When you choose to shop at local thrift or vintage shops, that's pretty much as good as it gets when choosing to live a repurposed life. Not all stores are created equal however. I’ll admit it. I’m not the hugest fan of Valu-Village. This is for a few reasons:
- I feel like I have to drench my self in a purel bath after I am done.
- I don't like how all the profit doesn't go back to the community. These products are all donated, and only a small percentage of their profits goes back to specific charities.
- I know that people benefit from the low prices for clothing - but are their prices really that low? Jeans are priced at $10...I think you are better off going to a Goodwill, Amity or Salvation Army or your local thrift store. The local thrift store in my community often has $6 clothing bag sales. It's where you pay only $6 for a bag stuffed full of clothes. $6. $6 for usually over 6 pieces of clothes. $6 Valu-Village...
What is different however are vintage boutiques. Yes their prices are significantly more money than your local thrift store, but there are a number of reasons why I think they are your better choice.
- You can get some unique pieces that are quality made. Let's face it, the quality of clothing at FOREVER21 isn't exactly going to hold up to the test of time, let alone next month. The pieces found at Vintage clothing stores, by dint of the fact that they are still here and in good shape proves that they must be of good quality.
- The store owner has already done the messy work for you. They have already sifted through the 1997 Britney Spears-esque crop tops to find some real gems
- If the clothes aren't in the best condition, it gets fixed before it goes into their store front. Usually a Vintage Clothier knows their way around a sewing machine. Any minor imperfections, such as a broken zipper or missing buttons can be easily fixed, and usually improve the garment.
Etsy is a great place for finding vintage clothing. Take note however to really read the measurements that are given (or ask for them if they are not supplied). What was a medium back in the 1980s is not what a medium is today.
60's Saks Fifth Avenue Mod Striped Mini Dress XS S
Garden Floral Garden Strapless Dress
Before you head out to Forever21, check out a vintage shop. This dress is the perfect example of how everything old is new again. I am pretty sure I have seen this similar style and print in store...for about the same amount and most likely poorer quality.
Great 1970s Vintage Animal Print Disco Blouse
I think this is just a slice of awesomeness. I realize it's a bit adam lambert glam - but that's why I love it. Pair it with a pair of stir-up black jeggins, and some great boots, and you'll be a deliberate hot mess! LOVES IT!
Graphic Print Dolman Sleeve Dress VTG
My best advice? Find a shop that takes pictures and stylizes their items in wearable ways. It helps to visualize the way it will look on you (because there are no virtual dressing rooms on etsy), and if it is something you like, chances are the shop owner has similar taste.
My next post will be about how I actually go out and shop for vintage clothing to fill a wardrobe.