How to find great fashion items at estate and garage sales

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Nowadays estate and garage sales are the new hot spots to uncovering fabulous finds! Three important factors to estate/garage sales:

1. The local newspaper is the bible for locating sales
2. Make sure you have plenty of cash or your checkbook
3. Be friendly with the workers - this can be a benefit in the end

Once you enter the sale, be open to exploring anywhere because you never know where you may actually discover a great fashion find. You may find neat plastic beads in the basement or cool fabrics in the attic. Typically, clothing, scarves, fabrics, purses, shoes, belts etc. are found in bedrooms and closets. Be prepared to dig! If lucky, you can find items from designer to everyday retail stores. To try any clothing on you could always use a bathroom or closet. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Any fabrics or scarves can be a multiuse for any wardrobe. Any clothing could be taken to a tailor to fix if it needs small repairs, or to create or add to something. Remember: if anything needs cleaning it can be taken to the dry cleaners.

Jewelry, whether costume or the real deal, is usually found around the cash table. Asking questions and trying on jewelry is a smart approach when deciding if it's the right purchase for you. From time to time, pricier purses/clutches/wallets such as Whiting and Davis or good leather can also be found by the cash table.

Estate and garage sales are places where you can find anything from vintage, to fairly new, or sometimes articles that were never worn. In the past, I’ve discovered a Banana Republic sweater, T-shirts from GAP, a pair of Nine West boots and a DKNY linen jacket.

Approach the workers if you have questions such as what something is, how much it is (unless marked) or advice as to how something looks on you. In my experience, they can be very helpful and honest.

You need to be patient with shopping at these types of sales. Nevertheless, you can get lucky with shocking fashion finds. Over the years, I have collected Gucci, Chanel, Yves St Laurent, and even beaded Pierre Cardin handbags, a Peck and Peck shift dress, Pappagallo flats, Lacoste button up cardigans, a Tiffany’s lacquer bangle, and many other vintage clutches/purses, clothing, and jewelry. The items may not be new, but the prices are more reasonable than going to expensive department stores and they add nicely to your wardrobe.

If you are looking for new places to shop to mix and match your everyday outfits, then estate and garage sales are the place to be seen. Happy hunting, fashionista!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

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