Clothing is an undeniably intimate extension of the self. Not only does it spawn from the artistic vision of its designer, but it has the ability to transform the mind and body of the wearer, granting a look and demeanor that may not be felt otherwise. Many use clothing as a portrayal of the self—to manifest a mood or even convey specific interests that reach beyond fashion—while others use it as a projection of someone they hope to be, channeling personal goals and ideals through a physical presentation. Regardless of what makes you wear what you wear, clothing is an element of our material lives that is deeply rooted in, and often parallel to, our personality, passions and aspirations.

On Grailed, we see the rarest, most coveted pieces around—unique items that undoubtedly carried significant meaning to their primary owners—being listed and sold everyday. Something drew in the original owner, leading them to invest, show off and care for whatever item this may be, perhaps for months, but often for years. But at what point does an article of clothing lose its emotional value and become something worth selling?

Asking this question assumes a few things, most importantly, that the initial purchase was emotionally driven and not simply seen as an item to resell. Often, this is not the case—a perfect example being the abundance of individuals that post up for Supreme drops, intermittently checking what items have sold out online to make the most of their time in line. There’s no doubt a community who buys for the hype and simply to sell, in which case all emotional connection is completely irrelevant. Well aware of this distinction, I spoke with a few power sellers on Grailed to better understand what drives their purchase-making decisions and, ultimately, what leads them to sell.

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