A blog post that isn’t a last-minute gift guide and/or 2012 fashion round-up?! You’re welcome. Here’s a 2013 resolution to mull over: Let us vow to look beyond labels when determining material merit.
I hauled ass to the Bronx the other day to scope out Unique Thrift – a behemoth of a store endorsed by many in the NYC thrifting scene. Ultimately, I spent an hour on the 1 train only to find myself drowning in a putrid sea of Adrianna Papell and Coldwater Creek. More on that later.
I’m not really a blouse person – I sweat too much and spill things on myself too often to don dry-clean-only shizzz. I wear blouses so rarely, I manage to forget their purpose entirely… until I have to go to temple or some charity event requiring business-esque attire.
Only then do I realize I have JACK SHIT to wear.
I was unaware that Loeffler Randall made anything beyond teeny weeny handbags costing upwards of $295 a pop. (Are said handbags adorable? Yes. Is it moronic to drop over two benjamins on something too small to accomodate your wallet? Also yes.)
Okayfine, describing the relaunch of Housing Works Buy the Bag as a wet dream is maybe a little bit gross. It’s also incredibly accurate.
This is warehouse-style thrifting, beotches. Much like sex or the prospect thereof, it involves varying degrees of shame and frustration. Whether or not you allow these feelings to jeopardize your ability to snag some material tail is a matter of mental fortitude.
That means think positive, for fuck’s sake.
At most thrift warehouses (see Goodwill Outlet Center, Queens), clothing gets lumped into general textiles and ends up buried among dirty towels, stained pillowcases and used jockstraps (yum).
Why should you give Buy the Bag a whirl, even if you’ve never before braved the bins? Because Housing Works PRE-SORTS their donated goods, removing the irrelevant ick before their bins hit the floor. This increases your odds of finding something amazeballs exponentially. Obvs.
Read The Rest
At AuH2O Thriftique, we’re pretty old school about how we stock our store. We go out and unearth the gently worn gems ourselves for two reasons:
1. We’re utterly addicted to the thrill of the hunt.
2. We’re DIRT CHEAP.
We spend hours on end in icky, icky places to deliver the goods at the lowest possible cost. The only thing we sell that doesn’t involve a shit ton of patience, grit and endurance on our part? Jewelry. We order in bulk from our vintage suppliers, a box of baubles arrives and wee! Kate Goldwater and I are both Jewish, so opening those boxes is basically the closest thing to Christmas morning we’ve ever experienced.
Read The Rest
On an AuH2O stock run a few weeks back, Kate and I came across two labels of note.
One was vintage. One was pretending to be. The label at left hails from a time when shoppers actually gave a shit about where their clothing came from. A time when textile workers had real, live rights.
An International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union tag basically says Hey, no one was killed or injured or forced to work overtime or paid unlivable wages to make this garment you’re buying. Isn’t that cool?!
Sooo cool. Sooo retro. Made in the U.S.A. with morally sound manufacturing practices – the only vintage trend that’ll never make a comeback.
The label at right reads, WE CREATED THIS GARMENT TO STAND OUT FROM ALL THE REST. EMBRACE THE IMPERFECTIONS OF YOUR SHIRT. THE HOLES, STREAKS AND SPOTS HELP CREATE THE “VINTAGE LOOK.”
I smell a vintage-inspired shitshow of verbiage. And it STINKS.
Note to Project E: Damaged things are cool when they’re old and actually have a bit of fucking history attached to them. Not when they’re intentionally beat up, marked up and made in China like everything else.
That being said, an item’s age doesn’t necessarily make damage a foregone conclusion. To imply as much makes me wonder if you know jack about vintage at all.
Vintage means classic styles and good fabric, responsibly produced in a way that enables the resulting garments to stand the test of time. Holes, streaks and spots hardly do it justice.
Ditto for those fugly, double Xs slapped on every synthetic top you import. Blech.