Fashion on a Budget – Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores

Fashion on a Budget – Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores

Fashion on a Budget - Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores

I was never a consignment or thrift store shopper “growing up”. But now as a mom I’m all about Fashion on a Budget – Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores.

Then I moved to NYC in the summer of 2001 and was introduced to them by a friend. My “shopping life” changed. I’m exaggerating a bit here… but truly, consignment shops and thrift stores are definitely places to “hit” when you’re looking to save some money on clothes, especially if you’re holding out for some high-end labels/brands.

Consignment/thrift stores are MECCAS for amazing deals on clothing, shoes, accessories (even household goods and furniture!). There are definitely some DOs and DON’Ts when it comes to shopping in consignment/thrift shops, and you’re not always going to get that “amazing find” – but, I promise you, if you look… and look hard enough, you will find.

While living in NYC, I used to make it a monthly “duty” to check out some of my favorite consignment shops. I have scored one of my favorite items at a consignment shop – a Chanel blazer for $35.00.

But there are some DOs and DON’Ts… Fashion on a Budget – Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores

DO:

1.) DO plan to take your time. You will absolutely need time to weed through racks (and possibly racks) of clothes, it’s not something you can (or should) breeze through. Some of the best “gems” are hidden, so really make sure you carve out enough time for yourself.

2.) DO have an idea as to what you’re looking for. It’s easier to go in looking for particular items: blouses, sweaters, jeans, pants, accessories, etc. That way you’re not making (many) impulse buys.

3.) DO know how much money you would like to spend. Just because the prices are more inexpensive than most retail stories doesn’t mean you shouldn’t budget yourself. Keep yourself aware of what prices are — and know (sometimes) you can bargain a price down.

4.) DO keep your eyes open for classic pieces. My girlfriend was able to buy a pair of black trouser pants and a gorgeous (matching) black blazer. These were items that she happened to “randomly” come across — and has been able to get a ton of use out of.

5.) DO remember that new clothing is always cycled in, so don’t give up if you don’t see anything on your first or second trip.

6.) DO remember that there is always a thing called – tailors and seamstresses! I love finding pants that fit my waist perfectly (and bummie!)… I just always need to remember that length can be altered! At consignment prices, you may still be able to find the “perfect pant” and still get them altered for a cheaper price than some high-end stores.

7.) DO look at jewelery and accessories and shoes!

DON’Ts for Fashion on a Budget – Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores:

1.) DON’T but something if it doesn’t fit. Just walk away. As much as you really may want the way too small or way too big cashmere (perfect) sweater to fit, if it doesn’t – it won’t.

2.) DON’T buy something just because it has a high-end label. Really, it may just be a waste of money – especially if you don’t think you’ll end up wearing it.

3.) DON’T (DON’T) buy undies… or anything that truly, truly looks worn to the bone! 🙂

**And if you’re looking to make some extra money and sell your clothes to a consignment shop, here is a GREAT article on how to get started!**

Fashion on a Budget – Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores was last modified: October 24th, 2018 by Audrey McClelland
SHOWHIDE Comments (4)
  1. too bad we don’t have some better consignment stores for adult clothes here… but every 6 months we have a HUGE kids consignment. It’s great for getting rid of the clothes & toys I’m done with, and I can get whatever I need for the upcoming season – mostly ON, Gap & gymboree for less than $3 a piece. Then I can spend whatever I save on my own clothes 🙂

  2. Great ideas! I have been “trained” by my grandmother and mother many years ago to browse thru Loehmann’s , TJMaxx, Marshalls, Ross etc. Audrey is right – you must have the time to shop there or else you’re frustrated -but I have found some stunning pieces over the years from these stores. They are usually my first go to places for a little something new!

  3. Thanks for this great article Audrey. My clothes are pretty much yard sale, thrift store, consignment shop, and clearance rack finds. I was happy you touched on this. You’ve given me a boost and made me feel better about my wardrobe.

Fashion on a Budget – Shop Consignment and Thrift Stores was last modified: October 24th, 2018 by Audrey McClelland