My love of thrift shopping started during my Sophomore year in college. I always loved fashion and styling but didn’t have unlimited funds to buy the clothes that I really wanted. I grew up flipping through fashion magazines and picking out which styles and pieces I loved the most.
Even though I didn’t have money to buy the looks I saw in the magazines; I always worked with what I had.
It was Sophomore year that I got my first car and I no longer had to depend on my parents’ money because I had two jobs (and also a full load of classes — #hustler). Since I had a car, I was able to drive around Winston-Salem (the town in North Carolina where my college is) and explore. This was the first time I ventured into a Goodwill. I’m not sure why I decided to go to Goodwill that day but I am glad that I did. When I walked in, I became exposed to a new realm of shopping and an abundance of gems. From oversized blazers, silk scarves, blouses and pants — Goodwill had pieces to quench my thirst for unique clothing to fit my style. The best thing about this experience was the price. I had finally found a way to afford the clothing that I wanted.
Since that day, thrifting became a hobby and a love for me. When I went home during holidays and summer break from college, I would thrift. My mom didn’t understand why I would want to wear someones used clothing but she came around to the idea once she started to see the clothing that I would find and the looks I put together.
I started thrifting with friends and in every city that I traveled to; I made sure to find a thrift store. I found boutique thrift stores, luxury thrift stores and those in between. Thrifting in different cities, states and countries is a dope experience because each store tells the unique story and vibe of the people in that area through the clothes, shoes and accessories that were once part of their lives.
Once I got to Johannesburg, I was determined to find thrift stores and I just knew that I would find covetable pieces. So far, I’ve been to 5 and while they all had amazing finds; my favorite is definitely Rags and Lace in Randburg. This thrift store is a bit big and filled with so many beautiful pieces. There are an abundance of designer pieces (Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Christian Louboutin, Prada…etc.) and lower-end items as well. What I love most about Rags and Lace is their blazer collection. I am obsessed with blazers at the moment and I always get excited when I find a blazer that is unique and fits well.
On the day I discovered Rags and Lace, I was flipping through the racks and there it was: my dream blazer. A beautiful muted lime green blazer with vintage gold and black buttons. It’s perfect for spring and summer and I immediately fell in love. I tried it on and knew it was the one when it fit like I had it tailored for myself.
I purchased the blazer, hung it in my closet and was beyond satisfied with my find.
It took me two weeks to wear the blazer but I wanted to wait for when it felt right. I took my braids out this past Saturday and decided on Sunday that it was the perfect day to wear my new blazer. I felt lighter (braids are super heavy!) and it was absolutely beautiful outside. Sunday was the epitome of a spring day — not too hot, not too cold and perfect — just like this green blazer.
To complete my look, I paired my blazer with white linen pants that cinched at the waist from Woolworth’s, a white sports bra that I’ve had for a while from Nordstrom Rack, white sling-back kitten heels from Jet and gold chunky earrings from Zara. I parted my hair to the side and wore a slicked ponytail. I wasn’t keen on carrying a handbag so I opted for my white drawstring shopping bag from Net-a-Porter (yes, I wore a shopping bag as a handbag haha). I kept my make-up natural and wore oval black sunnies from Cotton On.
I am a believer that if an outfit fits well; it immediately boosts your confidence.
As women, we can be very hard on ourselves so the days when we feel confident are vital and should be documented. I wore my outfit to lunch and church and managed to get a few shots in while enjoying the beautiful spring day.
If you’ve never been thrifting; don’t knock it.
If you’re patient and go in with an open-mind; you’re bound to find gems.