I hope you read my last article “Feeling Mint: Hot Color for the Summer.” Let’s just say that I’m a blog stalker so I read dozens of blogs and there seems to be a trend in where people are getting their dopest pieces: thrift stores. I remember back in the day when I would turn up my nose and roll my eyes at the thought of wearing used clothes. In my mind, it was dirty, unsanitary, and straight up demeaning. However, you live and you learn right? In Spring 2010, I embarked on my first thrifting adventure and I’ve never turned back. With that being said, it seems like thrifting is the “in” thing. Of course people have been shopping at thrift stores for years, decades, and even centuries, but now it is definitely regarded as the “cool” thing. All the “cool” kids thrift! Let me share some of the benefits of thrift shopping.
Top 5 Benefits of Thrifting:
1. You are playing your part to preserve the environment and humanity. By wearing used clothes, you are not contributing to the energy burned that goes into making clothes. Also, you are not supporting business and factories with deplorable employment practices (i.e. sweat shops and child labor)
2. You are helping someone out. Most if not all thrift stores are linked to charities. By donating your clothes or buying clothes from places such as Goodwill and Salvation Army, you are helping to employ, feed, and shelter another person.
3. You save OD (ALOT of) money. Prices can range from $.01 and up! Rather than pay $20 for one item at department stores, I can get four- five items (tops and bottoms at my Goodwill in Winston-Salem, NC are $3.75 and dresses are $5!!)
4. It makes you creative. You have to learn to think outside the box. There are no mannequins to spoon feed you. You have to be able to add blazers, mix patterns, color block, and really have any eye for how garments look together. Don’t be afraid to throw things together that you wouldn’t ordinarily wear either. Remember, you can also combine vintage gems with modern pieces. Lastly, as much as trends are fun to follow, you must establish your OWN style. Don’t go into thrift stores thinking about trends, start thinking about who you are and what you want to tell the world through your fashion.
5. You’ll own unique pieces because you never know what you can find. You can find vintage Chanel, Coach, or Dooney & Bourke. The possibilities are endless! The best part is that you won’t be a “twin” when you hit the streets.
As you read, there are many benefits to thrifting. I must say that thrift shopping isn’t always easy. It surely takes patience and know-how. Watch my video where I reveal my top tips for thrifting!’
You can also check out my blog My Thrifted Closet for more on thrifting and to see more of my thrifted looks!
Believe it or not, most of these looks are fully thrifted! I am so proud of myself that I’m able to save money, while staying true to my style. Here is the break down of two looks to further give you ideas when you embark on your own thrifting journey.
Black Blouse-$6 @ Etc. Consignment Shoppe
Patterned Skirt-$3.75 @ Goodwill
Vintage Belt Turned Necklace-$1 @ Goodwill
Earrings-$1 @ Goodwill
Sandals-$20 @ Payless
Weaved Belt-$1 @ Goodwill
As you can see, this entire look was thrifted, except for the shoes! When I saw this skirt, I knew I had to have it. It definitely wasn’t trendy and to some it’s granny-ish, but it’s so me. I love funky patterns and vibrant colors! I wanted to put all the emphasis on the skirt, so I opted for a plain shirt. However, I still wanted to give my shirt life so I turned this vintage belt into a necklace by clasping it around my neck. I mean, come on, the belt couldn’t fit me, not even on a good day lol. Turning the belt into a necklace is the kind of thing you have to do while thrifting. You have to have a vision. I turn skirts into dresses all the time. Don’t be afraid to change the function of garments to fit your needs.
Rea the Riveter
Gifted Lace Top (from friend grandmother’s closet)
Pleated Skirt-$3.75 @ Goodwill
Belt-$1 @ Goodwill
Earrings-$5 @ Primark
Assorted Bracelets-Icing and Walmart
Scarf-$2 @ Mega Thrift
You never know where you can find your gems. My most favorite lace top was actually given to me after clearing out one of my friend grandmother’s closet. I also get garments from my mother’s closet, which is always fun! This photo was taken in London, England back in April when I wore head scarves all the time. This day in particular, my photographer friend agreed to take photos of me so I wanted to wear something that was uniquely me. I think my hair was not looking too cute that day so I went for a retro pin-up look. As we say on the island, “every spoil is a style.” Add hair accessories, throw on your favorite pieces, and see what you come up with!
Thanks for reading!
Do you thrift?
What are your favorite thrifted pieces?
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SheRea is the blogger behind My Thrifted Closet (http://mythriftedcloset.blogspot.com/), a blog dedicated to thrifted fashion. She attends Wake Forest University, majoring in Communication with a concentration in Media Studies and double minoring in Theatre and Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprise. She is originally from St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands.View all SheRea posts.