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Value Village, (really) not just for Halloween!

If you’re planning a trip to Value Village™ soon to find your Halloween costume, well, I strongly recommend you take a tour because you could definitely come out with “everyday costumes”. I tell you that because I took a trip with the girls recently and I really, really, had fun plus I made some great discoveries.

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Are you surprised?

There was a time when I often shopped in thrift stores. Especially those in the Plateau Mont-Royal where I found looks for both stage and evening, inspired by the stars of the 50s and 60s, whose photos covered the walls of my room. Today, I am more and more aware of the ecological footprint of fashion and I wanted to go back, but it had been several years since I had shopped secondhand, and I had the feeling that I’d lost the touch. So I went to Value Village™ with the makeup artist Brigitte Gareau, photographer Sarah Laroche and Myriam Laroche (no family ties), the pro shopper for “preloved” clothing.

  • When I arrived, I quickly got excited, but I didn’t know where to start. My first question was: What are we looking for? Be on the lookout for…
  • Sweaters. We almost fought over the cashmere sweaters!
  • Good quality and luxurious materials, which are generally less accessible, but are at a good price there. Think silk, leather, real fur and wool.
  • Major brands and designer brands that are available at a fraction of the price.
  • Ensure to take a look at the accessories. Some of them, like belts, are even more beautiful after being a little worn in.
  • Some more edgy pieces, clothes that attract us, but which we would not dare to spend a large sum on in a shop.

If fashion moves fast, then trends come back at a crazy pace! Since it is not necessary to spend the equivalent of a down payment of a mortgage on clothes that will be out of style as soon as they have been worn three times, thrift stores are perfect for finding thematic pieces of a season for a lot less money. For 2018/2019 think leopard, fluo, checks and chunky knits. We also want jumbo accessories, oversized earrings to necklaces, ironically called “costume jewelry” in the world of fashion. But definitely not in the sense of a Halloween costume!

Myriam’s modus operandi

When she enters Value Village, Myriam is on a mission and ready for any possibility. She always arrives in leggings and a camisole to be able to try the clothes on quickly in the aisles. She puts everything she likes in her basket, without question, and sorts through them at the end. We must remember that each item in the store is unique and that we are always close to losing a great find! Once her basket is full, she tries everything on, creates looks and makes her choices.

My advice

Go shopping in a group. During our visit, our pleasure grew tenfold as we began to compare our finds, suggesting pieces and commenting on our looks. It’s really different than going into a shop and seeing 15 identical sweaters.

Here, we are on the hunt for treasures and we rarely leave empty handed!

We are also more likely to take chances when we are in a group and others can give us a little help with our style. Otherwise, the people onsite are really sweet too. A lady named Nicole Bélec, a regular client we met that day, even took the time to come and talk to us about it.

You know what? The touch came back pretty fast. And the taste for creating unique looks too. The creative that I am came out of there so energized that I will definitely go back!

Photos: Sarah Laroche

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Value Village, (really) not just for Halloween!