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Vintage pop-up shop on wheels shifts into gear for launch this April

Vintage pop-up shop on wheels shifts into gear for launch this April

Vintage pop-up shop on wheels shifts into gear for launch this April
February 19
10:03 2022

Over the past three months, overflowing bags and tubs of clothing have formed a treasure trove under the beds of seniors Shelby Ruckel and Hannah Long. Their collection of clothes is gathered for the launch of their own pop-up vintage clothing shop: Sun ‘n Terra. 

“Sun n’ Terra helps take retired clothing and re-shine the spotlight back on it while making it accessible to the public,” said Caylee Ricketts, sophomore and friend of Ruckel and Long. 

As business partners, Long and Ruckel have assessed their inventory of more than 600 pieces in an effort to get the shop off the ground. Frequent patrons of resale shops, they are now ready to share their finds with the community of Denton. 

“It was a way to write off our thrifting,” Ruckel said. “A way to fuel our addiction.”  

The pair spend most days sifting through thrift stores and estate sales to accumulate pieces they find to be eccentric. To add to their uniqueness, the duo is bringing their business to the interior of a 1972 Ford Econoline van. Putting their vintage pop-up shop in a van has given them complete geographical freedom from their Denton home base. 

“Everywhere is home to the van,” Long said. “[We] needed to have some sort of mobile business. [We] don’t want to be stuck in one location.”

The first day of the new year brought with it their official ownership of the van. The seafoam green Ford was shipped from Las Havasu, Ariz. The idea to establish their business in the van felt obvious since they were both “old car people,” Ruckel said. 

“We want that authentic vintage experience and if we keep running the van clean and how it is supposed to, [then] we are not going to be making much of a footprint at all,” Long said. “We do value sustainability. We are purchasing clothes second-hand, so we haven’t made much of a footprint in our business and the goal is to keep it that way.”

Sun ‘n Terra is taking steps to be resource-friendly by using reusable clothing tags and not purchasing clothing products that contribute to “fast fashion” and its copious water use. 

“I want to motivate the generations around our generation to see the value in buying second-hand clothing and how good it is for the environment and quality,” Long said. 

Long and Ruckel credit their business partnership to their random roommate assignment that took place in August. They bonded over their love of vintage style that they both previously established as individuals before they were introduced.  

“[My obsession] sparked from a shirt that my dad gave me,” Ruckel said. “It was an original Metallica concert shirt from the ’80s. For a solid four years after that, I just collected concert T-shirts. I was so narrow-minded that I was only looking for those.”

As they have had more experience thrifting, their style has matured with it, Ruckel said. For Sun ‘n Terra, they now collect everything from swimsuits to workwear to accessories that can be dated between the ’60s to the early 2000s. All pieces found in the shop are size inclusive and are marketed as unisex.

“When I first started, was I thrifting the same things that I’m thrifting now?” Long said. “Absolutely not. I regret that I can’t go back in time and get those pieces.”

The two are deeply dedicated to their craft and express how they have no limit to thrifting. They regularly travel to source their clothes, having traveled to cities like Amarillo. One shopping trip this year led them to purchase more than 100 shirts in Houston. 

“It’s not getting harder to thrift – it’s getting harder to say no,” Ruckel said. 

 For some pieces they pick up, the duo has a special corner under their beds labeled “needs love.” This is compiled of yellowing whites, items missing buttons and shirts ringed with sweat stains. No piece is too much of a challenge as they hope to develop their skills in alterations, Long said. 

“As long as the piece is authentic, unique and matches the broad range of vibe we got going on, [then] we are going to get it no matter what,” Long said. “We want to save those pieces because they really are iconic. We want them to be out there being worn by people and wanna say that we did that.” 

Sun ‘n Terra is planning to have its first pop-up shop in April of this year. Updates on location and dates can be accessed on all social media platforms @sun.n.terra.

Featured Image: Sun ‘n Terra owners Hannah Long and Shelby Ruckel model their clothes on Feb. 9th, 2022. Photo by Belle Maucieri

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Belle Maucieri

Belle Maucieri

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