Thrift Witch, a REO Town Marketplace thrift store that made a name for itself thanks to its year-round Halloween theme, has reopened at a new address in Old Town. Its soft opening saw a crowd of people shopping for spooky vintage goods, ranging anywhere from custom jewelry to Ouija boards.
“We had a great time. It feels like we’re onto something. We’re already low on product,” owner Tiesha King said. “The east side of Lansing came out strong. I had friends come in and a barrage of people I didn’t even know.”
When her marketplace lease was up and she was faced with the precipice of closing her shop for good, King said a push from Ted Stewart, owner of neighboring Old Town thrift shop Metro Retro, inspired her to set up shop in a new neighborhood.
“We took a huge leap of faith. It was a hard sell for me. Ted, who I call the godfather of Lansing thrift, pushed me to switch in the first place. He said, ‘Girl, no. Come down here to Old Town. This is where you belong.’ He even found the space for me.”
King said Colleen Kelly, owner of The Avenue Café, and Dawne Botke-Coe, owner of Triple Goddess Bookstore, also pushed her to make the move to Old Town.
King said the larger space will allow to her greatly expand the Thrift Witch operation. She said the small booth in the REO Town Marketplace did not provide the room necessary to stock all of the products she acquires from different vendors. “I had to start turning people down because I just ran out of space. I’ve got people down in Indiana, Ohio and Detroit that want to be vendors with me,” King said.
King will also use the new shop to further expand her other business, The Dark Art of Michigan. The Dark Art of Michigan is a series of performances that feature live music, painting, burlesque and pop-up marketplaces. The new Thrift Witch will provide a sort of de facto headquarters to sell more products from recurring Dark Art vendors.