Hey, Hep Cats! You know what’s the bees knees?
GOODWILL. & other underrated thrift shops.
One of my lovely roomies & I went to Goodwill this fine morning for some Finals Week stress relief alongside procuring some gorgeous outfits. Our Uni Goodwill boasted some fiiiiiiine finds this week for us. I got at least 3 swingable skirts for Greenwood in a few weeks. So, my friends, an abbreviated guide to thrift shopping for the lindy hopper that will even get Macklemore singing.
1. Divide and conquer- As in war, this is a golden rule. Go with a close friend to avoid unnecessary overlap. Also, have him/her pick out something cute for you! This is how E & I amassed 8 buyable items from the abyss of donated goods.
2. Scan it like a Librarian – Seriously, I went back to my shelving days for this one. Learn how to skim through those skirts, shirts & shorts like nobody’s business.
3. Get an Eye for Texture – Know which fabrics irritate your skin or won’t make friends with the laundry machine. It might look cute now, but will it be cute with hives? I didn’t think so.
4. Your Colors – What makes your eyes pop? Will it catch that Lead’s eyes on the dance floor? Have at least a few basics in black and navy, but don’t be afraid to throw on a crazily patterned skirt or shirt, muted by another neutral item
5. Get Comfortable with Your Figure – You know how dancing makes you more bodily aware? Apply that in the thrift store territory. A-line skirts are usually universally flattering, whereas a few types look amazing in pencil skirts. Perhaps you are one of those lucky girls who can pull off front pockets. Try on some different shapes until you look drop dead swingable, lady.
6. Pop the Tag – Not all brands are created equal. Sometimes, homemade items are just as sturdy and elegant as the name brands. Sometimes…not so much. Move around in your items, even dance in them. I got a skirt from The Limited which moves perfectly. A similar skirt from Loft or some other brand? Perhaps not so much. Get to that fitting room, pronto.
7. Don’t Skimp on Accessories – Two words: red bandanna. These are suuuuuuper cheap here. I got mine for only 99 cents! *moment of astonishment* Yeah, I know…cray. Look for colorful scarves and accessories here to bedeck yourself on the dance floor. I favor getting plastic and fabric flowers for hair decore. Experiment!
8. Peruse the Gents – Don’t forget the men’s section! You can easily roll up a pair of tuxedo trousers for a cute, vintage look. Borrow from the boys and you win. Vests and oversized dress shirts can be uber sexy when done right.
9. Be Creative – Think outside the confines of which the garment was made. Formal jacket? Roll up the sleeves for a comfy cardigan alternative that looks tres chic on the dance floor. Nice tie? Try using it to belt your skirt or as a hair flower. Yeah, I know.
10. Test Yourself – If you’re drawn to something, take a second to think through the events you could wear it to. A plain black pencil skirt is way more versatile than a shiny baroque mini skirt. Nevertheless, to each her own. If you know you’re going to wear that baby thin, BUY it…especially at $3.50 a pop.
Most of all, have fun with this. If you don’t find anything you love, at least you can goof around with your best friends in ridiculous costume clothing.
Love & Swing,