Shopping can be a very interesting experience depending on how you do it. Personally, I’m more of an online shopper. I enjoy finding out about new brands and websites that you can’t necessarily find at the mall. Now don’t get me wrong, the mall has its gems too, but everything is online. Most of the time, stores have a wider selection available on their websites. Of course, not every store or shop is online though, like local thrift stores. You have to go directly to the source to discover the gems hidden among the mile-long racks and do a little thrifting.
The Search is On
As some of you may know, I’m in search of a hobby and thrifting has crossed my mind once or twice. I went through periods where I liked watching fashion videos on YouTube and at one point I watched a lot of online thrifting videos. There is some serious skill that comes with thrifting. You have to know what to look for, where to look and how to be patient because some of these thrift stores have a lot of items packed tightly together. Some stores even have bins upon bins filled with clothes like Goodwill Outlets. Going through each item individually takes some dedication. I enjoyed watching people find all kinds of unique items and outfits. Some items were even brand new. Apparently, Value Village is widely popular among thrift shoppers and one of the good thrifting stores. It seems similar to Savers, which is around my area.
I’ve always heard of Savers especially while being in theater when costumes were in need for a show. Walking into the store, I had high expectations for myself based on what I’d seen people find and what people had told me they found. It was a bit overwhelming if I’m being honest because there were so many items at that one location. Saver’s system of organizing everything was easy to follow though. They have it all separated out by clothing type with shoes and accessories on the side. Savers also carry books and home decorations in addition to clothing. There is a certain system they use with their colored tags. Depending on the day you go, some tags are discounted more than others. The main find from my visit to Savers was graphic tees. I did find a cassette tape of Mariah Carey’s debut album once at a thrift store, I should have bought it despite the fact that I have no tape player in sight.
Thrift Shops are the most common and traditional ways to find second-hand items, but there are a variety of ways to find unique items that are looking for a new owner. Places such as Buffalo Exchange and Plato’s Closet allow you to buy and sell clothing. They usually purchase clothing that is on trend, in season, and in good condition. You can pack up any clothes you’re planning on giving away and take them straight to their counter. It usually takes a few hours for them to assess the clothing to determine if they will purchase it or not. I’ve sold to Plato’s Closet a few times and it was a pretty quick and straightforward process although you may walk out the door wondering why they didn’t purchase that perfectly good blouse.
There are of course online stores and apps that sell vintage and second-hand clothing if you want a wider selection to choose from. You can find some of them below:
I’ve mainly had experience with Poshmark in both buying and selling but Depop has a lot of unique pieces and an easy-to-use format. There’s also Ebay which we all know and love. Ebay is one of the most common websites used to sell and buy any and everything.
There are also amazing benefits to shopping in thrift shops and consignment stores. For one, you get to share the joy of fashion and clothing with other people. It decreases the amount of clothing that is thrown away since a lot of what is sold comes from donations or people selling their items depending on the store. Purchasing second-hand clothing also helps lessen the waste and the use of materials that come from making clothing.
Thrifting is not something that I do often, but it is something that I want to explore more. You can really find some amazing designer items or interesting and underrated brands if you put your heart into it. What’s the best thing you found while thrifting? Share in the comments below!
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