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Today’s nifty thrifty lesson:

“Clothing Brands”

I think one thing that deters people from thrift shopping, especially at Goodwill, is their lack of knowledge about clothing brands.  Shopping by brands is pretty important, and there are a few reasons for this.

1. As a beginner, brands will help you focus and find pieces easier.  More experienced shoppers may find that they will pick out nicer brands based on cut or fabric without needing to look at the tags.
2. Brands ensure that you’re buying high quality pieces and not the crapola that can turn up. Since Goodwill (typically) sets a price for certain types of clothing, you will pay the same amount, say $7.99, for jeans…no matter if they’re Wal-Mart brand or 7 For All Mankind.  Knowing the difference lands you with jeansor whatever, that will look better and last longer.
3. Going along with that, shopping by brands makes sure that you’re getting your money’s worth.  Ok, ok, so $4.99 for a shirt is really not that much to spend, but if you buy 5 shirts you want to make sure you’re getting the best for your money.  It’s all about maximizing your savings.
4. The Clothing Orgasm.  Uhh, yeah it exists!  When you add up how much you spent vs. how much it would have retailed for, you get the shopping high we all search for.  You’ll be on top of the world, and you’ll want to brag to alllllllllllll of your friends.  And go back.  Immediately.  Saving money is such an amazing feeling.

Unfortunately, people use brands to assert their social dominance over others, in a “I’m better than you because my jeans cost a gajillion dollars” way.  The superficiality is one of the main reasons, besides the cost, that people will step away from high quality pieces by name brand companies. Paying $200 just to get some horseshoes on your butt or a guy playing polo on your chest is ridiculous, they say.  And I agree.  So when you buy these at Goodwill (or other stores) you’re sort of mocking the process…as well as adding some great pieces to your wardrobe that will outlast cheaper brands.  So, for any of you social justice shoppers, I didn’t forget this bit.

Now!  Here are some brands that I suggest looking for during your trips to Goodwill. Which would you add?  Leave me a comment in the box below.

Clothing
7 For All Mankind →
Ann Taylor
BB Dakota
Banana Republic
H&M
Gap
LOFT
C&C California
J. Crew
H&M
True Religion
Rock and Republic
Citizens of Humanity
Hudson
Joe’s Jeans
Theory
Diane Von Furstenberg
BCBG

Shoes
Nine West →
Kate Spade
Aldo
Born
Converse
Jessica Simpson
Steve Madden
Stuart Weitzman
Sperry

One last tip: frequently at Goodwill, tags can be cut or ripped out of clothing.  If you can’t find the tag where it usually would be (back of the neck, for example) look down at the bottom of the clothing if it’s a dress or any shirt.  Companies generally have another tag on the inside at the bottom.  Jeans and other pants will frequently have some sort of stamp in the inside of the pants on the pocket, or you can check for their name stamped on the button.

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