Guest Post by: Sandra K
Thrift stores might be considered by many to be messy, musty places where outdated clothing is left to languish in heaps and piles, but no vision could be further from the truth. If you are a fashionista who would never consider the thrift store as a treasure box to be discovered, it’s time to shatter that myth.
Thrift stores today are generally clean and neat and feature dressing rooms and full-length mirrors. Their racks are organized and bursting with name brand clothing listed at a fraction of the retail price. If you are still hesitant about exploring the wonders of thrift stores, here are some guidelines that will help you get the most bang for your stylish buck.
Tips for Shopping Secondhand
- Open your mind. While you may be on the hunt for skinny jeans or a trench coat, allow your eye to wander and simply observe what is available. You never know when a sequin party dress or a vintage cashmere sweater might present itself to you. These are treasures that you won’t find at the mall.
- Ignore the size on the label. The number on that vintage sailor skirt probably won’t resemble any size in your closet, or someone might have shrunk the cotton tunic you just discovered in your usual size. Finger through each rack for hidden gems. Pick up what you like, and try on everything.
- Scope out each section in the thrift store. The junior’s section is often a goldmine for name brand clothing like J.Crew, BCBG, and American Eagle. If you are looking for current, contemporary pieces, this section will often be your jackpot. Also comb through the little boys’ section for shrunken blazers to pair with your skinny cargo pants and A-line skirts.
- Look for natural fabrics. While thrift stores are laden with 70′s polyester shirts, they are also treasure troves for over-sized silk blouses and crinkled linen pants. The thrift store is where you can afford to buy the highest quality and still walk out with change for lunch.
- Experiment! Thrift stores are the ideal places to play with trends and personal style. Not only is the merchandise incredibly varied, the low prices mean you can stretch your comfort zone without stretching your wallet. If trends like oxford flats or harem pants leave you curious but unwilling to part with the cash your local retail stores require, simply head to the thrift store. You’ll be able to move beyond your usual repertoire without enduring a shopping spree hangover.
Pulling It All Together
Stylish clothes aren’t the only goodies you’ll find at thrift stores; these shops are laden with unique, quality accessories. Simply stroll through a thrift store and you’ll quickly notice the plethora of vintage clutches, snappy fedoras, and beautiful costume jewelry available. Grab a wide leather belt to throw over a floral cardigan or cluster a few vintage brooches on your jacket’s lapel. Great accessories can change the entire mood of an outfit, and they can elevate a humdrum ensemble to something one-of-a-kind. A thrift store is a one-stop shop when it comes to the finishing touches.
Go Forth and Thrift
Buying at thrift stores is not only good for your wallet, it’s also a greener way to shop. Purchasing secondhand clothing means that you aren’t using any new resources to build a chic wardrobe, and there’s nothing more stylish than being eco-conscious. Saving money, saving the earth and looking uniquely fashionable? The benefits are endless when the thrift store is your shopping playground.
Guest Author Byline
Sandra K. is a freelance writer and fashion enthusiast. Far from the runways, she enjoys simple and cheap fashion ideas and helping people feel great in what they wear. She also gives advice online about getting great health insurance online and the best home insurance rates.