It's Hit or Miss at The Exchange

Hunting & Gathering

Photography by Wyatt Kostygan

As the second piece of a new weekly four-part series, we're rolling out local thrifting destinations for those frugal shoppers to get their fair share of gently-used, recycled bargains.

The Exchange has been a Sarasota staple since 1962 and upholds its original mission of benefitting the arts. Since its inception, the company has given $8.5 million to local arts organizations and art students--all of which has come from the consignment store, where an average of 12,000 items are sold monthly. “People come in looking for the unexpected, so they have the tendency to shop the entire store. The only time people come in for something specific is for furniture,” says Karen Koblenz, the CEO of 10 years. The Exchange provides quality pieces at half the price of retail, and many shoppers come in to find items to repurpose. Older furniture is often refurbished and more modern furniture doesn't last long. You can always bring things back, consign them and recoup 50 percent; it's a great way to mix things up in your home.

“I feel a sense of responsibility for the items entrusted to us; these are people’s memories,” she says. “Change is the only constant at The Exchange. If you don't find something today, you will find something tomorrow.”

The Exchange, 539 South Orange Ave., Sarasota, 941-955-7859, sarasotawex.com

Photography by Wyatt Kostygan

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