Posts Categorized: thrifting

Reader Request: Budget Shopping. No, Really

How to shop on a very small budgetThe Raisin Girl asked this question ages ago:

I’d love to see more on budget style. I see a lot about budget style all over the internet, but the women writing these articles seem to have much larger budgets than me. I was raised to shop clearance, to buy cheaply even if you didn’t like what you bought as much. I’ve been talked out of many items of clothing that I LOVED and would have worn endlessly, simply because they were pricier. And the weird thing is, we weren’t badly off. I could have afforded those items, but I didn’t. Now that I’m working part-time and going to school, I don’t have much extra income, so it sucks that NOW is when I learn it’s not a crime to pay more than $20 for a good pair of jeans. So basically, how do gals budget-shop, when they’re REALLY on a tight budget? read more

Originally posted 2010-08-23 05:36:00.

How to Make Thrifted Clothes Look Spendy

How to make thrifted and secondhand clothes look expensive

I’ve been thrifting since I was in middle school. I remember rifling through the racks of moth-eaten sweatshirts and paint-stained jeans as a girl, hoping to unearth something marvelous. And I nabbed my Pentagon Officers Athletic Club running shorts and hilarious red twill mechanic’s jumpsuit back then, so treasures did come to hand. But the shops were disorganized, the merchandise was a bit shabby, and it took loads of patience to find anything worthwhile. I think that many thrift shops have improved conditions and become more discerning about what they’ll sell, but some are still messy and packed with damaged garments. read more

Originally posted 2010-07-15 05:41:00.

Thrifting Lessons from a Pro

Thrift shopping tips from a pro

You’ve probably noticed that nearly all of my outfits include at least one thrifted item. I’ve written a whole bunch of posts about various aspects of thrifting, but thought it might be helpful to cull some highlights. Especially since spring and autumn are high shopping times for most of us, and present fabulous opportunities to hit the charity shops and score some fabulous, affordable, environmentally-friendly new duds!

  • Make time to thrift: Very few people can duck in and out of a thrift store in 15 minutes. Since you’ll be sifting through rack upon rack of poorly organized goods, allot yourself a chunk of time so that you can truly explore the bounty.
  • Try stuff on: Eyeballing it can be incredibly risky at a thrift store, so try everything on. My method is to wear leggings and a tunic or dress whenever I thrift. That way, even if the store doesn’t offer fitting rooms, I can throw things on in the aisles and make sure they aren’t horrifying on me. Try it all on, friends, including belts and scarves.
  • Keep an open mind: Take a wish list of items to keep yourself on track, but always allow the Thrift Muses to throw a surprise your way.
  • Experiment: Does something grab your eye because of color or texture, but scare you off because of how it’s cut? Try it on anyway. Are you drawn to that zebra print skirt, but have no idea if it’ll work in your wardrobe? Try it on anyway. Don’t buy stuff that makes you feel uncomfortable or is wildly impractical, of course, but thrifting is the best possible place to encourage your style to expand. Clothing is affordable, relatively sustainable, and the variety of offerings is VAST. Branch out a little. I mean, why not?
  • Don’t buy it just because it’s designer and a bargain: Oh man, have I ever been tempted to snap up undervalued duds simply because I knew their true worth. But here’s the thing: Unless you’re going to resell on eBay, you should only thrift items that you love and that work for your figure. A $5 Max Mara dress is a waste of $5 if it makes you feel like 15 hot dogs shoved into a tube sock. Use your common sense, and don’t be tempted by something just because it’s designer.
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    Originally posted 2010-05-21 05:56:00.