The Retro Store, an exclusive shoe store where customers can buy, sell and trade shoes, had its soft opening in North Augusta Saturday afternoon.
The owner, Maurice Tolliver, said his goal is to bring more of a sneaker culture to the area.
“We don't have anything like this in the area, you got to travel to Atlanta or Charlotte, you know, maybe Columbia to get something like what we offer,” Tolliver said.
There was a line of customers outside, waiting for the store to open.
“There’s not a lot of Black-owned stores that I would say in the South Carolina area, so I mean I think this would be good to bring out more of the community to him to support, especially to expand him a little bit further as well, so it’s good on both sides,” Raven Johnson, a customer, said.
Johnson said the store “most definitely has exclusive everything” when it comes to the shoes sold in the store.
Now that the store is open, people are welcome to bring in their shoes to trade and sell. There is no limit of how many shoes you can bring in, and the customer will be told an estimate of how much they can receive for their shoes.
“You can buy a shoe, or if you got some old stuff in the closet, you can bring that in and you can trade it towards another pair or you can sell it to me so you know, you just don't get that on the big chain stores,” Tolliver said.
Tolliver said most of the shoes sold in his store are not sold at the major chain stores in their area, and if it was sold there it is a shoe that sold out quickly.
“We pretty much take retro Jordan’s, and some of the more exclusive and hard to find shoes, because it's hard for us to compete with somebody like a Foot Locker so you know we just kind of get the stuff that's exclusive that they don't have,” Tolliver said.
Tolliver has been in the shoe business for 10 years now, selling shoes at conventions and on eBay. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, the conventions were no longer an option, but he continues to sell online.
The pandemic has also had an effect on the store’s opening date.
“I was originally supposed to open on Black Friday, if that tells you anything, so it's just been one obstacle after another,” Tolliver said.
Although Tolliver faced a couple of challenges opening his new store, he is excited for what is to come.
“I'm definitely looking to expand, I would like to have another store by the end of the year, kind of close in the area, and then from there, I'm looking to branch out and the sky is the limit,” Tolliver said.
The Retro Store is located at 141 Edgewood Drive, North Augusta, SC 29841 and is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.