clothes on a rack

Five tips to help you find the best vintage clothing

By: Mursal Rahman

Second-hand shopping is on the rise in countries around the world, including Canada. A 2019 report by ThredUp, conducted by GlobalData, showed that “resale has grown 21 times faster than the new apparel market in the last three years.” The report said that people between the ages of 18-37 are 2.5 times more likely to buy used clothing. The majority of people shopping second-hand are those from Generation Z, followed next by Millennials. There are also many online thrift stores like ThredUp, and Urban Outfitters vintage that sell second-hand clothing. For all of you who are interested in thrifting, we’ve gathered the best tips to help you find great pieces. 

    1. Have something specific in mind

    Thrift shopping can be overwhelming because there’s so much to choose from. It’s easier if you go in with something specific in mind or bring in pictures. For example, if your mind is set on finding a shirt with polka dots, you won’t be intimidated by the plethora of options. Have an idea of what you want to find and know that you may have to go to multiple thrift stores to find what you’re looking for. 

    2. Check each item for quality

    Although thrift stores make an effort to check if the items are in good condition, always remember to double-check to make sure there are no stains or holes.

    3. Re-work old vintage and tailor your items

    If you really love something that you find second-hand but has holes in it, try sewing it. If you see a maxi dress or skirt that you think could look better, try hemming it into a mini dress or skirt. You can take interesting pieces you find from thrift shops and re-work them into new ones. Don’t forget, thrift shops don’t carry a variety of sizes. If you find something you like but it isn’t your size, then you might need to take it to a tailor.

    4. Try on the items if you can

    Not all thrift shops have fitting rooms, but if you find one that does allow you to try on clothes, then you should take advantage of that. It’s best to try on items to see how they look and fit, especially if you’re not familiar with the brand and its sizes.

    5. Patience 

You have to be patient. It’s going to take time until you find what you’re looking for. If you don’t have patience, you won’t enjoy thrifting. Always ask when your local thrift shop re-stocks. Tell the employees what you’re looking for, so if or when they get something similar, they can notify you.

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