I was talking on the phone with my mom the other day and she was laughing about how popular thrift stores have become among young adults these days. She told me about overhearing a conversation between two girls about how they wanted to make their own style and not look like everyone else. They weren’t like hipster teens that would have blended in. They were your top 40 hits kind of teens. They weren’t embarrassed. They got a thrill out of building a unique wardrobe on a few bucks. To be honest…I do too.
I love shopping at thrift stores for my wardrobe. It’s a beautiful thing. I find gently used merchandise, gently use it myself and when I’m done with it, I get my money back by consigning it. If you are skeptical or are just looking at this post for some realistic thrift store fashion inspiration you’ve come to the right place. I’m not a super fashionista, I just like to look and feel good in what I wear. Let’s begin!
1. My Winter Looks For Less (I live in the South, so these combo’s suit our weather just fine!)
2. Picking Great Thrift Store Items Starts with the Details…
- Thrift stores are wonderful places to shop but you must be diligent about checking what you are buying.
- Shirts: Get into some good light and look for the following: stains, tears, snags, missing buttons, missing zippers and check all seams. Check the armpits for stains and friction balls.
- Pants: Check for friction fabric balls between the thighs, check the seams, check the buttons, check the zippers, check the fronts, backs and bottom of legs for wear or stains.
- Shoes & Leather Boots: Check the seams for any cracking on leather items, check the soles for loose spots, wiggle the heals to be sure they don’t move and check the bottom of the soles for any holes or breaks.
- Handbags: Check for stains, check that all the zippers and snaps work, check the handles for wear or tear, check the inside for gunk, wear or stains.
- Belts- These are usually in great condition at thrift stores, just check to make sure all the attachment devices are working.
3. Actually Being Fashionable
- Thrift stores contain three types of styles: recent, coming back, let it die.
- You can shop at thrift stores and be current. Fashion itself regularly cycles through new and old looks.
- How I shop: I usually take my smart phone along with me to the thrift store and use my Pinterest Fashion boards to help guide me to items that will look great. I’m simply looking for copy cats. It’s not hard to do when you take examples with you. It keeps me from getting lost in the Aeropostale sweat shirt isle being sucked back into my college days.
- A Note About Jeans: I love skinny jeans now even though I’ve been skeptical of them in the past. That is because I bought a pair from the regular women’s section at Target on clearance for $6.98. I didn’t try to squeeze into a low riding “juniors” department pair that would literally make me look like an ice cream cone. If you can still wear juniors after having a kid, more power to you. For the rest of you ladies out there, accept that the regular women’s department has designed jeans to make you look fantastic. When you are in a thrift store, avoid jeans with odd numbers and you will probably find jeans that fit you well. Look for 2-4-6-8-10-12-14-16-18-20. Skip the junior numbers: 1-3-5-7-9-11-13-15-17-19.
4. Winter Fashion Ideas:
- Layering is great in the winter.
- Long sleeve cotton shirts in your basic colors can go a long way.
- Denim jackets make layering easy.
- Look for skinny jeans and boot cut jeans to wear with your winter boots.
- If you wear skinny jeans, look for longer shirts, sweaters or long open front sweater vests.
- If you want to wear a shorter skirt, pick one in darker colors and be sure you have a coordinating pair of leggings to wear underneath.
- It’s hard to go wrong with any boots in the winter. They don’t really ever go out of style unless they look like slippers or have some kind of super pointy heel.
- Don’t forget those nice long scarfs to wrap around the neck in various ways. Check out these 15 Chic and Creative Ways to Tie a Scarf by Stacie Grissom on The Fashion Spot.com.
Kim’s is the party planning, cupcake loving, celebration catalyst behind the Thrifty Little Mom Blog. Kim was a pro event planner for over 7 years before she became a full-time blogger. Kim is the author of: Live, Save, Spend, Repeat: The Life You Want with the Money You Have. She’s been featured on Time.com, Money.com, Good Housekeeping, Women’s Day and more! Kim aims to inspire you to create parties, celebrations and gatherings that everyone loves!