The official thrift/discount store bragging thread

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by j, Mar 2, 2005.

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  1. Nashville

    Nashville Senior member

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    Good work. Purple Label is Ralph Lauren's top line, and comes with a stellar retail price. You probably saved yourself a clean $395 off retail with your thrift find.

    WTF!!!!!!!!!I came here to learn guys, and its already paying off. I have read on this forum for a while trying to pick up little bits and pieces. I know it was a good piece just by the buttons. I will keep checking the thrift, I looked at the suits and blazers im just too darn big with a 48 long, but i will keep checking.

    The shoes did not look right, but I have a shoe collection of over 60 pair from HS trask, many , many cole haan, kenneth cole, via spiga, mezlan, adam derrick, I have a very rare pair of boots by mike-konos. coach. here is a picture of my favorite HS trask boots


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I hope you can see these pics
     


  2. SimonC

    SimonC Senior member

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    I've read the whole of this thread with interest, and it spurred me to do some 'thrift' shopping myself. I've been quite a fan in the past and picked up some really good deals (brand new Trickers calfskin brogues for £10, T&A shirts for £4 for example), but I tend to think of there being a lot of dross out there to sort through. I'm also a difficult size (tall and slim).

    I therefore went out this morning in West London with the express aim of providing a British perspective on matters, and reporting back on anything of interest in all sizes.

    There are two types of store I went into - charity shops (what you know as thrift stores) and consignment stores (far rarer over here). I went into 16 charity / thrift stores, and 2 consignment stores [I passed over another 2 thrift stores that were unexpectedly closed]. This took me three hours including travelling time between the stores, though the overall area they fell within was probably a corridor about a mile wide and four miles long (from Kensington to Chiswick for those familiar with London, up to Notting Hill and Shepherd's Bush).

    I only ended up buying two ties for me - a Thomas Pink and a Ferragamo (£3 each), and a pair of nearly-new New & Lingood / Crockett & Jones Connaught in black calf (£10.99) to flip on eBay as they're too small. The rest of what I saw looked like this (minus all the cheap and nasty stuff):

    Suits:

    A bespoke, Savile Row grade SB in PoW check, from which the labels had been removed - very high quality though, but too big for me. £25

    A bespoke DB 4/6 button evening suit, very nice quality (again, probably up to Row standards but without any labels), probably a 40S / R £10

    Another unmarked dark blue DB 4/6 button suit in dark blue worsted, about a 38 - 40L but with a large chest, so it just didn't suit me. Nice quality, but machine-sewn button holes and bouttoniere. £20

    Five (!) Loro Piana Tasmanian Super 120s bespoke suits in one of the consignment stores. £100 each, which seemed very reasonable, but they didn't quite look right on me. If they drop the price a little next week I'll have one or two as the savings will pay for some alterations.

    A Brooks Bros Golden Fleece DB in a lighter colour in 44R for £45

    Some hand-made but very badly made bespoke suits for about £20 - no makers name, possibly home-made. Pick stitching going all over the place on the edge of the lapels, buttonholes on the skew.

    Some Hong-Kong made MTM suits (same manufacturer, different stores) at £15-30 - machine made but functioning button holes, fully canvassed, but lacking finesse

    Two Hickey Freeman suits, one that looked better quality than the other. Again, about £25.

    Lots of lower-end Hugo Boss and a little Armani.

    A couple of lower-end Corneliani and Canali suits (and a nice lightweight Silk / Wool Canali DB in my size) for between £20-40 each.

    Jackets:

    A 42L Austin Reed jacket (dark grey, pink pinstripe, relatively modern, 42L) that surprised me because it was fully canvassed and looked handstitched. Had obviously been part of a suit. £15

    Two Zegna Trofeo jackets, orphased from their suits. About £20 each

    A dark grey DB orphaned jacket by George the Tailor (of Bown Bespoke fame) for £10

    A black leather Hermes shawl-collar jacket, about a 40R, marked at £750 (!!!) in a charity shop - I rather doubt it'll sell. Quite old too.

    Jumpers:

    An odd mustard coloured TSE button jumper in pure cashmere. Fitted nicely but I didn't like the colour, £12

    A Zegna Sport button neck in knitted cotton which looked quite nice, but I don't know when I'd wear it.

    A Donna Karan mainline cashmere jumper in dark blue (had a small hole where the collar met the body, could easily be fixed) £8

    Another fashion-forward grey cashmere jumper that had lost its label, but funky looking. £10

    A Donna Karan mainline merino turtleneck £8

    Ties

    Plenty of good quality specimens, with prices varying between £3 (where I brought mine) all the way up to £20. Most high-end brands represented - Gucci, Ferragamo, Pink, Brooks Bros etc etc. No Hermes though. And a fair number of polyester / soup-stained examples.

    Shirts

    Lots, though of differing quality and wildly differing prices - no-one seems to consider whether the shirts are worn out or stained before they put them out for sale. Ranged from £5 for some nice Charles Tyrwhitt / T M Lewin examples in one shop through to £25 for some worn-out Thomas Pink specimens in another shop (I'll name and shame here - Oxfam are getting terrible these days - why would I pay £25 for a threadbare and stained Pink when I can get a brand new Lewin of similar quality for the same price?)

    Found some Norton & Townsend MTM, fitted perfectly everywhere except the sleeves, which were too short. Also some H&K and other good brands, but no T&A.

    A good (looked unworn) Tyrwhitt in white, but the sleeves were 33" which is too short for me. Only £4.

    Also a nice James Meade (west-country based, but produce stuff in the same factories as everyone else) light blue linen LS shirt with all the usual features. £5.

    Shoes

    Mostly worn out or poor quality. Highlight was the C&Js I brought for £11, other specimens were a pair of waffle-soled Church's suede boots for £15;

    Alden captoes in black for £15 (hardly worn, but I was pretty appalled by the quality), some other tan suede boots with rubber soles by a good Northampton maker whose name I forget. Both size 12 though.

    A pair of nicely patinated Church's penny loafers for £30 at the consignment store but otherwise looking a little worse for wear

    A pair of what I think were MTM Cleverley loafers for £100 at the same place

    Some Maxwell / Foster & Sons brogue slip-ons for £40 (small size) at the consignment store (possibly MTM, looked better quality than the RTW I've seen in their shop window).

    Some K Shoes (old English lower-mid range brand, now defunct) bluchers in a lovely patinated tan leather - had obviously been well cared for.

    A pair of Tim Little 'blue sole' oxfords, some wear but would have polished up nicely.

    Coats

    A Burberry trench for £10 in good condition, but the size label revealed it to be a ladies 12L. Almost brought it for my other half, but she would never wear it.

    A Burberry DB wool & cashmere coat in good condition 42L £60

    An Austin Reed 100% cashmere overcoat for £100, but a bit threadbare with it.

    Various fashion-forward topcoats, especially in the consignment store (Yohji Yamamoto for £300 etc...)

    That wasn't everything, but it's everything I can remember a couple of hours later after a few glasses of wine. I think the abiding impression I gained was that there is plenty of nice stuff at reasonable prices (though a lot higher than I think you pay in the US) if you're willing to rummage, and that actually there was more I saw that would fit me was was reasonably priced than I actually went away with - simply because I'm trying to exercise some self-restraint...
     


  3. rnoldh

    rnoldh Senior member

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    A black leather Hermes shawl-collar jacket, about a 40R, marked at £750 (!!!) in a charity shop - I rather doubt it'll sell. Quite old too.



    Great post and overview of British Thrifts.

    I rather doubt the Hermes will sell too!!!
     


  4. amerikajinda

    amerikajinda Senior member

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    Highlight was the C&Js I brought [sic] for £11.

    That wasn't everything, but it's everything I can remember a couple of hours later after a few glasses of wine. I think the abiding impression I gained was that there is plenty of nice stuff at reasonable prices (though a lot higher than I think you pay in the US) if you're willing to rummage, and that actually there was more I saw that would fit me was was reasonably priced than I actually went away with - simply because I'm trying to exercise some self-restraint...

    Excellent post, SimonC -- thank you for both doing the research and the write-up. Very informative... congrats on finding the C&Js!
     


  5. mack11211

    mack11211 Senior member

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    Meanwhile, back in the states:

    A J. C. Wells [Hanover Square] bespoke plaid sport coat, green, orange and tan plaid, narrower lapels [1967], perfect condition. MOR Savile Row styling. Two buttonholes on sleeves, both working, widely spaced.

    A gray striped Jacques the Tailor jacket from the late sixties. He was in Greenwich Village. This one is more eccentric: slash hip pockets, flapped breast pocket [also slashed], and a red and yellow foulard lining inside coat and the flaps as well.

    Both fit excellently if I take a half inch or so off the sleeves.

    Each was about $10.
     


  6. jdmnbflo13

    jdmnbflo13 Member

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    Greetings All;

    I have been lurking on these forums for a while now and finally decided to register. I was diagnosed with diabetes and placed on metformin about three years ago. Since that time, I joined a health club, have gone on a strict sugar-free/ low carb diet, lost 112 lbs. (I have another 15 I want to lose) and am no loger on any medication for my diabetes. My chest went from size 56 to size 48, and my waist dropped from a peak of 54 to my present 38. Needless to say, I was forced to undergo several wardrobe makeovers. My Wife is an ardent thrifter(?) and I reluctantly agreed to accompany her beginning approximately 3 months ago. I had a stereotype of old polyester clothes being all that was in these stores and I am forced to gleefully admit that I was 100% wrong. In the last 3 months I have purchased 6 Zegna dress shirts, 2 Canali suits, a Burberry trench coat, a Brooks Brothers wool topcoat, 15 Polo shirts, a multitude of ties by Zegna, Polo, Hermes, Fendi and Gucci, as well as assorted jeans by Polo, Levi's, and Calvin Klein. The most expensive item I purchased was one of the Canali suits, which set me back $13.99 + tax. If it were not for my Wife, I would have remained unaware of the tremendous bargains to be found at these stores.

    For those of you that have never thrifted, set aside your preconceived ideas of the merchandise they carry and give it a try. You will probably be presently surprised.
     


  7. j

    j (stands for Jerk) Admin

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    Picked up a label-free cashmere turtleneck sweater in a caramel color. It feels like very good cashmere, no pilling or anything. Fits well though the sleeves are short... I may try to stretch-block them. Looks great under a jacket. $10
     


  8. CBDB

    CBDB Senior member

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    Not a thrift find but a retail store sale. I bought a Borrelli club strip wool tie for C$20 in Toronto. Regular price: C$250 Yoo Hoo!
    [​IMG]
     


  9. amerikajinda

    amerikajinda Senior member

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    Greetings All;

    I have been lurking on these forums for a while now and finally decided to register. I was diagnosed with diabetes and placed on metformin about three years ago. Since that time, I joined a health club, have gone on a strict sugar-free/ low carb diet, lost 112 lbs. (I have another 15 I want to lose) and am no loger on any medication for my diabetes. My chest went from size 56 to size 48, and my waist dropped from a peak of 54 to my present 38. Needless to say, I was forced to undergo several wardrobe makeovers. My Wife is an ardent thrifter(?) and I reluctantly agreed to accompany her beginning approximately 3 months ago. I had a stereotype of old polyester clothes being all that was in these stores and I am forced to gleefully admit that I was 100% wrong. In the last 3 months I have purchased 6 Zegna dress shirts, 2 Canali suits, a Burberry trench coat, a Brooks Brothers wool topcoat, 15 Polo shirts, a multitude of ties by Zegna, Polo, Hermes, Fendi and Gucci, as well as assorted jeans by Polo, Levi's, and Calvin Klein. The most expensive item I purchased was one of the Canali suits, which set me back $13.99 + tax. If it were not for my Wife, I would have remained unaware of the tremendous bargains to be found at these stores.

    For those of you that have never thrifted, set aside your preconceived ideas of the merchandise they carry and give it a try. You will probably be presently surprised.


    Congratulations on your weight loss! That's terrific!!
    And you got some terrific bargains too -- especially the Canali suits! Amazing...
     


  10. SimonC

    SimonC Senior member

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    I went thrifting again this weekend - not as good as last weekend (most of the lower-end stuff I saw last week was still sitting on the rails, and the higher-end stuff hadn't been replaced with more of the same quality).

    One of the (usually more expensive) stores was having a bit of a clearout - suits and coats £6, everything else £4, ties 99p. I brought a few ties and shirts and then had a clearout when I got home, so some of the stuff I brought to flip and some of my own stuff is now on eBay. I also managed to get a pair of Church's and a pair of C&Js for very reasonable money - having confirmed neither will fit my brother they are also now on the Bay.

    The good news is I found another thrift store close to some of the others I frequent - that's a new one last weekend and another this weekend. And through learning the area I've knocked 30 minutes off the time it takes me to get between them.

    The consignment store had some nice stuff in - a tweed John G Hardy suit (MTM?) - a bit short, but I'll be honest and say the fit around the shoulders was nothing short of a revelation - better than anything I've ever worn before. If it drops in price a little I'll get the sleeves extended, waist taken in a little (it's nicely suppressed, but then flares out a little too much) and trousers taken down.

    I brought a 100% Cashmere overcoat from eBay during the week - £32 posted. It arrived and has a little moth damage that was undisclosed in the listing and is way too large, but it was sufficiently cheap that I'll probably just flip it back onto eBay and get my money back/
     


  11. jonnyunpleasant

    jonnyunpleasant Member

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    I picked up this cool tie from the Salvation Army a few days ago for two dollars. I'm a big fan of thin, square bottomed ties.
    [​IMG]
     


  12. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    That's crazy old school. What will you wear it with?
     


  13. jonnyunpleasant

    jonnyunpleasant Member

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    That's crazy old school. What will you wear it with?
    I'm not entirely sure. I could put it with a grey suit and pretend I'm Lyndon Johnson.
     


  14. The Devil's Hands

    The Devil's Hands Senior member

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    CORNELIANI Corneliani tweed jacket: $10
    Zegna reg tie with zigzag stitching in the borders: $4
    BB makers tie w/flowerpot pattern: $4
     


  15. mylesmyles

    mylesmyles Senior member

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    over the weekend i hit up the Syms semi annual bash and picked up a pair of burgundy fairfax AE's for $115+ tax which was fine with me considering they are discontinued and i had trouble finding that color in my size.
     


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