Thursday, April 13, 2006

Clothes By The Pound

Do you have a place where you can buy clothes by the pound?

Here we have the Goodwill Salvage Store, adjacent to the Farmer's Market downtown. It's where unsold clothes go for one last gasp before being baled for rag material.

Normally they're priced at $1.49/lb, but they go for 99 cents/lb. on Wednesdays.

While I'm fascinated by the concept, the store itself leaves a lot to be desired. (And this, from a veteran thrifter, is no joke.)

First, many of the clothes have defects.

After all, someone gave them away in the first place, then they didn't sell. You do have to scrutinize.

Second, the smell.

Put a lot of old clothes in a warehouse next to a tobacco manufacturing plant and open a convenient bathroom to the homeless people of downtown.

Third, the safety factor.

If you look like a suburban mom, you are a target for panhandlers, ranting religious zealots, and all the huddled masses yearning to breathe free.

So why do I go? I'm honestly not sure.

I like the thought that in all the clothes aggregated from our Goodwill region, someone missed a treasure, like the St. John suit I sold on Ebay. I like that summer children's clothes, which hardly weigh anything, cost under a quarter apiece. I like that I may be the only one to recognize that Williams-Sonoma tablecloth or the print of a Vera Bradley bag.

Granted, you do have to dig through a cardboard box to find them, but that's part of the experience. If you have an opportunity to shop "by the pound," it helps to choose light, thin garments: cotton, silk, poly blends.

Just don't forget to go to the bathroom before leaving home, lock your car doors, and carry the antibacterial wipes with you.

4 comments:

~Kayla~ said...

Um, how exactly does one go about finding a by the pound shop? I still can't even find a thrift bakery! DOH!

Mom2fur said...

Another thing you might think about is buttons. A garment might be out-of-date and ugly, but maybe you could cut the buttons off and use just them. If you sew and you've priced buttons...you know they are ridiculous.

Meredith said...

Kayla, sorry I missed your question earlier. If you live in a major metropolitan area, the "chain thrift stores" like Goodwill might have something like this. I would get out the phonebook and call the headquarters to ask.

Mom2fur, you're absolutely right! I don't sew, but I see fabulous buttons all the time. I did buy one linen jacket and cut off the giant, mother-of-pearl buttons to sew on a pillow once.

Anonymous said...

where would you find one in VA