Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Ukrainian Folkwear, Anyone?

The rider is trying to run off with the girl,
but her grumpy old dad is preventing it!
I used to think thrift stores were gross and unsanitary and only old ladies who already smelled like the thrift store shopped there. When you're young (or maybe just when I was young), having the newest stuff that happens to be the same as all your friends is the important thing. Now, I know some high school-age bloggers out there are big on thrifting, upcycling, and refashioning, and I only wish I had such presence of mind when I was younger. But! Better late than never, and now my favorite places to shop are these not-just-for-old-ladies stores. I mean, where else can you find things like unopened patterns for Ukrainian and Russian folkwear?! What I really love about thrift stores, though, is the idea of taking someone else's discards and turning it into something wearable. Reduce, reuse, recycle, right? This way, I can be assured of something unique, and I am helping to prevent more waste by not buying something new off the rack.

I know that some bloggers are capable of taking a hideous/huge dress and cutting it up to make a super-cute, totally different outfit, but I'm not that talented. My refashioning only goes so far as taking up the hem of a skirt or cutting it down a size. When I go to thrift stores, I actually usually just look for cute sheets that I can use as fabric. After all, why pay $3-$12/yd when you can get a whole sheet set (usually at least five yards) for $2? More recently, I've begun looking through their boxes of sewing patterns as well. I used to think that $1.99/pattern at Yardage Town was a good deal, but $0.25/pattern is even better! Of course, not all the patterns are winners. For example, check out these patterns from the 70s:

Exhibit A: Hardy pioneer-type jacket. Look at him staring heroically into the distance, just like Pa Ingalls!
Exhibit B: I totally remember seeing my dad wearing shorts like these in old pictures. Eww, I just grossed myself out. 
Exhibit C: Who doesn't need a velour tracksuit top? I especially love how the drawings look just like a stereotypical creeper/stalker.

Obviously I didn't buy those patterns. I did, however, add the following vintage and not-so-vintage sewing patterns to my collection. I am looking forward to making some cute sundresses!

I also picked up a couple yards of turquoise and white striped jersey, some navy blue bedsheets that I'm planning on using to make a sailor dress, and lastly, black leather pants (who even wears such things?!) for my Bellatrix costume. All in all, a very productive day at the thrift store!

Walnut investigates the bags of thrifted treasure.


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