30th July 2019
Cheap vintage clothing
You’re looking for cheap vintage clothing. You’ve just found and fallen in love vintage style clothing, Rockabilly music and Vintage Pin Up style. You want to totally renovate your wardrobe and make it all rockabella style? Or it’s a style you’ve loved for ages, but you’re a savvy shopper and you know that you can spend your money wisely
But you’re on a budget. Our suggestions below will help you look after the pennies, and in most cases are kinder to the planet than raiding the local discount fashion brand.
Here’s our guide to getting the vintage rockabilly pin up look on a budget. Get ready to bring out your inner Lana Del Ray vintage Queen
These trips and tricks are ones we love and find fun and exciting, which we think vintage shopping is! You can also find specialist vintage clothing shops in your area. If you stop buy regularly you might be able to sweet talk the owner or staff to keep back certain items. In the past I’ve got some good finds from knowing the owner and how to fix or save that item of clothing.
Cheap isn’t cheap
Here’s what you’re not going to find in this post. Links to loads of brands which sometimes do vintage style clothing and are a part of the fast fashion machine.
Because fast fashion sucks.
It sucks the life out of everything. The people who make it, the places it’s made, the environment. Synthetic fabrics take upwards for 200 years to bio-degrade.
Buying something more expensive which will last you is a much better investment in yourself and in the planet. We believe everyone involved in the production of your clothing deserves to have had a good time. Which means items end up costing a bit more. But that’s ok, because then as the owner you look after something better if it means more to you.
Lecture over, let’s get to the cheap vintage clothing hacks.
Check the sale section
Start right here on our site. Most clothing brands will move through styles and once an item has been around for a while put some reductions on. While we’re a slow fashion brand and don’t work with flash sales or many sales throughout the year, we still have times we clear the decks of older lines. If you’re an XS or an XXL you’re in luck, because those are the sizes which normally make it to sale at Lady K Loves, and in some cases see huge reductions.
We also have an eBay clearance shop, if you’re a seamstress or know someone who’s handy with a sewing machine you’re in luck here. We use this as a place for end of the line styles, items which only have 1 or 2 left in stock, some stock is slight issues which need a quick seam fixing with a sewing machine. New styles are added all the time too!
In your quest for cheap vintage clothing, eBay is the budget buyers best friend, did you know we have a clearance shop on eBay? Poshmark in the States is also great for pre-loved goodies (did you know The Cherry Dollface has a Poshmark shop?) Depop is another good one, and a range of other sites where people can sell second hand goods. eBay is useful because if you’ve got your eyes on a particular item you can set up a notification so you know when ‘red gingham trousers size 12’ are listed. There are also a range of swap and sell groups on Facebook and most likely other social media platforms too. These are also great ways to get items you’ll love. Make sure you read the rules when you join, it helps avoid any issues over sales later.
You can also use all of these options as was to clear your old items and raise some funds for your new wardrobe
And general second hand shops, or op shops, thrift shops, good will, call it what you like wherever you are in the world. If you have a clear eye for what you are after these can be really successful. Or if your open to something from total left field. When you find a good one they are total gold mines for cheap vintage clothing. The location can have a huge affect on what the shop has. Wealthier areas are more likely to have high quality brands. The items might be a bit pricier, but for vintage clothing it’s still cheap.
Some places have a better eye for what is vintage and will even have a vintage section. The prices are still very pocket friendly though so don’t let that put you off.
There’s two added bonuses with this way of shopping,
1 – Your money goes to a good cause,
2 – You’re less likely to see someone where the same item!
Over the years I’ve gotten to know the brands I’m looking for and have scored some pretty sweet pieces from well known brands on the rockabilly, pin up vintage scene. Tops which I know retail at £40 for a tenner, or dresses for £15 which I know are still listed on the website for £70+. In some cases, if you know what you’re looking for, you can snap up these items, sell them on the above sites and then use the pennies to pick up that item you really want.
This is the cheapest way off all to get your wardrobe together. It may sound a bit counter productive but stay with me. Go through your wardrobe and reduce out what doesn’t feel like the ‘You’, you want to be. I think this is one to do regularly any way (Despite being totally guilty of being rubbish at it myself). When you look through your wardrobe with a particular eye, you’ll find items which already have that pin up vibe. A classic black pencil skirts is a staple item, it might not have a vintage clothing brand label in it, but it creates the same look. Taking stock of the items like this which you do have, means you can free up the money you have spare to spend on items which you can combine to give you the over all pin up look you’re after. Make it more fun by adding in friends and try on loads of stuff, bring out your inner Cher Make over a la Clueless
Sometimes cheap vintage clothing isn’t cheap, but other items can be. The extra joy of clearing your wardrobe means you have a having a hit list of items you’re looking for. Keep this on your phone so it’s easy to remind yourself next time you’re at a charity/thrift/good will shop, car boot or garage sale, or anywhere which sells second hand clothing. Keep yourself focused. I know there’s always so many things you could walk home with but.
How much do you have to spend? Is it on your list?
Keeping your focus, means you can make those outfits you really want. If you’ve been desperate for a black cowboy shirt then don’t leave the black cowboy shirt and walk off with another sequinned dress and you have 5 already and no where to wear them. Your wish list helps you know what will work in your wardrobe and what will help you get the look you’re after. It also helps you save for the investment pieces you really want, like a pair of our rockabilly jeans. Then spend smaller amounts on a range of tops giving you loads of outfits for not as much outlay.
If in doubt, bring a friend, particularly one who is brutal (but kind) about if things suit you and knows what you’re trying to do.
The bullseye of cheap vintage clothing, you pay with items you no longer want!
You’ve gone through your wardrobe and have a massive stack of items which aren’t in the pin up, trailer queen, vintage, retro, rockabilly style you’re after. What do you do with it?
There are a few options; you could give back to the charity shops you’re now scouring. Or you could sell anything which is in good condition on eBay et all….
Or you could organise a swap shop. There’s loads of ways to make this work! If you’ve got kids take over the playgroup you go to with your 1 year old and get all the mum’s to bring their unloved items, take over a house, garden, café, pub, community centre, garage, shed, wherever works for you. Invite your friends, ask them to invite their friends, put a notice out on social media, your local community board, your works intranet, that meet up app you’ve heard about. The wider you cast your net, the wider the range of people who will come, which means, the more likely there will be a few bits of gold for you to go home with. Anything left over, organise to give to charity so you all get to leave with cleaner wardrobes, new things to love and happy hearts knowing your supporting a good cause.
How do you shop on a budget? Do you have any great ideas which we’ve missed? We’d love to hear from you! Join in the conversation on any of our social pages