So I love consignment shops. There’s something very rewarding about digging through items that others have sold or discarded; it makes me wonder what type of stories lay within clothing. Where did these shoes travel? Who wore this beautiful pin? What memorable moments did this blouse have in its previous life?
Sure, you typically have to dig through garbage to find those treasures, but it’s so worth it. Even upscale places will carry items you inevitably find ugly or dated, but vintage pieces are buried in these racks, and plus sizes are often easier to find. Also, if you’re in search of brand names, you’ll find them in any secondhand store, even Salvation Army.
There are oodles of blogs and magazines that offer some great tips for first-time thrift shoppers. The best tip I can give is to not overthink it as you grab items. Forget sizes or outfit combos; if you like it and it looks like it could fit, throw it in your cart or over your arm. Wait until you’re in the dressing room to make any final decisions.
I had occasion to shop at a place called Clothes Mentor, located in Allentown, PA. I went on Mother’s Day, which was lucky since they were having a 20% off sale. I had won a $50 gift card at a lovely Mother’s Day dinner, which included a raffle at BRAVO!.
For the record, the man and woman who helped me were incredibly friendly, and the dressing rooms actually have doors that close and lock (I’ve had women pull curtains on me several times now while trying things on). This place had a ton of stuff, but you do have to take your time and do some digging.
I wanted to share the great items I found at Clothes Mentor:
This sweet blouse from Old Navy was actually new and still had its original tags, but it’s still a good idea to wash any clothing you pick up from a secondhand store, even if it’s brand new. This blouse is light cotton with a pretty floral pattern, perfect for warmer weather.
These jeans are a great find. Jennifer Lopez boyfriend! I needed a pair that was a bit skinnier than what I’m used to (I’m a huge fan of flares, regardless of what’s in or out of style). These are a light wash with just a bit of ripping on the sides (strategic, not from wear and tear), and best of all, they can be rolled up to show off cute sandals or boat shoes for spring and summer.
I know it’s May, but I couldn’t resist. At a great price and an adorable pattern (I’m a sucker for patterns), this coat was meant to be mine. It’s by Apt. 9, it’s lined, and it has real pockets! Don’t you hate when pants or coats just look like they have pockets, but they don’t? Silly.
During this shopping trip, I also picked up a great shirt for my mom (It was Mom’s Day!). With the sale going on, I didn’t even spend all of my gift card. I’m a happy girl. I highly recommend stopping by Clothes Mentor. They also carry shoes (organized on top of racks, just like at Plato’s Closet), lots of handbags (I saw a Victoria’s Secret beach tote for less than $20), a decent selection of jewelry, and even some lotions and fragrances (a lot of Avon, it seemed).