As soon as you walk into the Hangout consignment shop in downtown Englewood, you note the cool vibe. There are big bowls of candy and neon wall art; hip-hop and pop jams playing, and displays that don’t hold back on glitter and color.
This fun, unfussy vibe, owner Lauren Turk says, is intentional. Turk, 34, a thrift and consignment shopper since high school, wants her store to feel like you’re just hanging out to check out her closet. “I treat this store and my customers the same way I treat my friends,” the gregarious Teaneck native says.
She opened The Hangout in February 2020 after working in real estate for almost a decade, with admittedly little idea of what running a retail business entailed (she initially stocked the shop by gathering clothes from the closets of her best friends, their mothers and family members), and promptly had to shutter three weeks later for three months due to the pandemic. During lockdown, she turned to making elaborate Instagram videos and posts for fun. (She also made a few sales.) “I started to just go to the store and talk into my phone”—about what she’d wear if she were going to the Met Gala or to a party, all with a sense of humor—“to entertain people. I’m a silly person.”
Now, her clientele—in-store, online and via social media—includes all ages searching for designer gems, uniqueness and sustainability. Shoppers will find items like J.Crew knits, Zara dresses, Burberry trench coats, and Prada, Chanel and Dior bags.
When Turk’s not in the shop, she’s working with consignors. She knows it can be hard to part with clothes, and unlike the new wave of online consignment retailers, she makes herself personally available. As a one-woman operation, Turk spends her Sundays combing through amazing closets of consignors, which have included a 21-year-old heiress and a 96-year-old with an impeccably preserved wardrobe.
“Every single piece that comes into the store is my decision,” says Turk. “I fall in love with every piece I take, and it goes to somebody who really appreciates it.”
The Hangout, 8 N. Dean Street, Englewood; 201-732-7070.Click here to leave a comment