You might be surprised by the little treasures that are hidden inside your local Goodwill Store. The Goodwill is not usually associated with name-brands, but if you are in search of a unique name-less piece with a lot of history—this is your store. At this specific Goodwill, the only recognizable tag I have come across is Mossimo from Target (who doesn’t love Target), but each Goodwill has a different type of merchandise depending on the area it is located.
My love for the Goodwill began last year when I was on the hunt for some cute t-shirts that didn’t cost $20. They carry some of the best “vintage” t-shirts that are in great condition for around $2 each. Once I got over my initial shock of purchasing “used” t-shirts (the best t-shirts are always in the men’s section), I wandered into the women’s department where I immediately fell in love with the quirky jackets and dresses hanging on the racks.
Though the Goodwill is not known for it’s welcoming decor, you can really find some interesting items if you try hard enough. My good friend, Ashleigh, recently picked up a pair of mint condition leather Bass boat shoes, an adorable straw fedora, and a few mugs for her apartment!
There is not much to say about the Goodwill as they are all different. My biggest piece of advice to you is be patient, don’t have high expectations, and most importantly have fun! I guarantee you can find something, clothing or not, that will brighten your day!
If my obsession with bargain shopping isn’t already clear, let me confirm it here: I can shop and will shop anywhere I possibly can, so when I find multiple inexpensive stores right next to one another, I just about lose my mind. South Street, Philadelphia is budget shopping heaven. There are so many different shops that sell adorable clothes, funky accessories, and trendy shoes (and I can’t forget the delicious food!). Just remember that the best items are usually tucked away behind a stores seedy exterior, you just have to take the time to find them! Here are a few of my favorite shops on South Street:
In addition to consignment shopping, the Internet is an incredible tool for finding chic clothing and accessories on a college budget. I am always browsing various blogs to find ideas for my next ensemble. My favorite site for celebrity style inspiration is OutfitID, they post daily updates on recently worn celebrity outfits and where to buy them. This site is usually my first stop on the hunt to find a similar style that fits my budget. Give it a try! You will be pleasantly surprised how close you can come to recreating the original outfit at a much smaller cost.
My recent outfit obsession is this look by Lauren Conrad. She wore this shopping in Beverly Hills on January 27 (you may begin to see a trend here, I love Lauren Conrad). I am obsessed with the shoes, so I had to find a pair of my own for spring!
Lauren Conrad vs. Thriftadelphia Look for Less
Lauren Conrad’s Outfit:$2, 454
- Sunglasses – Ray Ban Classic Aviator, $139
- T-Shirt– Kain Eko modal-blend top, $110
- Handbag– Miu Miu Leather Shopping Bag, $1,420
- Skinny Jeans– Levi’s Made & Crafted Low-rise jeans, $190
- Sandals– Miu Miu Crisscross Platform Sandal, $595
Thriftadelphia’s Look for Less Outfit:$217.60
- Sunglasses – Urban Outfitters Classic Metal Aviator in Gold, $14
- T-Shirt – Forever21 Striped Weekender Top, $12.80
- Handbag – Melie Bianco Miley Hobo in Saddle, $96
- Skinny Jeans– Forever21 Classic Skinny Jean in Dark, 19.90
- Sandals – MICHAEL Michael Kors Juniper Platform Sandal in Teak, $74.90
Have a celebrity outfit you want to replicate? Post a link in the comment section and your pick could be featured on the next Look for Less!
Photo Credit: OutfitID, Bergdorf Goodman, Net-a-porter, Polyvore, Shopstyle, Urban Outfitters, Forever21, Melie Bianco, Nordstrom
Like any new task, consignment shopping can seem daunting if you don’t have the proper instructions. Here are a few helpful tips to get you started.
Before you set out to dive into the unknown racks of second hand clothing stores you need a clear head and a clear schedule. The most precious gems are found deep in the midst of pilly pullovers and out-of-date outerwear. You have to be ready to walk into the store, approach the first rack, slide the abundance of clothes to one side and sift through piece by piece; and don’t forget to try things on! Something on the rack can seem helpless but look fantastic on your shape, and something on the hanger may take your breath away but once you don that dress you may find yourself wanting to run far, far away. Be patient, keep an open mind and remember there’s nothing a belt, brooch, or a few stitches can’t do to update and individualize an item.
Do It Yourself!
When thrifting it is important to remember to be creative! The most precious aspect of a thrifted item is that there is a slim chance you will be walking through campus and shamefully spot the exact outfit coming toward you. These pieces are so exclusive and carry so much history that there may be times you come across a top with a breathtaking neckline and…shoulder pads. For $4.99 it’s worth buying and taking the time to show your creative side. Sit down with a pair of scissors and some thread and create a completely new, completely you, sleeveless tunic! Don’t get caught up in your old commercial shopping ways, everything you buy can be modified, by yourself or even a tailor. With the money you will be saving by thrifting these quality items it is okay to shell out a few dollars and get a quality hem from a professional. Since we’re thinking outside the box, remember to stray from the women’s department! Some of the greatest finds are in the men’s section. A button down can become a dress, a tie can become a belt, even a mens hat with some proper accessories like peacock plumage or sassy ribbon can kick the fedora trend to the curb! It’s all about using your creativity and fashion sense with thrifting, there are no models or advertisements to influence you.
Don’t be afraid to Haggle!
Ah, bartering. It seems like people are still uncomfortable when it comes to haggling a price. Obviously if an item is priced fairly there is no need to waste time trying to knock it down, but there are instances in which an item is priced too high for the quality or there is a tear or rip in an article of clothing that has been overlooked by an associate. There’s no harm in asking, most of the time they will be willing to knock off a few dollars just because you brought it up. Of course, if you are looking for the ultimate deal and you are confident with bargaining, the best tip I can bestow is to leave your credit, debit, and personal checks at home. Carrying cash is your best bet in ensuring a great bargain. You also avoid a surcharge that some of the thrift stores invoke once you pay with plastic.
Image courtesy of: flickr.org