Friday, August 26, 2011

Thrift Store Challenge

Phew! The work/school week has flown by and despite all my intentions to post during the week, it just didn't happen.  I don't have a travel post for you right now, as I have lots of neat things and ideas going on right now that I want to share.

I, like anyone that isn't under a rock, am a Pinterest fiend.  You can see my collection of boards here.  If you are a user of Pinterest, you are familiar with the "outfit" photos that circulate.  All these photos are created from using Polyvore.  Polyvore* is a website that allows you to mix and match outfit items to create what you would deem a "perfect x outfit".  Often, I see "coffee date", "fall", "work" as the taglines to these wardrobe inspirations.  Users can mix and match tops/bottoms/accessories from different brands to help them mimic a celebrity look or to simply plan an outfit.  This could be a good tool if you have a piece that are you looking for coordinating items to go with.
 *disclaimer, I do not know if Polyvore allows to do the same coordination for men's clothing/children's clothing
Here are some that I am a fan of:
ooh summery

I am not sure what that jewelry is, but I love everything else about this outfit

mmm Fall

This is "going out" for me!

The days are winding down that I can wear this...

Cute weekend outfit
  Now, I don't personally use Polyvore to create these outfits, rather I "repin" from other Pinterest users.  If you browse the Fashion pages on Pinterest, you will see many different options like this:

A little preview of Pinterest (ew I am not a fan of those Hello Kitty nails)
So, now that I have sufficiently blabbed enough about these outfit inspiration pictures and Pinterest, onto the meat of it! After seeing these photos, I feel this compulsion to go out and buy clothing so that I can assemble these outfits.  I have never been too terribly fashionable, but I find that with a little bit of inspiration, I can look presentable cute.

The problem is that I don't have the money to just buy the pieces to assemble the outfits, and nor do I want to just give into my impulses.  Additionally, I am working on buying more of my clothing used/from thrift stores (sometimes there are new, donated items!) for economical and sustainability reasons. 

So I am going to challenge myself to assemble outfits inspired by these 'pins' purchasing items only from thrift stores/consignment shops!  Here are my guidelines:
  • The purchased outfits merely need to be inspired by the photos, not exact replicas.
  • I can not purchase from upscale consignment shops that are selling designer goods.  This challenge is meant for scouring the Goodwills of America.
  • If I own a pair of shoes/boots that adequately complete the outfit, I do not need to find those at a thrift store (especially since I own only "basics", that most women have and can easily produce to replicate an outfit).
  • If I do not own a pair of shoes that coordinate, I will simply prove (through a photo) that I can find those shoes at a thrift store, I do not have to purchase them. (I am not a shoe collector for a reason, so no need to start)
  • If I already own a basic component of an outfit (i.e. teeshirt or similar jeans), I do not have to purchase them, but prove (like the unowned shoes) that it CAN be found at a thrift store.
  • I will provide the costs and place of purchase for each item of clothing.
  • Outfits can be purchased at different stores on different days.
  • I can use any inspiration board I find (and like!) on Pinterest, not merely the 6 pictured here.  
I am excited to get this started! In full disclosure, I haven't started this project yet. I don't know if its even possible.  I plan on hitting up some thrift stores tomorrow for clothing and furniture, so I wanted to issue this challenge to myself before then.  Hopefully I will be stylish for less (money and waste!) soon.

Why Am I Doing This?
I am hoping to prove that you can be frugal and sustainable without compromising your fashion sense or whatever else you may want to pursue.  This was spurred by a break room discussion about ways to save money.  One woman was advocating for thrift stores 100%.  She buys clothing for her kids every 6-8 weeks, and sells back (we have a sell-back thrift store chain in/around Iowa City) what she purchased the previous visit! Genius!  Not everyone thought this was the most desirable way to dress your family, and I realized that thrift stores have this stigma that you can't get anything good/cute/nice there.
I want to prove that I can save money and look fashionable at the same time.  Let's hope I don't prove myself wrong. 

No comments:

Post a Comment