How I Wear My: Secondhand Treasure

For this month’s “How I Wear My” post, Jill of Everything Just So and I thought it would be good for our wallets (and the environment) to focus on secondhand pieces. While we are not on a spending freeze it’s nice to resist all those tempting end-of-summer sales and focus on thrifted or even hand-me-down items. Secondhand can be even more wonderful than new!
~ To get us started, Jill is showing us a couple of great retro pieces. Find out how she acquired her chic sunglasses and classic silk scarf over at her blog.

~Style Higher looks chic and sophisticated in her luxe secondhand treasures.

“I am wearing a Valentino jacket bought secondhand (eBay) and Dolce & Gabbana shoes I picked up secondhand at a killer price. They had a piece of gum stuck on the bottom and it smeared a bit on the patent leather. But I got all of it off and now they are good as new!”

What fantastic shoes! Those heels….

~ Reader and friend, Barbara, recently returned from Paris with a Kenzo wool coat she found in a thrift shop. She has this to say about her new purchase: “I’m madly in love with it ! It’s wonderfully tailored. I bought it from a vestiboutique in Auteil.”

Barbara’s T-shirt, belt and shoes are all thrift shop finds as well…from Rome! I want to do some European thrift shopping with Barbara. That coat is fantastic! And you look effortlessly chic, Barbara.

~ Heather of Vintage French Chic gives us three looks with her treasured silk scarves. Saying, “I would like to highlight my Hermes scarves because all have been thrifted or bought used. But that doesn’t make them any less beautiful or valuable in my world.  I love wearing them and I think of them as wearable art.  Here are some of the ways how I have worn the three that I have:

1.  Ascot for casual wear.

2.  Used as a belt

3.  With a LBD

Three great scarves worn three stylish ways.

~Jane of The Navy Blue of India wears a home-sewn vintage jacket she picked up for $9 and a coral brooch that she paid $8 for. I like the combination of colors Jane put together.


~ Pam of Over 50 Feeling 40

Pam wears a brilliant orange sweater, olive military flats and burgundy bag. All are from Goodwill, where Pam is an ambassador, and cost a total of $16.00!

No wonder Goodwill has Pam as their representative. She’s an expert at finding secondhand treasures.

~ Tamera of Tamera Beardsley

Tamera took a Chanel-inspired secondhand jacket, sewed lavish trim and turquoise embroidery onto it, then added a vintage stole.

She calls it Chanel meets Antrhopologie with a twist of glam. And I agree. So glamourous, original and creative!

~ Catherine of Not Dressed as Lamb also wears a secondhand find that she modified herself. She says this about her embellished blouse:

“Although I do shop a lot online, I don’t always buy new: I’m a big eBay fan, mostly for vintage items. This shirt may or may not be actual vintage as it was described – I call it my old lady shirt (I got an “oi, oi” from my mum about that description!) – but it’s one of my favourites. This time it just needed a little adornment in the shape of some pretty pearl collar pins (I’d been meaning to do a DIY to make some, but ASOS shoved some under my nose in the sale. Tut, tut).”

~Amy of Denim and Dots looks stunning in a high low tank dress. She has this to say about her secondhand treasure:

“I’m lucky enough to get hand me downs from my very stylish mother-in-law, and this black tank dress that was passed down is one of my favorite items so far because it is easy to mix up with different belts and accessories.”

~ Gracey of Fashion for Giants shows off three of her favorite vintage finds. The cuff, the blouse and the skirt are all secondhand. Love the leopard with stripes! And Gracey’s big, beautiful smile completes the look.

~ Leigh of Hines-Sight Blog poses with her picture-perfect family in a flattering green sweater.

“This green sweater is a consigned piece.  It is a BCBG short, wrap-sweater.  I wear it with jeans a lot, but I am going to begin to wear it this fall with summer dresses to extend their life. They are sleeveless. Pictured with Joe’s Jeans, black Long Skinny tee, and Tory Burch leopard-print ballet flats. I’m looking forward to using it again this fall.”

Her darling, curly-haired daughter is showing off a secondhand treasure, too, with her Lily Pulitzer consigned dress.

~ Michelle of The Persnickety Eater surprises us again with yet another great thrifted look.

“This is my $1 blouse from a thrift store – it was on sale for half off the day I bought it. I like pairing it with a simple black skirt I bought years ago at Walmart for $8, but it would dress up a pair of skinny jeans quite nicely. I’m wearing it with an old silver watch that doesn’t work (but it’s pretty) and a hematite bracelet plus my wedding ring. The bright pop of pink in the shirt gives me the perfect excuse to doll up my lips with a coordinating pink, something I don’t do often enough!”

With many secondhand treasures in my trove, mostly from thrift shops, I had a hard time deciding which item to pick for this post. Many I have blogged about already, except for this one. It’s a sterling silver spoon cuff Bill bought me in Paris in 2008.

The monogram is upside down in this photo.
I think the initials are C and M, with C being the prominent initial.

The lovely shop owner told us she makes these cuffs from antique spoons. She guessed that most were from the mid to late 1800’s. So while the spoon as bracelet may not be secondhand, the spoon most certainly is and I think that qualifies.

I wore it here with my favorite thrift store find, a Club Monaco dress I bought for $6.99 at Goodwill. I love the way this dress fits and it’s very comfortable. And the ruching hides a variety of flaws. This fall, I plan on wearing it with tall boots and a cardigan or blazer.

A big, big thank you to all who participated this month. Such a wonderful turnout this month! I love seeing everyone’s treasures. And I also like to demonstrate how doable it is to look great wearing used clothing and accessories.

Jill and I can’t believe next month will mark the 1st anniversary of the “How I Wear My” series! Won’t you please join us in a toast to two beautiful autumn colors, Burgundy and Bordeaux?

Whether you go for purple-tinged Burgundy or the chocolatey-red Bordeaux we’d love to see how you are wearing two of fall’s most bewitching shades. So send Jill or me a picture of yourself for “How I Wear My: Burgundy and Bordeaux” by October 1st.



  1. September 5, 2012 / 4:24 am

    I like the gray jacket!

    The pink jacket is fancy! Too cute!



  2. September 5, 2012 / 4:50 am

    Thank you for hosting! You had a good turn out with some fabulous vintage/second hand treasures. I will be dreaming of coral brooches and silver spoon cuffs. I recently commented on another blog how I would love to see fur (faux) trimmed suits come back in vogue and now I see they have! 🙂

  3. September 5, 2012 / 4:57 am

    Everybody looks so good! And that spoon cuff on you, how unusual and beautiful, I’ve never seen one before. I love learning of its origins. What a great post! XO, Jill

  4. September 5, 2012 / 5:19 am

    I LOVE this post, you all look fab x

  5. September 5, 2012 / 5:29 am

    What a great post, Adrienne – I love admiring all these treasures including your fabulous spoon bracelet.

  6. September 5, 2012 / 5:30 am

    This is a great feature. Every submission is gorgeous but I especially love Barbara’s plaid coat.

    Maybe I will find some time to submit for the next “How I Wear My” feature.

  7. September 5, 2012 / 5:54 am

    @Brooke Hi Brooke!

    I like both the jackets you mentioned, too. I especially like the creativity that went into Tamera’s look. I would never have thought to embellish the way she did!

  8. September 5, 2012 / 5:56 am

    @vintagefrenchchic Thank you for participating! I love the way you wear your scarves and am so pleased I made the smart decision to buy that Ferroniere from you last year – or was it 2010??

    I have a faux fur collared jacket that I bought consigned. It’s a little short in the arms but I don’t care. I love wearing it anyway.

    Isn’t it fun to see everyone’s secondhand finds? Such a vast array of finds.

    xo, A

  9. September 5, 2012 / 5:58 am

    @jill815 I always imagine a wealthy French family sitting down to a formal dinner with their lovely silver service. Wouldn’t they be shocked to know some American woman is roaming around wearing one of their spoons on her forearm!

    Love your retro look and love it even more knowing the history of your treasures.

    Looking forward to Burgundy and Bordeaux for October!

    xo, A

  10. September 5, 2012 / 5:59 am

    @Faux Fuchsia Thanks, FF! Would love it if you joined us next time for Burgundy and Bordeaux. I know it’s springtime in Oz, but maybe you have a little something in your wardrobe that’s in the maroon family 🙂
    xo, A

  11. September 5, 2012 / 6:01 am

    @Patti The fun part is getting the photos of the participants. I really enjoy seeing what people choose as their favorites. I hope you join us next month for Burgundy and Bordeaux…maroon colors are hot this season and I just bet you’ve got some burgundy items in your closet!

  12. September 5, 2012 / 6:02 am

    @Lisa Can you believe how fantastic Barbara’s coat is? I am so impressed with her entire look – so, so chic and modern.

    I hope you’ll join us next month. Maybe you have a burgundy ballroom dress you could show off! That would be so great to feature!

  13. September 5, 2012 / 6:49 am

    @hostess of the humble bungalow Hi Leslie!

    Jill and I started doing these How I Wear My posts back in November – since they are only once a month, it’s not easy to see that it’s a series. I would love to do it once a week or twice a month but it’s too time consuming and people need time to get their photos together. I hope you’ll consider participating in next month’s feature – Burgundy and Bordeaux.
    xo, A

  14. September 5, 2012 / 7:16 am

    Everyone looks amazing–I’m honored to be included among such a stylish crew!

  15. September 5, 2012 / 8:44 am

    Adrienne all the girls look sooooo wonderful!! I especially love Gracey’s pattern mixing (her smile is always her best accessory)! You do classic chic so well and that spoon bracelet is amazing?!! Thanks so much for featuring mine too :))

    Catherine x

  16. September 5, 2012 / 9:06 am

    Thanks for hosting me in the post! It’s really an honour!
    I love your spoon bracelet Adrienne, it’s really chic and tasteful, and very unusual and so is the dress…in Paris I saw some Club Monaco dresses, I remember you writing that you cherished this label, is it still produced?
    I’m impressed by Tamera’s jacket, is it a true work of art! I will get tired to say that Tamera is a pure genius, you should send your résumé and art book to Kaiser Karl, I’sure he would be would be intrigued…
    I am equally impressed by Higher Style DG shoes…they are very original and look like new, and by the wonderful Hermes scarves Heather wears, I like the way she tied it in the first picture, it is simply divine.

  17. September 5, 2012 / 9:48 am

    These posts are a lot of fun, Adrienne. Thank you for including me in your post. I appreciate it.

    I love your spoon bracelet. It’s beautiful.

  18. September 5, 2012 / 10:05 am

    This was fun! I am so excited to be pictured with so many great looks! I LOVE what Tamera did with that jacket…amazing! Thanks to you and Jill for doing this!

  19. September 5, 2012 / 10:39 am

    Dying over that Valentino jacket and D&G heels!

  20. September 5, 2012 / 12:08 pm

    Hi Adrienne, what a fun post. I enjoyed seeing how all of these ladies style their second-hand pieces.

    You look drop dead gorgeous in that dress!

  21. September 5, 2012 / 1:38 pm

    What fun this is! Everyone looks fabulous. I need to get my hiney in gear and join in. Thank you for taking the time to put this together and write up such a nice post.

  22. September 5, 2012 / 3:12 pm

    Hi Adrienne !
    Just discovered your blog which is a real delight. Needless to say I love all the scarf stylings you show.
    Will be happy to follow your blog 🙂
    See ya,

  23. September 5, 2012 / 6:26 pm

    Great post. I’ve always been attracted to hermes scarves… but had no idea how to incorporate them. I’d LOVE to know what that lovely oval shaped accessory is that allows Heather to wear them like that! Thanks for the inspiration 🙂

  24. September 5, 2012 / 8:27 pm

    First and foremost my dear…you look model perfect as always!

    This post was such an inspiration to me…it made me remember how much i love taking something…and turning it into something else…i am already working on some new pieces.

    i also love Barbara’s jacket…and can only imagine how fabulous it would be to go thrift shopping with her in Rome. She has been such a generous soul to me…as my daughter left Sunday for Italy…Barbara was so dear to give us tips on Italian traveling!

    They always say birds of a feather flock together….both you and Barbara are so generous with your time and spirit.. I can see how you would be friends…thank you both for sharing.

  25. September 5, 2012 / 10:45 pm

    Hi girls!
    Everyone is welcome to Rome for a jolly round of thrift shopping and of course street food tasting! BTW Tamera I read your daughter’s post, I’m happy she arrived in Turin safely, she talks about aperitivo, you know the best aperitivo in Italy is the one prepared by bars in Turin? They have legendary fame, they even prepare aperitivo sized version of the typical piemontese cuisine such as bagna cauda…it’s amazing, really.
    PS your words almost made me cry…

  26. September 5, 2012 / 11:59 pm

    All you ladies look fantastic. It’s amazing what you can do with a bit of imagination and a good eye for a bargain!

  27. September 6, 2012 / 2:05 am

    Everyone looks wonderful, fabulous, and chic. Great finds, use, and ideas.

  28. September 6, 2012 / 6:43 am

    Fun post and everyone looks clever and wonderfully individual.

  29. September 6, 2012 / 6:56 am

    Oh, this was wonderful fun! So many different (and ultra chic) women with their (our) thrifty finds… Makes me want to get out there and do some more hunting!

    Thanks for hosting!!

  30. September 6, 2012 / 6:57 am

    P.S. – It was delightful seredipity that this posted on my birthday!!

  31. September 10, 2012 / 5:52 pm

    All you ladies look great, I love his idea and I am going to get working on my burgundy. I don’t have much so I like the challenge.


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