Basic ‘Do’s and ‘Don’ts of Thrift Shopping
- Try before you buy! If you find a piece you like, but you're unsure of the fit, try it! Things can look good on the hanger and weird when you put them on (and vice versa), so it's always better to try-before-you-buy! TFG offers a try-before-you-buy service and a two-week exchange period. What could be better?
- Think before you buy. Don't buy items that you'll end up tossing or giving away just because they don't go with anything. Instead, try to think of at least 3 looks that the piece you're about to buy would go with based on your wardrobe at home.
- Look for sustainable fashion. Look for materials that you like and that will stand the test of time. Opting for pieces that are made of materials such as cotton (like denim jeans), linen, suede, and leather will most likely become a wardrobe staple.
Budgeting and Quality
- How to set a thrifting budget. Decide a budget for your thrift spree by ensuring that the things you want and need are covered within the budget. One of the perks of vintage shopping is the thrill of finding hidden gems. TFG takes pride in our assortment of products, and their accessible pricing; one of our main goals is to make the world a place where thrifting products are as accepted as shop bought, and any fiscal gain along the way is a bonus for the charities TFG associate with!
- Quality check. Unless you're an expert in the area, you probably won't know whether the items are correctly priced. But using your gut feeling usually goes a long way. Avoid broken or faulty items but remember that items such as clothing can be tailored if they are a little small or big – just remember to factor this into your budget if possible. At TFG items are always priced appropriately depending on quality, age and brand.
Thrifty Fashion Tips
- Retaining your style. Fashion is fashion, no matter where you get your clothes from. Shopping for clothes you like from thrift or vintage stores is no different than buying from a high-end or a fast fashion retailer. The latest objects of my affection on the TFG website are a pair of Toms: . Not only do they have a unique aesthetic, but they’re also a pair that have helped an underprivileged child receive a free pair of shoes (under the TOMS one for one scheme).
- High-end fashion. Stick to what you like, even if it’s not objectively “in” and it will leave you with confidence and a look that withstands the test of time. As fun as it can be to buy that new trendy bag, those new shoes and that leather jacket, try to see if you can find these stylish items in vintage stores. Chances are that you'll find something similar to the high-end fashion retailer but for a fraction of the price and for a better cause.
Thrifting Advice for Beginners
Have fun! Thrifting is a never-ending story that only gets more and more fun as you learn what you like and evolve your style. Also, remember that thrifting is a much smaller investment than shopping for fast fashion or high-end fashion, which allows you to try new things and mix it up! Plus, you can always return your clothes to the thrift stores whenever you're tired of the pieces, which is a lovely bonus. If you have items to donate to TFG please click here.
Think of thrifting as a way to go lighter on your purse, and heavier on the crusade against climate change as well as helping others – and you will find the spark inside you to give it a chance if you haven’t already!
(Some responses have been edited by the team for length/clarity)