Ever since high school, I have found myself absolutely in love with fashion. In my eyes, it’s a way to express oneself outwardly without ever having to say a word, and as such is a high form of art. For me, clothing was a way of stepping into the world, unconditionally, as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. I was able to become more confident in who I am through the vibrant colors I chose to wear, and today I have solidified a sense of style that is unique to me, as many of my friends have told me. In addition, I have found an outlet of fashion that allows me to put my passions for a sustainable society into action.
Anyone who has gotten close with me has quickly uncovered my passion for thrifting and vintage clothing. By shopping at a thrift store or vintage store, I am able to do three really incredible things. First and foremost, you are able to invest in local economies as many of these shops are locally owned or give back their proceeds in some shape or form. Second, you can often find clothes from several decades ago, giving them a new life. And finally, you are able to repurpose high-quality, long-lasting clothing that already exists, combatting fast fashion and reducing our environmental footprint by reducing the need for “new” clothing. In regards to Rome, I have found a few places that have absolutely revolutionized the game through affordability and offering, with incredible articles of clothing at beyond fair price!
Every Sunday, just south of the Trastevere neighborhood in Rome the Porta Portese market takes place. Here, vendors offer everything from vintage jewelry to jeans and jackets! It can be a very daunting experience, given the size of the market. It is always impossible to visit every vendor in a single trip, but in that sense, there is always something to look forward to on Sunday mornings as you plan for a return trip! Moreover, you can build connections with vendors, and really connect to the culture around you! My advice for this market? Make sure to get there around the market’s open at 9 A.M. This way, you beat the crowds and get first pick, making the experience all the more seamless!
Coming from Los Angeles, there is something of a stigma surrounding vintage stores. Typically, they tend to offer incredible curated pieces, but they are by no means affordable. When I first set foot into Humana Vintage, I feared that the experience would be similar. There was clothing from the 70s and 80s in the most vibrant colors, and I was scared to check price tags given my experiences back in California. That said, I found myself in shock when I learned that the clothing was more than reasonably priced. To contextualize, I often find the coolest vintage sweaters for no more than 15 Euros. Compared to a new sweater from a larger brand, this is a mere fraction of the price. All in all, Humana is one of my favorite spots to visit in Rome when I have free time, for I have never found a better place to thrift! My advice? Keep an eye on the shop’s Instagram. They have extremely frequent discounts. For example, an “everything 3 Euros” sale! I couldn’t believe my eyes when I got a pair of vintage Levi’s at such a price.
General Advice for Thrifting!
Overall, thrifting can be intimidating with so many options to choose from! As such, one of my best pieces of advice is to be cognizant of pieces that you already own. If you own a lot of one color, try to diversify that with new colors!
Additionally, you should know your measurements! One of the drawbacks in thrifting is that most pieces will only be available in one size, and sometimes it is one that simply does not fit right. Knowing your size can help you save money in the long run!
Finally, have fun! Sometimes, it can be really cool to venture out of your comfort zone with a new piece in order to spice up your wardrobe!
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Hey there! My name is Andrew Masciarelli, and I am a rising junior from Occidental College studying economics and politics. Outside of my studies, I love to cook, and I am also spending as much time as I can teaching myself how to play the guitar!