Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thrifting is the Name of the Game.

I've been thrifting for a while now.  So much so that it's become a verb to me.  It's something that I go out to do, usually with my thrifting partner in crime, Courtney. It's truly become an art form and we've become pretty darn good at it.  We've actually had the cashiers at some stores comment on the awesome finds we've picked up.  But where did the love of thrifting begin?

It was in college, but we never went and took it seriously in college.  We were usually in the thrift shop around Halloween or if we were having a theme party like this:

Beauty and the Geek Party - Clothing brought to you by Goodwill

In college, we were too cool to think that thrifting could be beneficial and that we could get tons of great clothing.  No, it wasn't until after college, when we were truly poor that we began taking it seriously.  Soon we were hitting up Goodwill and Savers like nobody's business.  On top of it, we were stopping at random thrift stores we came across to see what they had available.

And then it got really serious.  We weren't just going to thrift stores for clothes anymore.  We were looking for shoes, purses, furniture and whatever else we could find.  It's gotten to the point where I usually check a thrift store if I'm looking for something before I go to Target or the mall.

Now it's a way of life.  I would say between 50 and 75% of my wardrobe is from thrift shopping and I get tons of compliments on the stuff I've gotten.  There's never a time when I say that I got something at a thrift store and people aren't surprised.

So, why do I think that thrifting should be about 75% of your regular shopping? This is why:

All the clothes you see here, I got in one thrifting trip and I spent less than $60.  To be honest, I only ended up spending that much because I tend to have expensive taste (which is awful when you're a super cheap person).  I always pick up the 7 and 8 dollar sweaters in the thrift shop while Court happily wanders around picking up everything that is 2 and 3 dollars.  I dunno how I do it, but it never fails.  Hopefully this isn't the story for you. 

I know $60 might sound like a lot but let me break this down for you (I know the picture might be hard to see).  I purchased three shirts, a sweater, a cardigan, 2 pairs of pants, a belt and 2 scarves - 10 items - for $60!  How can you beat it?  I'm gonna go ahead and throw some designers out there, too.  The blue collared shirt you see here is American Eagle as well as the tan corduroys.  The pink sweater is J. Crew and it's awesome!  And as you can see it's all high quality stuff. Lot's of people have this picture in their head that thrift store items are crap, but look at this stuff.  It's great!

This is why you should thrift more often.
You get twice as many items as you would get at a regular store for the same price.

Seriously, I can buy 10 things at Savers for $60. That's 6 bucks an item!  How many things can you get in a department store for that much?

It's recycling!

You don't want your old clothes anymore?  Send them to a thrift shop.  If you throw them out, they are going directly to the land fill.  The last thing we need is more stuff going into our landfills.  The clothes that are old and boring to you are new and exciting to somebody else.  There's no need to throw them away.  Recycle your old clothes and buy recycled clothes! 

It's guilt-free shopping

I am cheap - with a capital C.  There's no way around it.  I just don't like to spend money on stuff, especially when I don't really need it.  So when it comes to clothing I feel really guilty because if you saw my closet you would know that I just don't need anymore clothing.  But I WANT more clothes....all the time.  When I'm thrifting, I know I'm spending just a small percentage of the amount I would pay in a regular store and I'm helping the environment in a small way.  I also know that when I buy something and only like it for a year or two it's not a big deal.  I only paid $4 for something, so when I don't particularly like it in a year's time, I don't feel awful about packing it up and sending it back to the thrift store. 

So, the moral of my story is, try thrifting.  You don't have to be crazy about it like I am, but just try it once.  It's cheap, it's evironmentally friendly, it's guilt-free and it'll make you feel great!  You just wait until the first time someone says "I love your sweater" and you say "Thanks, I got it for $2."  No joke, there's no feeling like it!

I'll be doing periodic posts about my favorite thriftables and some of my thrifting hauls over time!  Keep an eye out.

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