Okay. So shopping is my thing. You know it, I know it, my dad knows it, EVERYONE knows it. I love refreshing my closet or adding new accessories to my rotation, especially during season changes. Unfortunately, I also fall out of love with a lot of pieces in my closet. Faster than I’d like to admit, in fact. And we’ve all been there! That sweater is staring you down at the store that you just HAVE TO HAVE IT. But then a few months go by, and the sweater was only worn once, or maybe shrank from a medium to a small in the dryer (did it say lay flat to dry? whoops). Or hey, maybe your style changed and it simply doesn’t belong. That’s okay! I’ll be the first to admit that I have a constant pile of clothes next to my dresser that I have every intention to donate. Granted, I always wait ’till it’s a little large to take it to the local thrift store. But my intentions are good!
I had such a stack growing for some time when my friend sent me a Facebook invite to a clothing swap. Intrigued, I checked out the info. My friend is a very environmentally friendly person. She makes the constant effort to do her best to maintain a level of sustainability most of us will never achieve. She is the person who has encouraged me to never have paper plates, cups, or plastic-ware in the house. I grab a dish rag faster than a paper towel when going to clean up a mess. I recycle anything I do use (as long as it is recyclable!) and try my best to cut down on my own personal waste. But I never EVER thought to do something along the lines of a clothing swap.
The invite was super exciting, too: she would be making quiche and providing mimosas to the group as well. Her quiche is to die for and, well, who could say no to a mimosa on a sunny Sunday afternoon? I found myself driving to her place a few weeks later with a duffel bag of old clothes and accessories.
The event was a total success. A few people went home with some previously loved pieces of mine, and I raked in a handful of perfect pieces to add to my closet as well! Even better, some of them are items I’ve been trying to keep an eye out for in stores but haven’t had the courage to fork over the dough (ie. a simple white and black stripe plaid shirt, mock neck knit sweater, and a few cute dresses perfect for spring and summer). I was even lucky enough to snag a few Calvin Klein pieces! Even though we were browsing used items, the shopping experience was a ton of fun. Everyone showed up in yoga pants and white camis for easy try-ons. The compliments were flying, people were finding clothes that fit them and their style better than the old items they had brought along. The atmosphere was bubbly and light, and the energy was positive and exciting. The experience itself was worth the trip, let alone the loot!
I’ll be sharing some of my looks in the next few weeks over on my Instagram. My goal this week is to wear outfits comprising at least one new item from the swap each day. So far, so good! Here are the outfits I’ve created thus far:
This maxi dress won my heart. It’s hard to tell in the photo, but it’s a navy blue color and slightly cinched at the waste. I wore this to work with a simple white cardigan and my braided Minnetonka Santorini sandals (these are last season’s style, so it was hard to find you a pair but I linked one on sale at Cabela’s!). I adore the high-low cut of the dress. It’s overall very flattering on me, and probably my favorite casual dress right now. The tag says it’s a Merona dress, so definitely a Target find. Of course, who would have thought I’d like something from Target?
Apparently I didn’t take a photo of Tuesday’s outfit, but it was a cute L.L.Bean Grey Cable Knit sweater (similar here, plus some cute beading!), layered over a Gap white and black plaid button up. Follow my Instagram to see more of the looks I create with these previously-loved pieces!
If you and your friends are similar sizes and have un-worn, previously loved clothing in your closets I HIGHLY recommened setting up a group clothing and accessory swap. Throw some shoes in the mix if you can! It was so much fun revamping my closet knowing that I was spending no money, and probably bringing joy to someone who used to love the clothes I took home! Bonus points if you follow in my friend’s footsteps: she was able to donate five bags full of clothes to a local, fair trade thrift store! It feels good that on top of the shopping, mimosas, and delicious quiche, we were helping a cause near and dear to her heart.