One of my favorite weekend activities since making the shift to slow fashion is ... you guessed it! Thrifting.
For most of my life, I was actually quite weary of thrifting. I would occasionally shop secondhand at consignment shops like Plato's Closet, but stepping foot into a Goodwill or Salvation Army just wasn't an option in my mind. In college, I had several friends that would go thrifting, and I tried it a few times ... but never had any luck. Part of me felt like because I couldn't pull off the whole "vintage" look, thrifting wasn't for me. Not to mention the fast-fashion loving, wanting-all-the-new things me back then wasn't completely sold on the idea of wearing someone else's clothes, especially when the new stuff was cheap enough to begin with.
Fast forward to 2018, and you'll never find me at the mall (except for a movie date with my husband), but instead popping into Salvation Army while running errands. You know your mindset has shifted when you search thrift stores near your new house on Google Maps... Speaking of which, there are a handful of thrift shops in Auburn, which I'm looking forward to checking out now that the craziness of the move has finally settled down.
What I love most about thrifting is the challenge of finding that diamond in the rough — it certainly doesn't happen every time, but when it does, it's so thrilling and rewarding. Since starting my thrifting journey, I've managed to score some beautiful, high-quality pieces at incredible prices. And the best part? I'm giving these clothes a new, loving life ... and keeping them out of the landfill.
Being able to "shop sustainably" is often considered a privilege in itself because of the higher price tag that comes with choosing higher-quality, natural fabrics and supporting ethical production practices and livable wages. As a result, it tends to exclude lower income communities that simply can't afford to drop $200 on a pair of shoes, let alone $50 on an organic T-shirt. But I find that thrifting is a more accessible approach to being a sustainable shopper (and not just with clothes), with prices even more affordable than retail chains like Target or even Walmart. Many thrift stores also have programs that help those in need, both locally and around the world, and by shopping at these stores, you're supporting these initiatives.
One of the most sustainable things we can do is to use what we already have — and thrifting helps us do that.
Lately, I've been enjoying mixing old and new pieces to create a look that fits my personal style ... without breaking the bank.
THE LINEN JUMPER
This linen jumper is easily one of my favorite thrifting finds to date ... and it was only $3! I spotted it a couple months ago during a Salvation Army trip to look for a new pair of jeans because my favorite ones died beyond repair after three years of wearing them. As soon as I pulled the hanger off the rack, I had a feeling this jumper would be coming home with me, and it's quickly become a warm weather favorite in my closet.
THE CHELSEA BOOT
These boots were scored on the same day as the dress, actually! I didn't find any jeans at Salvation Army, so I stopped by Clothes Mentor, a consignment shop in Syracuse. In addition to finding the perfect pair of slouchy boyfriend jeans — or mom jeans as my husband likes to call them — I spotted these Chelsea rain boots in near perfect condition. Now here's the funny story: I actually saw these boots in Target last year and tried them on. While I really liked them, my heart couldn't justify supporting Target clothes, so I passed. So when I saw them secondhand in my size, I knew I had to get them. New York gets quite a bit of rain during spring and summer (also why we get a lot of snow in the winter), and I honestly hate wearing tall boots, so these have come in really handy for those dreary days and afternoon rainstorms.
THE DENIM SHIRT
One of my most recent wardrobe additions is this amazing Vintage Denim Shirt, which Tradlands gifted me to celebrate the launch of their Summer Collection. For those of you who aren't familiar, Tradlands is a U.S. based clothing company that creates high-quality, ethically-made essentials for the modern woman who's a tomboy at heart. Constructed out of 100% midweight cotton, this shirt is perfect for summer. I was looking for a slightly oversized fit with this style, so I opted for a size up from my usual.
When it comes to accessories, I'm pretty old fashioned and simple — a pair of delicate earrings, a few minimal, stacked rings, and a watch. I received this Round Gold and Black Watch from BERG+BETTS last year, and wear it a least a couple times a week. It's such a classic timepiece and story behind how it's made is so cool. Essentially, BERG+BETTS up-cycles surplus leather offcuts and transforms this "trash" into stylish timepieces that can be worn for many years to come. (Get 20% OFF your next BERG+BETTS order with code 'MOTIFIED')
DO YOU THRIFT? WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE SECONDHAND FIND?
This post is not sponsored or produced in partnership with any of the brands mentioned above, but it does contain affiliate links. When you shop using the links above, I may make a small portion of the sale. Thanks for supporting brands that support MOTIFIED!