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Disco Balls, Sustainability and Beyond: A Conversation with Sidney Hui

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at American chapter.

Between vintage markets and social media sales, Washington, D.C. local Sidney Hui is shaping the city’s vintage fashion scene through The Disco Loft. Hui’s vintage store has achieved social media fame and significant influence within the District’s worlds of fashion and sustainability.

Initially launched as a vintage resale shop, The Disco Loft has evolved into a diverse and dynamic venture. In addition to secondhand vintage resales via Instagram, Hui now organizes vintage markets, clothing swaps and book swaps in the Washington area. 

The Disco Loft’s most recent Happy Daze Vintage Market, sponsored by the All Things Go Music Festival, featured nearly 20 vintage vendors.

According to Hui, a lifelong interest in secondhand fashion fostered her present passion for vintage clothing and decor. 

“[The Disco Loft] has grown into an extension of myself and a way for me to express my passion when it comes to home decor and fashion styles,” Hui said. “But it’s also just helped me meet people in the community and get involved in various events, whether it’s markets or the clothing swaps.”

Fittingly named after Hui’s apartment decorated with countless shining disco balls, The Disco Loft blossomed from Hui’s hobby of collecting vintage household items. Encouragement from a former roommate inspired Hui to begin selling home decor on Instagram, eventually expanding into the world of vintage clothing.

Hui places a strong emphasis on sustainability in her work, a value stemming from thrifting as a child. When discussing past clothing swaps, Hui noted the “jarring” reality of witnessing and cleaning up the vast amount of poor-quality clothing items destined for the landfill.

“I think something that’s exciting but also special about secondhand clothing is that when you’re saving these clothes—like this clothing from the landfill—everything has its own story…especially things that are decades old. I find a lot of joy in that,” Hui said.

Hui’s Happy Daze Vintage Market results from inspiration and encouragement from other sellers in the vintage community. According to Hui, the welcoming nature of the District’s vintage community has made the laborious process of managing and selling at markets into an enjoyable experience. 

“I have made so many great friends from the vintage community,” Hui said. “Wanting to gather all of my favorite people—the actual sellers—all under one roof is what inspired me to put together some of my larger markets because it’s always a great time.”

In terms of encouraging others to dive into the world of vintage fashion, Hui suggests  prioritizing personal style over the rapid turnover of trends in modern fast fashion.

“I feel like trends are happening so fast. There’s new trends all the time. My main advice would just be to stick to what you actually like, what makes sense for you and what makes you feel good,” Hui said.

Hui is set to be a featured vendor at an upcoming vintage pop-up market hosted by Flowerz, a Washington cannabis dispensary, on Oct. 14. Hui continues to sell vintage items through her Instagram page and is an anticipated participant in other local vintage markets throughout the rest of 2023.

Shreya Jyotishi

American '26

Shreya is a freshman at American University majoring in CLEG (Communication, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government). She is originally from Westfield, New Jersey where she wrote and edited for her high school magazine and led a Girls Learn International chapter. She is passionate about feminism and LGBTQ+ rights and loves to expand her crystal collection, make Spotify playlists, and explore DC.