i grew up as a thrifty shopper. i would always go with my parents to value village to rummage through large racks and deep bins of clothes to discover some affordable “new” gems.
the need to find a good deal has stuck with me. rarely do i purchase a clothing item full price. hand on heart, the first place i go to in every store is the back corner where the clearance items lie: i power walk my ass to those bright orange stickers.
some of my favourite places to find a great steal:
old navy. great clearance (online and in store). free shipping on orders over $50
(PRO TIP: order $50 worth of items even if you only want one pair of $10 jeans. they have free returns and include a return label and bag/box to ship it back in. i do this all the time!) my last trip i walked out with a $5 toque and two $2 comfy long-sleeved shirts. i’ll take it!
joe fresh. their website has gotten a lot better with a big clearance section and free shipping on order $50 and over, but in store (and i’m talking about shopping the aisles of clothes in between the meat counter and frozen peas) can be fabulous! their pyjama sets are a great buy after christmas as they go for under $10 and make a great gift. i’ve also purchased a jean jacket for $9, Thinsulate winter gloves for $6, and a great dress for $7.
target. sad day when that place left Canada just as soon as it appeared. i used to get the best deals there! i still do, whenever i make a trip over the boarder. their clearance section is out of this world! i always walk out with some sort of cardigan with animals on it or a pencil skirt for work.
independent second hand stores and garage sales. “Off the Rack” in Barrie comes to mind. i love this place as they have a “free” room where all of the clothing and accessories are free for those in need. the rest of their clothes are very, very affordable, $2-8 range. i walked out with a new (with tag) black cape coat from joe fresh (of course). there’s also a place in Midland (near where I live) called “Team Reds” and almost all of their clothing is $2 on Tuesdays. needless to say, i go a little wild. and don’t feel guilty whatsoever.
i have actually stopped supporting the big companies and have been more inclined to browse the independent second hand stores. it supports local families and local business and keeps the community blooming. the prices are also much better. i tend to donate only to these places as well.
unfortunate as it is, i think there still tends to be a stigma with buying things second hand. i think it is a great way to recycle, save money, and find some really cool items. yes, inspect the items to check for rips or tears. yes, you are technically able to buy undergarments there but nobody is forcing you to. everything else? jeans? sweaters? a cute dress? that’s what washing machines are for!
i’ll be the first to admit that i’ve never been one to need to be in style. i wear what fits, looks decent, affordable and TIMELESS. i still wear items i had in high school. 90% of my clothes are clearance or second-hand.
if you haven’t given any independent shops a chance – try it. you may surprise yourself! you never know what you may find!