December 30, 2016 06:47 PM
Shopping is something new for 18-year-old Molly Marshall.
"At first it was, I don't know. I'm not used to doing things like this," she said.
The college freshman has been on her own now for about three years. The money she has goes to furthering her education.
"Especially with being a college student, you can't afford anything,"Marshall said.
However, at the Threads for Teens pop-up boutique, it's not about making a profit.
It's about helping teens like Molly find a sense of pride.
"They come in really shy and maybe not standing up straight and not feeling confident," Grace Myler said.
At only 15-years old, Myler and her mother, Katie, are launching Minnesota's first-ever Threads for Teens store.
It gives girls in foster care and from low-income homes something they can't get from hand-me-downs or donation boxes.
"I think the biggest thing is keeping their dignity intact," Grace said. "The confidence that comes with picking out clothing that you know is going to be yours and this is brand new and I'm getting to pick this out for myself. I think that's really important for the girls."
Shoppers are nominated by their foster parents or a social worker. They pick about five new items from the racks with help from stylist Grace and her sister, Ella.
"They start styling them and adding scarves and necklaces," said the girls' mother, Katie Myler. "The girls feel amazing and they leave here feeling amazing. It makes a big difference."
You may not easily see it when they walk in, but the girls who come to shop at Threads for Teens are some of the strongest and most inspirational young women you'll ever have the privilege of meeting.
Through this boutique, many of them also find the dignity they've deserved to feel all along. It just took a new outfit for them to know it.
"Just get out there because you're never going to know when you'll get another chance," Marshall said while wearing her new clothes. "Live for today."
The pop-up shop served 25 girls in Prior Lake over the holiday week. Seven more girls have been selected for the next event but the Mylers still need a space to put up shop.
They're also searching for a permanent location so they can take calls from social workers and bring teens in to shop right away rather than having to schedule appointments and find a space.
If you want to donate or nominate someone you know for this one-of-a-kind shopping experience, you can e-mail Grace or her mother, Katie at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Updated: December 30, 2016 06:47 PM
Created: December 30, 2016 04:15 PM
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