The 5 Best Thrift Store Finds for the Holidays

Thursday, December 6, 2012

According to Google Analytics, 36.44% percent of Recycled Fashion blog readers reside in the United States, compared to 16% of Australian's, and 9% Brits.

What this means, is a large number of you, would be familiar with thrift stores rather than my frequently mentioned op shops.

This also means that a large number of you reading this blog will be wearing clothing for a cooler climate. As your companions situated in the Southern Hemisphere are bracing for hot days, dusting off their bikini's, shorts, sandals and sunhats, you're pulling out your winter coats, boots and thermals.

Freelance writer Lindsay Parrich has written a guest blog post for Recycled Fashion, focusing on the best thrift store finds for the holidays situated in the Northern Hemisphere:

 The 5 Best Thrift Store Finds for the Holidays

Even if you're a thrift store regular, always out for the most fashionable bargains, you might not think about heading there for your seasonal holiday fashions - but you should!

After all, some of your holiday fashion items are probably only going to be worn once or twice - or at least only once or twice a year. Why not save some of your hard-earned cash for things like gifts and plane tickets home to visit your family? And, of course, shopping at thrift stores means that you might find some awesome vintage attire, like Randy's snowsuit from A Christmas Story. That's holiday-themed, right?

Here are five of the best kinds of holiday attire to look for at thrift stores this year. And who knows, you might even be able to put together an entire outfit!

Scarves. Inherently a cold-weather accessory, your chances of running across a holiday-themed scarf emblazoned with Frosty the Snowman, Santa Claus, or the ever popular reindeer is actually fairly good. Scarves are fantastic thrift store finds because they're easy - you never really have to worry about whether it's going to fit or not!

(Editors note - drooling over this vintage teal soft wool scarf available to buy via CaptainCat)

Hats. Here's another item that isn't hampered by the thrift store size factor, because unless you have a giant head (or, I suppose, a really tiny one), most hats you find are likely to fit. You can find everything from baseball caps to fedoras if your store is a good one, but for a holiday theme, it's best to go for the traditional knitted pull-down caps - with or without the puffy ball on top. Find one that matches your scarf and you're on the right track. Alternatively, if you run across a novelty Santa, elf, or even Christmas tree hat, they can be hard to pass up if your goal is to dress up for a holiday party.

Coats. Yes, the weather outside is frightful, but why spend hundreds on a quality winter coat when you can find a great bargain at your local thrift store? You can go for the layered look of lighter hoodies and jackets, or pick up a true cold weather coat, complete with insulated lining and extended length for extra warmth. If you can match it to your new hat and scarf, you get bonus fashion points.

(Editors best ever thrifted winter coat)

Boots. What kind of boots? That's between you and your thrift store. You can go for old school galoshes in holiday colors, fluffy insulated boots that make your feet feel like they're in a sauna, or designer label styles for a tenth of the price you'd pay in a regular store. Really, you want whatever's going to work best with your ensemble, and that means different things for different people.

(Editors thrifted boot collection)

Holiday sweaters. The pi├Ęce de r├ęsistance. Love them or hate them, holiday sweaters are a staple of the season. Buying yours at a thrift store gives you the opportunity to do a number of things. First off, you can keep yourself from spending big on something you're almost guaranteed to never want to wear again… at least until the next holiday party. Second, you can find some truly horrible vintage sweaters that just have to be shared with the world for the sake of hilarity. And finally, where else are you even going to have a chance at finding that atrocious sweater grandma bought you 10 years ago that "accidentally" got tossed?

  (Sweater for sale on WinterGreenVintage)

about the author: Lindsay Parrich’s passion for fashion directly translates to her day job as a freelance writer. When she’s not writing poignant articles about frugal fashion techniques, she can be found working for Bird-X, a company offering humane, eco-friendly, pest and bird control products, and passionately writing about environmental issues.


Patti said...

Great post, Erica. I have found some amazing boots at thrift stores - some that I wear every day. You won't catch me in a themed sweater though -- I'm a little too seasoned to pull off the irony! : >

Geminae said...

I always wondered what the "op" in op shop stands for.

Gracey at Fashion for Giants said...

Great post. I'm a huge fan of thrifting and almost all of my coats are from thrift stores. As a result, I have a lot of coats, but they're great!

Kelly Wayne said...

Hehe, it wouldn't be a 'winter' chrissy for some, without the obligatory christmas sweater!!! Kx

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