Upscale resale store opens in Lone Tree

Founders follow up on Plato’s Closet success

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A resale women’s clothing store that takes off on its enormously popular sister company’s business model opened in Lone Tree Oct. 3.

Clothes Mentor, whose founders also launched Plato’s Closet, aims for a more mature demographic than Plato’s Closet’s teens and twenty-somethings customers. It offers high-quality resale clothing, jewelry and accessories.

The new Lone Tree store is the fourth Clothes Mentor in Colorado, and is open in the spot most recently occupied by Plato’s Closet at Yosemite Street and Maximus Drive.

“We focus on better women’s brands and designer women’s brands in excellent resale condition,” company spokesperson Richard Brill said. “The average price is $11. The overwhelming majority of our items are very, very reasonably priced.

“Everything we sell is from local women who sold it to us. It’s got to be name brand and it’s got to be in good condition.”

Commonly found brands include Talbots, Ann Taylor, Lilly Pulitzer, Chico’s, Coldwater Creek and Coach.

Purses fall on the higher end of the price scale, Brill said, but also offer among the greatest values. A prominent corner of the store is reserved just for them.

“The best values are on designer purses,” he said. “Things that might sell for $500 brand-new at the mall can be $100 at Clothes Mentor, or less.”

The store’s interior is designed to offer a retail shopping experience at thrift store prices.

“We want to create a shopping mall-type experience,” Brill said. “The store looks great. It’s a friendly, family business. It’s warm and bright and clean.”

Aurora residents Todd and Marlene Thompson own the Lone Tree store. Their daughter Emily, from Centennial, manages it.

The resale concept has caught on, Emily Thompson believes, for a variety of reasons.

“I think everyone is just a little more savings-conscious with the economy the way it’s been,” she said. “They’re just spending money more wisely. This is a great way to get those high-end name brands at a lower cost.”

Clothes Mentor buys new items continuously, she said, “so our inventory changes every day.”

“We’ve already had a lot of good feedback about the quality of our inventory.”

Ohio residents Lynn and Dennis Blum founded Once Upon a Child, a children’s clothing resale chain, in 1991. They later moved up the generational scale to launch Plato’s Closet in 1998 and Clothes Mentor in 2001. About 80 Clothes Mentor stores are open nationwide with 40 more under development and a total of 500 planned, according to the company website.

The Lone Tree Plato’s Closet recently moved to a larger space on Park Meadows Drive east of Quebec Street.