Wednesday, March 26, 2014

A Day on the Bluff

Today we went to one of my most favorite places in the world, the Bluff. As a child I spent most of my time either on, or at the top of the bluff where my parents owned a piece of property. I had built a clubhouse there with my friends. We used to run down the bluff, swim through the river and run across the highway to get to Tidyman's for a donut. The first headquarters of Barters Closet, my old house, sits just a few blocks away from here and while I was living there I used to walk on the Bluff daily. 

Despite the warmer weather I am wearing a cardigan and flannel. The flannel I have had since middle school and for some reason many women I have encountered have tried to steal it from me, this happens with my blue sweater as well. Both the cardigan and flannel are thrift store finds. I got the cardigan more recently at the Arc. Per my usual attire I am wearing my moccasins, they have rubber souls and hold up quiet well on my Bluff hikes. 

City Streets, $5
thrift store

Van Heusen, $5
thrift store

Manni Jeans, $35
Nordstrom Rack

LL Bean, $30

Wacky Wednesday

What a wonderful day here at Barters Closet. the sun was out and shining bright. Although it was sunning the heat has yet to come for my spring attire, I like to wear light vest with a dress shirt (rolling up the sleeves is optional).

Vest :Anchor Blue
Anchor Blue went out of business
Retail: $13 

Paid: $6
Value Village

J Ferrar dress shirt
Retail: $20
Value Village

George tie
Retail: $8
Paid: $1

Down by the Tracks

Once again hiking in my flats, we set out on a mid-day office stroll in pursuit of a great place to take some pictures. Wishing I could be in my converse as opposed to my last season Steve Madden nude flats, I was once again faced with the reality that dressing the part and comfort do not always go hand-in-hand. Despite feeling like I was going to break my ankle, the rest of my outfit was more than comfortable. With the warmer weather, I paired a nice tank-top with my signature favorite black cardigan. I am a big cardigan person, they really complete an outfit and can make any top look more put together in my opinion. Dressing comfortable and fashionable is a lot easier said than done. Sometimes you need to make some sacrifices when choosing an outfit; a pair of not so comfortable shoes with a comfy cardigan or a flannel shirt with a tighter pair of pants. Occasionally you need to compromise when dressing to impress.

Stopping by Barters Office

I love stopping by to say hi to my friends at Barters Closet. I am passionate about what they are creating ... a way to maximize the lifecycle of clothing by offering you the option to sell, trade or even give away the clothing you no longer wear or need--regardless of brand. This concept keeps money in your wallet and keeps clothing out of our landfills. With the website launching in a few weeks, timing couldn't be better as I am planning a spring cleaning of my closet this weekend.

My wardrobe consists of key designer splurges mixed in with second hand scores. Fresh off the train from a visit to the Seattle Goodwill stores (Bellevue & Edmonds) and the Nordstrom Flagship Store, I was excited to share some of my finds.

John Varvatos. 
$480 Nordstrom

Redd Seam. 
Retail $110, 
Thrift Shop $3

AG Jeans. 
$210 Nordstrom

Ted Baker. 
Retail $240
Thrift Shop $6

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Save Space In Your Closet With Shower Curtain Rings

Some clothing items are hard to find a good place for in the closet because they are so small its a waste of space to put them on their own hanger. Things like tank tops, scarfs, ties and belts fit this category, things that are hard to hang but also awkward to fold. So what's the solution? Shower curtain rings. 

All you need to do is pickup a set of closable shower curtain rings at your local home improvement store and use them just like hangers in your closet. In the summer you can hang multiple tank tops on one ring and in the winter you can hang scarfs, you can use a ring in place of a tie rack or belt holder also. 

Using a shower curtain ring is a simple but very handy way to store those awkward shaped items.  Do you have any secret uses for household items that make organizing your closet more efficient?  Comment below and let us know!


Monday, March 24, 2014

Iron Your Clothes with a Cooking Pot

Don’t have an iron but need to use one? Macgyver your own using a cooking pot with these five steps. 

1: Find a large pot with a smooth, flat, clean bottom.
2: Fill the pot with water 
3: Wait for the water to boil
4: Empty out the water
5: Move the pan over your clothes upon a flat surface, using the bottom of the pot as an iron.

This method may not be ideal for ironing a large amount of clothes because of the time it takes to boil water. However, if you need to get just one shirt flattened out in a pinch before a party, using a warm pot may be your best bet.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Good News for the Secondhand Clothing Industry

There are great things happening for secondhand clothes right now. Here are just a few of the reasons why:

 1. "Made in USA" back on clothing tags

USA textile production is seeing a comeback.  Remember the Sochi Olympics?  The USA team sweaters were made in America.  Other promising factors have been spreading such as the increasing number of sewing jobs in US factories.  American made clothing might be a bit more expensive, but if it means better working conditions and higher quality, it's well worth it. And the higher quality of USA products means that they’re going to last longer and, with the help of a couple thrift shops, have many owners.

2. Worn Wear

Companies like Patagonia are urging their customers to reuse their products. Patagonia’s Worn Wear program buys back used clothes for resale. While many companies in the fast fashion industry want you to hold onto your clothes for as little time as possible, it’s good to see that not everyone is only looking after their bottom line. Patagonia makes great products that can satisfy many customers with the same item. For more information about Patagonia’s Worn Wear program go to:

3. Thrift Shop

Macklemore’s song, Thrift Shop, has popularized secondhand shopping and aided it in going mainstream. This is good for a variety of reasons. One, it takes away the stigma that shopping secondhand is for the impoverished. Two, it educates people on an alternative and more sustainable (let alone fun) way to shop. And three, it inspires people to have a more individualized look on fashion, that not everything you buy needs to come from the latest fashion trend.

So there you have it, good news for the secondhand clothing industry and these are just a few. Great things are happing to secondhand clothes, and it’s good for everyone. Do you have any positive stories about secondhand clothes?   Tell us about it in the comment section below.