When looking for new wardrobe pieces, handbags, and shoes throughout the year, you might want to consider pre-owned or secondhand items rather than purchasing brand new off the rack pieces. Over the last several year, repurposing and purchasing unique items from thrift stores, or previous owners online, has burst into popularity. With so many different options on where to buy second hand previously owned clothing, there are a few important tips to keep in mind regardless of where you are purchasing your gently used items from. There is not a better or worse place to shop for previously owned pieces, some people prefer thrift stores, others prefer high-end consignment shops, and there has been quite a boom in websites where people can individually sell clothing they no longer want.
There are many reasons why purchasing pre-owned clothing, handbags, and shoes has become so popular, and one of these reasons is because people are more environmentally conscious of the effects of fast fashion on other societies as well as the environment. Additionally for more luxurious and designer pieces like handbags or shoes, it is a welcome alternative to purchase gently used second items in this space rather than having to purchase them brand new. Often times, people will sell their designer purses and shoes after only a season of wear, and opt to sell them in order to continue renewing the pieces in their closets throughout the year.
Without further adieu here are the top tips for buying pre-owned clothing, handbags, and shoes in 2020. Hopefully you find them to be helpful and comforting in your search for your technically not new, but new to you pieces!
Tip Number 1
Consider what style you most identify with. Thinking about the style that most likely describes your wardrobe is essential in figuring out which pieces are worth purchasing and which ones will most likely never get taken out of your closet. The idea is to be very conscientious and mindful of what you are purchasing and why. If you are getting something that is gently worn and has had a previous owner, you might be more willing to overlook any imperfections with the items you are interested in, then you would be if it is an item that you maybe are half sold on.
For example, let’s say you found the most perfect seller for used Gucci bags but the only downside is they might come with a scuff mark or two, along with previously owned shoes, but if it is a handbag or a shoe that fits so seamlessly with your everyday wardrobe you probably won’t mind the imperfections. In fact, you might even be so bold as to learn how to repair minor imperfections like this.
Tip Number 2
Check out all of the images of an item, or inspect each item in person very thoroughly before purchasing. Keep in mind that when you purchase a used or second hand items you likely will not be able to return it.
Tip Number 3
The dreaded vintage smell…whenever you purchase a second hand item you will probably come across some funky smells whether you are in a shop or if you receive a parcel in the mail with your desired item. Fortunately with clothing you can easily get rid of the “vintage” smell simply by washing the items a few times in a row on a gentle cycle and then hanging the item out to air dry.
While a handbag or shoes might be a little more difficult, you can actually clean these items as well. For example, if you have gorgeous Louis Vuitton or used Gucci bags that have been stowed away in someone else’s home for years before you purchased them, you can opt for a specialized handbag and shoe cleaner and conditioner that are optimized for cleaning leather products. These specialized cleaners and conditioners can be found online and often times can give you an added layer of protection for your gently used items to last even longer.
Tip Number 4
Find a great drycleaner! You might have purchased an item that is not machine or hand washable and requires much more delicate care to clean. It is highly recommended that when purchasing vintage items that you also check out the reviews for the best dry cleaners in your area. Make sure you choose a dry cleaner that has experience in luxury or high-end clothing and will ensure a great result for your lovely new vintage items.
Tip Number 5
If you are someone who prefers purchasing pre-owned items in person rather than online, and enjoys the process of searching for those ideal pieces that will mesh perfectly with your wardrobe from a thrift store or consignment shop, then this tip is for you. Thrift stores are a revolving door for some real gems and while some might need a little more polishing than items your find online, you can find really great pieces and take them home straight away without having to wait and see the quality later on. The major tip to remember here is to ask your favorite thrift stores when the best days are to come in and shop every week.
Tip Number 6
Search for estate sales near you! Generally when there is an estate sale, it is typically because there is a person that has passed away or alternatively has moved on to live in a retirement home and have decided to sell everything in their house rather than keeping it. While this might seem a little doom and gloom, they are quite common, and you are sure to find one in a neighborhood nearby. Estate sales are known to typically have high quality vintage items that have lasted the test of time and are gladly sold to a new owner.
While estate sales will have a mixture of furniture, clothing, shoes, jewelry, and even handbags, it can always be a hit or miss. The person having an estate sale might not be your size in clothing or shoes, but maybe you will be able to find some really cool vintage bags that you would not be able to find anywhere else.
Tip Number 7
Overall the most important tip when considering buying pre-owned clothes is to have an open mind and a level of appreciation towards an item that was carefully made by someone else. Understanding that taking on a second hand item can be a great thing to do for the environment and to be more pensive about your purchases.
Hopefully you have found these tips helpful on your journey to your “new” pre-owned items. This is a trend that has become more popular in recent years but additionally creates a greater level of connection and appreciation to the pieces you place in your closet.
Image Courtesy: pinterest.com and coutureusa.com