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Best Secondhand Clothes 

Clothes Contact

473 Valencia (at 16th Street), 621-3212

Clothes Contact is one of the few places in town where you can still purchase your couture not by label or fabric but by gross tonnage, a popular concept back in the pre-dot-com '90s. Used clothing, fabrics, buttons, and patches are carefully weeded of overt dreck and displayed throughout the store's cavernous interior in well-organized fashion. The quality is a step above your standard rummage store selection, with cool leather jackets, trench coats, vintage hats, pin-stripe trousers, and politically savvy T-shirts among the recently unearthed treasures. (There are also a number of pleasantly hideous '60s, '70s, and '80s fashion statements ideal for your next costume party.) Payment's easy: Just schlep your choices to the big scale up front and shell out $8 for every pound of garments. The Mission-hipster vibe can get pretty thick, but the Bombay Ice Ice Cream and Chaat is just up the block if you need some post-buy palate cleansing.


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