Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Thrifted & Gifted

Whilst it's an established phrase for our American sisters, thrifting isn't a word we Brits use, but as my lovely friend Alex pertinently points out in her fab blog, Pretty Frocks and Odd Socks, just lately it's creeping into many British bloggers' vocabularies.

Over here we like to be specific with our second-hand shopping, it's from a car boot sale, charity shop, jumble sale or flea market. How can non-converts be inspired if they don't know where to look? Thrifting sounds like an exercise in saving money and we don't buy second-hand just to save the pennies but to find one-off, unique or vintage pieces to help us stand out in the ocean of identically dressed chain store shoppers.

Another word that gets Alex's back up is gifted. If somebody has been kind enough to buy you a present surely it's only polite to let us know who it was? Us bloggers are a nosey bunch and need to know.

Take these wonderful parcels that arrived today from the fantabulous and awesome, Jem:

Calamity Jem's blog was one of the very first I discovered. Finding her blew my mind, we love the same outrageous prints, retro labels and kitsch bit and pieces. Neither of us dress purely in one era but love to mix up the decades creating our own vintage, not being afraid to get the scissors out and do a bit of customising along the way.

The parcels were wrapped so prettily in things I love, pink flamingos and Jimi Hendrix. I gazed at them for ages before carefully opening them. I will reveal the hidden treasure, you'll have to be patient. If you've never checked out her blog you really are missing a treat.

I'm off for a cheeky midweek drink and a delicious curry shortly. As the next few days are going to spent in a field I need to frock up to the max and don my highest heels.

Psychedellic Maxi Dress (Jumble sale 40p), Leather "Finland Made" shoulder bag (British Heart Foundation £2.95), Contemporary suedette clogs (Local Boutique £10), Channel Islands Pendant (Salvation Army 99p)


  1. What a wonderful joyously purple print on that dress! And nice choice of the malachite-ish pendant for contrast. You're like a psychedelic medieval maiden.

  2. La la la la la pretty flamin-GO la la la la la
    Blast from the past. Yes, I do read Jem's blog because it's on your Can't Live Without. She's got some great Demonia shoes at the moment. Nobody rocks those Sixties prints like you though!

  3. Jem's blog is on my list, I love how she dresses & of course I love reading about those bargains! What pretty parcels, love the green and pink x

  4. 40p frock!! I don't know how you find them! Looking forward to seeing what is in your parcels you little tease!
    Kandi x

  5. you know i am completely impressed that she sent a jimi card! perfect pairing here. the purple looks great with the warm straw colored leather because they are opposite ends of the color wheel. the yellow makes the purple look more purple and vise versa. i will check out the other blogs. thanks for the sweet message!

  6. Wow that is one knock out of a dress (in a nice way). Hope you had a great time.

    I must admit to liking the word thrifting - I don't know why, maybe because its an apple pie sweet sort of word .

  7. it is so interesting to see the difference between the us & uk blogs, you picked the hottest words i think ;-)

  8. I’m glad you pointed out the thrifting terminology, I have never heard of the gifted term however I do think this whole thrift word thing can get a little over used.

    What a spectacular wrapped parcel! There’s nothing more mysterious than a package through the post. I am very intrigued to see what you received.

    Stunning dress, the colours are so sharp and the pattern is fabulous and as always an absolute bargain xx

  9. I have been guilty of using the 't' word, I think I read too many blogs written by Californian lovelies. However, you and Alex are right, when I read a UK blog I want to know where these wonderful finds are from.

    Looking gorgeous as always, enjoy the curry x

  10. Dear Vix,
    that is what I call a super duperly quick delivery by ye olde Royal Mail and you know what...after last Wednesday's giveaway proving to be as popular as bingo night at the graveyard, there will be another parcel coming your way soon ;)
    I love that gorgeous maxi dress, it has the most luscious cut, colour & print.
    I totally agree with you & Alex, the word 'thrifted' is far too vague.
    I generally describe something as a 'pressie' instead of 'gifted' if it is something that has been given to me by a rello or a friend; rather than writing a longwinded sentence like "this was given to me by my great aunty Jean who lives in the Outer Hebrides".
    I have to admit that it's not always because I'm too lazy to specify; sometimes I simply cannot remember who I was given the item by…the shame :(
    I'm chuffed to bits over your kind words & I am exceptionally happy that we did manage to bump into each other here in the blogosphere.

  11. Ha you tease! Can't wait to see. I prefer secondhand or charity or jumble etc and also am with Jen - it is a pressie!

  12. What beautiful packaging. Very lovely lady indeed!

    You don't look bad either... ;)
    Love that pendant, enjoy your curry you lucky minx, I had salad. :(


  13. Oh you are just lovely! Adore this dress. And your hair looks spectacular!

    As for thrifted: I'm lazy. That's as specific as I am going to get.

    And gifted?: sometimes it just doesn't seem appropriate to share! Or maybe I'm lazy again. Well, definitely lazy. ;-)

  14. That was a good lesson in English language, Vix! Having also lived in the US I sometimes don't know if I should call an item 'from a thrift store' or '2nd hand'... But I do know that you treasure your clothes and always come up with amazing designs and pieces (like this one) - no matter if thrifted, vintage, 2nd hand, old, 60s or however people call it. Wishing you fun in the fields! xxx

  15. I love purple and that dress is divine

  16. Love the print but I think I would have liked it a little longer:-) This seems an awkward length to me. And the packages are wrapped soo beautifully!!It makes the gift even more precious..

  17. I usally only use the word thrifted when I actually got it in a thrift shop. But there is only one that I know of in Dublin so I just stick to charity shops most of the time. You're the first person who influenced me to start buying second-hand clothes! I'm addicted now and only rarely buy clothes in chain stores/high street now. So thank you so much!

    That dress was only 40p?! I'm so jealous! Love this <3
    I never did a blogger meet-up or shared letters or anything like that. Even if I do see "ads" for blogger pen pal, I never join up cos I'm too shy most of the time. Ah annoyance!

  18. I love the print on your bright and fun. In australia we call it op-shopping. I have to thrift or charity so overseas bloggers know what I'm talking about it.
    Midweek drink sounds fab...I'll be enjoying a few beers tonight too. xxx

  19. I love your outfits and you are a very clever write!!! So happy that I found your blog.

  20. Love the colors of your outfit and will go check out the blog of your friend now! :)

  21. Such a pretty frock!!The bag looks rather interesting!And your hair is dreamy!!You're wearing one of your new pendants!
    Ooo,doesn't Jem wrap beautifully?! How exciting! Don't you dare rip & tear!
    I think you know my stand on the term thrifting!! I reckon use whatever term applies-if overseas people don't understand it,they can ask and learn.Like we all have.
    LOVE HelgaxxxXXXxxx

  22. Hey Retro Heads!

    I entered a contest to win a walk-on role on the most retro-licious TV show ever: MAD MEN!

    But I need your votes to help me win, so please visit my blog or go to and vote for me!

    Thanks a bunch,

  23. This dress is awesome - love the print! And it fits you like a dream - do you regularly adjust your finds?

  24. Gorgeous printed maxi, love the colouirs on you, and that bag a super steal!
    Jem's an absolute sweetheart...kind thing!


  25. That dress is gorgeous in so many ways! You are definately right about us being a nosey bunch!

  26. Ooh I'm very honoured to be discussed on here! It's refreshing to know that I'm not the only one who thinks that way - I wondered if I was touching on a bit of a taboo subject when I mentioned it originally.

    Jem's presents look so intriguing - can't wait for the reveal!

  27. LOVE the dress, and what a bargain! That shade really suits your skin tone.

  28. haha!I could have written the bit about 'thrifted'! I will not be using this Amercian term,I hate the way Americanisms creep into the vocab these days even though I am guilty of using them myself.I shall stick with vintage or second hand!!

    (sorry,sticky keyboard meant typos!)

  29. Hallo lovely! great colours on you!! A question for you, if I issue you a hairstyling challenge, would you be up for it? I think you would, but just want to make sure before I go ahead.x.

  30. Oh the sleeves on that dress are so wonderful!
    The term "thrifting" for me is fairy new, growing up I would just say I'm going "thrift shopping" and it meant I'm going to various thrift stores or charity shops as you guys call them. Over the past few years my friends and I picked up the term thrifting, I never really thought about it but it does sound kind of funny.

  31. je suis fan de ta robe,forme et motif extra top ;O)

  32. When I am trying to create an air of hipster coolness i say "it's vintage" but mostly I am all giddy and say things like "This? This was 50p from PDSA!"
    I like to call it chazzing

  33. Oh dear, I use thrifted and gifted all the time :D

    Great dress!

    Sal xXx

  34. hmmm... I thought I had commented here...

    I say op-shopped... charity shops here are called opportunity shops and op-shop/op-shopping has a nice ring to it.

    Alas Australian bloggers are using thrifted now, Australians are getting very Americanised... I don't like it so I don't use it. 'thrifted' sounds -as you say- miserly.

    I op-shop to heal 2 birds with one stone... to give back and help and to prove that money does not buy style.
    ... obviously shopping at markets is not about the first reason but it's always about the 2nd reason... To me constantly proving that (like you do) is so much more pleasurable and worthy.

    Unfortunately, I don't really consider a person who dresses in labels and spends thousands of dollars as stylish. fashionable maybe but not stylish.

    Gifted... well, that word is an adjective meaning showing a natural aptitude for something!! It's very kiddie language... my kids when they were young would say that they "versed so-and-so team"!!

    LOVE this dress Vix!!! You look GORGEOUS!


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