Sarah Nicole Landry, the face behind The Birds Papaya blog and The Papaya Podcast, has been shopping thrift for years. Not only is it a financially responsible way to shop, but it also helps reduce clothing’s impact on the environment. Below, Landry shares her tips on shopping thrift and the benefits that reuse brings to your closet and the planet!
Mediaplanet: How long have you been shopping at thrift stores like Value Village?
Sarah Nicole Landry: Since my early 20s!
Why have you decided to do this?
At the time, it was out of necessity. I was a stay-at-home mom, in a single-income family. We needed to save money where we could, and this allowed me to update my home and my wardrobe and dress rapidly growing children in an affordable way.
What do you like about shopping there from a fashion perspective, sustainability perspective, and value perspective?
From a fashion perspective, it’s always given me a creative edge. We are so used to going into a retail store, liking what we see on a mannequin, and finding that very thing in our size. Thrifting strips that all away and forces us into a new type of style shopping that is so inspiring. From a sustainability perspective, this became more important to me as I learned about the way clothes are produced and the impact on our environment. From a value perspective, there’s nothing I love more than being able to pull together a look for under $100 that would easily be close to $300 if bought new. You always feel like you got a deal!
What percentage of your clothes do you purchase there?
I’d say about 50 percent, easily.
What would you say to someone who hasn’t tried this but cares about the impact that fast fashion has on the planet?
Easy — try it! It can be confusing and overwhelming at first, but give yourself time. Go into the store with a focus or two (say, just shopping jeans and shoes) and take time with EVERY single item in your size. When you look at everything all at once, it’s harder to find the gems.
Any other messages you think are important to get out there?
Thrifting is one of the most environmentally and financially responsible ways to shop, but even more so, it’s accessible, with stores like Value Village full of pieces that suit both your unique sense of style and budget.