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June 30, 2011

By Jennifer Chaky

If you are like me and wait until after a season already starts to head out and buy clothes for that season—let me tell you about a very successful shopping trip I took yesterday to get my daughter some much-needed summer clothes. Now, I don’t shop in traditional stores for clothes very often.  Because of the environmental impact of the fashion industry, I prefer to buy clothes second-hand in thrift stores. My theory is that the environment got hit once already to make the clothes, so instead of adding to the demand for more clothes, I will put my money into the charitable causes that are usually supported by thrift stores.

Yesterday’s trip was to a large Goodwill store, although I frequent small church and hospital thrift stores in my area as well. Boy did I make out. My arms were heavy with the amount of cute tops, summer shorts, and loads of summer dresses I got. And let me tell you—my daughter is 12 and a half and picky about her clothes, but she was pleased with everything I got.

You’d be surprised by all the great things you can find in secondhand shops these days. It’s not just musty, out-of-date items from grandma’s attic anymore (although, if you dig a bit, you can find some great vintage pieces). There are even several shops throughout the state that specialize in hip, upscale secondhand clothes.

After my trip yesterday I came home with: four pairs of shorts, one pair of jeans, 10 tops, three summer dresses, (all name brand in perfect condition), nine dinner plates, four salad plates, two soup bowls, one wooden salad bowl with tongs and nine small bowls (well worth over $100 new and I got them for $8), eight drinking glasses and eight coffee mugs, three nesting bowls with lids, and a basket. Total cost: $173. Yes, I did just go in for summer clothes, but when you shop thrift, it doesn’t hurt anybody to splurge!

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