The first question you ask yourself when you come across Noihsaf Bazaar is probably how to pronounce it. Noise-hoff. Noose-haf. It doesn’t matter, according to resale site founder Kate Lindello. When creating the Instagram handle in 2013 to resell clothes she loved but never wore, she didn’t focus on an easily marketable name. “I think it’s so funny that my business has this crazy hard-to-spell and pronounce name,” she shares. What matters is the meaning of the name – the word fashion spelled backwards. “Fashion in general is intimidating and being from the Midwest is something I loved but never really felt part of. Noihsaf Bazaar is for people like me,” says Lindello.
Maybe you’ve never heard of Noihsaf Bazaar – the thrift site curated not by AI, but by Lindello and his team in the chill town of Duluth, MN – but your fashionable friend who managed to pull off prairie chic in New York City has likely found it through the Instagram years since. Southern California editor Noah Kim calls Noihsaf “the ideal middle ground between over-organized and under-organized.” He heard about it by word of mouth at a Twin Peaks concert. Another devotee, Valencia Shanelle, found Noihsaf after Lindello bought a personalized balaclava from Shanelle’s store. “I always crawl a bit on my clients and I found his site,” she says.
Lindello started Noihsaf nearly a decade ago as she battled postpartum depression during the coldest winter on record in Duluth. Reviewing the clothes she liked but never wore, she picked up her phone. “It was 2013 and Instagram was just a bunch of sepia latte squares. I thought it would be easy to create a handle to list some of my items for sale,” she says. Her own pieces started moving and almost immediately friends asked Lindello to list on their behalf.Soon a community of well-dressed, like-minded individuals flocked to the account, submitting clothes in the hopes that they pass the eye of the Lindello curator. Gretchen Jones, strategic business advisor and 2010 Project Runway winner, became an early adopter. “Finding an outlet to ‘mark up’ coveted items that were difficult to find even at full price via a tight-knit community of shoppers was refreshing.” To this day, Noihsaf’s commitment to the community, plus tight curation, remains his bread and butter.
Shopping on Poshmark is painful. RealReal may seem too organized. Ebay is a mess. But Noihsaf is the illusory, perfect fusion of Golidlocks, of selective and delicious. Without an app, which Lindello describes as “unnecessary and expensive to maintain”, or VC funding – “you don’t have as much creative freedom when only the outcome matters” – in the near future the site is free to run. grow at the pace of their community. Users upload their parts to the site, with detailed measurements and clear images, and wait for Noihsaf’s green light. Once listed, buyers can comment, make offers, and receive their purchases directly from sellers. With a team spread across Minnesota, Wisconsin, and New York, Lindello manages to maintain Noihsaf’s silver bullet — his coveted curation — through good old-fashioned instincts. Highlighting independent brands, as well as well-made basics from more recognizable labels, has always been the site’s goal. The descriptions under the listed items read like charming Instagram captions. Navigating feels like a tour through an independent label wonderland. Even the site’s blog features an array of sellers from all walks of life.