“Ima take your grandpa’s style, no for real-ask your grandpa-can I have his hand me downs?”….
Ah Macklemore thank you for bringing light thrift shopping. Thrift shopping is great you NEVER know what you are going to find. Yes, I know the stigma, thrift stores are dirty etc etc, however, those are actually the better places to find something of value. I found an Oscar De La Renta dress for $3 in such a place.
If you can suck it up and deal with dirt for a little while, you can find some great pieces. I have gone around to every thrift store in my city(and neighboring cities), and have found some amazing pieces. Yes I will admit some of the things I find take a little imagination, but isn’t that what makes fashion fun? Isn’t the point of fashion to push boundaries and turn heads?
However, if you are going to embark on making thrift shopping a part of your staple wardrobe, there are some things you will have to understand and do. First off, look for quality, not name brands. If there is a slight tear in the garment you will have to understand how to use a needle(what thread to use, what needle to use, etc). It sounds more ominous than it is. The internet it a great tool to figure out what you should be using.
Get familiar with your local fabric stores dyes. Just because a garment is faded does not mean you should just pass over it…you can re dye it. However, the exception there is basically anything that is threadbare. Unless you are going to patch it all up for a costume party, leave it be.
And then if the garment is too big but you just adore it, take it to a local tailor. You may find a one of a kind dig, but it’s too big, what’s $15 spent for alterations when in the department store it could retail for $300+?
The trick to finding the best pieces is go first thing in the morning. If you can beat the collectors and people looking to resell items, then you are doing great because there is ALWAYS something new going into these thrift stores.
Designate some time to spend in the store because honestly, you are going to have to dig to find a treasure.
Yes, some thrift stores are over priced so make sure you know the quality of the garment(not the label on the inside). This one time I went shopping and this store wanted to charge $20 for this fake pleather express dress with a stain on it and a ripped zipper…..yet they charged $5 for this beautiful silk dress that was exceptionally lovely. That’s an example of NOT knowing your product. They just looked at the tag on the inside of the dress and not the quality of the garment. Another place was charging $16 for an Abercrombie & Fitch shirt. First off, I used to work there and you could not GIVE me their clothing. There is absolutely no quality or design that goes into their garments. Any place the security tag was, there will be a huge gaping hole the 2nd or 3rd time you wash it. So the moral of the story is know your quality. Some people are label hounds, but really, how you look in a piece speaks volume about you as a fashionista.
Thrift shopping is not for some people. That’s totally fine, but for some people working off a budget is how we live. When thrift shopping always remember mornings are the best(if you can do a Tuesday or Wednesday morning, that’s better), quality first, and don’t discount the fixer-ups. Happy Hunting!


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