ELIM CHU | February 6, 2017


I discovered secondhand shopping around 16. I had started my first job at the mall and the bus stop for home was in front of a little local charity shop. One fateful weekend afternoon, I popped in while waiting for the bus and proceeded to lose track of time for over an hour. 
What I found was racks of vintage silk blouses, perfectly worn in leather purses, beautifully crafted belts that you just don't see anymore, leather pencil skirts and tailored wool coats that were #madeincanada. It was a store full of potential treasures and where I began to teach myself how to shop secondhand.

elim styles secondhand my modern closet

Tip 1: Set the time

The lovely thing about consignment or thrift stores is that they are all full of the unknown. But the unknown involves time and exploration. I find that setting a timer minimizes my frustration and impatience. If the timer goes off and there's nothing in my basket, I peace out.

secondhand my modern closet

Tip 2: Beeline for sections YOU are interested in

For me, it's denim and dresses followed by sweaters. I'm always on the hunt for vintage Levi's, a tailored wool or linen dress and cozy knits (esp. cashmere). If I have time after these racks, I'll wander around coats/jackets and then the home goods area for teacup sets or vases.

elim styles consignment my modern closet

Tip 3: Inspect

I triple check my items before purchase to make sure they are in a condition I feel good about paying for. 
What I'm looking at:
> seams are intact
> I'm comfortable with the level of wear and tear
> stains
> care labels

All original content & images by Elim Chu



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