How to Thrift: Part Three

In the Dressing Room and at the Register

Now that you’ve scoured the store for every likely and unlikely thing you want to try on, you’re ready to hit the dressing rooms. As always, things will be different at a thrift store in comparison to the dressing rooms at the Banana Republic. Take a read:

Go to the dressing room once

  • You may have to wait in line for a dressing room. That’s ok. Check out the return rack while you wait. Someone might have found something great that didn’t fit. (It could be yours! Mwha ha ha ha ha!)
  • Try to have everything in your cart for one marathon try-on session. It is easier to make purchase decisions when you compare all items next to each other.
  • Always ask yourself if an item will make it easier to dressed or more difficult. Is this item going to work with you and your wardrobe or against it? Is it a new best friend or a closet space-taker waiting to move in?
  • Remember the Used Clothing Buyer’s Guide.

Make purchase decisions

  • Be judgmental. Don’t  bring home clothes that you won’t wear (some risks are always a good idea).
  • Is it worth the money? Is it on sale?
  • Remember that thrifting isn’t about spending a lot of money. Always weigh out the cost before you leave the store $100 lighter.
  • Do you need to have the item altered? Again, thrifting is about being thrifty. Is this item worth the investment?*

Go to the register

  • Remember to be patient. There may only be one cashier. It is also a universal truth that someone in the line ahead of you will be giving the one cashier a hard time. Managers need to be called, prices need to be checked and sometimes people try to haggle over the cost of an item.
  • While you wait you might as well go over your purchases one more time. Maybe there is something you don’t need.

Walk out of the store

  • If you didn’t end up leaving with a lot of stuff, try not to be disappointed. There’s always tomorrow. Besides, you probably had a good time and learned something about the history of clothing in America.

Now, go home and wear your new stuff. Be proud that you saved money and know that you won’t look like everyone else.

* If you can sew, bless you. You have an extremely useful skill not many of us have anymore. I am proud of you and so is your mom, your grandma, and great-grandma! Speaking of alterations…um…..would you alter something for me?


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