Cute and comfortable complete outfits under $20!

There are a lot of Mardi Gras parades this weekend, and if you’re spending the day in downtown Mobile on Fat Tuesday, the parades start at 10:30am and don’t stop until after 6:30pm! Since you’ll be spending the day downtown, you’ll want to wear something comfortable, that looks nice too. Thrifty fashionista Kristen Tella tells Cherish Lombard it’s easy to find the perfect outfit for Mardi Gras at your local thrift shop for less than $20! So we met her at Goodwill Easter Seals in Mobile so she could show us how it’s done!

For the men, Kristen recommends a nice pair of jeans. She says thrift shops like Goodwill Easter Seals are full of brand name denim that’s already pre-shrunk and worn in. Once you’ve found jeans in your size, she suggests adding a green, purple or yellow button down. A long sleeve shirt can easily be transformed. If it’s warm outside, just roll up the sleeves, and if it’s cold, just add a sweater on top of it. To finish the look, boat shoes are comfortable and great for lots of walking.

For the ladies, Kristen suggests wearing a cute, casual dress if it’s warm outside. She says thrift stores are full of cute dresses, like the the denim dress she found at Goodwill Easter Seals. Add a pair of flat boots for both comfort and style and top off the look with a purple baseball cap to shield your eyes from the sun. You can also accessorize with a fun Mardi Gras pin to add some flair to your look. Kristen says it’s always a good idea to check jewelry counters at thrift shops because you never know what you’ll find!

If it’s cold on Fat Tuesday, Kristen suggests wearing
dark-wash jeans with a purple, green or yellow sweater, and you can add a colorful jacket if you need it. She says a great way to finish the look is with a pair of flat, beaded, vintage shoes. They’re perfect for making a statement at Mardi Gras and since they’re flat, you should be able to do a lot of walking. And since you’ll probably catch a lot of beads and moonpies during the parades, add a gold tote to put them in.

Kristen’s Tips for Successful Thrifting:

1.  If you don’t plan on spending a lot of time in the store, focus only on the sections of clothing that you are interested in.  Most thrift stores do a great job of organizing their clothes by color, so for Mardi Gras, stick to the green, purple, and gold (or yellow) sections.

2.  Shoes may seem like something you don’t want to recycle but a lot of times I find pairs that have never been worn.  You’d be surprised at the number of designer shoes you can find hidden in the racks…you just have to look!

3.  Don’t forget the jewelry counter!  A lot of times people only scour through the clothing racks, but the jewelry counters are treasure troves for unique and colorful pieces.  Festive, holiday pins are common and can be purchased for as little as $0.50.

4.  To cut down on time, scan the racks visually instead of flipping through every item.  While you may miss a few things by doing this, it’s an easy way to weed out the pieces that you aren’t interested in.  I usually scan the racks quickly and pull any print or color that looks appealing to me.

5.  Always wash the clothing before you wear it.  Even though many stores wash the items before they put them on the racks, it’s a good idea to wash the clothing to ensure that they are clean.

6. Whatever you wear Fat Tuesday, don’t forget the beads!

For more tips, tricks, and outfit ideas, check out Kristen’s fashion blog at .

Goodwill Easter Seals
2423 Schillinger Rd S
Mobile, AL 36695
(251) 375-9109

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