Giving Thrift Finds A New Life —SCB

Like MAV, I don’t feel so comfortable making a fashion post (although she is one of the most effortlessly stylish people I know), but this week I thought I would share some tips on how I make my secondhand clothing finds my own. Maybe there’s something in your closet that could be given a new life.

Cover it. I loved this vintage wool blazer, but it had a small discoloration on the sleeve that didn’t come out with a cleaning. Elbow patches to the rescue. You can buy suede elbow patches at most fabric stores (these were about $7—twice the cost of the blazer, by the way) or make your own from a leather, wool or other non-fraying fabric scrap. Here’s a handy how-to.

Alter it. This blouse was originally a red white and gingham. Cute, but I looked like a picnic table in it. After a little bath in some blue dye, it turned a pretty plum color. Only natural fibers take dye well.

Change it. Poor quality buttons really cheapen a garment. I often switch out the plastic buttons on my sweaters and jackets with ones from my vintage stash (fabric stores have higher quality new buttons as well). I like the contrast of brown on my blue and gray clothing.

Remove it. Sometimes, it’s not about adding something, but about taking something away. I found these navy leather gloves with a wool lining, but wasn’t crazy about the buckle detail. Snip, snip. Now you can really see the stitching detail.

Happy hunting and remember to make it your own!