Welcome to On the Brown Low—a column dedicated to exploring all that the lovely city of Providence has to offer. Join me, Isabela Karibjanian, as I take you on a tour of all the hidden gems I find off College Hill!
Halloween—or Halloweekend as it’s more commonly referred to on campus—is one of my favorite times of the year at Brown. I love the challenge of putting together unique costumes, whether it’s through combining things in my closet already or finding components at thrift shops around Providence. A large portion of the Brown student body takes this approach to the holiday, as well; it’s almost like a campus-wide competition to have the most creative costume. Read more after the jump to find out my tips on thrifting around Providence for the best costumes!
There are a number of thrift shops and consignment shops near campus, including Savers, the Salvation Army, Second Time Around, and the Army Navy Surplus store. Last year, some friends and I attempted to visit the Salvation Army thrift shop, but ended up missing the stop on the RIPTA (Rhode Island Public Transit Authority—the bus system around Providence that, as Brown students, you have free access to with your ID). After begging the bus driver to let us off at a street corner in East Providence, we made the trek back across the river and made it to the store.
The Salvation Army had racks upon racks of clothes to sort through. A friend of mine once described it as like sorting through someone’s grandfather’s attic—everything is vaguely musty and disorganized, but that there may be hidden treasures waiting for those that have the patience to hunt for them. Several of my friends have found their entire Halloween costumes just by aimlessly looking through the racks of clothes at this store, so for those willing to invest some time and for those who are confident in using RIPTA, it’s definitely worth checking out!
This year, some friends and I visited Savers in East Providence. Savers has quite the reputation on campus—in fact, some even describe going to Savers for the first time as a rite of passage as a Brown student. Entering Savers for the first time was a bit overwhelming—the racks seem to stretch back for miles. Unlike the Salvation Army, Savers had very distinct classifications for aisles and shelves, which made finding what we needed a lot easier. Looking for a very specific type shirt or jacket is much simpler of a task, and around Halloween, they even have employees designated as costume consultants to help you find what you need. Savers is also a great place to shop if you’re just looking for eclectic clothing on a budget. From patterned pants to funky overalls, Savers has it all. And the best part is, everything at Savers is ridiculously cheap!
Going on any costume-hunting excursion will definitely go smoother if you go in with a clear set of objectives or with a list of costume components you’re looking to buy. Luckily, no matter how specific of a costume you’re planning—whether you need a bright green jumpsuit or just a red t-shirt, chances are, you’ll be able to find it within a ten-minute radius of campus.
Is there something in Providence that you want to see covered here? Have any suggestions for my next adventure? Send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) to let me know!