As a designer, nothing is more challenging and gratifying than creating a silk purse out of a sow's ear. And what could be more“unsexy” than a thrift store? Photographer Ed Freeman and I came up with the concept of people donating items they
didn’t need to AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s
Out of the Closet Thrift Stores.
With the headline “Give it up! If you can’t use it, we can.” and my newly-designed logo, we created a dozen ads using a variety of models, costumes
and props that were humorous as well as
The full-page ads ran in alternative newspapers
and magazines for a number of years. The yearly revenues for the 20 Out of the Closet Thrift Stores increased from from 1.5 million dollars in 1996 to 9 million by the end of 2003.