The other day I entered The Zone (Goodwill) with confidence. I needed a few pairs of jeans and I knew it would take a lot of looking, but I also knew that I was totally up to the task. I had entered this battlefield before and had almost always walked out with a conquest or two in hand. So, I passed through The Zone’s Sliding Doors of No Return, grabbed a cart, locked eyes on my target area and began the gruesome process of going hanger by hanger through the jeans section. Now, I must digress and confess (hey, I didn’t even mean to rhyme). I must be really wimpy—or something—because my right arm gets sore when I go shopping at Goodwill or Salvation Army.All that looking through each rack, giving each hanger a little “push” as I go to the next article of clothing—you know, it can be quite exhausting! Anyway, let me get back to the story.
Now, I’m going to pause and insert a picture:
You see? There’s hope! So don’t let me hear you whine again about never finding quality stuff at your thrift stores! OK? OK. Now I will move on.
Years of jeans shopping at The Zone has taught me some important lessons—tips and tricks that I will share with you, my young padewans, so that you can have success as well.
Look for denim washes that you really like.
Don’t pull the jeans with the dated washes. It will just waste time.
If you see a denim wash that you like, pull out the jeans and examine.
Here are two examples:
I loved the wash on this pair. So classy! Pulled it and was impressed by the pocket area and cut. This next pair had a cute, faded wash, but ended up having a really tacky monogram on the leg. Ew.
The wash-evaluating is only the first step to finding a good pair of jeans.
Look at the waistbands!
If the waistband looks dated, ratty, crumpled or thin, I typically stay away. I personally like wider waistbands (they help minimize muffin-tops).
Look at the jean length and width.
I’m tall, so I gravitate towards the longer jeans and I look for jeans with the “wide-leg” cut. Scrutinize the legs before putting a pair in your cart.
Back to my story: the battle had been long and hard. My arm was tired from waging war and my eyes weary from eagle-eye scrutiny. My cart was piled high with conquests, but I still had to face the Dressing Room of Gloom and Doom.
I tried on pair after pair, discarded pair after pair, but then, success. Sweet victory. I found two pairs of jeans that I absolutely love! I checked out, exited those awful doors and flung my trophies in the seat of my chariot … erm, car.
May victory also be yours, my friend. Fear not.