Hipsters know the rules. And which ones to break. Vintage and thrift shopping takes some serious skill and patience. Here’s how you can score your favorite fashion finds on a dime.

Tips for Vintage and Thrift Shopping

Don’t Have a Plan

If you plan to walk into Goodwill and find the perfect fitting gown for your next formal event, you’re likely to leave empty-handed. Thrifting and vintage shopping is best done with an open mind. You never know what you’ll find, so having expectations is a moot point.

Ease Worries

Some people are germaphobes and can’t get past the idea of thrift store shopping. Often the stores are messy, the clothes smell, and there are racks and racks of junk. And then you find Dolce and Gabbana. Score. If you have serious fears of germs take along antibacterial lotion and take your finds straight to the dry cleaners so you can wear without worry.

Try Things On

Today’s sizing differs drastically from days gone past. Try things on and try on everything. You never know which cuts will flatter you. If you always go back to your trusty silhouettes you might miss the opportunity of turning heads in a seriously sexy dress.

Let Things Speak to You

When you vintage shop you should only buy the things you truly love. You probably already know your true style so once you find those items that reflect it, ask yourself if you love it or like it before you even dare look at the price tag. An affordable garment will be a costly mistake, even if it’s just $5. Buying something you’ll never wear is like throwing money out the window. There’s no point to it.

Organize Your Closet

Knowing what you need before you set off thrifting will help you stay focused during your search. As mentioned you’re not likely to find the EXACT garments you had in mind, but a list detailing the missing pieces from your closet will certainly help you fill in the gaps without getting sidetracked on that vintage Halston dress that you’ll never wear anywhere.

Don’t Overpay

Shopping consignment stores is always an option, but bear in mind those recycled goods might have a heftier price tag, as the shop owners know their worth. Scour finds on eBay and Etsy and visit as many Goodwill and Salvation Army stores as you can. While the shopping experience may not feel as organized and upscale, the prices won’t bust your pocket book. And that means you’ll have the cash to buy that vintage Bonnie Cashin Coach bag you always coveted. For $10. That’s a thrifting success.

 

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