I have been a thrifter for quite some time and I have my mother to thank for that. We have always shopped at Goodwill, Salvation Army, local vintage stores and second hand item stores. As a teenager I thought it sucked… I wanted everything new and my own (and everything had to come from Abercrombie & Fitch). Now I can appreciate the story behind vintage clothing or take someone else’s throw aways and re-purpose them in my closet. Sorry for my bratty teenage years mom, at least I can enjoy the thrill of thrifting with you now!
Lately, as I have almost completely halted my monthly shopping budget, I have been thrifiting more than ever (and justifying it as “okay” and separate from my typical shopping budget). I wanted to share my finds in a video and share my tips with you! If you aren’t a video person… here are my tips in writing:
- Shop at a variety of stores including Goodwill, Plato’s Closet, Salvation Army, Closet Mentor and other local vintage boutiques as well as online at Etsy and Ebay. You never know what you’ll find or where you’ll find it! Be open to all of these places… I have found plenty of work appropriate things at Plato’s Closet even though it is more focused on teenagers and I have found less expensive items at local vintage stores even though some of the items in the store were very high in price.
- Go thrifting with something specific in mind. This isn’t always necessary, but having something in mind gives you a place to start looking and going through hanger by hanger. Unlike shopping at your favorite store where everything screams buy me, you have to find the treasure at these types of stores. For example, I usually start in the blazers at Goodwill by a specific color because I wear blazers all the time and even if I don’t find one in the color I’m looking for I may find another one I’ll wear a lot.
- Take a friend or family member! Two sets of eyes are better than one! My newest vintage addition (the polka dot skirt) is something I originally saw and thought that my mom would like. She tried it on and didn’t like it on her so suggested I tried it on, which I did, and fell in love immediately. It helps you narrow in on things you would like and your shopping buddy may see something for you that you would never find on your own.
- The official shopping rule in general: TRY THINGS ON! Of course, you can’t do this through Ebay or Esty, but in the store make sure things are worth the purchase. I know it is a lot easier to say “screw it” when the price is so low to begin with, but the last thing you want to do is be taking something back to Goodwill to donate after you just bought it for yourself the day before because it didn’t fit or you didn’t like it on. This is especially true for vintage items. Sizing was much, MUCH different back then, so if you like something it is worth trying it on to make sure it fits.
- Finally… get creative! When some of these pieces are buried in with other pieces you would never wear or use, it can be hard to picture just what you would wear something with. Don’t let this distract you. Try to picture the piece hanging next to items in your wardrobe and how it would be worn with those pieces! Also, there are plenty DIYs out there, so remember that if you are crafty and want to spend the time transforming something it could be fun and totally worth it!