When I first started Fashion Steele NYC my main means of shopping for clothing was thrifting. I was a pretty broke graduate school student and found myself researching various thrift stores in New York City and visiting them all. I was already and avid thrift and vintage shopper when I lived in North Carolina visiting Goodwill’s in my hometown of Durham and small boutique vintage shops throughout Chapel Hill & Raleigh. Honestly, I haven’t thrifted in a good while and most of that comes down to time. You need a lot of it when sifting through bins and bags and digging into piles of clothes. I haven’t had that kind of time in years. Luckily, I recently did a thrift collaboration with Buffalo Exchange and it reignited my love for thrift shopping.
Photography by Rose Lazard || Editing by Monroe Steele
Zara Floral Shirt (on sale $16) get similar here || Thrifted Skirt get similar here || Vintage bag from Hamlets Vintage || Rainbow Sandals (on sale $16) || Lack of Color Hat get similar here ||Indigo Pony Earrings || Big Chop Hair Clip Ins
GET THE LOOK
I’ve been thrift and vintage shopping a lot the past month and wanted to update my list of favorite thrift and vintage shops. The best thing about thrifting is finding those amazing pieces for nearly nothing like this dress, this bag and this skirt. I’ve always loved vintage shopping although it’s a lot more costly than thrifting. What drives me to vintage shop is the uniqueness and scarcity of the pieces. It’s very unlikely that you’re going to see someone walking down the street in the same 1960’s skirt as you. Don’t get me wrong I still love a good Zara purchase (like this floral top thats currently on sale). But I’m making more of a conscious effort to reduce my carbon footprint and get away from looking and dressing like every woman in New York City. I love mixing luxury, thrift & vintage and high street (Zara, H&M, Mango etc). It’s what this blog was founded on and I definitely want to get back to that.
This place is an absolute treasure for perfect floral tea length dresses, silk and cotton button up tops in every color (thank God everything is color coded), and well maintained denim from jeans to cutoffs. This place is massive and you can spend hours in here. I love that everything is priced well too. Most dresses range from $20-45, denim is around $20-25 and tops range from $15-30 depending on fabric. Most of the silk pieces are a little more expensive. I just scored two great dresses. Make sure to check out their sister store, Stella Dallas Living next door. I just got the most amazing 1970’s two-piece top and skirt set very reminiscent of Zimmermann. I can’t wait to wear it in Paris next month.
Buffalo Exchange is a great place for thrifting. I’ve found so many great items in this location and the prices are unbeatable. Check out this video of my last thrift & try-on haul where I found dresses, skirts, bags, accessories and shoes for less than $100 total.
This thrift and vintage shop is a long time favorite of mine. I’ve found so many great vintage pieces from this vintage envelope clutch that I’m wearing to several vintage dresses and skirts. I always pop in once every few months to say hello to Hamlet and see if theres anything new from the carefully curated collection of goods that catches my eye.
I love Artist & Fleas for their thrift & vintage shops. The space is huge, clean and beautiful with its own coffee bar and sitting space. Though it’s a little more highly priced than other thrift and vintage shops they carry amazing designers from YSL to Gucci and Chanel. It’s a treasure trove of goods.
Vintage Thrift Shop is an old favorite from my graduate school days at NYU where I lived within walking distance of this store. They always have great skirts and accessories, not to mention incredible home goods.
There are tons of Housing Works throughout the city but the most well stocked in my opinion in the 23rd Street location. I’ve shopped here for nearly 10 years and have gotten so many goods here, I can’t even list or link them all. It’s also great that the proceeds go towards fighting homelessness and AIDS in New York City.
Goodwill just opened their new Upper West Side location that is more of a fashion boutique with more high quality and stylish clothing. The clothing is well sourced and curated for a more fashion forward experience.