Go “Thrifting” In Your Mom’s Closet

I loooove getting a bargain! I also loooove to take myself on mini-shopping sprees. But this year has been a bit of a financial doozy, and I forced myself to examine my shopping practices. Gone are the days when I’d drop hundreds of dollars at Gilt Groupe a few times a week. Instead, my equally-shopping-addicted friend and I made a pact — we wouldn’t spend more than $20 on a single item. And that also meant we couldn’t go shopping and buy five items for $20 each — I wasn’t falling into that $100 loophole, either. With a lot of willpower, I was able to cut down my shopping drastically. I only went on two buying endeavors the whole season! And one was the Housing Works Buy-the-Bag sale, where I picked up 27 second-hand pieces for $10 total! Even though many of these thrift pieces have become favorites of mine, I did leave Housing Works feeling slightly unfulfilled.

You see, for months now, maybe even a year or so, I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect vintage pair of high-waist, tapered leg jeans. Some of you might refer to these as mom jeans, but I think these jeans highlight the waist and make the rump look fuller — two pluses in my style book.

Anyway, had I thought of them as mom jeans, instead of the most-amazingly-awesome-vintage-high-waist-jeans-known-to-woman, it might have occurred to me to check my mom’s closet. Because the jeans were sitting right in a pile of clothes ready for donation. Fortunately for me, I rescued them!

I was surprised and delighted that the jeans fit, even though they are labeled a size 7, a size that is too big for me now, but sizing of vintage clothes varies drastically from era to era. I couldn’t believe these jeans, which my mom bought in the ’80s, were right under my nose all this time.

I was also equally surprised that my mom held on to these jeans (WITHOUT TELLING ME!!!) for so many years. You see, she has this really devastating habit of telling me about all these awesome clothes she made herself in the ’70s and ’80s that she didn’t think to keep for her daughter. Do you know how annoying it is to know your mom was a style icon in her own right, and she hardly kept any clothes for you?!

But instead of thinking about what could have been, I’ll just enjoy my vintage mom’s jeans, which will go really well with the one item she did think to save — a half-moon basket purse. And I’ll heed the lesson of this story — go “thrifting” in your mom’s closet because you might find the exact fashion you’re seeking and it will be free! Damn, I can’t wait to go tearing through my grandmother and great aunt’s closets … Let’s hope my access isn’t denied!

Has your mom passed down an item of clothing, jewelry, purse, etc. to you? What has been your greatest thrift or vintage success? Tell us about it in the comments.