Have you ever thought to yourself, ‘How could I spend less money on clothes and still be able to be fashionable?’ or ‘Is there a way for me to help save the planet by buying clothes?’ I know I have asked both of these questions and am happy to tell you that YES you can!
I have always loved thrift shopping with my mom since I was little and as I got older, my friends and I enjoy spending time together and getting GREAT DEALS… all that to say I would like to share a few ways with you of why and how to thrift shop and hopefully you will be able to find some of the great deals and good times that I have in my hometown thrift stores.
Rules to follow and be mindful of when thrift shopping:
- Have in mind what you are looking for… & not looking for. It can be incredibly overwhelming to walk into a store with thousands of items of clothing just to look at one rack and not find anything you like. Or you could make your game plan to spend 30 minutes there and if you find something, great. If not, better luck next time.
- Be cognizant of things you should not look at or probably buy from a thrift store. Underwear, bras, shoes, hats, and stuffed animals are things that are potentially very dirty and germy; therefore, I would suggest not even touching things like this in a second hand store.
- Make sure to carefully examine all clothes and other items that you choose to try on and/or purchase. Look at the arms, hems, and all seams to make sure there are no holes, tears, or rips that would prevent you from being able to wear it once you get home. Also check all over the clothing items for possible stains such as grease, oil, or food. (While food is fairly easy to get out of clothes, grease and oil stains are nearly impossible to get out).
- Have fun! Putting together the tackiest outfits in the store is so much fun when you are with friends… of course be aware that some people in the store may find those items attractive, however in the privacy of the dressing room you are your friends are welcome to get a good laugh out of them.
My suggestions for being a successful ‘thrifty’ shopper:
- Be open to using different pieces to create your own style! Don’t be afraid to go for large patterns, bright colors, or anything else that say YOU!
- Don’t get discouraged if you don’t find anything on your first trip to the store. I don’t always find what I’m looking for when I go shopping, and sometimes I don’t find anything.
- Learning your friends’ styles makes shopping more fun as well. When you’re shopping for someone other than yourself, it is easier to find something that at least one of you will like!
- Finally, make sure anything you buy is something you will truly wear, not just something that looks cute on the hanger! Sometimes I fall in love with a top or dress in the store and then don’t have a practical time to wear it.
These tips are some fun things to try as you start your thrift-shopping journey. Feel free to add on and expand them to your own preferences! I think one of the greatest lessons we can learn from reusing anything, especially something like clothes is that the earth we have been given is a gift and anything we can do to preserve it is worth trying, doing, and sharing with other people!
By: Sarah Jeanne