Located at 40 N Salado Ave next to the Post Office and Patterson Library, Thrifts & Gifts has not only evolved since its last feature in 2017, but the business has persevered. Owner Tracy Webster has managed to keep her dream and business alive by continuing to stock new and gently used items through the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Nobody could have predicted how things would turn out,” said Webster. “But I like to think that my life is such a dream. Even in the middle of this storm that we are going through.”
Webster has always been a business and social entrepreneur. She started out as an Interior Designer working independently to stage model homes and consult privately with clients. In the midst of her career she accumulated her own staging materials and started out doing high-end yard sales with her neighbors that featured music and dressing rooms. After receiving multiple comments through her regular customers, Webster’s close friends and family encouraged her to open up her own brick and mortar. Hence Thrifts & Gifts was opened independently by Webster in 2017. Since then, Webster has actually gone on to grow her business, clientele, increase her community relations and even fulfill a dream of hers by purchasing the building in 2019.
“As [my business] grew, I was able to purchase the building which was always a dream to not only have a business in that building, but from the start it’s been a dream for me to own that property. That in itself has been such a dream and the community has been great…I owe so much to the community and my customers. They love me and I love them.”
Webster’s shop provides the community with the opportunity to purchase niche and fashionable products from respected brands shipped from across the globe that are usually only found in larger cities. For example, when first entering the shop one only needs to turn to the right to find a glass display case of designer purses. Gifts ranging from jewelry and houseware items to paintings, rugs, clocks and even shoes can be found in Thrifts & Gifts colorful, eclectic rooms in which members of the community can get lost exploring its countless and endless treasures that await to be discovered.
“You’ll always find beautiful gifts. It’s a really fun place to come, shop and find something for just about anybody.”
Free gift wrapping is also available for items purchased at Thrifts & Gifts, who’s summer hours have shifted to 12pm to 4pm Monday through Friday. Webster has also unveiled her Summer Monday Sales. Every Monday until September 1, every item with the exception of jewelry is 50% off.
“We’ve had almost a year with not being able to sell so I accumulated quite a bit of product,” said Webster. “[So with Summer Mondays] customers have the opportunity to get some things they may have been seeing that they didn’t want to pay full price for but also I get to clean out some of the inventory so that I can bring in the new fall inventory.”
As for the future, Webster remains hopeful that the town will get to rejoice in the Apricot Fiesta. She plans to continue pushing forward in growing her business and is grateful for her customers in the community that have continued to shop at Thrifts & Gifts.
“I plan to continue to survive,” said Webster. “I have hope for us to enjoy the Apricot Fiesta again, that’s such a big beautiful tradition in this town and I believe we will enjoy that again so I’m looking forward to us doing that and staying strong, sticking together, surviving this pandemic and getting our lives back...I want to thank [my customers] for their support through the pandemic...I want to thank a lot of them for just coming through for me.”