The 3 Benefits of Thrifting and Consigning

While you’re young, take advantage of your ability to slip into vintage without looking dated. From the neighborhood Goodwill to a hip Buffalo Exchange or swanky designer shop, thrift stores and consignment boutiques are where all the cool kids shop today. Pre-owned pieces are seriously beneficial in the sense that they are unique, eco-friendly, and high quality. Let me explain.

1—Unique. It’s a thrill to dig and find that rare piece of treasure! Thrifted or consigned apparel are sometimes historical and always one-of-a-kind; they are definitely unavailable at your local Forever 21, Zara, or H&M. Legendary costume designer, Patricia Field, admittedly prefers putting actors in used clothing. This way, film audiences are more focused on the plot rather than identifying which trendy retail stores the characters’ ensembles come from.

2—Eco-Friendly. Did you know that the textile industry is one of the largest polluters in the world? Cotton growth consumes a substantial amount of harmful pesticides and fertilizers, and textile treatment or dyeing contributes to 20 percent of fresh water pollution. If you care about the earth, you should consider buying secondhand. Clothes should be recycled because quite frankly, fashion trends follow a rotation. Contemporary styles frequently mimic looks from previous times. Thus, it is judicious to rock recycled, revamped, original, and most likely cheaper versions of the current craze.

3—Quality. Back in the day, mass-production did not exist. Moreover, products composed of fine construction and were created with exceptional handwork. Fabric was made with 100 percent natural fibers, rather than with synthetic fibers (polyester, rayon, viscose, etc.), which results in a rich and breathable feel. Detailing was hand sewn, stitched, embroidered, or beaded, for a delicate appearance. Beads were made of pure glass, rather than plastic, thus they glimmer under lights and clink with movement. Since pieces from the past are without a doubt luxurious, Fashionistas commonly tailor vintage to cater to their tastes and fit them like a glove.

Shopping gently-used attire can be a serendipitous and experimental experience. If you decide to wander into a thrift or consignment shop sometime, remember to wear a simple outfit that is easy for try on. Skim the entire store, keep an open mind (don’t look for specific items), and don’t let sizes constrict you to certain areas (different decades rely on different scales). With practice, patience, as well as an eye for design, you will soon begin to understand Macklemore’s enthusiasm for thrifting!

Have you ever thrifted or consigned?  What kind of gems did you find? Let us know in the comments below!

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Kitty Wu

​​Hello! My name is Kitty Wu, I'm from Virginia Beach, and I am a Fashion Merchandising and Design student at Virginia Tech. I am currently serving the Fashion Merchandising and Design Society as Secretary for the second year, and I am also a member of the Scholarship as well as Recruitment committees for Kappa Alpha Theta. My hobbies include creating art, reading, exercising, and hiking. I would say that my three strongest attributes regard in communication, responsibility, and art. Firstly, my background in the service industry as well as leadership associations has enhanced my communication skills. I am comfortable in interacting in a team, and always respecting as well as considering the ideas of others. Secondly, I acknowledge the importance of responsibility. When given a task, I consistently complete the assignment on time and to the best of my ability. I believe that I will be an asset to my co- workers as I follow directions sufficiently, work well with others, and am always eager to learn. Finally, I won the "Art Senior of the Year" award in high school, and was able to transfer 6 AP Studio Art credits along with 6 AP Art History credits into college. My passion for art and fashion prove that I have an eye for colors, design, and details. I am hardworking and always devoted to my job. In the future, I hope to land a career in the creative side of the fashion field. For more information, please visit me on the following sites! LinkedIn: Facebook: Instragam:

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