I used to have this thing against thrift shops. I just had a problem with the idea of wearing someone else's clothes. Plus, those shops always seemed so dingy and dusty. Wasn't everything they sold stained or torn? Even when I made slightly above minimum wage and lived in a converted garage, I couldn't bring myself to wear someone else's sweater.
Recently my views have changed as I (re)discovered a couple of wonderful thrift shops near my home, one of which is really a consignment shop. Each has its own unique personality and vibe. As I type this, I am wearing a skirt that I purchased from one of them and I don't feel musty or anything.
The Junior League of Long Island Thrift Shop
1395 Old Northern Blvd (aka Main Street in Roslyn)
Roslyn, NY 11576
I know, I know. "Junior League"? Isn't that a bunch of futzy women who wear white gloves and play golf? That was my first impression when I visited this shop many years ago - it seemed to be filled with, well, old gloves and golf skirts. My, times have changed - or perhaps it's my perception that has changed. This is now a beautiful, spacious shop filled with light and fabulous clothes (plus furniture, etc.). The merchandise is donated and the proceeds go to charity. I have not checked to see which charities benefit, so I'm hoping they are charities that aren't evil 'cause I love the clothes. Last year, I bought a silk scarf here for $2. In recent days, I've purchased an H&M skirt (which I am wearing today), an Ann Taylor Loft dress, and two tops from Kimchi and Blue and Free People. Favorite moment: walking up to the register and having the cashier say, "Well, this is from the designer rack, so it's $9." Yeah, I can cover that. All of those goodies were about $50 total.
Time and Again
101 Manorhaven Blvd
Port Washington, NY 11050
This shop is within walking distance of my home. I passed by it every single day over the past two and a half years and NEVER WENT INSIDE until a month or two ago! Why? I think it was the old musty thing again. For some ridiculous reason, I formed the mistaken idea that this shop was run and frequented by blue haired ladies with poor taste. When I finally got up the nerve to visit for the first time, wow, was I surprised. Granted, this shop is much smaller than the Junior League shop and it is stuffed, I mean STUFFED, with clothes. Amazing clothes. Designer clothes. It's a true consignment shop, which I love - you can drop off your gently used treasures and either get 40% cash or 50% store credit when they sell. Each person who participates gets a code, so you can look for stuff from C20 or M2. It's like a fun clothing club! And the owner, Cece? She is absolutely delightful. Since that first foray, I have purchased a lacy St. John vest, an Ann Taylor shell, a pink terry skirt from Abercromie & Fitch, a bright yellow Banana Republic cardigan, a tropical print dress from Anthropologie, and a floral skirt with a lacy red overlay (I'm sure I'm forgetting something). This was all well below $100 - probably closer to $50.
My size has fluctuated somewhat over the past year (umm, down, this time), so this has been an economical and super fun way to restock my closet! Now I just need to keep myself from shopping in these stores every day!