Why do you buy used clothing?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Carey, Oct 23, 2006.

  1. wheelerray

    wheelerray Senior member

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    I don't care how often a garment has been cleaned, someone elses "boys" have been in there for who knows how many wearings.

    I guess I am just too picky.


    Yes, you are. Good luck finding a virgin. Even if you find one, she's probably kissed another guy before meeting you.
     


  2. Lysol

    Lysol Senior member

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    Clothes are not cars, nor are they like antique furniture.

    I certainly don't want to tell you the things that I did in cars or on couches while in high school then. [​IMG]

    Seriously though, just like everything else, it's just a matter of person. I started buying vintage clothing when I was in my teens simply because I liked clothes from the 1960's and 70's more than I liked what was being made for my generation (early-mid 90's) and it carried over into adulthood. I rarely purchase clothing at full retail. Not only because I do live on a budget but also I often think that full price for many mass produced items is overly inflated. I comb store sales, eBay and thrift stores. More often than not, these items are new but occassionally I find a score at a vintage store or on eBay that is used and I'm not going to pass it up for fear of germs of all things.

    I can understand people who can actually afford a brand new pair of John Lobb shoes insisting on new items as a matter of status and pride of owning a new item, they've certainly earned that right, but I just can't identify with the "icky poo" excuse of it previously being on a strangers body for people who should be living on a budget and instead of just raking up credit card debt. If it's been cleaned proper, it's of no matter to me. For me, buying a pair of $1000 shoes, second hand on eBay for $200 is the difference between my wife and I vacationing in Spain... or the Jersey Shore this summer.
     


  3. Carey

    Carey Senior member

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    Yes, you are. Good luck finding a virgin. Even if you find one, she's probably kissed another guy before meeting you.
    Marrying the town whore is another thing all together.
     


  4. Carey

    Carey Senior member

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    I certainly don't want to tell you the things that I did in cars or on couches while in high school then. [​IMG] Seriously though, just like everything else, it's just a matter of person. I started buying vintage clothing when I was in my teens simply because I liked clothes from the 1960's and 70's more than I liked what was being made for my generation (early-mid 90's) and it carried over into adulthood. I rarely purchase clothing at full retail. Not only because I do live on a budget but also I often think that full price for many mass produced items is overly inflated. I comb store sales, eBay and thrift stores. More often than not, these items are new but occassionally I find a score at a vintage store or on eBay that is used and I'm not going to pass it up for fear of germs of all things. I can understand people who can actually afford a brand new pair of John Lobb shoes insisting on new items as a matter of status and pride of owning a new item, they've certainly earned that right, but I just can't identify with the "icky poo" excuse of it previously being on a strangers body for people who should be living on a budget and instead of just raking up credit card debt. If it's been cleaned proper, it's of no matter to me. For me, buying a pair of $1000 shoes, second hand on eBay for $200 is the difference between my wife and I vacationing in Spain... or the Jersey Shore this summer.
    You are certainly not poor if you have to choose whether to go overseas or just to the Jersey shore for vacation. The racking up of consumer debt for clothes, cars, fancy restaurant meals, vacations, or whatever is unresponsible behavior. What I would like to know: if a garment (shoe, trouser, or suit) was made to fit someone else, then is it a fantastic coincedence if it fits the one who buys that item second-hand? What divine providence it must be to have the same stooped shoulders of the previous owner who could afford to have his garment made on Savile Row, and look I got it for just cents on the dollar. I guess you know what it feels like to walk a mile in another man's shoes. Does it ever hurt your feet?
     


  5. SGladwell

    SGladwell Senior member

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    I buy used clothes for one primary reason: I enjoy the hunt. (There is a secondary reason, which is that except at the most stratospheric prices, cashmere quality now is not what it was.) I take pleasure in breathing new life into something beautiful that for whatever reason didn't fit into someone else's life any more.

    I guess everybody draws lines and they're all arbitrary beyond not wanting to wear someone else's underwear. I don't ever buy used shoes, not for the germ rationale that others use, but simply because fine shoes, more than anything else in one's wardrobe, seem to take on the unique attributes of the wearer in terms of anatomical irregularities, and so on. While the hand-stitching of a good coat in the chest, collar, and shoulders will mold itself to a new wearer pretty quickly, I don't think that leather, cork, and whatever compressed by gravity will do the same. I may well be wrong, and silly for excluding this valuable resource. Mostly, I've bought used cashmere sweaters and sportcoats, with a few suits thrown in for good measure. I will consider used shirts if they're special and look nearly new, but shirts wear out fairly quickly.

    It has nothing to do with finances for me, to some extent, though my wardrobe would certainly be less without the influx of interesting vintage items. My sweater collection would be a third or less of its current size, in particular.

    Also, I don't think that it's a myth that men will buy very nice clothing and seldom wear it before tossing it aside. The typical man who wears T&A shirts, for instance, probably doesn't just own ten or twenty shirts. It is probably fifty or more. Maybe a lot more. If that person gains twenty pounds in five years, those shirts are lightly-worn thrift store fodder.
     


  6. Carey

    Carey Senior member

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    I certainly don't want to tell you the things that I did in cars or on couches while in high school then. [​IMG] Seriously though, just like everything else, it's just a matter of person. I started buying vintage clothing when I was in my teens simply because I liked clothes from the 1960's and 70's more than I liked what was being made for my generation (early-mid 90's) and it carried over into adulthood. I rarely purchase clothing at full retail. Not only because I do live on a budget but also I often think that full price for many mass produced items is overly inflated. I comb store sales, eBay and thrift stores. More often than not, these items are new but occassionally I find a score at a vintage store or on eBay that is used and I'm not going to pass it up for fear of germs of all things. I can understand people who can actually afford a brand new pair of John Lobb shoes insisting on new items as a matter of status and pride of owning a new item, they've certainly earned that right, but I just can't identify with the "icky poo" excuse of it previously being on a strangers body for people who should be living on a budget and instead of just raking up credit card debt. If it's been cleaned proper, it's of no matter to me. For me, buying a pair of $1000 shoes, second hand on eBay for $200 is the difference between my wife and I vacationing in Spain... or the Jersey Shore this summer.
    The running up of credit card debt in order to satisfy one's desires is a foolish endeavor. One day the piper has to be paid. But is it not just as deplorable to have champagne tastes and a beer budget? My god I can't be expected to wear a clunky pair of Aldens, when I know if I can beat out the next guy on an ebay auction, I can wear someone else's elegant sweat soaked shoe. No one who says they have to decide between a vacation overseas versus the Jersey shore is poor. Poor people don't get to go on vacation. Poor people don't have the luxury of Paypal.
     


  7. SGladwell

    SGladwell Senior member

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    The racking up of consumer debt for clothes, cars, fancy restaurant meals, vacations, or whatever is unresponsible behavior.

    Fair point, but utterly irrelevant to the topic at had.

    What I would like to know: if a garment (shoe, trouser, or suit) was made to fit someone else, then is it a fantastic coincedence if it fits the one who buys that item second-hand?

    Presumably, one only buys things that fit properly to begin with and takes his vintage gems to a good tailor to refine the fit to his anatomical eccentricities. Yes, the tailoring often (if not, perhaps, usually) exceeds the purchase price of the item. But for many (myself included) the combined cost is nowhere close to the value of wearing something truly beautiful.
     


  8. odoreater

    odoreater Senior member

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    Personally, I like to write my own history instead of latching on to someone elses. It means nothing to me to be able to say "the guy who owned this coat before me must have loved it" or "the guy that owned this coat before me wore it to the Grand Ball." It means more to me to say "ever since I bought this coat I wore it here, here, and there and those were some good times."

    By the way, I'm not saying that all of the reasons given on this thread for wearing used clothing are not legitimate reasons - they certainly are. But, different strokes for different folks.
     


  9. summej2

    summej2 Senior member

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    What I would like to know: if a garment (shoe, trouser, or suit) was made to fit someone else, then is it a fantastic coincedence if it fits the one who buys that item second-hand? What divine providence it must be to have the same stooped shoulders of the previous owner who could afford to have his garment made on Savile Row, and look I got it for just cents on the dollar.

    I don't have statistical data to support this, but anecdotally, my wife buys many older YSL rive gauche clothes from a resale shop in NYC which has a client who is, apparently, her body double. Everything has been altered, and, it would seem, to fit my wife perfectly. Bespoke or couture is another matter.
     


  10. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    The other side to buying used is this: I know I will wear it. If I drop $1500 on a Corneliani suit, I know I'll keep it in the closet for weddings and other special oocasions.

    If I get said suit for $50, then I'm wearing it much more often with a bit less reserve - it's got its flaws or wear, and I'll wear it for any occasion or no occasion and not treat it precious and not grieve when it gets a stain or a snag. That sort of freedom is worth more than pride of new ownership.
     


  11. Lysol

    Lysol Senior member

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    You are certainly not poor if you have to choose whether to go overseas or just to the Jersey shore for vacation. The racking up of consumer debt for clothes, cars, fancy restaurant meals, vacations, or whatever is unresponsible behavior.

    What I would like to know: if a garment (shoe, trouser, or suit) was made to fit someone else, then is it a fantastic coincedence if it fits the one who buys that item second-hand? What divine providence it must be to have the same stooped shoulders of the previous owner who could afford to have his garment made on Savile Row, and look I got it for just cents on the dollar.

    I guess you know what it feels like to walk a mile in another man's shoes. Does it ever hurt your feet?


    I'm not entirely sure where in my post I said I was, or even alluded to being, poor. However, neither my wife nor myself make the kind of money where we can justify spending retail for our rather expensive taste in clothing. It would be "unresponsible" (sic) to do so. Does that mean that we must be relegated to shopping at JC Penny's? Like I said, I rarely purchase used clothing, I more often than not just buy on sale, but I'm not above it. If you are, that's wonderful, I'm quite ecstatic for you.
     


  12. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    What I would like to know: if a garment (shoe, trouser, or suit) was made to fit someone else, then is it a fantastic coincedence if it fits the one who buys that item second-hand? What divine providence it must be to have the same stooped shoulders of the previous owner who could afford to have his garment made on Savile Row, and look I got it for just cents on the dollar.

    I guess you know what it feels like to walk a mile in another man's shoes. Does it ever hurt your feet?


    Who is talking about buying used bespoke, other than you? I don't buy used bespoke. Have I missed part of the discussion, or is this just a strawman argument?

    A RTW Oxxford size 42 is a RTW Oxxford size 42, unless drastic alterations have been made. And I assume anyone who buys one would check to see if that were the case.
     


  13. Lysol

    Lysol Senior member

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    The running up of credit card debt in order to satisfy one's desires is a foolish endeavor. But is it not just as deplorable to have champagne tastes and a beer budget?
    If you live within your means to get the things you want in life how can it possibly be "deplorable"?
    No one who says they have to decide between a vacation overseas versus the Jersey shore is poor. Poor people don't get to go on vacation. Poor people don't have the luxury of Paypal.
    I believe simple mathmatics would illustrate that if I can obtain an item that costs $1,000 for the price of $200, that is $800 I have saved that I can spend on other things in life that make me happy. I'm still not entirely sure where this notion of "poor" entered discussion.
     


  14. Infinite42

    Infinite42 Well-Known Member

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    You are certainly not poor if you have to choose whether to go overseas or just to the Jersey shore for vacation. The racking up of consumer debt for clothes, cars, fancy restaurant meals, vacations, or whatever is unresponsible behavior.

    What I would like to know: if a garment (shoe, trouser, or suit) was made to fit someone else, then is it a fantastic coincedence if it fits the one who buys that item second-hand? What divine providence it must be to have the same stooped shoulders of the previous owner who could afford to have his garment made on Savile Row, and look I got it for just cents on the dollar.

    I guess you know what it feels like to walk a mile in another man's shoes. Does it ever hurt your feet?


    At this point, the following statement of yours no longer applies: "Really, I just wanted to hear why someone will wear and even seek out used clothing."
     


  15. AlanC

    AlanC Minister of Trad

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    At this point, the following statement of yours no longer applies: "Really, I just wanted to hear why someone will wear and even seek out used clothing."

    This entire thread is a troll. He's not been interested in the debate at any point.

    Carey = [​IMG]
     


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