Thrift Store Style: It's All About the Layers! 1

Thrift Store Style: It’s All About the Layers!

How to Refashion a Sweater Vest into a Sweater
How to Refashion a Dress into a Top Without Sacrificing Bottom Details

Well well well…I’ve almost made it through my first month back on the blog! I’ve gotta say, I didn’t realize how much I had missed it until I came back to it.

Thanks for all the words of encouragement. While I can’t always respond to them, just know they’re very appreciated. 🙂

As I’ve said before, I don’t just wear refashions. I thrift a LOT. And I find a LOT of neato things that I wear as-is! I know a lot of you guys don’t sew (WHYYYYYY??????) and maybe don’t want to sew, and that’s okay. This is a judgement-free zone!

But even if you have no desire to refashion, there are SO many amazing thrifted finds to be….er…found! I thought I’d share my favorites from this month with you.

Also, if you want a larger dose of my somewhat quirky thrift store style, as well as pics of Douglas and Benson, make sure to follow me on Instagram (the pups would really appreciate it)!

Sidebar: A blog post on where/how to find $1 Thrift Store Clothing in your area is in the hopper!

My New Favorite $1 Blazer

thrift store style refashionista blazer
I mean business.

This was actually picked up in the Boy’s section. As I put it on, I couldn’t help but think of that scene from 30 Rock:

Jack: You’re in an “adult dude” situation. You’re wearing a beautiful blazer from Rico’s Husky Boy collection.

Liz: Is that what Raggazi Robusti means?

Whatever. I thought it looked great for a day of working remotely.

refashionista shakespeare got to get paid son
Shakespeare got to get paid, son.

Anybody remember that sweet sweet savagely thrifted Dooney bag?

An ’80s-Inspired Thrifted Ensemble

thrift store style refashionista blondie tee
Just walking around my backyard in front of my camera tripod…as one does.

For this outfit, I paired a Blondie tee I’ve had since my freshman year of high school (I was obsessed with them then and still love them now) with a $1 double-breasted sweater jacket (I ripped out the shoulder pads), a pair of perrrrrfectly-faded black jeans, and a $3 thrifted pair of vintage Aldo shoes!

refashionista thrift haul
All thrifted, my friends!

$1 Leather Vest & $1 Hooded Dress

leather vest
Yes, it’s real leather!

I could not believe that vest made it to the clearance rack. How could no one else have wanted it???

thrift store style refashionista leather vest close up
Look at those details!

Keeping it Casual

thrift store style refashionista casual
So comfy!

In the middle of this month, SC had a nice refreshing warm snap. Temps were in the mid-70’s, so I thrifted accordingly! You’re looking at a $1 Ralph Lauren tee, and a $1 pair of oversized lounge pants (I added a drawstring).

thrift store style refashionista accessories
All appendage accessories seen here were thrifted too!

My Favorite Color of the Moment

thrift store style refashionista mustard
Why wasn’t this the Pantone Color of the Year?

This outfit features a ’70s terrycloth dress, a denim jacket I’ve had forever, a vintage headscarf, and a chunky scarf I got from Stitchfix a while back. Oh yes, and my beloved Fiestaware. 🙂

Pattern Mixing is Fun!

thrift store style refashionista pattern mixing
This is probably my fave!

I am all about this one, you guys. You’re looking at a $1 vintage butterfly collar shirt, a $1 fall floral dress, and an amazing vintage owlie handbag a thoughtful coworker gifted to me a few years ago.

refashionista owl bag
Mr. Lizard likes it too!

The boots are an old pair of Steve Maddens I’ve had for probably a decade now. I know knee boots aren’t quite on-trend right now, but I also don’t care. Wear what feels good, I say! 😛

thrift store style refashionista pattern mixing in the daytime
Same outfit. Different Lighting.

So there you go! My favorite outfits from this month! I hope these give you a lil zap of inspiration for how you can wear your own thrift store finds! It’s so much fun to thrift oddball pieces that you’d probably never splurge for new, and incorporate them into your everyday wardrobe.

Happy Thrifting, and I’ll see you on Instagram!


How to Refashion a Sweater Vest into a Sweater
How to Refashion a Dress into a Top Without Sacrificing Bottom Details


  • Ellen Smith

    Can I ask where you thrift from in Columbia? I’m local to you, but never find anything quite as exciting while searching. I mean, I know you don’t wanna give away all the tricks of your trade but do you have nay spots you would suggest in Cola??


    • ReFashionista

      Here’s my biggest secret: It’s not even so much as WHERE you thrift, but WHEN. Find out the days new stuff is put out on the floor (just ask the staff). I’ve also adjusted my work schedule so I’m at the door before my favorite store opens on the day clearance items get marked down to $1 (I start work early, and take my “lunch” break around 9am). Also, I rarely thrift on weekends, as that’s when everyone else is there and everything gets picked over. Just during lunch breaks. Weekends are for checking out vintage booths at antique malls, auctions, or yard sales.

  • Karen

    I love thrifting too, and I’m pretty sure I was inspired to begin thrifting by your blog, quite a few years ago. I’m glad you are back, thanks for sharing!

  • Kay

    Always such a treat to see a new post from you! Mixed patterns, oh my yes. And the concept of picking up that unlikely item that makes an outfit really interesting, truly one of the many charms of thrifting. In my college years many decades ago I worked in a smaller thrift in a fashionable city. Some of our customers were so incredibly creative and always looked so amazing, it’s inspired me ever since. (And you save money…)

  • Michaele

    Love them all, Jillian! Thanks for sharing! A challenge I like to do with my girls (17 and 24) is to pick outfits they like on Pinterest and then try to recreate from thrift stores and GW. Makes it a fun game. And we only pay a fraction of the cost!

  • Christine Scott

    Messaging you from a Calgary, Alberta, Canada blizzard! Just love, love, love your fabulous inspirations. Girl, you gotta write a book soon! (Christine Scott)

  • Yona Bello

    Love everyone of these outfits and accessories! When I lived in California, there were great thrift shops and garage/yard sales to pick up $1 items to revamp, but since moving to NY I find absolutely nothing for $1 or even close to it I do enjoy seeing your transformed outfits and your creative talent

  • Catherine

    I love this post, you look adorable in all your outfits.
    I want to tell you the leather vest you found is a great find, I have the same one in black which was bought for me in Cody Wyoming it was a 175.00 vest.
    You have a wonderful find.
    Thank-you for returning and sharing your wonderful transformations with us.


  • Laurinda Pudlo

    Your preaching to the choir here! Although I always cringe a little when someone who wears a small or medium size, buys 2 & 3 XL to cut down. Those sizes are really hard for us big girls to find to wear as is, let alone refashion

  • pamela

    LOVE YOUR POSTS! Sure wish I could find thrift stores like you have in your area! I never find deals like you do, but I love thrifting. I like finding clothing make from great material that I can refashion. Plus, who doesn’t want to save money?

  • Bree

    Oh, oh, oh…. I could just weep when you comment on how you are surprised that your followers have expressed joy at your return. WE MISSED YOU!!! We are thrilled to see you back. You are an inspiration but you are more than that. So much more. Your sense of style is awesome and you have a great sewing set of skills. I agree with Rebecca (drawstring comment) that there are a lot of people out there who have no idea how to fix things. What is up with that?
    I have been waiting for you to arrange advertising and I see it has arrived. Advertising saves blogs for sure and I am hoping yours continues til we are both old and grey. Oh, wait… I am there already… lol

  • Debbie Brown

    Wow! I have a needlepoint owl bag just like that one. My Mom, who just passed away in May, made it probably in the 70’s. Thanks for the sweet memories. I guess I’ll have to get it back out and use it, but I’m sure it looks a lot cuter with you.

  • Mare

    So so glad you are BACK….not only blogging, but back sharing your incredible fashion style. Always look forward to your posts !

  • Sandra Ruiz

    Dude! Where do you live? I use to love thrift store shopping when I was in jr high & high school because I could find sweaters for a quarter, dresses for a $1. And of course the kids thought I was weird. Now in CA, it’s trendy to go thrift store shopping and the prices got hiked up big time. I still love thrift store shopping but look for the half price sales…lol. I ponder if I really want to spend $7-10 on an item at a thrift store…sometimes I do if it’s really unique but usually wait for it to be 50% off. You found some amazing items for cheap. Every time I travel, I visit thrift stores. I have found some treasures! Oh and just an FYI as I read this…I was like, “I’m wearing knee high boots right at this exact moment…they’re not ‘on trend’ ???” Yea, I’ve NEVER cared about that either. They were $3 at my favorite thrift store. Ha! 🙂

  • Anna

    I used to thrift a lot in high school and college but fell out of it at some point along the way. I’m so glad you’re back because you’ve been inspiring me to get back to the thrift store and get excited about my wardrobe again! It used to be so fun to find one-of-a-kind things and put it all together in different ways .. and it still can be! Thank you for reigniting my clothing creativity.

  • Lisa Hamel

    The yellow outfit is my favorite! Yay for lounge pants!

    I have to ask. How long is “forever” for you and your denim jacket? My beloved is nearly 17 now, and I plan to never give him up. He is in dire need of elbow patches, though, and I can’t decide between leather and denim.

    Happy thrifting!

  • Jo

    Know any good sites for making changes to our dated sweaters? I’m a sweater gal, but they go in and out of fashion like anything. Or, any sites to dress up sweaters?

  • Kim

    Awesome! Glad you are back! BTW, I just moved out of Manhattan back home to Portland, Oregon. Everyone in both cities wears knee boots – it’s cold and wet! So, if hip NY girls wear knee boots and casual-cool, I-don’t-care Portland girls wear knee boots, they are in style. A classic is never out of style, IMHO. 😉

  • Julie

    So nice to receive your blog in my mailbox again! Thanks for coming back…I get a smile on my face every time I see “Refashionista” !!!

  • Janice

    So happy you are back! You look absolutely darling. I shop my closet and refashion all the time! Such fun and gets the most bang for the buck! Thanks for all the inspiration.

  • Andrea

    I love these posts! I work at a thrift store and while some days the selection is rather meh… I get good days too and have a new styles to try. I really needed help with some fashion ideas and you do keep them coming! I sew as well but time has been lacking so thank you once again for the ideas!

  • Martha

    I am so glad you’re back! I love your blog and your style! I also love thrifting, but I’m nowhere near as imaginative as you are when it comes to refashioning.

  • Murielle

    Jillian! I fabricated my first $1.00 pair of jeans! There was a dollar rack outside my local thrift store and after I had made my purchases, I thought, I wonder if there would be anything there that would fit me (I am a plus lady) and there was a pair of Melissa McCarthy skinny jeans that fitted me beautifully. Yay!

    I love your looks, especially the mixed pattern one because you know and practice the rules: patterns can’t be the same size, and must have a common color.

    Yay for dollar items! Yay for your gorgeous sun room, and the biggest YAY for your wonderful blog!

  • Laura DeBoer

    I can’t wait for the post about finding good thrifting places. I live in the country and there isn’t much around here. There is one thrift store in our county and one clothing consignment place (which is cheaper than new, but nothing like $1!). There are a few in neighboring counties, but I get overwhelmed sifting through the junk and give up before I get to anything good. Maybe I need to go to a city?

  • Camille Duke Mueller

    Love that you are back! Told my male business partner yesterday that ALL my clothes, accessories, and shoes are from thrift stores (except a couple of pairs of used really cool boots from Ebay). He was shocked – he said you always look so awesome and well put together. I said that is the WHOLE point! I want to do more refashioning but haven’t gotten my skills up to that level yet! Keep inspiring me!

  • Monica

    I love how you can make vintage look sassy and not sloppy. So glad you’re posting again to your blog. You’re an inspiration!

  • Samantha

    You put together outfits so well and look great in everything! I’m a big Debra Harry/Blondie fan as well, and saw her in concert last summer at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. She was fabulous!!!!

  • Sandra Lape

    I just don’t know how you do it. When I try to throw things together, instead of an amazing outfit I would look like I fought my way out of a bin of cast off clothes. Amazing!

  • Rebecca A Pitt

    That leather vest is amaze-balls and I’m jealous that you wear yellow so well. Don’t you love that someone else passed over those lounge pants because they don’t know how to install a new drawstring?!

What do you think?

%d bloggers like this: