A new brand name “gently-used” clothing store opened Friday in Rock Hill, drawing a line of at least 175 people, including one Fort Mill woman who arrived around 4:30 a.m. – 5.5 hours before the 10 a.m. grand opening.
Denise Mitchell was the first person in line at Clothes Mentor, in the Winthrop Commons shopping center on Cherry Road. She and 24 people behind her received a $25 gift card from the store to buy shoes, clothes, purses, accessories and other items.
When Mitchell arrived, she said she took a nap in her car in the parking lot until other eager shoppers showed up. She had to be there early, she said, to buy a pair of pink Coach boots, which she quickly found inside when Shawn Cox, the Rock Hill Clothes Mentor owner, opened the doors.
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Clothes Mentor has more than 130 stores across 29 states, including two in Charlotte. The Rock Hill Clothes Mentor is the fourth location in South Carolina.
Shawn Cox and his wife Alyssa own the store. Alyssa Cox was behind the register on Friday, scanning items and taking cash and credit and debit cards from customers looking for a deal.
Most people in line said they were looking for new items for their wardrobe and Clothes Mentor’s used clothes give them a chance to fill their closets without spending too much money.
Sara Starnes and her son Matt, of Rock Hill, arrived at 9 a.m.
“If he hadn’t taken so long eating breakfast, we would have been here at 8:30,” Sara Starnes said.
Expecting her fourth child, Sara Starnes said, “I look for discounts” and Clothes Mentor has items that “could suit everybody.” Starnes said she was shopping primarily for maternity wear and found Clothes Mentor to have items she needs for half the price of other stores.
Starnes and many other shoppers first came to the store earlier this week when items weren’t yet for sale, but customers could swap their clothing for cash. Clothes Mentor is similar to a consignment shop. The store offers cash on the spot for gently-used designer or name brand pants, shirts, shoes and more.
Hours: Monday to Friday: 10 a.m.- 8 p.m. Saturday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday: 1 - 6 p.m.
On Friday, Shawn Cox raffled gift cards to a salon and spa and other local stores. He and his staff managed the long line on Friday and, when the doors opened, workers stood back as shoppers swarmed the aisles.
To help shoppers navigate the tight space, workers stored items in baskets behind the counter while customers shopped.
The Rock Hill store, 725 Cherry Road, is open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
To sell clothes to the store, customers should wash their items first. No appointment is needed. The store may decline to buy clothes based on the item’s condition, its inventory, or the brand.
Favored brands include: Ann Taylor, Gap, J. Crew, White House Black Market, Chicos, Calvin Klein, Old Navy, North Face, Michael Kors, Prada, Coach and Burberry.