Monday, July 22, 2013

My Daughter’s Modest Monday ~ Do you buy something that needs mending?

The thrift store was packed for half-price Saturday as the 13yo, the 11yo, and I perused the dresses.

“Mom!” The 13yo’s squeal pulled my focus off the denim. I turned to see her holding up a sleeveless dress with a geometric design in shades of blues and greens. “Look at this!”

“Yeah, it’s nice.” I would never wear something that busy, but I reminded myself that my daughter was not an exact replica of me. I had decided a long time ago that I would be grateful for our differences.

“What do you think?”

I took it from her and looked it over, checking the seams and looking for all the buttons. I held up one of the side slits to her. “There are a couple of buttons missing.”

“That wouldn’t be hard to fix.”

“I don’t think I have any buttons that would match.”

“Oh.” Disappointment flitted across her face.

“What if I just stitch up the slit?”

She looked up, a smile of hope beginning to form. “Yeah?”

“The pattern is so…everywhere, that I could just stitch it closed and we’d leave off the buttons. I don’t think it would be that obvious.”

She held the dress to her, checking the length. “Well, it’d be down near the floor, too, so who’s going to notice?”

“Probably no one.” I grinned. “Unless I write a blog post about it.”


When you’re shopping thrift stores or rummage sales, do you buy garments that need mending? I usually ask myself three questions.

How much does it cost? The more it costs, the higher my expectations that the garment will be in good condition. Otherwise, I could buy something new without investing my time and effort.

How fascinated am I with the garment? If I’m not sure of the color or the design or I have a general meh feeling about it, it goes back on the rack. If I love it, it might be worth the repair.

How much time and effort will be necessary to make the repair? This is the deal breaker. If it just needs a button or a bit of hem stitched back into place, I’m much more likely to take it home. If it needs major alteration, forget it. I’m not paying for something I could make on my own with about the same amount of effort.



What the 13yo wore ~

Maxi dress ~ thrift store
Shrug ~ Kohl’s 50% off with additional coupon
Navy Blue Mary Jane’s ~ Payless


Lilla Rose flexi ~ Half-up with a twist in size medium Sea Inspired Dolphin








Do you buy garments that need repair? How do you decide?




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33 comments:

  1. I can't sew at all. If I buy something that has to be altered then it is not much of a bargain if I have to pay someone to fix it. I wish I could sew then finding modest clothing would not be a hassle.

    Charlotte Moore

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    Replies
    1. It is a benefit to be able to sew, Charlotte. What about classes or a beginner's book or, like suggested below, You Tube videos? It's not hard to sew on buttons or put in a seam. Do you know anyone who can sew? Perhaps you could barter or trade services.

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  2. That is a cute, cute dress your daughter bought and she looks nice in it. I like color and design in my clothing so that looks like something I might purchase and wear. I usually don't buy something at a thrift store in need of repair unless it is something really special. I try to get things as close to new as possible and for as little as possible when I go to the thrift store. Have a wonderful week.

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    1. I agree, Deb -- as close to new as possible and for as little as possible. Thank you, and have a great week! :)

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  3. Haha, I have a co-worker who first compliments me on a new outfit, then asks, "So, what did you do to it?" since she knows I almost never wear clothes as is. I've caught the refashion bug, so sometimes I'll buy things to use in a totally different way than the cashier at the thrift store is probably anticipating. I agree with your cost to effort analysis, though my deal breaker is how much I like it. Nowadays I only buy things I like, since even cheap purchases are a waste of money if they end up hanging in your closet. But if I really love something, and I've got an idea in my head, I will find a way to make it work.
    Incidentally, I don't just do my shopping this way to save money. It's just so much easier to create unique,cute, modest clothing than to try to buy it.
    Charlotte, you said you can't sew, but I want to encourage you that if you're the least bit interested, I am very certain you could learn how. Lots of people are scared of sewing, but there's nothing mysterious about it. It's just a learned skill that involves starting with the very basics, practicing and working up slowly from there. Go for it! Take a class or learn on online. You don't have to do crazy refashioning stuff like me, either. There are plenty of patterns and ideas out there, especially in the blog world.
    Jacqueline

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    Replies
    1. I have seen so many cute refashioned pieces, Jacqueline, but I'll confess I'm a little scared to try it. I'm not skilled, so even zippers give me hives. :) But it's the same as your encouragement to Charlotte -- start with the basics. Thanks for your suggestions!

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  4. Love the dress your daughter is wearing.

    youtube.com videos will show anyone how to sew. Just type in sewing for beginners and start sewing.

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    Replies
    1. Great tip! So much can be learned through You Tube. My husband was even watching videos about installing wood flooring a couple weeks ago. Thanks!

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  5. The dress ist wonderfull, I can see why your daughter picked it.
    I sew a lot myself, from scratch and also alteration.

    Greetings from Germany
    Salo

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    Replies
    1. Greetings, Salo! Your work from your blog looks great. So happy to have you here! :)

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  6. I do buy them once in awhile. My decision is based on the same questions you use.

    I do enjoy your blog.

    Blessings,
    Laura
    Harvest Lane Cottage

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  7. I'm with you---it depends on the effort involved and if I already have the supplies to fix it. A lot of times, I'll buy vintage dresses at yard sales that need a new hem or whatever---because I can resell them for so much more on Etsy or Ebay. To me, that's worth the time. Hope you're having a great day so far!

    Sarah

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    Replies
    1. Wow, Sarah, what a great idea for a business! Thanks!

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  8. I think it was a wise purchase! The colors really look nice on her, too. I think her dolphin hair clip brings the whole thing together, as a geometric sea inspired look!

    I have bought similar dresses to that one, and cut them up and turned them into elastic waist skirts!

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    Replies
    1. I hadn't thought of the dolphin clip being geometric. Good eyes! And thanks for the suggestion about turning dresses into skirts. :)

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  9. Meghan,

    I just came back from Goodwill and this is the first time I ever bought clothing there. I bought a skirt from Land's End that needs hemming but, otherwise, it's great.

    I wish I had a friend who dressed modestly to go with me. I do not know anyone who dresses for the Lord. In fact while I was at Goodwill, I bought a book on dressing as a modest Christian. I wish you were my neighbor, it would be wonderful to have a friend like you.

    Blessings!

    Sue

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    Replies
    1. That's neat, Sue, that you found a book about modesty at Goodwill, and Lands End has great clothing. Good for you! :) Thank you so much for your kind words, and many blessings to you!

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    2. Sue,

      I'm right there with you - I wish I had someone close by to go modesty shopping with. I'm so thankful for all my online friends that write their encouraging posts about modesty (Thank you, Meghan!!).
      What was the book titled? I would love to look for it as well.:)

      Bibi

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  10. Your 13yo picked a pretty dress, it looks so good on her :)

    I can fix buttons, but unfortunately that's about it. So I base my thriftstore purchases on that - if I absolutely love it, I'll get it and fix the buttons (maybe a tiny hole, but that's stretching my know-how on fix clothing haha). If I have the tiniest bit of doubt, I'll leave the item hanging for someone else, who may be totally in love with it and repair the garment.

    Bibi

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    Replies
    1. She is beautiful in those colors, isn't she, the way they accent her blonde hair? Fixing buttons is a good start, Bibi. It's always amazing to me how many people get rid of perfectly good clothing just because a button pops off. Then, you're in business! :)

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  11. You are a neighbor at R and R Wednesday. I love your daughter's dress and she is so happy and that is impressive.

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  12. Just stopping by from R&R. I love to remake things and save money. Creativity and thrift all rolled together. Good job!

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    1. Thank you, Linda! So nice to have you here! :)

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  13. What a wise and beautiful girl of God! I am visiting from the Homemaking Blog Hop Party! I look forward to your visit at http://www.homemaker-mom.com/the-homemakers-journey-blog.html ! Happy homemaking!

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  14. Such a pretty find!! I love how she did her hair with the Flexi. Her hair is so nice and long. I just cut a bunch of mine off. Too heavy, lol, and I didn't want it longer. It doesn't stop growing that I know of.

    Yes, I have bought skirts from thrift stores that needed repairs. I have made them smaller, and my daughter does major repairs because she likes the material. Mostly I will sew up the slit or put a kick pleat in it but only if it isn't so narrow that I wouldn't be able to walk with the slit sewn up. That's not funny!! I did that and wore a skirt camping about 12 years ago. I felt like I was shuffling when I walked!! The bad part was that that year we had to wear our clothing two days...so I was stuck with that skirt for TWO WHOLE DAYS!! UGH!!

    Oh, Thanks for linking up with WholeHearted Home. I got so involved with your post I almost forgot :-)

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  15. Judith, what a challenge it is to me not to covet my daughter's hair...still blonde and thick enough to do something with it. Mine is so thin I only need a medium flexi to get it all up.

    I love that you come to comment on all the posts linked up. Thank you! (And I won't mention my giggling through your story.... :) )

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  16. Having four girls, Goodwill has surely been a blessing. It is difficult to find modest clothes elsewhere and a lot cheaper than hand made garments! I buy my 9 and 7 year olds skirts from the women's department and use my serger to reduce waist sizes. I also buy preteen mini skirts for my two year old and cut into the elastic and trim it down to size, and in five minutes or less, I'm done!!!

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    1. Great ideas! It took me a while to figure it out, but now, like you, I love to buy the bigger skirts and cut down the waist for my youngest girl. Thanks for commenting!

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