Chat with the chief: Cheap thrills

For most of my life, I’ve really, really loved picking out new outfits.

On most days, I try to coordinate my clothes with my jewelry and my makeup. I really enjoy channeling my creativity through what I wear. Odds are, if you see me on campus, I’m wearing an outfit-makeup combination that is at least relatively coordinated (unless you catch me on a bad day when I’m wearing sweats and my hair is a rat’s nest, in which case, mind ya business).

So many people think, as a college student, they do not have enough money to fund a fully stocked, on-trend wardrobe.

That could not be further from the truth. For those looking to be fashionable and frugal, I’m here to tell you that it is absolutely possible.

Due to my love for all things fashion and beauty, and my online shopping addiction, I’ve discovered a lot of secret gold mines full of the best articles of clothing. Although I will admit that shopping can be expensive, it certainly doesn’t have to be. Aside from some name-brand things I’ve received as gifts or purchased during a “Treat Yourself” moment, a lot of my clothes were discovered on a resale rack.

In Big Rapids alone, there are multiple resale shops for students to find stylish pieces at a reasonable price. Label Shopper on State Street is one of my personal favorites — I’ve had a lot of luck there, whether it’s wardrobe staples or unique articles that you couldn’t find anywhere else. There’s also your usual suspects: Goodwill on Perry and Salvation Army on State, although their selections are pretty hit or miss (with emphasis on the “miss”). I also have friends who rave about Fabulous Finds Resale Shoppe on Michigan Avenue, though I’ve never checked it out myself.

The key to finding hidden gems at these stores is to really dig. You might not find exactly what you’re looking for right on the surface, but I’ve snagged some name-brand dresses, grungy flannels and jeans with the tags still on them tucked in the bottom of a bin at a resale shop.

Even if you can’t find the absolute best outfits at these establishments, you might be able to layer or mix a resale item with an old piece from your closet to put a spin on one of your classic outfits.

If you’re not into fashion and just want to wear your old, comfy clothes, go ahead and rock it. But, if you want to spice things up and add some new items to your closet, you can do so without breaking the bank.

Head out to your local resale shop or Goodwill. You might be surprised at what you’ll find.