Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Thrifting fun!

I've been inspired by some of my favorite style bloggers to try thrifting.  I was resistant to thrifting; I had been in a few stores in the past and didn't really find anything that appealed to me.  I have to admit that I had a hard time getting over the 'ick' factor of taking home other people's clothes and (in my imagination), other people's dirt.
My husband has been a thrifter since I've known him and he has gotten some nice things.  Still, I just didn't think I could overcome my squeamishness.  I imagined wading through dirty, torn and stained clothing and closed my mind to the idea of thrifting.
My spending on clothing has spiraled out of control in the last few years.  I have gained and lost 10 pounds a few times and felt it was necessary to have a complete wardrobe for the three sizes that I span as my weight vacillates. I started shopping at off-price retailers two years ago and it has helped the budget a bit, but not quite enough.  I have felt guilty about this (and don't enjoy debt!) and so with some encouragement from my hubby and some encouragement in the form of beautifully 'thrift' dressed bloggers, I decided to dive in and give it a try.
I'm very happy to say that after three trips to a new Goodwill store in my community, I have had GREAT SUCCESS!  Instead of finding the ragged clothing I imagined I would find, I found several beautiful brand name pieces.  I'm so thrilled and excited to have this new avenue of clothes shopping to explore.  In addition to saving a ton of money, the other benefits of recycling and reusing are very appealing.  I also like the fact that if I end up not loving an item, I haven't spent a lot of money on it and will less guilty giving it up.
I have walked into thrift stores before and glanced at a few things and walked out.  I think the key to my success this time was taking time to really look.  I started by scanning the racks in my size for colors and textures that appealed to me.  If I saw something I liked, I would pick it up, look it over for obvious problems, discreetly take a 'sniff' test (clothing that is too perfume, musty or smells like cigarettes were immediately rejected) and then take a closer look...checking for fabric integrity, looking at the underarms, ect.  I am a pansy.  It was hard for me to touch things at first.  When I saw that 95% of the items were in very good condition, I gingerly continued looking until I became comfortable.  I'm so happy that I overcame my trepidation.
I still intend to visit my favorite off-price stores like T.J. Maxx and Marshall's and can't wait to visit the new Ross store that will be opening soon in my city.  There are still great bargains to be had there and it just feels good to have a brand new piece of clothing every now and then.  And I just can't buy used shoes and purses, bras or pajamas; that's just too intimate for me to feel comfortable.
Here is a list of my haul:

Gap jean jacket
Banana Republic khakis
J Crew striped long sleeve tee
Ralph Lauren sheath dress
Black cardigan
White cardigan
Several long and short sleeve tees in solids and stripes
Several sweaters, long and short sleeve
and much more.........

I hope to post some pictures of my goodies and eventually post outfit pictures.  It is taking me some time to get the blog ball rolling.

Most of the things I purchased were black, white, cream, gray or other neutrals.  I am bring to build a wardrobe of interchangeable 'capsule' pieces.  I've been reading a number of blogs that present capsule wardrobes and I love the idea.  I love the idea of blending a hard working capsule wardrobe with off-price store finds and now thrift finds.  This is a new direction in clothing self-expression for me and I am happy to be starting this journey.


  1. Looks like you found some great pieces! Thrifting is so hit and miss.

    Thank you so much for stopping by my blog! You have no idea how wonderful it is to hear that I'm inspiring your to eat healthier. Good thing I don't take pictures of everything I eat!

    Good luck with starting your blog up. It's so much fun!


  2. Thanks, Emilie..and thank your for being the first to follow me. I'm still getting used to managing my blog and haven't yet figured out how to create a list of blogs I follow...but sooner or later I will get a handle on it!


"When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect"--Mark Twain