RE-LOVED: Tips on Buying Second Hand Outerwear

written by JILL November 17, 2016
second hand

Growing up I was one of those kids that ALWAYS shopped at the local second hand thrift store for back to school clothes. I remember my mom always getting us hyped to go to Value Village, the VV boutique. It got old quick because like most kids, I wanted to be like all the rest who were getting NEW and ‘cool’ back to school outfits.

I would never have thought then that those years of thrifting experiences would turn into a strong and successful second hand thrifting skill as an adult!

I love a good second hand store. For those fellow thrifters reading, isn’t it just the best feeling when you find that great quality-good condition-just what you needed find?

Now for those of you who aren’t veteran thrifters or who are interested in the idea but don’t know where to begin, then I will share with you my main go to tip for thrifting and that is to start buying your outerwear from a thrift store.

I love jackets and outerwear… I would have more jackets in my closet than shirts if I could (mainly because I am always cold), however outerwear can get very expensive and for fair reasons. Over the years I have found some of the coolest and greatest quality jackets from thrift stores.

My favourite second hand jackets have been these here:

Wool Camel Duffel Coat

Cashmere/ Wool Camel Top Coat

Authentic Leather Bomber Jacket

Cozy Minimal Trench Coat

They have always been a steal of a deal and most of them I’ve had for several years and because of their timeless style they seem to never get old or outdated!

Since it’s coming to that time of the year where warmth is a sought after commodity, I’d like to share with you just a few relevant thrifting tips about buying just the right second hand outerwear piece:

  • Purchase neutral colored items with minimal to no pattern
  • Find the timeless styles like the camel coat, bomber or trench so they can transition fashion trends well
  • Don’t settle, there are good quality gems out there you just have to find them
  • Don’t be afraid of little alterations (for example, my camel top coat had more buttons and shoulder pads that I removed)

Thrifting is not only a reward in and of itself when you find a great deal, but it also promotes sustainable purchasing helping to improve the environment. The fashion industry is the world’s second largest polluter next to the oil industry. The amount of clothing that is thrown away or not used is incredible.

According to stats taken from Value Village’s website:

North Americans send more than 10.5 million tons of wearable waste to landfills each year, not to mention the increased impact when you add in the rest of the world. In fact, only around 15% of used clothing gets recycled or donated, giving textiles one of the poorest recycling rates of any reusable material. That’s even more shocking when you realize around 95% of the textile waste sitting in our landfills today, is actually recyclable.

Value Village

Buying second hand clothing supports sustainability from the pure fact that you are reusing and recycling other people’s unwanted and unneeded clothing. The saying that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure is exactly applicable when it comes to thrifting.

It also not only promotes purchase recycling, but being a recycling contributor yourself through giving your unwanted goods away to people you know or your local thrift store supports sustainability in the same way.

So grab some of your old clothes and head on over to your local thrift store to find that next great deal (or more specifically a solid ‘new’ outerwear piece)!

Remember… reduce, reuse and recycle.

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