...I love a good Sal Val haul
I have this affinity for thrift ever since I can remember. I'd rather - a million times over - root through racks and racks of used clothing than pick a size from a carbon copy set of attire. There's something in the thrill of the hunt and the subsequent find that gives me a sense of victory.
Wednesday, I took a stroll through beautiful downtown Shamokin on my lunch break, as I often do, to see what our local Salvation Army thrift store had to offer.
Like any shopping trip, my trips to the Sal Val, as I affectionately refer to it, are very hit or miss.
Sometimes I score home goods, other times jewelry and, if I'm lucky, I find a few items to add to my wardrobe.
Wednesday's haul was small in size, but rich with what I consider great finds.
You see, Wednesday is half- price day at the Sal Val, which, for someone like me, is as exciting as when I was in school and we were treated to free ice cream on the hottest day of the school year.
Already bargain-priced items have an insanely low bottom line on half-off day, so it's by far the best day to stop in if you're looking for clothing and you're extremely cheap, I mean, thrifty like me. If only I were cheap; my dad says I spend money like a Rockefeller.
So here, ladies and gentlemen - or not gentlemen, since the fellas, all of whom I adore, always tell me on the street they don't bother to read if I write something "real girly" - is the breakdown of my latest haul:
Army green military-style jacket
Similar item retails for $50 to $68
Original Sal Val price: $6
Half- off day bargain: $3
I have this horrible habit of misplacing jackets. Why? Well, I'm admittedly absent-minded occasionally, but, in my defense, a jacket is something you take off when you arrive somewhere. I can't say there are occasions I take much more off than that, aside from a pair of shoes if the weather is messy, which explains why I don't lose my pants nearly as often. (Must I really point out that is a joke? I hope not.)
I spied this jacket at the very end of a rack I was perusing casually and after sizing it up to be sure it would fit, I knew, at $3 it had to be mine.
Nothing beats a versatile jacket, and a lightweight olive green, military-style jacket with feminine details is just right for upcoming summer nights enjoying a cold beverage on the patio.
3/4 length sleeve top in yellow and gray stripes
Similar item retails for around $9.88
Original Sal Val price: $2.50
Half- off day bargain: $1.25
There are days I just need a shirt to throw on to go to lunch or go shopping. This shirt will fill that need. Yellow is a color I stayed away from as a blonde, but since I've embraced the dark side of my roots, I find myself gravitating towards it, especially in the spring. The color combination is one of my favorites used in interior design and don't even get me started on stripes. I've got stripes. Stripes so plenty they necessitate an entire section to themselves in accordance with the way I organize my clothing.
Green blouse with flouncey tie at the collar
Similar item retails for Lord-only-knows-how-much because this shirt is likely from, I'm guessing, the 1970s
Original Sal Val price: $2.50
Half- off day bargain: $1.25
You would think, considering I have a thing for vintage blouses with a built-in flouncey thing, that I would know the technical term for said flouncey thing, but, unfortunately I do not. I find myself buying this style of blouse, first, because the word blouse makes me feel fancy and, second of all, the look of the blouse makes me feel fancy as well.
Often paired with a pencil skirt of a neutral color, the flounce-factor makes blouses such as these a staple in my office attire.
Another bonus is the lightweight fabric. It's very breathable and ideal for summertime.
Sleeveless, belted dress in brown with white polka dots
Similar item retails for about one trillion dollars because it looks identical to the one Julia Roberts wore in "Pretty Woman" when Edward took her to the horse races (trust me, the color may not translate well here, but it's identical)
Original Sal Val price: $5
Half- day bargain: $2.50
Oh, the fairy tale of "Pretty Woman." Who couldn't fall in love with a movie about a prostitute who falls in love with a rich businessman who randomly picks her up by asking for directions. Holy Hannah, Hollywood. A little celebrity, a handsome leading man and a likable leading lady and most of the world forgot this movie was about a hooker landing a sugar daddy.
Nevertheless, the movie is sort of a cult classic of its own. Between the classic lines like "Slippery little sucker," - referring to an oyster, mind you - to the impeccable wardrobe Vivian was treated to once she was deloused and stripped of her lady-of-the-night garb during a trip to Rodeo Drive.
This dress, though. I don't know what it was, but I had a thing for this dress like you wouldn't believe when I was younger. She paired it with little white gloves and a big white hat and it made for the perfect outfit on the perfect day with her new "John" or, I mean, boyfriend. That is, until Edward ruined everything by telling his business partner she was a hooker. That prostitution is a tricky business.
Anyway, I'm not sure I'll accessorize as such; I'm not even sure where I'll wear this dress, but the sheer magnitude of a find like this for $2.50 will go down in my personal Sal Val history.
Similar items retail for about $20 a piece at the very cheapest
Original Sal Val price: $2/each
Half- day bargain: $2/each (Purses don't count on Wednesdays)
I needed a new purse because, although I'm a huge fan of the pleather feathers on the one I'm currently using, the purse is simply too small. Plus, the strap broke and I don't have the Lady MacGuyver'ing energy to fix it due to a large-scale rig job I accomplished on a broken piece of furniture earlier this week.
One of these bad boys is even leather and has so many different compartments and pockets, had I considered trading in my journalism career for that of a lady version of Inspector Gadget, I'd have all kinds of places to hide all my tricks.
The people who work at our local Salvation Army could not be any friendlier and a kind man even made the effort to walk over and open the door for me. Overall, my trip was a delightful experience and I was able to donate $13 to one of my favorite charities.
(Jenna Wasakoski is an assistant editor at The News-Item. Her column appears every Thursday.)
Note: You'll notice my "column mug" has changed. I was told my previous, long-running mug was not flattering to readers who have met me in person, so I'm trying a few new ones.