Thursday, October 1, 2009

Thrift Store Jeans Shopping

Jeff's clothes are starting to look, well, aged. So, yesterday I dropped by our local Savers thrift store to find him some replacements. In barely more than a half-hour, I was able to buy Jeff three pairs of jeans, two pairs of shorts and two shirts and I only spent about $45 in total. The most expensive item was a black, like-new pair of jeans for $8. And when I say like new, I mean not faded. I totally don't understand the demand for pre-faded jeans right now.

Earlier this year I went into a store and tried to buy new jeans and I was quite frankly appalled by the dead-looking jeans that went for $40 and upwards off the rack. (Check out this $60 disaster; thank goodness they're on clearance. Hopefully this fad is on its way out.) Why do people buy "distressed" jeans from stores? Honestly, if you like that style, why not visit your local thrift store and buy truly distressed jeans for a fraction of the price. Many of the more worn pairs of jeans at Savers were $5 or less.

I also picked up a pair of jeans and a pair of shorts for myself for another $12. They're all in the washing machine right now and I'm looking forward to being able to wear them for our family visit this weekend.

About 20 years ago, I had a hard time convincing myself to buy "used" clothing. But in the early 1990s, when we were just out of school and really tight on money, I shopped garage sales and the local thrift stores out of a need to find ways to cut back on our spending. (We had a lot of mortgage debt at the time and maintaining the payments was difficult.) Over time, though, I've found the thrift stores to be nearly the only places I can find clothing I like. I clearly have not kept up with the clothing fads.

I'm grateful for the availability of out-of-style, unfaded clothing that I only seem to be able to find at the local thrift store. I'm really not looking forward to another decade from now when the crap they sell at the stores today finds it way to the local charity shops. Maybe by then unfaded, undistressed jeans will be back in style and we can buy new; I can only hope so.

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