December 19, 2011

A Right For A Second Chance

No matter what the others say about second hand shops - ["How can you wear something that's been worn by other people? Do you trust the hygiene of it? Bla, bla bla - a regular talk between my friends and I who do not believe in shopping second hand for designers' clothes, jewelry with 'historic dust' and things that didn't come right out of the factory...a.k.a. items that smell 'brand news'] - I really, really like those second hands, for many reasons...

I like the fact, actually, that things clothing pieces, bags, shoes and jewelry have 'history' and have been used by someone - [but don't get me wrong, i liked them cleaned up before they go on the sale racks].


There's just a common misunderstanding with those who never shopped the second hand stores that those items re-sold are dirty, filthy...They are not. 


Of course, it depends on a second hand shop, but in most occasions any self-respected second hand shop would have all their items cleaned up: dry-cleaned, restored - you name it, because they'd like to keep their reputation and have the fashionistas not only become their regular shoppers but also their 'spokespeople' - so no laziness and cheapness on the part of the cleaning would worthy loosing the reputation for good! Believe me, those vintage/second hand shoppers do talk and share their experiences!


 So, no, I'm like you - [my dear 'brand new clothes and accessories' shoppers] - I don't wear dirty clothes off some stranger's back. Neither I wear them ripped and in a 'falling apart' stage. Neither I, actually, buy any shoes. I make sure that my second hands come from a right place, like the one I really like and appreciate for their attention to cleanliness, neatness and good services is the shop on Upper East Side of Manhattan - Second Time Around - available in other locations as well, by the way. See if this 'gem' in your neighborhood. 


(One other second hand store I also like is Fisch for the Hip.)

I've recently reconnected with them - two weekends ago, to be more clear - and it never looked better. Same space, same coziness, and same approach to the selection of the turned-in designers' clothes: in nice modration but of a great variety: from Marc Jacobs / Theory coats to DVF iconic wrap-up dresses and Prada shoes...

It's not just the 'gems' that you can find at those second hand shops at the bargain prices - [I paid $25 for the nice dress shirt when the original designer's price was $85] - and the quailty and condition of it, I could honestly call as if 'new'.


I love second hands - also - for the experience of the shopping the second hands - the ones that are cozy and small - it's the curiousity of looking through one-of-the-kind and one-of-the-size clothes, shoes, old-school vintage jewelery - Chanel pendant necklaces anyone? Those that price at $1,700-2,000 'new' and could be aquired for $100-200 as 'worn'...Again, it's also the feel of this misterious belonging to someone else before - what if it belong to Daphne Guinness? Or to Sandra Day O'Connor? Or Jacky Kennedy-Onassis? Or to Eleanor Roosvelet? Or, perhaps, even to Bronislava Nijinska?

But then again, you're either into this kind of thing or not... You can't make someone who dislikes onion to eat onion soup just because it's very popular with the fashionable Parisians :)

Personally, I think I love visiting second hand shops also because it has a rather 'theraputic' effect on me - I browse through all these very unique items, I think about things, I even dream a bit...not necessary about the clothes, just about something that I want to dream about.

Plus, I also like the fact that this kind of stores gather rather unique, particular patrons - and as a fan of 'people watching', I do enjoy checking out the other cool shoppers' personal style - as the items in a second hand store, those personal styles of those who shop there are as one of a kind as the clothes on the racks...

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