Awhile back I had the pleasure of attending one of the most fun fashion events I've ever been to. Yes people, they call it a clothing swap and if you've never been to one I'm here to tell you, "Go, GO NOW!!!" A clothing swap is exactly what it sounds like. It’s an event that provides a venue for individuals to bring gently used, cast off items from their closet in order to trade for the misfits of others. What I’m getting at here is it’s an opportunity to not only clean out your closet, but replace the sad little holes left behind FOR FREE!!!
Admittedly, this last swap was not my first rodeo. Sioux Falls has been savvy enough to host several of these types of functions. It’s at this time I would like to sincerely thank the individual who continues to organize forward thinking events, like the swap, for our community. On behalf of all self-proclaimed fashionistas I would like to state, “Thank you Ms. Jessica for continually attempting to put our little city on the map of Midwestern Style. Your efforts have not only made a huge impression on my wardrobe, but also introduced me to other like-minded individuals who dress for art, rather than purpose.” If you find yourself reading this and wonder, “Who the heck is this Jessica chic? What can she do for me?” Well, I’m here to tell you the answer is to check out her Etsy store at https://www.etsy.com/shop/ELOFSON. Again I'll state, “Go, GO NOW!” Considering how much of my own wardrobe has come from her shop, one can bet after purchasing from Elofson they’ll be looking like me in no time. Wait, that statement may not be the best endorsement.
Alright, I’m done with the shameless promoting. Returning to the topic at hand, I had a delightful time at the clothing swap. How could I not? I received free clothing in return for the crap I didn’t want in my closet! Let’s focus on that last statement for a moment. Admittedly, each time I’ve attended a clothing swap I’ve felt this subtle nag of guilt in the back of my head. I worry, “Other people have donated all this great stuff and I’ve brought a hodge-podge of shit that even I decided was too weird for me to wear.” However, I’m continually shocked at how diverse both the clothing and the people at these swaps are. There seems to be a fit for every fish out of water.
I was delighted to see several of my items get picked up by other individuals. In fact, one of these pieces was an over the top, 80’s windbreaker jacket that I wore on this blog a couple of years ago while snapping glamour shots with my parents, “fabulous,” Chihuahua. Upon bringing this piece to the swap I thought, “Who the hell else would wear something so garish? I really shouldn’t be bringing this.” I was thrilled to realize there are other weirdos in town just like me and by the looks of them I must be making some correct fashion choices. Suddenly I was like, “Do I really want to get rid of that jacket?”
At the end of the night my friends and I gathered to admire all of our found treasures. My favorite scores of the evening included a fantastic pair of vintage, leopard print, Donald Pliner mules and the vintage Mickey Mouse sweatshirt I'm wearing in the above photographs. This shirt actually reminds me of another close friend of mine that has one similar to it. I saw it and immediately thought, “I always liked her shirt.” Thinking of this now I can’t help but marvel at the irony of acquiring such a uniquely coveted item at a clothing swap. Maybe my long distance friend was hiding among the masses of women trading each other for treasures. Furthermore, maybe my couture cohort who organized the whole event knew this was the only place I could find such a piece. Lastly, upon leaving the swap my companions and I couldn’t help but laugh at the fact that one of them had taken a rather strange western style shirt without realizing it had been one of the items I had originally donated. I guess my overall point here is that fashion not only keeps me entertained, it keeps me connected. As unique as I like to consider myself, we’re all just sharing one big closet.
Sweatshirt: Vintage (Aquired at the clothing swap)
Purse: Vintage (Etsy)
Ring: (Purchased at a craft fair)