2010-12-09

Thrift Thursday. The Big Easy.

belt1

I don't know if this picture makes me ashamed or proud.

belt2


Hmmmm.... looking at the close-up, that feeling in my chest is definitely pride (though it could also be love because my kitties are at my feet posing on the new zebra rug). This is the upper echelon of my collection of brown leather belts. They are all second hand... most from the thrift store... They are great quality; good leather, heavy hardware and unique design... Seeing them together makes me feel scarily content.

Brown leather belts are one of the best finds at a thrift store. Well, now that Walkmans are no longer being manufactured, finding a Walkman would be pretty useful because that way you can go for a walk and listen to your favourite tape. Imagine that, eh? But besides Walkmans, brown leather belts are a really good find.

First of all, they are ridiculously versatile...

final belt


This is a tiny sampling of how I have worn a brown belt. Over sweaters, over dresses, over jackets... occasionally I might even wear them the old fashioned way... to hold up pants. Sometimes I am crazy and wear 2... FutureLint is even crazier and wears 4... I want to be her when I grow up.

Second of all, brown leather belts age well. I hope I age like a brown leather belt... except not so leathery, you know? Seriously though, a few scuff marks hardly detract from a brown belt. In fact, they look better worn in. I always like to contrast materials and styles when I dress... a roughed up belt looks great with a dressier skirt or dress because it says 'I tried but not too hard'. Did you know that your belt could talk? I didn't but I've been working on my listening skills.

Thirdly, brown leather belts are one of the best thrift finds because they are in abundance. Thrift stores are overflowing with belts and it is seldom that I don't find a nice one. They are also well priced. Unlike our collective bitching about randomly high thrift store pricing, it is rare that I find a belt for over $5. And I don't mind paying $5 for a good quality leather belt, though I usually pay less.

So... what does this mean? It means that if you are shy to go thrifting and don't know what to look for... go for the sure thing. Brown leather belts are so useful and easy to find and a good starting point to build your thrifting confidence. Besides, if you are one of those people who would love to thrift but have a hard time getting over the ick factor, belts are often organized and require little digging around or cleaning. And check men's belts... I can't believe I never thought of this before but I ended up there by accident this week (in the men's belt section, not the thrift store...) and hit the jackpot.

If you are a thrift newbie and you screw your courage to the sticking post (love using phrases that I don't understand the origin of) and score yourself a sweet leather belt... let me know! Better yet... send a pic! And if you are a seasoned thrifter... go buy some more! I don't want to be alone in my hoarding! Maybe we could start a support group. Friends don't let friends buy new belts.

belt3

(Maria, I promised you I would thrift you a belt and I just got you this one. You like?)

31 comments :

Jane Milton said...

I totally agree about buying belts from thrift stores. I'm generally a little unsure about buying clothes, especially now, because of the bed bug issues, but belts, no problem!

I've gotten really unique and genuine leather belts from Goodwill. One time, I had to physically restrain myself from buying 10 of them. Now I regret it.

The Elegant Bohemian said...

Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes! Is there anything on this planet that is not improved by a brown leather belt? I think not! LOVE your belts and LOVE thrifting! ~Serene

kileen said...

great thrift store finds! i haven't been out thrifting in awhile, but hopefully will make it out this weekend. definitely will be checking out their belt selection!

oh, and i like the idea of wearing multiple belts at once. super cute!

cuteandlittle.com

joelle van dyne said...

woah, you most definitely should be proud!! those belts are all gorgeous, and they really are the most versatile thing. wearing several at once is a great idea. ~joelle

Alison said...

I LOVE thrifting belts too! My best belts have been thrifted from the men's section.

Mandy Paige said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mandy Paige said...

I'll never pay full price for leather belts again, I was find good quality leather at the thrift stores.

amanda said...

it is my life's goal (see how awesome my life is?) to find a men's leather belt that i can wrap around my waist twice. haven't found one yet. surely in this age of mcdonalds and other grease pits, there are men out there who are twice my size and want to get rid of their belts at my local thrift. surely! great post. and i think you should wear all those belts at one time. it looks cool :)

erica said...

this was the best blog post i have read this week. :)

love it!!!

Linda W said...

You hit the nail on the head on this one. I'm always telling people that I will never buy belts anywhere but Goodwill. At $0.99 why would you go anywhere else? Plus, when they are so cheap, I don't have to worry about twisting them into weird configurations.
The Auspicious Life

Sarah said...

I'm totally with you on this one, belts are the easiest way to get started with thrift shopping, that's how I started and it sucked me in I tell ya! I also hope to age like a leather belt...but not look like a leather belt if if you catch me drift (I haven't used that saying since I was thirteen).

Lindsey N. said...

I think my eyes are green after seeing all those gorgeous belts. I love thrifting in all forms, and belts are so much fun to thrift! You can find the most interesting things.


Lindsey Soup

Looks and Books said...

That is quite the impressive belt collection, my friend. I always have belts on the brain when I go to the thrift store, but have yet to walk away with any real finds. This inspires me to try harder next time!

De Facto Redhead said...

Wonderful belts! And if Maria doesn't want that one, I'll take it! Haha.

Funny you should mention the "ick" factor with thrift shopping - I just posted the other day about my own personal thrifting hurdle - used footwear! A Thrift Thursday post by you on that subject would be great!

Stella said...

Okay, so I love your dressform (I need one myself, actually) and those belts are amazing. That is an excellent way to display belts. Mine are all individually rolled up in a closet organizer drawer.

Brown leather in general is awesome. In fact, I have way too much brown! (Well, I lie. You can never have too much brown leather!) I just scored a slew of brown belts for a quarter each (excuse me while I cackle in the corner at my economic victory) and I've already reduced their cost per wear to zero, pretty much. The one problem is that I have barely any black leather (belts or boots) so now I'm in a sad hunt for a nice black leather belt and nice black knee high boots.

Oh, and the Walkman comment made me laugh out loud. At work. Shame on you! If I get caught...I'm laying the blame all on you! :P

Emily (tomorrow never knows) said...

Honestly, who the hell pays full price for belts? not this girl. no way. i really have too many belts... i should take a picture, it would be so much LESS classy than yours. They used to be hung on the back of my bedroom door but they always fall off... and stay on the floor... so now they just sit in a pile behind the door.. AND then the other day, i put them in one of those floppy storage baskets that are sorta weaved(?) (from ikea probably) and then i couldnt find a particular one so i had to pull them all out and throw them back on the floor... ANYHOO
This is exactly what is amazing about thrifting... the spots you KNOW you wont be dissapointed in. when i walk in a thrift store, it's usually shoes/purses/random freaky accessories and then i go through the rows of clothes.
It can be bad tho... u end up like me... unable to open your bedroom door at a 90 degree angle.

Future Lint said...

Thanks for the shout-out, I'm ridiculously flattered! The men's section is full of gold (erm, brown leather), and sometimes the kids section is too! I've found quite a few seed beaded leather belts in the kids section!

Emily said...

I love this! This has long been my secret - usually guys belts are cheaper, sturdier, and just cooler! Thanks for the reminder - I think I'm going to thrift a belt for everyone I know for Christmas presents. :)

briannelee said...

I buy all my belts at thrift stores. I refuse to pay retail for one!!!

K said...

I too have a ridiculous amount of belts...a drawer full actually...but I can't help it! You're exactly right. It's basically impossible to not find at least one awesome belt at a fabulous low price and I wear belts all the time so it's easy to talk myself into buying them. I love your thrift Thursday posts!

Briony said...

Nifty thrifty advice AND a Shakespeare quotation thrown in for good measure! This thrift shop-lovin, Macbeth essay-marking English teacher is inspired and impressed! :-)

Phoebe said...

Love this post! Thanks for the encouragement and the fabulous collection of leather belts!

Terri said...

I have slowly learned the trick about checking men's belts. Lately I've been looking for one that would let me switch buckles easily...but haven't found the one just yet. It will appear.

E said...

Definitely something to feel proud of! I wish my brown belt collection rivaled yours!

Louise said...

What an incredible belt collection! I wanna go thrifting right now!

Anonymous said...

If you find a belt that's too long, a shoemaker can remove the buckle and trim it to the proper length.

Kendra said...

I love all of your belts (a bit jealous). You inspire me to go find more....belt hoarding is my new found hobby;)

LyddieGal said...

Pride, it's definitely undoubtedly pride.
That's what i'd be feeling anyway!

Those belts are true beauties, and really do look better with age.

I've thrifted so many belts -- some were for a costume years back and I had to cut them up. I honestly still feel guilty about using them that way! I kept going back for more when one I chose was just 'too good' to sacrifice.

Chic on the Cheap

my name is lauren. said...

i fully agree. i find the most fabulous belts while thrifting. i found my most favorite belt - a vintage michael kors for a whopping $3.99! i'm totally checking out the men's belts next time. thanks for the suggestion!

Eyeliah said...

Drooooool

Anonymous said...

I think my eyes are green after seeing all those gorgeous belts. I love thrifting in all forms, and belts are so much fun to thrift! You can find the most interesting things. Lindsey Soup