Monday, March 4, 2013

Skeleton Closet: Hand-Me-Down Treasures

I hear plenty of people complaining about receiving hand me downs, as if it was a bad thing!
Unless you're receiving nothing but tattered remains (which can be a treasure in itself, if you sew), hand me downs are the best! It's completely guiltless if you attempt reconstruction, and best of all, it's free!

I love clothing, and this is no secret to anyone I encounter. I receive so many hand-me-downs from my mother, her colleagues, and from some of my acquaintances and friends. As promised, I will showcase for you today the amazing outfit which was entirely given to me by a wonderful acquaintance.


When we first met, during my wedding reception, she and I sat discussing steampunk and gothic fashion at length. She told me that when she was my age she would dress much like I do, and that she kept many pieces from her former wardrobe. I was thrilled to find a kindred spirit!


It was during last years 4th of July party that she presented me with two quite spectacular pieces. A velvet dress and a button up vest with fringe. She told me that she was going through her items, and thought that I would enjoy them, which I unequivocally do!

And then, earlier this year she gave me another article of gothy goodness; a velvet jacket! Isn't it wonderful?!


Perhaps later I will add some vintage metal clasps to it, as it currently has no way of closing. Regardless, I just cannot get over how beautifully 1920's the style strikes me.

What I am wearing:

  • Hand me downs!
  • Boots: K-mart


Have you receive many hand-me-downs? If so, which are your favorite pieces?

17 comments:

  1. It must be an amazing feeling to meet someone who is much older than you and hear about their past alternative style choices:)

    I love getting hand me downs! Few months ago I got a huge amount of accessories and some clothes from a friend of our family; many of them aren't my style, but they let me check how would I look with something that I would never consider buying myself. I also have some clothes from my mum, grandma and aunts that I love to wear. Latest thing that I obtained was a huge black faux fur that my granny wanted to get rid of. I'm about to cut it soon and make several items from it, including warm collar :)

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    1. Judging from the pieces she gave me, she has a spectacular taste in clothing; even now when she is not dressing so outwardly goth, her choices in the little things are covetable.

      Oh that sounds wonderful! Fur collars are quite luxurious for winter =)

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  2. A big, ornate clasp would make a lovely focal point on that jacket.

    Hand-me-downs are great. I see it wasteful for people to throw away clothes, and if you're going to give them away, giving things to people who appreciate them is as good as giving them to a charity shop, and at least if the recipient sews, then unlike a charity shop that might not be able to sell broken clothes, the recipient might be very happy to take them. My partner's mother has similar tastes to me, and I've had some nice hand-me-downs from her.

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    1. That is exactly my thoughts on thrift stores! Thrift shops are inherently good, but they do toss so much clothes away that are unsaleable to the garbage; it's a little disheartening seeing all the waste.

      Isn't it exhilarating getting pieces from someone of similar tastes in clothing?

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  3. Hand-me-downs are the best! And you can't go wrong with velvet :)
    We throw away too much. In Sweden people are also afraid of giving stuff away, thinking no-one wants their old stuff, and that they would offend somehow.

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    1. Yes, velvet is queen in many wardrobes! ;)
      That's really a shame to hear that, with such a rich culture both progressive and traditional, there are probably some real gems getting tossed :(

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  4. There's nothing wrong with hand - me - downs, I've also received quite many from my mom and grandmom, and my mom's collegues. Some of them are real treasures. Sometimes I get clothes, that are absolutely not my style, but it's always fun to try them on and see how I look in them...:)

    I also like to hand things down to people who appreciate them rather than giving them to the charity shop where they might be just tossed into a box waiting for someone to fish them out...

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    1. Those are wonderful sources to receive treasures from =D
      My older brother is adamant about never purchasing anything used or handed down, and I hear it from so many others too!... it's quite baffling!

      Oh, and sometimes they're actually tossed! Most of the time I give my unwanted clothing to charities, but if I feel that someone would truly enjoy the piece, than handing it down feels real good!

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  5. I love hand-me downs, I still get a few from friends and me and my mum have been known to trade clothes (although she's a bit smaller than me so not everything that fits one fits the other, most things do) for instance she gave me back a velvet top that I used to have when I was 11 recently; she borrowed it for a few years to wear for smart parties (getting her into a dress is a twice a decade occasion =P), but now she's bored so I get it back =]

    I think it's great to recycle clothing and it's nice giving it to people you know (so you might see it again, in some form of another) if that's possible! I've given a few things to friends myself; one of my friend's I gave a corset too because I loved it but it was a bit big; she loves it to death and that makes me really happy. I used to give clothes to a younger friend as a kid and her mum would make them into patchwork things =] I loved that. Seeing a cushion in her room and realising one of the patches was the embroidery from an old top of mine was ace.

    Your friend has great taste in clothes, they look lovely on you too. I like the idea of adding vintage metal clasp to the jacket, that would be a lovely touch.

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    1. Heh, my mother and I share the same relationship with clothing! She's given and taken, just as I =P

      Patchwork recycling is awesome!

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  6. I never get hand-me-down clothing any more - boohoo. Although I do get things for the house gifted to me ... as in “Ooh, this is creepy. Lynne will probably like it.” And that's always lovely!

    You are one lucky girl - a black velvet dress AND a black velvet jacket! I'm sure I probably have the perfect clasp somewhere in my stash for that jacket ... send me your email and I'll send you some pictures. You'd be like helping with the downsizing!!! ;o)

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    1. Even household items are great to get! My mother-in-law gave us her old bedroom set made from solid wood, along with other pieces to fill our home! Hand me downs of any kind rock!

      Oh my, you mean it? That would be great to take a gander at! I sent you a message via FB-- hope it gets to you! Otherwise if you come back here my email is mari.mortem@gmail.com ... I haven't figured out how to message through blogger; the send message won't pop up anywhere =/

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    2. Good thing you mentioned you messaged me on FB - I only ever check that thing on Sundays! :o)

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  7. I love hand-me-downs! I get them on a fairly regular basis from one of my step-mom's friends. It's pretty awesome. At least half of them turn into DIY projects but that's half the fun.

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    1. That does sound wonderful; a steady flow of hand me downs? I'm a little green ;)
      Indeed! I love to DIY!

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    2. It is rather awesome. I love to DIY too I just never feel like I have enough time.

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  8. I think the most part of my closet are second hand things. For some strange reason I haven't received a bundle of hand me downs in a year :(

    I love the frills on that top!

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