This stellar pair of overalls cost me eight bucks at Buffalo Exchange.
I layered them over a Theory blouse (also Buff Ex – $21.00, WORD) and added navy tights and black Etienne Aigner oxfords (Mommy’s closet). Decent, but still missing something.
Blazers: The ultimate outfit finishing tool. I snagged the vintage number pictured on my latest stock run to Goodwill Outlet Center, where I paid fifty-five dollars for thirty-seven pounds of clothing.
The actual cost of this blazer? Approximately 75 cents.
Ahh, January. The month in which we feel the pain of over-indulgent spending. Is it possible to undo the monetary damage of the holiday season? Not entirely, but selling your unworn clothes, shoes and accessories for cash is bound to alleviate some guilt. Follow this handy list of Do’s and Don’ts, and you’ll be able to net some much-needed moolah in exchange for your closet castoffs. Here we go.
DO: Clean Your Closet Thoroughly
Take a good hard look at your wardrobe, and be brutally honest with yourself about what you do and don’t wear. Items that have gone unworn for six months or more should be removed from your closet immediately. What happens when you hang onto stuff that’s too small on the off-chance it’ll fit again some day? You try it on periodically, and it makes you feel like crap about yourself. Get it out, and don’t look back.
Note: 80% of your outfits come from 20% of your clothes. That means you could get rid of over half your wardrobe, and your style wouldn’t change a lick. I’m just saying.
DON’T: Be Delusional
Think someone’s going to pay you for dated work apparel or nineties-era Paris Blues? Think again. Retail might be struggling, but resale is recession-proof: Secondhand boutiques are pickier than ever about what they buy. A Buffalo Exchange staffer summed it up best: “If it’s not something your best friend or sister would want, chances are a resale shopper won’t want it either.” If it’s seasonally and stylistically relevant, it’s a potential seller. If not, into the donation pile it goes.
DO: Divide and Conquer
Split your potential sellers into two piles: resale and consignment. A resale store buys your clothes on the spot in exchange for cash or store credit; a consignment store compensates you as your items sell. What goes in what pile? So glad you asked.
Imagine the gently worn world as a highbrow department store. The Premium Designer floor is consignment. The Contemporary Women’s Apparel floor is resale. Helpful analogy, yes?
Read the rest on Huffington Post Style. Tweet for good shopping karma :P.
Any time a well-publicized fashion event occurs, I’m often asked by friends, acquaintances and strangers alike if I’m attending. The theory behind these questions is, I suppose, that because I write a shopping blog, it follows that I’m interested in and/or completely obsessed with fashion. This is an error in judgment, an assumption that lumps me in with the kajillions of girls who live and die by the approval of the sartorial world.
I’ve been trying to reconcile my relationship with fashion for quite some time now. By reconcile, I mean trying to give a shit.
I’ve been trying to see the point in trends, in must-haves, in Spring collections, in fashion weeks across the globe. I’ve been trying to care about designers and corporations who – when the economic going gets tough, and the sustainability movement rears its ugly, righteous head – choose to retreat into the self-glorifying bubble of their industry and go about business as usual. I’ve been trying to ignore the fact that money that might be spent developing ways to reduce the enormous carbon footprint attached to the luxury goods industry is reserved instead for PR, advertising, runway shows and general fabulosity.
I’m done trying.
The truth is, I don’t really give a rat’s ass about fashion. Oh sure, I like to look at pretty things; I like to copy certain looks; I occasionally appreciate the art of the industry as seen through the lens of Grace Coddington. But at heart, I’m just a girl who likes to buy stuff, and who likes to not feel guilty about doing so.
I’ve been trying to play the game these past few months, to show that the latest trends can be re-created via clothes, shoes and accessories shopped resale, thrift, vintage and consignment. The truth is, I’m not a stylist. I’m not a fashion editor. I’m not in the business of telling you what to buy and what to wear, because my goal isn’t for you to be In or to look like a style Do or whatevs.
I just want you to look like YOU, to buy what YOU want, and to experience the joy of finding whatever it is you want for a fraction of its retail cost. I want you to be able to pat yourself on the back after you’ve made your purchase. Because even if the green factor of second hand shopping isn’t your motivation (it certainly wasn’t always mine), the fact that you’re recycling every time you shop obliterates whatever guilt you might feel about buying extraneous things.
Lately, I’ve been letting the fact that the world isn’t ready to endorse resale as the greatest form of shopping there is trip me up. That ends here. Because I don’t want you to shop resale because it’s cool, or because it’s acceptable, or Martha Stewart’s on board with consignment.
I want you to shop resale because it’s good for your wallet, your planet and your soul. I want you to shop resale because it isn’t attached to trends or advertising or any form of media that cons you into buying something that ends up sitting in your closet unworn. And yes, I want you to shop resale because it’s a big fat Fuck You to an industry that makes us feel like crap about ourselves so we’ll use our dollars to keep it in business.
On that note, here’s some motivation for your next thrift, vintage, resale or consignment shopping excursion:
Rag & Bone pants usually retail for upwards of $250.00. This pair is a particularly brilliant endeavor by the line: With the simple addition of a button, a zip-fly and some equestrian styling, leggings become snappy casual bottoms.
Buffalo Exchange initially priced these pants at $25.00 – an uber reasonable number in comparison with their heinously marked-up retail cost, as per usual.
The problem? I realized the aforementioned zip-fly had suffered some damage in the dressing room upon trying them on.
It’s rare that I’ll buy a damaged second hand item and spend the extra dough to get it fixed, but brandtastic leggings that masquerade as pants are obvs an exception to my rule.
I pointed out the busted zipper to the manager at the register, she took ten bucks off their resale price, and the excursion ended with me snagging $250 pants for $15.
Can fashion inspire joy of this ilk? Fuck no. It happens only in the gently worn world, dollfaces. Only in the gently worn world.
Go forth, and get yours.
Today, Fashionista hinted that Topshop’s Chicago expansion might be borderline insane. It is. Topshop isn’t just a massive rip off – it’s a rip off that’s managed to frame itself as a reasonably priced alternative to expensive, on-trend apparel and accessories, when its average price point clearly says otherwise. I sincerely hope Chicago clotheshorses are wise enough to put it out of business as soon as possible.
My hatred for Topshop isn’t entirely cost-related – it’s worse. I actually really dig the clothes, trendy and poorly made as they may be. This makes me doubly bitter over not being able to afford the offensively inflated retail mark up on said clothes.
Enter resale, exit bitterness.
Lucky for me, Buffalo Exchange’s sublime selection of brands extends to Topshop. This hot little pink-tinged beige mini skirt retailed for $65.00, once upon a time.
Its $14.50 resale price is obvs much more palatable.
Totally spaced on posting this: Had the honor of being featured in Women’s Health with a crop of fab budget shopping bloggers.
I also had the pleasure of meeting some of the glossy’s editors in person, who couldn’t have been nicer or easier to work with. It appears bitchiness isn’t a prerequisite for working in fashion. Either these girls are an exception to the rule, or I don’t know everything. I’m thinking it’s the latter.
I guess I can’t be right all the time. :P