The Secret of Savers

I hope they never close the Savers on East Lake in Minneapolis.

God, I love it there. It seems that anytime I’m truly upset about something, I end up at that Savers, standing in front of a rack, flipping through hangers until I feel better. Or at least calm.

Every trip to Savers is a minimum of two hours. This is not a place to breeze through. Ya gotta dig in.

I’ve never been disappointed. I got a chair at Savers for $30, sewed a cover for the cushion and now it sits in our living room. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t admire that chair. I believe the fabric for the cover also cost me $30. So, its a sweet chair for $60. Never mind that a dog had chewed one of the arms – my friend Levi crafted new arms for me and it now looks new.

On my last trip to Savers the focus was spring clothes. I scored a kelly green knit skirt (that I will need to shorten – its kinda School Marm length right now), a yellow tank top dress that I will shorten into a tunic, 2 pairs of pants that will be fine for walking the dog and a tiered dress that can have a couple tiers removed to make a very nice, dressy shirt. All of this cost me $40.

I never thought I’d ever say this but a person should know the basics of sewing. How to hem and how to fix holes. If you can do these things, you an buy a lot more used clothing. I guess some people think used clothing is kinda gross – and I admit I never buy used socks, pajamas, underclothing or shoes (because they are usually worn out and always not cute) – but standing in Savers and staring at the racks and racks of used jeans makes me feel the need to do something. Let’s reuse all that denim! There must be a way. If you think about how much it costs to make new jeans in terms of energy… Could we all commit to buying at least one or two pairs of pants used each year instead of new?

And as a side note, its not at all unusual to come across clothing in places like Savers that still has its tags on from the original store. Somebody bought it and never wore it. This is a big score! You can get a new item for the price of a used one.

The only thing you really need to be careful of is the lable. Predictably, Savers is the final resting place for A LOT of stuff from Target, Old Navy and H&M. I find that sometimes the pricing on this stuff is waaaay off. As in jacked too high, more than what it would have cost on sale at these stores. Old Navy clothing is essentially disposable anyway, in terms of quality. Also beware buying H&M. The shirts shrink like nobody’s business – turning your cool tunic into a baby tee in one washing.

I understand wanting new clothing. I buy a lot of stuff new. But I think I’m going to make an even bigger effort now to buy used. That’s right – I’m going 50% used in 2008.

4 thoughts on “The Secret of Savers

  1. I completely agree and will join you on your 2008 pledge. We have to keep each other honest and on track with this pledge. It is stunning to think about the “new” crap I buy that has no added value.

  2. You’re starting a revolution Reebie – consider me pledged (and not the waxy lemony smelling stuff that my mom uses on her furniture)!

  3. Ellen, you know me better than this! Spend nothing? I think not! Just spend half on stuff that’s used. Or, clothing that’s used. Books. Etc. and so forth and so on. We all know that “spend nothing” doesn’t work. A person could go out and spend $200 on yarn.

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