Fresh graduates and interns in Singapore who are new to the workplace and may not have adequate clothes suitable for work in their wardrobe. For many, splurging on an entire set of work-appropriate clothes isn’t a luxury they can afford.
Fortunately, if you know where to look, assembling clothes suitable for work need not be a costly affair. One good option is to buy from thrift stores that specialise in curating, listing and selling high-quality second-hand clothes – often at a fraction of what you’ll pay for the exact same item at retail outlets. If you are lucky, some of the “pre-loved” clothes on sale could even be completely brand new!
To get you started on your thrift shopping spree, here are three popular online thrift stores that save you from having to spend more on your work clothes than you need to.
Refash was founded in September 2015 to help women to buy and sell secondhand fashion quickly and conveniently.
With clothes from brands like Alexander McQueen, ASOS, and The Tinsel Rack, prices range from under $25 to more than $200. Clothes are categorised into “Like New” or “New with Tag”, giving customers the freedom to buy clothes that are in the condition they are comfortable with.
A check on the website showed a second-hand crotchet overlay peplum top by Love Bonito selling for $17.90 instead of the usual $39.90 in-store. Another potentially work-appropriate item is a brown satin culottes by Runaway Bandits that costs $17.90 instead of $34.90 in-store.
If you prefer to try on the clothes before purchasing, there are currently eight offline Refash stores islandwide in locations such as Orchard Gateway, Northpoint City, and West Coast Plaza.
The Kint Story
The Kint Story was founded less than a year ago by two NUS graduates, Elisa Goh and Huang Yushu. What sets their store apart from other online secondhand stores is their approach: each piece is hand-picked by the founders, washed, styled, modeled and launched in themed collections every week.
Prices depend on the brand and condition of the item, but can go as low as $9.90 for a H&M mint top, a mid-range price of $16 for a mermaid skirt, and about $59 for a vintage jacket by Yonex.
Customers who collaborate with The Kint Story to sell their clothes or nominate a friend to be a seller will receive a $10 credit voucher.
If you find yourself needing more than just clothes, StyleTribute which was founded in 2013 is a one-stop place to buy second-hand high-end clothes, shoes, bags, and accessories at much lower-than-original prices. Delivery is also available for a fee of $5.
To give you an idea of what you can find, a grey blazer by Theory only goes for $60 instead of the usual $580 in-store, which is a whopping 90% discount. For shoes, a pair of black heels by Karen Millen sells for $90 instead of the retail price of $296.
For those with clothes they wish to sell for cash, there are two ways you can do so on StyleTribute. The first way is to download the StyleTribute seller mobile application and list the item. When the item is sold, a courier will bring the item to the StyleTribute HQ and you’ll earn up to 80% of the sale.
The second way is to arrange for a free courier pick-up for all your items. The staff at StyleTribute will then check the items before listing them on sale. For items over $1,000, the seller earns 75% of the sale price while for items below $1,000, the seller earns 70% of the sale price.
Looking Fabulous Without Breaking The Bank
Whether you’re an intern, fresh graduate or someone looking to stretch your dollar, thrift stores can be a great, wallet-friendly way to acquire high-quality clothes suitable for work, formal, and casual events.
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