By Angela Lince

Imagine being able to save the environment, save your money, and feel fabulous after a shopping trip. You might be thinking it’s too good to be true, but it’s quite the opposite. To start your journey into becoming a champion of shopping you must rear away from malls, or any store that sells brand new clothing items.

So where do we go now? What you’re left with are second-hand shops. You can call these, thrift stores, consignment shops, resale stores, and antique and vintage stores. Although each store specializes in selling certain used goods, there is one item they all have in common … Clothing. Whether it’s a plain white t-shirt or a retro polka dot dress, you’ll be amazed at the unique pieces you can discover.

woman looks through second-hand clothes
College student, Sarah Rubin, files through clothes for unique pieces at her local second-hand shop.

“It’s like digging for treasure,”avid thrift shopper, Sarah Rubin said after spotting some great items. Rubin believes second-hand shopping is great for people of lower incomes. “It helps people feel included and also gives the best deals on clothes,” Rubin adds.

Rubin’s all-time favorite second-hand purchased was an American Eagle burnt-orange dress. It’s length hit right before her knees, and its rustic color added a 70s flavor. “The quality was great,” Rubin said.

owner bagging clothes
Dress Code owner, Julie Woodley, bags items for her next friendly second-hand shop customer.

Dress Code consignment shop owner, Julie Woodley, is quite the expert when it comes to understanding the second-hand clothing world. Woodley has owned Plattsburgh’s Dress Code for seven years. This has shown her the truth and benefits behind shopping second-hand. With this experience, Woodley states that the four biggest benefits of being a used clothing community member are “recycling, saving money, donating and keeping up with trends,”Woodley said.

Woodley mentions that although certain styles might be out of your comfort-zone, it’s cheap. Experiment with your look without forking over hundreds of dollars.

second-hand ring
Woodley flaunts a second-hand favorite that she found within her own shop.

Woodley has discovered many treasured items within the donation piles of her own shop. A few of her favorites include an L.L. Bean Hardware jacket, a North Face long, down jacket and a Kate Spade bag. Woodley mentions her admiration towards these items due to their “like new” look.

Cache Elegant consignment shop owner, Barbara Hugus is another knowledgeable source in the “second-hand world”. Hugus mentions her favorite second-hand find,  “a watercolor painting.” The painting consisted of the colors, orange, green and yellow. To top off the artwork is a vintage gold frame. Hugus found her cherished item at local shop in downtown Plattsburgh, N.Y., the “Antique and Variety Mall.”

Hugus also discussed her own take on the beneficial reasons behind shopping second-hand. “You can dress for less and if you’re transitioning in weight gain or loss, this is the best option for you,” Hugus said.

According to Winona Dimeo-Ediger, writer for the women’s lifestyle website, The Frisky, “Whether you decide to buy a couple of new things to bridge the gap between your old and new sizes, have all your old stuff tailored to fit, or wait to hit your goal weight and buy a whole new wardrobe, just make sure you always have a few things in your closet that make you feel beautiful and confident.”

 

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