Editor's note: Muncie Origins is a Ball State Daily News series profiling various businesses that originated in Muncie.
Walking into the Vintage Shoppe Thrift and Gift will give anyone an immediate positivity boost. Inspiring artwork covers the walls and vintage clothing and shoes fill all corners of the cozy space.
What makes the place, however, is not the unique clothing and artwork — it is the warm owner herself, Jasmin Shopp.
Shopp opened the store almost two years ago after she and her husband moved back to Indiana from Austin, Texas. She wanted a job that allowed her to pursue her passions, art and fashion, while also allowing a flexible schedule for her growing family.
She turned to her lifelong love of thrift stores, and the Vintage Shoppe was born.
“I came from a large family, so we would always go to thrift stores,” Shopp said. “We decided to start a family, and once I had my first child, I knew I had to stay home, so I had to have my own business where I knew they could be with me at all times.”
Shopp can keep her own hours, which are currently noon to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, and this allows her to raise her children and provide a source of affordable fashion in the Muncie community. Her daughters, ages 3 years and 6 months, even have their own toy room in the back of the store.
While she does some bartering with customers to stock her shelves, most of her inventory comes from estate sales.
“Most estate sales, people go for furniture and antiques, but I’ll go in and just buy all the clothes. I have about two years of inventory right now — it’s crazy. It’s all awesome stuff because I’ve already gone through it and donated what I don’t want,” she said.
Shopp curates the clothing herself and chooses the pieces based on current trends and her own eye for fashion. The estate sales also allow her to keep her prices really low, an important part of her mission.
“Most vintage stores are very, very pricey, especially near any college town. In Bloomington they’re all over, but you can’t walk out without paying at least $30,” she said.
Her prices are generally around $10 to $15, but she also does bag sales on the third Thursday of every month (with the exception of November because of Thanksgiving) and has a free bin that shoppers can take from after they’ve purchased an item.
While she would love for more locals to shop at her store, most of her customers are pulled from Ball State and Ivy Tech, Shopp said. She has several regulars who buy a majority of their clothing from the shop, and she loves the energy they bring.
Many of her regulars have also started modeling for the shop’s Instagram account.
“I give them a $10 store credit per hour, and they love it — it really helps to see the outfits on,” she said.
However, Shopp doesn’t see Muncie as just a college town. After high school, she moved all over the United States, including stays in Florida, Georgia and California. She and her husband, Josh, whom she met in New Castle during a brief return, ended up back in Indiana because of family, friends and expenses.
Shopp couldn’t be prouder of their home.
“Muncie has really transformed in the last 10 or 15 years, especially the downtown,” she said. “We’re really glad to be a part of it.”
Shoppe is most proud of her ability to get affordable, fashionable clothes into the hands of girls who will love them. She enjoys building outfits for customers and helping them sort through the store’s wide selection.
“A good outfit can really change your whole day. Especially if you didn’t have to pay a lot for it,” she said.
As Shopp looks to the future, she hopes to someday expand into having private events or craft nights at the store. However, one thing is certain: the Vintage Shoppe is here to stay.
“We plan on being here forever," Shopp said. "Hopefully my kids will have the store someday.”