Keeping Up with the Joneses’ On a Budget

Monday, 07 November 2011 04:45 Written by  Ebony Tripplett

In today’s fluctuating economy, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to have the latest and nicest things. Fortunately, there are some ways to still be trendy and have quality clothes in your closet without spending a fortune.

Thrift stores and consignment stores are places filled with fashion finds with reasonable deals. In recent years, these places have increased in popularity. The resale industry has experienced a growth of approximately 7 percent a year for the past two years, according to The Association of Resale Professionals at ( There are currently more than 300,000 resale, consignment and thrift shops in the United States. According to America’s Research Group, about 16-18 percent of Americans will shop at a thrift store during a given year.

Thrift stores are located all over the city, and while you may have to search through several racks of clothing to find a few good items, getting a name brand quality blazer, a handbag, a silk scarf, a vintage necklace and a pair of Levi jeans for less than 20 bucks is well worth the search. Some thrift stores also have sale days, so you can take advantage of some even bigger bargains.

Unique Thrift Stores, which have a variety of locations, have sales every Monday and all items throughout the store are 50 percent off. They also have sales on Thursdays and during the holidays. Kristine Forester, a 24-year-old shopper at Unique expresses that “thrifting” is rewarding for her in several ways.

“I like finding things that other people don’t have,” she says.” I love finding things that I pay a couple of dollars for that are clearly worth a lot more. It’s a stress reliever for me. There are so many clothes in the world that I figure we should recycle rather than buying new ones. I think people are starting to realize they don’t have to pay hundreds of dollars for a few quality items.”

If digging and searching is not for you, try visiting a consignment store instead. These stores buy your trendy, gently used clothes and resale them. These stores usually feel more like a boutique because they buy a collection of name brand in-season clothes from sellers. Some popular consignment stores in the city are Plato’s Closet and Buffalo Exchange.

Catching popular retailers during a sale can also help you save some major money. Stores like Forever 21, Charlotte Russe, Urban Outfitters, Macy’s and Akira have some sales where items are marked down up to 80 percent. Sign up to receive email updates from these retailers to know exactly when these sales are happening.

There are ways to appear as if you are “keeping up with the Joneses’” without spending the same amounts of money. With pieces coming in and out of your wardrobe as trends come and go, it is more economical to spend less for clothes and recycle them as well. The Joneses’ ought to be more like you.


Ebony Tripplett

Ebony Tripplett

Ebony Tripplett is a contributing writer for GMO.

She can be contacted at