When Thrifting Backfires

 
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It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of thrifting clothes (buying and selling), but sometimes the process doesn't go as planned. I recently spent an entire weekend sifting through my shameful plethora of unwanted clothes, crammed into my tiny Brooklyn closet, in order to (hopefully) make some money thrifting what I could and donating the rest.

Want to know how much I made from Beacon's Closet – my local Bushwick, Brooklyn thrift shop – which I was SURE would be a gold mine? -$25... Yup, you read that right, NEGATIVE twenty-five dollars...my plan totally backfired on me and I spent money at the thrift store.

The feeling of being handed back my giant Ikea blue bag of previously cherished clothing from the cashier can only be described as one word, rejection. Thoughts of middle school embarrassment rushed back to me. Wandering around the lunchroom, brace-faced with nowhere to sit. The cool kids giggling in the corner. When I snapped back to reality, I realized, I've come a LONG way since then. I then reminded myself, who cares what these people think? We have to learn from our mistakes to better our chances next time. 

I accepted the fact that thrifting is a lot harder than being a thrifter (my kind of hunting and gathering). It's a matter of opinion, surrendering your clothes to another's judgment and being prepared for the potential let down. However; I now know that there are ways of increasing your luck. This includes:

  • Familiarity: Frequenting the same store...never hurts to make some insider friends
  • Quantity: Bringing fewer clothes (without the Ikea bag) 
  • Timing: Presenting seasonal selections (no crop tops in winter) 
  • Trial & Error: Hitting many different spots to up your chances (and be patient) 
  • Research: Look at the brands and styles in the store and align yours with this

On the bright side of this unfortunate day, I ended up with this awesome Rebecca Minkoff, plaid pea coat, a new favorite in my wardrobe! Time to do some more research in my favorite shops. 

XOXO Alex 

Photography: Nat Belkov

 
 
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Shop my look (not exact items due to vintage)!

 

Vintage Vantage

 

When I discovered my love of vintage clothing I was a budding college student, lusting over the eclectic, almost majestic vintage looks I was seeing in the pages of W and Vogue. So I hit the “coolest” vintage shops I could find in Florida, and let’s just say I emerged more than a little disappointed. When you think of Florida, your mind doesn’t exactly jump to fashion, more like your Grandma’s retirement home and that one Spring Break you spent in the keys.

It only took me three years to finally discover the gem of a vintage shop in a field of Lily-infested sadness. I became obsessed with this one shop in Winter Park, Florida called Avalon Exchange which ultimately led me to the HEAVEN that is vintage shopping here in New York (especially in Brooklyn)! Let’s just say I certainly found my place in the city. Among my favorite stores include Known to Man, Beacon’s Closet (on 13th), Buffalo Exchange (on occasion), and 10 ft. Single by Stella Dallas.

The below outfit consists of vintage ‘90’ flared stretch pants (AKA the most comfortable item ever) plus a Topshop crop - because mixing the old with the new is the best way to update a look. I paired it with my low, chunky, nude sandals, and simple silver jewelry.

Leave a comment if you have any other favorite vintage stores I missed in this post!