Shopping consignment is one of the best deals out there. There are different kinds of second-hand retailers, and consumers often lump them all together and get discouraged from frequenting them. Vintage can sometimes still be pricey and thrift stores are usually 90% junk but the good consignment stores are filled with carefully selected product at amazing prices. Consignment stores mostly carry clothes, shoes and accessories that are only a few years old, were worn by the original user a handful of times and have been hand picked by the store owner as pieces that are still fabulous. And, lucky for the District fashionistas, there are several great consignment stores in the area! Three of my favorites are Current Boutique, Inga’s Once is Not Enough and New to You.
For the Socialista: Inga's Once is Not Enough is tucked away up a set of stairs on MacArthur Boulevard in Georgetown. Inga is known for her designer inventory. She carries tons of Chanel, Gucci, Manolo Blahnik and other higher end designers. Her pieces are not vintage but are often 3-5 years old, which lets you know that they can stand the test of time.
For the Recessionista: Current Boutique is located in Arlington, VA, along the Clarendon-Courthouse corridor. Owner, Carmen Lopez, is one of the city’s most stylish fashionistas and hand picks the best pieces from her regular consigners. She won’t take anything that is not in excellent condition, a good brand, and stylish. At Current, you'll find a lot of designer jeans such as Seven for All Mankind and Citizens of Humanity and brands such as Free People, BCBG and Trina Turk. And as the name suggests, her inventory is always current, I’ve even seen pieces in there that were still in the department stores, but at a third of the price of course.
For the Fabulista. New to You is another great treasure that can be found in Falls Church. The girls who work there are passionate about fashion and very knowledgeable about their inventory. They carry a wide range of brands from J.Crew to Moschino to Gucci. Their fabulous inventory always moves fast so check in every few weeks for the best finds!
And don't forget, if you have some fabulous pieces in your closet, in good condition, that don't fit or that you just don't wear, call these stores for more information on how to get some money for your unused wardrobe.