Monday, May 8, 2017

What? To Look for when Thrift Shopping

Thrift shopping can be daunting the first few times a person does it for a lot of reasons. I always do a quick assessment of the establishment as soon as I walk in the door. A shop that is clean and tidy and well organized is always a better experience. This normally means that the clothing has been checked better before it hits the floor. 

Basic rules to follow when Thrift Shopping:
- look for flaws - stains in underarms, collars and inseams - always check for any signs of discolouration 
                          - holes - Hold the item up to the light if possible this should make any small holes more noticable. This may sometimes be a problem as many shops do not have much natural light. But do your best.
                          - check all seams to see if they are intact
                          - make sure zippers and snaps still function
                          - see if garment is missing any buttons
- read the labels - fabric content
                          - washing instructions
Other things to check for - Touch and even caress the fabric to judge feel of the garment. Ask yourself is it something you personally like the feel of. Do a scrunch taste to check the wrinkle factor.                          
                                         - Pilling of fabric - Closely examine any area where friction occurs. Think about the human body and what areas have a tendency to rub against each other. This is important to remember with activewear. Some cheaper knits also pill easily.
                                         - In activewear it is also important to check the underarms and crotch area for sweat damage. If fabric is relaxed but looks wavy anywhere there has been damage to the integrity of the fabric, so you should pass on the garment.

If you have basic handstitching skills many simple fixes can be accomplished. Knowing how to sew a blind hem can be quite beneficial. Often someone has gotten rid of a skirt, dress or pair of pants just because they don't want to deal with the loose hem.

Other simple fixes are if there is wear on the hem of a pair of pants, maybe they could just be shortened into capris or perhaps you have shorter legs then the previous owner. If there is a stain or wear on the cuff of a top, you could add some trim to hide the fact or shorten the sleeves. Loose or lost buttons can often be reattached or replaced. 
Zippers and snaps are not always a simple fix. Unless you have experience replacing a zipper maybe pass on the garment. As for snaps check what type of snap needs replacing as they vary greatly.

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