This past weekend I bought four pairs of jeans from the thrift shop! Excessive, I know, but when you hear this story you’ll see it was unavoidable.
I would have never thought such a feat to be possible if it didn’t happen to me. I mean, jeans are notoriously hard to shop for even in conventional retail stores. Yet, I found four perfectly beautiful pairs in one day at the thrift shop. It happened and it was a history-making score. This is how the story goes.
I already had a good collection of jeans: two skinny pairs, two relaxed boyfriend style, and two flared. All that I’d ever need, and a bit more. However, two of those pairs (a boyfriend and a flared) were starting to feel a bit loose, and I had been looking to replace them. Of course, I never thought I’d be able to do it in one day.
This past Saturday I needed a longer break from home and kids, so I went out to visit both my favorite thrift shops. In the first one I found three great pairs of jeans. I found a Joe’s, Japanese denim, boyfriend style; a Hudson, made in USA, flare; and a Burberry, straight, ankle check pair, made in England. And they all fit! I know. I couldn’t believe it myself. Now, I am not usually one to buy cartfulls when I go thrifting, because what’s the fun in that? I usually just keep it to one or at the most two items per trip. So I made myself select only two pairs and leave one behind. I chose to leave the Burberry behind, because the other two pairs looked better on me. Plus, I reasoned, it’s good to leave some treasures back for other people to find, for good thrifting karma. I was of course certain that the next person to lay their eyes on the Burberry jeans would snap them in a millisecond.
At the second shop I had no intention of buying anymore jeans. As a matter of fact I had no intention to buy anything at all, just to enjoy the browsing. Unless of course, something formidable and out of my wildest dreams would show up. Which, you probably have guessed, happened. I found a pair of black skinny jeans, made in Japan, by Karl Lagerfeld ! I had been dreaming about Japanese denim for a long time, because they are apparently the holly grail, as declared by denim connoisseurs over on the two or three websites that came up in my Google research some months ago when I was looking to buy some nice jeans for my husband. So this is how I ended up buying a third pair. Interestingly enough, in this second store I also found another pair of Hudson jeans identical to the one I had bought already. So you could say that I left a treasure behind even here.
I spent a good hour or more on Saturday evening cutting and rehemming. I’m not too fussy about that, I just cut off the original seam using older jeans in the same style to measure, and then I sew the new hem by hand, because I broke too many machine needles with jeans. One of these days I’ll buy some denim needles. Maybe.
And this is where the story doesn’t end yet. No. The following day I couldn’t stop thinking about the pair of Burberry’s I had left behind. They were actually a nice straight leg, and I don’t have this style in my collection, and in a beautiful dark wash, and they were made in England (the most exciting part about it). Because I had a 30-percent off coupon and apparently nothing better to do this Sunday, I decided to check the store again and see if they were still there. I was convinced they wouldn’t be, of course. I didn’t even look too hard, but I saw them immediately there, waiting for me. Destiny, what can I say. And at checkout I discovered that it was a 50-percent off day. How were those jeans still there? I can’t think of any other reason that they were meant to be mine. This is the magic of thrifting: it’s not just shopping, it has meaning. Right? And meaning is happiness. Meaning is everything.
Now I got rid of one of the old jeans (I might use it one last time for a Holi celebration this weekend), and I am left with nine pairs, of which one is a bit too tight in the waist and one is rather loose (but in a good slouchy way that I enjoy). I’ve never owned this many jeans before. Such decadence. I’m not sure how I feel about it.