Sunday, December 18, 2011

$50 Professional Wardrobe - Thrifted

If you read last week's You Search, I Answer, you know the drill for this week, the only difference is that this week's post is entirely thrifted!

If you are trying to build a professional wardrobe on $200, you really have two options.  The first is to shop mass-market retail, the second is to buy your wardrobe second-hand.  This week I present to you the second hand version.

For me second-hand shopping extends beyond just the thrift store.  It's any type of venue were you can purchase pre-worn items.  I encourage you to explore all your options.  Look for second hand clothing at:
  • Thrift Stores
  • Resale Shops
  • Consignment Stores
  • Flea Markets
  • Vintage Stores
  • Yard Sales
  • Estate Sales
  • Clothing Swaps

When you're shopping second hand, you should be looking for the same types of items:
  • Blazers
  • Cardigans
  • Blouses
  • Button-Ups
  • Trousers
  • Pencil Skirts
  • Flats
  • Boots
  • Accessories
One thing you should look for in second-hand clothing is quality.  Chances are that for less money you can buy something of higher quality than you would find in the typical mass-market retail store.  When I'm in a thrift store or resale shop, I generally look for "nice" brands, ones I can't afford to buy often at full price.  I also find that vintage items tend to be of a higher quality than newer items.

Once again, I have taken six pieces of clothing, two pairs of shoes, and two belts (all from second-hand sources this time around), and made ten outfits, two weeks worth of work outfits.  I tried to use items similar to last week's post, just to prove that you can dress well and thriftily.

Last week's total for the professional wardrobe purchased retail was $191.59.  This week similar items purchased second-hand ring up at a sweet $51.50.  That's a $140.09 difference! 

$200 Wardrobe 1

Black Blazer - Ann Taylor, Local Thrift Store, $3.00
Maroon Cardigan - Worthington, Local Thrift Store, $4.00
Floral Blouse - Odille, Goodwill, $3.50
Button-Up - Banana Republic, Consignment Store, $5.00
Trousers - Banana Republic, Resale Shop, $10.00
Skirt - Vintage Oscar de la Renta, Goodwill, $4.00
Brown Boots - Vintage Joan and David Couture, Goodwill, $8.00
Black Boots - Nine West, Goodwill, $6.00
Brown Belt - Goodwill, $3.00
Black Belt - Vintage, Goodwill, $2.00

Total $51.50

$200 Wardrobe 2

Outfit 1 & 2

$200 Wardrobe 3

Outfit 3, 4, & 5

$200 Wardrobe 4

Ouftit 6 & 7

$200 Wardrobe 5

Outfit 8, 9, & 10

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