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Talking trash with a Carolina girl: Patty

Patty shares her fashion finds
Patty shares her fashion finds
George Hodan

Talking trash on Monday morning may be far too easy to do for some people. But, we’re not here to make disparaging remarks about the the Gamecocks or Tigers, to belittle any political figure or even pass along the latest gossip about our favorite celebs. We’re talking trash – literally items that are thrown away by a staggering 87% of the population.

In Columbia, it is easy to find donation centers for unwanted clothing. In many small towns and rural areas, this is not the case. Too often clothing that is perfectly good, and may even have the original tags attached, becomes trash – stuffed into a plastic garbage bag and hauled to the dump. Even in cities, people often find it easier to throw away clothing than drive it to a thrift shop where it can be resold.

This weekend, while thousands of people were dodging raindrops and tying up traffic on Bower Parkway and Two Notch Road to make the most of tax free weekend sales at department stores, Patty was at Goodwill buying other peoples’ trash.

Patty arrived at Goodwill at 9 a.m. on Saturday and was, amazingly, the only person shopping at the time. Another customer arrived shortly after, but the store was virtually empty. She found three pieces to add to her corporate casual wardrobe that will be ideal for work. Her budget for trash shopping: $8.25.

First Patty chose a ¾ sleeve white blouse from Cato. Its v-neckline, shirred detailing and rhinestone centered bound buttons bring a classic to life. Gently fitted, it falls to hip length and is figure flattering and easy to wear. Meant to be worn tunic style, it’s a perfect match for black dress pants and low-heel pumps.

Patty next found Cato cuffed khaki slacks. Pull-on style with a front placket and two tiny zip pockets, they feature belt loops and an elasticized side waist for adjustable fit. Simply adding a brown leather belt will make them office-worthy and easy to mix and match for multiple transitional late summer looks.

An Alfred Dunner rose and grey lightweight floral cardigan was Patty’s final selection. Featuring classic button front styling, it has tiny black beads and glittering sequins on several of the flowers at the front, giving it just a touch of bling. Easy to dress up or down, it layers perfectly with a pink tank or rose lace trimmed cami.

We can all learn a valuable lesson about trash. What one person cannot use or doesn’t want can create a fashion find for another. The next time you clean out your closet, take your trash bags to the nearest thrift shop rather than the dumpster. And the next time you are near a Goodwill thrift store, stop in and look around. You just might find the best trash in town!

There are many Goodwill thrift stores in greater Columbia. Just enter your zip code to in the box where it says, Find Your Local Goodwill.

As always, maximize your style and minimize your spending~