Tucked into trendy, walkable midtown Atlanta, Free Fab’rik is a non-profit thrift store offering free shopping sprees to women and girls in need.
“Obviously we love fashion and clothing and style and just looking great on the outside but its really about just helping girls know that they are valued and they matter and they’re loved and God has a plan for their future,” manager Rachel Large said in the video above.
Free Fab’rik started in 2009 as a pop up thrift shop set up for special shopping sprees for underprivileged women in Atlanta. It’s the non-profit branch of Atlanta-based boutique Fab’rik and was born out of a desire founder Dana Spinola to make the experience of shopping in a beautiful boutique available to every woman in Atlanta. Free Fab’rik partners with local non-profits, shelters and schools to find women and girls in need and then bring them to the store for a special, price-tag free event. Shoppers are taken around by volunteer stylists and are given hair and makeup styling as well. After shopping, all of the ladies put on a fashion show.
In November 2013, the thrift shop became a permanent fixture and opened to the public. All proceeds go back to Free Fab’rik, providing shopping sprees as well as mentorship and job training opportunities which are awarded to five women at a time in partnership with a local shelter, City of Refuge. These women work in the store where they gain work experience and skills and are also offered spiritual and personal development through the mentorship program.
“Free shopping sprees are a chance for girls in need to get that boutique shopping experience without the pressure of price tags,” Large said. “The whole point is just let them know that they matter and are valued and that they’re beautiful inside and out.”
Free Fab’rik has helped more than 1,000 women and girls since 2009 and they’re just getting started.
“I just want them to know that God loves them just the way they are and he has a plan for their future,” she said. “We just want to be the vessel to help them discover what that plan is.”