January was a blur. Between the emotional highs (women's march and brief, victorious moments) and lows (pretty much everything else) I haven't taken a whole lot of time to let everything soak in. It feels like I've let a few things I love fall by the wayside, and I've flat out ignored the things I don't love as much but know that I need (exercise, for example). As we enter February and start prepping for Spring, I'm beginning to crave some intentionality. My husband and I are looking into grassroots organizations to join that champion social justice, I've rearranged my closet a bit, and I finally feel like I'm taking some first steps toward several long-term goals. With that in mind, this post is a tribute to slowing things down. As veteran activists and bloggers and humans everywhere note, you've gotta balance your charged actions with some self-care. To that end, here's what inspired me recently to take a breath, take a beat, and recharge.
One of my most favorite self-care pastimes is perusing thrift and secondhand stores. Readers of the blog know that I am no stranger to the world of thrifting, and I'll admit, sometimes an hour or two spent sifting through a good thrift store (or book store, but that's for another post), is all it takes to set me right. I don't even need to buy anything. Somehow exerting discernment and thinking about other people's stories is all it takes.
This is particularly true when I'm looking for the number one thing I prefer to buy secondhand:
I am a staunch believer in reusing and repurposing as much as possible. Buying secondhand is good for the environment, it's good for your wallet, and it removes any question of human rights violations from your shopping equation. But buying denim secondhand does even more. Never will you score more cool points than when you saunter into your favorite spot sporting a vintage Levi's jacket in the perfect wash. Denim is like wine and Betty Davis: it just gets better with time.
I happen to be the proud owner of two vintage denim jackets (one very light wash and one dark, both bought secondhand), and I consider them closet staples. I've been known to wear the two with skirts, dresses, trousers, a monochrome outfit, and even jeans for that full Canadian tuxedo look. To me a denim jacket is as timeless as a good leather one. You just can't go wrong.
I never, not in a million years, would consider looking for a brand new denim jacket at full price. It's the one thing I've exclusively hunted for secondhand each time I've needed a new jacket, which, mind you, is three times total. I bought my first one from Crossroads when I was 18 and it just ripped last year, hence, the new washes in my wardrobe. Most thrift stores are full of denim jackets in a multitude of styles, washes, and finishes. So if you're in need of a little R & R, I highly suggest paying a visit to your local Goodwill. If you do, let me know what you find!