It’s that time again: Fall is here, and for many of us that means school is back in session. Whether that thought garners excitement or dread for you, one thing we can all agree on is: there’s nothing better than having a fresh new outfit for this cozy season!
Actually - scratch that, there is something better: Having a fresh new sustainable outfit! Thrifting is a great way to make clothes shopping a little more sustainable, so we thought it would be fun to share our Do’s and Don’ts for successful thrift shopping this fall season:
Give yourself lots of time:
Make a day out of it and allow yourself enough time to be thorough. If we could only give you one tip it would be this one! Take your time and have the patience to look through everything carefully.
Go at the end of a season:
Give things that aren’t on your list or you wouldn’t normally consider a chance, and consider ways that you could make it work for you: could you dye it? Crop it? Hem it? Take it in? Get it altered by a tailor? Change the buttons? You can do all this while still being critical of whether you actually need and will wear it.
Start at larger & less expensive places and go from there:
This will help you feel confident that you aren’t overpaying, and keep you from worrying that you could have found a similar item for less at a different place.
Have an open mind:
Give things that aren’t on your list or you wouldn’t normally consider a chance, and consider ways that you could make it work for you: could you dye it? Crop it? Hem it? Take it in? Have it altered by a tailor? Change the buttons? You can do all this while still being critical of whether you actually need and will wear it.
Look for things that are good candidates for reuse:
By this we mean clothes that are durable, versatile, and repairable. Clothes that you’ll be able to wear again and again and again with different things in your wardrobe; can be easily mended and maintained; and could still be used (either by someone else or repurposed for a different use) even after you are done with it.
Try things on:
This is essential! - don’t waste your time and money on things that don’t fit you well or are uncomfortable. If you have to keep adjusting it or standing a certain way to make it look good, move on!
Take note of materials:
It’s always good to remember in the back of your mind that natural fibres (cotton, linen, silk, wool, viscose etc) are generally better than synthetic fibres (Nylon, Polyester, Lycra, Spandex etc) when it comes to the environment, and often quality & durability. Check the tags!
Look for loose or oversized garments and consider altering your thrift finds:
Some things are easier than others to thrift; loose, flowy dresses and shirts, skirts or coats because they are more likely to be forgiving with fit and less worn out. When something is just a little too big, consider Diy or reaching out to a tailor - clothes that fit you perfectly make all the difference, but be critical and ask yourself if it is really feasible and worthwhile.
Go when you are hungry/tired/in a bad mood:
Thrifting can feel really exhausting and disappointing if you aren’t in the right headspace for it! Take a snack on the go with you and keep it fresh with our Nature Bee beeswax wraps :)
Buy things that you don’t love:
Chances are you won’t like it when you get it home, so leave it for someone else. Remember: you will never like it more than you do in the store!
Buy things that won’t work with clothes you already own:
Try to picture at least three different outfits I could wear with an item before I buy it. If you can’t think of anything to wear it with, chances are you won’t wear it at all, or you'll end up buying more clothes just to make it into an outfit.
Only go to one store:
Try both larger thrift stores Like Value Village as well as smaller places like: local vintage shops, charity consignment stores and markets, or even online shops on Ebay, Depop or etsy.
Buy things in bad shape:
Unless you are willing and able to mend something, don’t buy things with (unintentional) rips, stains, pills or defaults - if you have the option, things in better condition will be more durable and you will get more wear out of them.
Buy more than you need:
It can be tempting to buy things that are really cool or a good deal even if they don’t fit or aren’t your style, but these things just take up space in your closet that you could be filling with clothes you’ll actually wear.
Forget to bring your reusable Nature Bee Tote bag:
Once you’ve followed all of our Do’s and Don’ts, you’ll need something to bring all your awesome thrift finds home!
We hope these tips help you love thrifting as much as we do! And to everyone headed back to school this fall: all of us here at the Hive are rooting for you - you got this!