Why do people who do it at thrift shops have more style than those who do it at malls?
I would say, because if you find an item that works for you at a thrift store, you're likely never going to see it on another person in your life. A a mall may have, say, 1500 mens items in a store. Of those 1500 mens items, 300 are actually different items, the other 1200 are different sizes or variations of those 300 items. In a thrift store, all 1500 items would be different except in the most basic category (t-shirts, jeans, trousers, etc) I would not say that I think the people in the 70s were cooler than people are now. It's pieces of 70s clothing that made it through to '05 and are now endearing bits of the past instead of something in every man's wardrobe.