It's Thursday, time for another installment of Thrifty Threads, AKA Most Stylish Compact-y outfit, where readers model their favorite secondhand clothes.
A Compact-y outfit is from Goodwill, a thrift store, consignment shop, ebay, craigslist, a yard sale, garage sale, or anywhere else you find secondhand clothing.
Today's model is Cynthia, who at a size 16 just barely qualifies as the very first plus-size TT model. And since she's on her way down from a size 22 after losing 50 pounds, she deserves a big congratulations! Cynthia says she's always liked buying clothes at thrift stores, and this is what she wore for St. Patrick's Day.
The green sweater, blue cardigan, and Chinos are all from Goodwill. The earrings were a gift, the green and blue necklace is from the thrift store Savers, and she got the Cole Haan shoes from ebay. Cynthia says the whole outfit cost less than $30, and all of the pieces are versatile and can be used over and over in combination with other items.
What great finds. The cardigan sets off her gorgeous blue eyes, and I love the pretty necklace. And Cole Haan shoes cost hundreds of dollars new, plus they're super-comfortable, so those were a smart purchase. I was able to buy a pair of Cole Haan boots in 1996 that were on sale for $100, marked down from $300. They're so comfortable that I still wear them every year to the Jane Austen Ball.
I asked Cynthia how she lost the weight, and here's what she said: "I made a lifestyle change that included eating healthy, real food, cutting out sugar, white flour and salty crunchy snacks. I allowed myself an occasional treat, but stuck to my plan pretty well. In addition, and this was super important, I made exercise part of my daily routine. Weight resistance 3 times a week, treadmill the other 3, usually one day off exercise. Using motivational mantras was also key (like "Yes I can, no matter how hard it is. Don't give up"). It wasn't quick, it took a year, and I'm not done yet, but it has really been worth it. I feel so much better physically, stronger, and like myself better. The one other thing was accountability. I have my nails done every two weeks, and weigh in with my nail lady. Then my trainer would ask how I did, I didn't want to disappoint them. I should be more concerned about disappointing myself, but that wasn't how it worked for me."
Cynthia, thanks so much for sending in that photo and congratulations on losing all that weight! You look great! And I have to add, so does your house. I love all the beautiful wood and the river rock wall. Readers, it's your turn. Put on your favorite thrift store score and send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Isn't it fun to see what people are discovering in their local thrift stores? I think secondhand shopping is a great way to be fashionable for a lot less money, and it's particularly useful for anyone whose size is changing rapidly, whether they're losing weight like Cynthia, gaining weight due to pregnancy like last week's model Nicolle, or growing out of their clothes quickly because they're a toddler like Simone.
Please share your favorite tips and advice for buying secondhand clothes, plus compliments and kudos for Cynthia, in the Comments section. And click here to check out previous installments of Thrifty Threads.