own line after shopping one day, as she does frequently, and finding a headband for $30. She says, “I knew I could make them for myself and my friends much cheaper.” UTC junior Brooke Dobson says that McCallie’s creations “cost so little but look so expensive. They go with everything…I own five headbands and a pair of earrings.”

Brooke Dobson in a felt brooch. $8

Brooke Dobson in a felt brooch. $8

McCallie has already seen a large growth in her entrepreneurial business. Dobson says, “I’ve known Bekah for a long time. She is a very driven person and great business woman. OwlEyes will be a huge success.” The accessory line is already available at numerous nearby businesses, including Leo’s Handmade Gallery and Sugar Plums Antiques.

Rebekah in a "Shades of Brown" felt headband. $8

Rebekah in a "Shades of Brown" felt headband. $8

What does the future hold for OwlEyes? “I want it to be selling in many more stores, and eventually grow to a point where I can start my own store,” says McCallie. “I just want to make as many people as fabulous as possible. I hope to see OwlEyes really grow.”

OwlEyes’ Accessories can currently be purchased online from and, as well as through the Facebook page.