Leah's Fabulous Finds
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Conch Style: How to Shop Consignment

Posted on: August 10th, 2012 by Leah No Comments

Florida is home to some of the best consignment stores in the country.  Not only are they great for selling your gently used items, they’re also great for finding unique vintage and brand name items for a fraction of the cost.  Think of them as a hand-selected version of a thrift store or garage sale without all the junk.  Only the best of the best gets sold there.  That said, people often say that shopping at consignment stores can be intimidating.  They don’t like digging and they’re overwhelmed before they even get started.  Here are some recommendations on shopping at consignment stores.

Start your visit by asking the owner or sales associate if they have anything new in.  This usually will prompt them to show you a few of their favorite things around the store which usually translates to be a really great find!

Next, start shopping in the jewelry or accessories area, as they’re typically displayed in an easy to browse way that will let you look through them without all the “digging”.  Look for great bangles and long pendants to pair with dresses and sandals for a beachy chic look.  Also look for vintage clutches for evenings out and unique sunglasses.  After all, a Florida Keys girl can never have too many sunglasses.

Dresses are another easy area to browse as they’re usually hung by size and style and can be easily sifted through without much work.  Fashion repeats itself, so many of the styles that would be considered vintage are back in again.  Always try it on as many vintage pieces aren’t marked or accurately sized.  At the very least, your dressing room experience could turn into a fun flashback to an 80’s prom.

Look for designer names as consignment stores usually carry a great selection of high-end labels most of us would never normally be able to afford.

Make sure to always double check your items before you buy as many may be vintage and you want to be sure you’re okay with the condition it is in.  Nothing is worse than getting home only to realize that its missing a button and you don’t have the time to repair it.  That said, most consignment stores will only accept items in the best condition.

Here are a few amazing pieces found at MS.cellaneous consignment boutique in Islamorada, FL.

1. Vintage gold mesh necklace with large medallion ($30) – Pair this necklace with a long maxi dress and gold bangles and earrings.

Necklace available at Ms.Cellaneous Consignment Boutique in Islamorada, FL.

2. Chain Body Jewelry ($60) – This piece would look amazing over a black dress!

Chain Body Jewelry available at Ms.Cellaneous Consignment Boutique in Islamorada, FL.

3. Black Vintage 80’s dress size 8 ($20) – The style of this dress is so in again.  Wear it with cute heels to a more formal function as its long, hitting just beneath the knees.  Consider cutting out the shoulder pads although leaving them in could be kind of fabulous as well.

Black vintage dress available at Ms.Cellaneous Consignment Boutique in Islamorada, FL.

4. Escada Knit Suit – $46 Vintage suits look great when separated for a more modern look.  Worn more like a sweater, this knit jacket would be a preppy addition to a chic structured shift dress for cooler evenings.

Escada Knit Suit available at Ms.Cellaneous Consignment Boutique in Islamorada, FL.

5. Pastel green vintage handbag and matching gloves – $28 This bag is so effortlessly ladylike, you could wear this with jeans and look amazing.  And the gloves have never been worn, still displaying their original tags.

Vintage bag and matching gloves available at Ms.Cellaneous Consignment Boutique in Islamorada, FL.

MS.cellaneous is located in Islamorada on the Oceanside at MM 82, open Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.  For more information, go to Islamoradaconsignment.com or call 305.517.9990.

And if all this advice is still a bit overwhelming, go with a friend who’s good at shopping.  They can help you sift through the store to find those amazing pieces you won’t be able to live without.

 

This article was also featured in the Florida Keys Reporter and Keynoter as a part of my “Conch Style” column that runs bi-monthly in the Friday and Saturday edition.  If you have story ideas on style in the Florida Keys, please send me an email at Leah@leahsfabulousfinds.com.