As I'm sure you have noticed we are both pretty avid thrifters. I know, we're breaking some new ground there...who isn't these days? I learned all the tricks of the trade from my mom and dad at a very young age. So young, in fact, that there was a time when they made some announcement over the loudspeaker at our local goodwill about keeping your children with you at all times and I, having a very vivid imagination, assumed all kinds of horrifying things would happen to me and my brothers if we could not see our parents and so I was terrified of goodwill for quite awhile...other thrift stores were totally fine. I'm over that now. Anyways. Moving on. Here are a few recent finds that I'm particularly enamored with!
Vintage Ralph Lauren embroidered blouse: Salvation Army, Chicago, IL
It's a real beauty... the sleeves are a bit billowy for my taste, but under a cardigan it's stunning. Also I'm toying with the idea of chopping the sleeves off and making it more summery. But, as my sewing skills are less than satisfactory, I may wait till summer and see if my very talented Grandma Lew could help me with the project.
Proof of its vintageness: probably from the 70s or 80s...billowy sleeves and all, the union tag and the RN number. The 80s aren't that old but still.
Toast n Jam Tray by Toastmaster: Thrift & Thrive, Chicago, IL
I am completely smitten with this tray...who doesn't like breakfast in bed, right? Also, my adopted Scottish grandparents always use trays and they are not just for looks! They are quite practical and every well-oiled household should look into getting one; they add so much festivity to toast!
Banana Republic Blouse: Salvation Army, Chicago, I
And finally this green blouse that is not vintage but equally lovely and fits much better (isn't that always how it is with vintage??).
I really enjoy the fall of the sleeves on this one...quite elegant. And it goes so well with this skirt (an older thrifting find, Goodwill, Tacoma, WA).
My cashier at Trader Joe's was quite in love with this outfit... in the time it took her to ring me up, she had planned a whole evening around it, including where to go for drinks (her recommendation was Barrelhouse Flat. I've never been, but she made it sound really good...speakeasy with two floors and a pool table), what my husband should wear (a nice jacket and a fedora), and whether or not he was cute (her: "you must think I'm so weird that I'm trying to picture what your husband looks like..." me: "he's pretty cute!" her: "I would assume so!").
Everything I need to know about thrifting I learnt from B. I was horrible at thrift shopping. I used to walk into Goodwill and feel panicked. Nothing to do with B's fear, more of an overwhelmed feeling that I would never find anything. It took a day of thrifting with our friend Gina and B to learn that it was more of a treasure hunt.
So I developed my own system to help get over the panic that came with the sheer volume of material in a store. As far as clothes go - I only buy higher end labels: Banana Republic and J Crew are my go tos. I also try to only buy things less than $5. That makes it more of a challenge and helps me know what to look for. Of course it's a game and rules are meant to be broken. So I did pay a little more for the mustard heels above... but I'd been looking for them since April 2010. I'd wanted them for B's wedding to go with my bridesmaids dress. Better late than never right?
I love boxes! Suitcases! Storage.... and I found this for $3. Granted it was at an estate sale. Estate sales always make me a little sad... but then I see things like this with HOT AIR BALLOONS!!!! And it's okay. Still not sure what I'm going to use this for - but it's lovely.
This is my favorite clothing item of the year. B bought it for me at Goodwill in Chicago for my birthday. I am never sure if I can pull of the long skirts, but this one just is comfy, warm, and fun!
$3. Goodwill Seattle. Fondu pot! I love this so much. It's got a wooden handel. I'm not going to use it for Fondu. I am not sure if I can put it on the stove top, but it's just so pretty! So these are a few finds from the winter months here.
I love thrift shopping now! A few more hints. Look in the men's section for wool sweaters and leather belts! Always go to thrift shops first for sun dresses. Clean out your summer closet then bring those items to somewhere like Buffalo Exchange and they will buy them back for more than if you bring them in during the fall. Go in with an idea of what you're looking for but don't be tied to a list or you will miss gems like the red fondu pot!
Have you had any good finds lately?