Thrifty Fashionista

Being a conservative thrifter is one of my goals right now.  That’s basically my pretty sounding language for trying to not be a hoarder.  Thrifting = good! Hoarding = not good.  I watch those hoarding shows and those people just do the thrift store thing all wrong.  Don’t be like them.

So it’s not that I absolutely need more clothes, but when you can get a cute skirt for $2…not a hoarder. Not a hoarder.

I’d like to think of myself as a thrifty fashionista.  That is, I look at current trends and try to replicate them with what I can find in a thrift store.  It’s kind of insane how styles come back to life after a few years.  After we’ve given “clothing item X” away, the fashion magazines come out with celebrities wearing “clothing item X” that costs lots.  I know I’ll soon be on the hunt for some high-wasted jeans I can make into shorts, since those are popping up everywhere!

Anyways, I know, and the fashion gods seem to agree, that long, flowing skirts – the maxi skirt – are perfect for this summer!  Whether they are solid or printed, you can dress them up with a nice top and fancy jewelry for a special evening, or throw on a tank top and some flats for a casual day.

I’ve seen maxi skirts selling for a lot of dollars (as in like $80 – that’s just way to much money for this post-grad) at stores like Zara.  Click on the link to see a picture of said skirt that I can find a (and you can too!) practically identical version of at a thrift store.  I’d show you a picture, but I don’t know how all that copyright stuff goes/it’s easier to link it/I’m a little lazy today.

Or long floral skirts at American Apparel for $45.  Is it just me, or have I seen this skirt in many thrift stores before?  And maybe this is my personal opinion, but this skirt ain’t that cute/I’d maybe pay $2 for it.  Definitely not $45.  That is positivo.

What do you think of the long maxi skirt summer trend?  I love it because a) it’s comfy and cool and b) you don’t have to worry about shaving your legs every single freaking day during the summer.  Double score.

Recently, I got this awesome borderline vintage beige with black floral accents maxi skirt from the Salvation Army Thrift store in Richmond, Virginia for around $3.75.  It was originally $7.49, but the tag color noted it was 50 percent off that day!  Score.

Beige Skirt with Black Floral Accents $3.75, Banana Republic Shirt $1.98, Purple Gem Necklace – borrowed from Mom’s costume jewelry
photo (2)
Floral on the skirt, floral on the walls…

I also found a super cute red printed high wasted skirt.  It’s got a bunch of horizontal line patterns of a variety of colors.  Kind of tribal looking, which I know is in style right now. And %100 cotton.  Love me some natural fabrics.  The waste-line was really tiny, which is hard to find at second-hand stores.  The best part, it was $2.49, also 50 percent off!  So I got this skirt for $1.25.

Red Vintage Print High-wasted Skirt $1.25, Banana Republic Shirt $1.98, Gold Waist Belt – borrowed, but also thrifted, Vintage Purple Gem Necklace – borrowed


I should also mention that I found the top, which is a fitted, stretchy top with gold glittery specs (it’s hard to see in the picture) at a Goodwill store in Arlington, Virginia.  It was Banana Republic and this particular store had all their short sleeve non-print shirts at $1.98.

I also got this cute blue top, which is Gap, I believe, for $2.25 at Diversity Thrift in Richmond.  The orange sweater, that I wear a lot, wasn’t from a thrift store, but it was from a J.Crew warehouse sale, so that’s kind of being thrifty!

Photo on 4-28-13 at 12.32 PM #2
Blue Tie Top $2.25, Orange J.Crew Sweater – gift, but purchased at J.Crew warehouse sale

What neat summer fashion trends have you discovered thrifting?  Is there anything I should be on the lookout for that’s coming back in style?  I would love to know 🙂

Happy Thrifting!


Mother-Daughter Thrifting

Thrifting is a huge mother-daughter bonding experience for me and my mom.  I think I got the thrifty gene from her, but, she will attest, I did not get my creative gene from her.  She mostly thrifts “cat” related items.  (Side note: We have 4 cats.  Everything in our house is cat-related.  It’s insane.)  And she doesn’t need anymore cat-things, but we all have our hoarding tendencies.  Right?  Right.

A while back, we went to the Salvation Army Family Store located at 2601 Hermitage Road in Richmond, VA.  This trip was by chance; we had planned to go to Diversity Thrift which is a few streets away from the SA, and we did, but after a disappointing selection (not totally disappointing – I got a Jones New York wool sweater and a 100% Cashmere sweater for around $7 for both) we decided to stop by the Salvation Army. (Side note: Something is wrong when a thrift store sells used Chinese take-out containers for $1, shame on you Diversity Thrift!)

Green-ish Cashmere Sweater from Diversity Thrift – And how I feel about Mondays…

The Salvation Army store is really nice.  You almost feel like you’re in a department store.  Everything is well-organized by “type” of clothing (long sleeve blouses, short sleeve shirts, sweaters, etc.) and they weed out a lot of bad items.  Additionally, they have a large selection of gently used furniture and household appliances like washing machines, stoves and refrigerators for amazing prices.  I don’t remember the exact prices, but significantly less than buying them new.  They also had a couple of pianos for less than $100.  I can vouch, these pianos were in great shape, maybe needing a tune-up.  Not in need of a piano, but if you’re looking for a second hand piano in Richmond, this is your place!

During this trip, I was shopping for long sleeve blouses.  I think there’s a fashion trend (note “I think” – not a big fashion person!) for these flowy, blousy tops.  I’ve seen them in many stores and as much as I like them, they are often over $20 and made of that dreaded fabric – polyester.  I don’t have anything against polyester or blends – they are washable and low maintenance – but I don’t feel right paying exorbitant amounts for poly.

I’ve found that many thrift stores carry the original inspiration for this trend – silk blouses.  Sure, these might have belonged to grandma, but after a quick dry clean, they are better, cheaper alternatives.  I think they have much more “character” too!  Yay for vintage pieces!

I ended up purchasing a few blouses for about $5 each.  I’m thinking these tops were from the ’70s, but I’m not sure.  I love pairing them with leggings or skinny jeans.

Here is a lovely burnt-orange blouse with pretty embroidery:

Vintage Silk Blouse with Embroidery & Tiffany Necklace (necklace is not from the thrift store)
Close up of the Embroidery

Mom also bought Dad two button down shirts at the SA – one made by Vineyard Vines for $6.  I love Vineyard Vines, but they are so expensive.  I found the identical shirt online and it retails for $98.50 – Are you kidding me?!?  I’ll update with a picture of the shirt next time I’m home.  I swear, it’s the same shirt in absolute perfect condition!

The Salvation Army is a bit more expensive, but it’s so well-organized and sells quality items, so the higher prices don’t bother me.  Also, the SA has a great mission statement – the proceeds from sales go towards helping people get back on their feet from homelessness, drug addiction, etc. and provides work-training.  It is a religious-affiliated organization.

Happy Thrifting!