I have been quite absent from the internet as of late. We spent our weekend happily disconnected from the computer, enjoying a relaxing family reunion. When we returned home we unhappily spent a few days not hooked up to the internet. As anyone who runs an at-home business knows, that is the pits.

During my online break I taught a lesson on how to thrift shop to some ladies from my church. I did a personal assignment where I found elements of particular pieces of clothing that I liked (thanks Anthro) and then thrifted something similar. I added up the cost for my entire outfit, which, not surprisingly, was much less than the items I was inspired by. It was a good exercise for me, and even better, an excuse to get myself some new clothes.

Words of thrift shopping wisdom I passed on:
Don't be deterred by the smell that greets you at the door.
A belt can make any size your size. (Also, look in other sizes besides your usual. Lots of brands fit differently.)
Always check for imperfections. Even if it is the holy grail of thrift finds, don't buy it if it has a big obvious stain. (Guilty as sin on this one.)

Does anyone else have a good tip to add to the list?


  1. wow, good work j! i love all your finds and the different looks they create. (that last ensemble is so strikingly beautiful.) wish i could have been present at your lesson...and that i had your thrifting eye!

  2. love this idea. I love thrift. and I also totally know what you mean by the smell. :) Nothing a trip to the laundry can't fix!

  3. amaaaaazing! good finds.

    sorry about your internet troubles :( but, i'm so glad the family reunion was relaxing!

  4. tricks of da trade
    by amber henrie

    chapter 1: every man for himself

    you think you might fancy that? GRAB IT. grab it like it's a baby on fire. chances are some old bird will come and snatch it when you're not looking. remember. you can always put it back. but you can never grab it from an old bird's cart. unless she's blind. then maybe.

    chapter 1.5 every man for himself part II

    if you are smart, you will not go with your best friend. or any friend. they will find something amazing and ask you "isn't this AMAZING?!" and you will shrug and do your downward mouth thing and say "meh." and secretly have a huge lusting desire to push her face away with your open hand and grab that little nugget and run. but you won't.

    chapter 2: buried treasureorwhatever

    if you have time, look. everywhere. "maternity? but i'm not pregnant!"-you say. do you see who works at these joints? do not trust the signs, man. there are gems hidden everywhere. don't have a five year old boy? who cares. go check out the little boys jackets. GEMS, guys. EVERYwhere.

    chapter 3: this is a thrift store

    no matter how many amazingly ugly and awesome things you find at this joint. remember. this is a thrift store. adult diaper wearers will be present (true). kids who scream so hard they might puke, might actually puke. right next to you ( totally happened). of course this is not always the case. but bring hand sanitizer. just in case.

  5. Um you are the best at this! I miss seeing your outfits everyday. Can I have lessons?

  6. AMBER-(all caps, symbolizing amazingness) Your list is shockingly fantastic-and dead on! No friends, vomit, buying little boys clothes, grabbing the goods! Words to live by.

  7. I love all of your outfits lady!

  8. I always make sure I've had a proper breakfast ;)

    And since I also work as a seamstress I look for things I can alter.
    A few sewing-skills and imagination will get you far :)

  9. One trick to see if something will fit if you can't try it on:
    For pants, skirts, other bottoms - with the garment flat like it was on the hanger, if it fits around your neck it will fit around your waist. This is with the item flat and closed. Does this make sense? It totally works. . .