In my experience, it is exactly this kind of town that offers the best thrifting. Why? Well, the shops aren't picked over, store employees are exceedingly polite, and the merchandise is extremely representative of the town. In Sherman's Salvation Army, for example, you'll find fringed Western shirts, snap-front denim jackets, well-worn cowboy boots, Aztec and Indian print blouses, and a wide array of belt buckles, roper boots and high-waisted jeans. Sherman is where Western wear comes to die, and I swoop in to revive it.
It is also in Sherman that I've discovered my love for pleated skirts. These polyester, chiffon, or silk beauties, often made by Espirit, The Limited or Jordache, are the kind worn by teenage girls in the 1980's, high school princesses who kept their homework in Trapper Keepers and collected Lisa Frank stickers. Every time I thrift one of these pleated skirt I imagine the life these girls led, with their teased Aqua Net hairdos and licit Camel Lights. They had part-time jobs at the Piggly Wiggly (yes, there's one left in Sherman) and decorated their bedroom walls with posters of Kirk Cameron. They attended church every Sunday morning and watched Who's The Boss and had boyfriends named Justin and Bart. They read romance novels and held parties in their basements, where they drank warm beer provided by some friend's brother. They were young and carefree.
My pleated skirts are knee length or just above, all with elastic waists. They are comfortable and versatile and extremely easy to care for. I bought all of my pleated skirts for under $6 at The Goodwill and Salvation Army, and am certain that your favorite thrift stores has them too. Here are some tips for finding your perfect pleated skirt:
- Skirts with pleats that begin at the waist are much more flattering than those that flow from the hip. If you have any kind of booty, a drop-waisted pleated skirt will only emphasis it.
- Thin pleats are easier to work with than thick ones. A knife-pleated skirt is slimming and elegant, and looks great paired with a flowing blouse or casual tank.
- When caring for pleated skirts, wash them in cold water and hang them to dry. Throwing them in the dryer could ruin the crispness of the pleats.
- If you're petite like I am, look for shorter silhouettes. A pleated maxi skirt will likely overwhelm your figure and made you look wider.
- If you see a pleated skirt while thrifting, and it isn't in your size, try it on. The elastic waist allows for a more forgiving fit.
|My favorite thrifted pleated skirt. Price? $3|
(Missed any previous parts of my Thrifting 101 series? Up to this point, the series has focused on tips for newbies and those dealing with the squick factor, advice regarding how to shop at a thrift store, thrifting for the clothing snob, recommendations for finding the best thrift and consignment stores, tips for determining what days are the best for thrifting, a post where I explained my love for thrifting, advice regarding thrift store etiquette, tips for cleaning vintage leather, a post of my favorite thrifting and vintage blogs, tips for identifying and cleaning thrifted jewelry, advice for storing vintage and thrifted garments, and tips for shopping for vintage online. I also discussed influential periods in fashion - the 1920's through the 1950's; the 1960's; the 1970's; the 1980's; and the 1990's.)