A Jumbo Collegiette's Guide To Affordable Style

We scroll through Pinterest, Instagram and numerous other fashion blogs every day looking at cute outfits and pretty jewelry, but the price of these items can make us want to cry. No need to reach for that Kleenex, Collegiettes – welcome to the world of thrifting!

As a correspondent from Her Campus Tufts, I dedicated a Saturday to thrift store hopping in order to give you the low-down on the best deals in fashion around the Boston area. These stores are listed in order of increasing distance from the Tufts Medford campus.


1.     Raspberry Beret

Porter Square, 1704 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge


Located only one stop from Davis Square, this relatively small but charming store carries stylish clothing and caters entirely to women. Prices are relatively wallet-friendly at $15 for a really cute cardigan (that may or may not still be there). I recommend this store if you’re in the mood for browsing for a few items as opposed to an entire wardrobe makeover.


2.     Boomerangs

Central Square, 563 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge


Boomerangs is a popular chain of thrift stores in Massachusetts owned by AIDS Action Committee of MA, and all proceeds go towards their work to fight AIDS. Prices are $8 for sweaters, $4 for long sleeved shirts and $6 for long sleeved blouses. Stuff here isn’t particularly trendy, but there is a large quantity of functional clothing that includes some men’s clothes. They also have quite the array of cheap books, dinnerware, and some furniture that you could use to decorate your dorm or apartment.


3.     The Garment District

Kendall Square, 200 Broadway, Cambridge


The Garment District was definitely the most fun place for me to explore. It consists of three sections: Boston Costume, By The Pound, and their regular store. Boston Costume is, as you probably guessed, a huge costume store. With Halloween coming up, this is the place to go! The By the Pound section is a whole floor area covered with mounds of clothing that you can take and pay for by the pound. A good proportion of the clothes are really big or quite old, but if you score some good pieces, it’s such a good deal (I got three sweaters for $2.50!). Upstairs is their regular thrift store, which is a few times bigger than any of the other stores on this list. They have a large variety of chic yet affordable clothing. The Garment District wins by a landslide in terms of the variety and amount of clothing offered; it would take at least two or three visits to cover the entire place!


4.     Second Time Around

176 Newbury Street, Boston


STA is a chain of stores with branches in Connecticut, New York, DC, and other parts of New England. There are three on Newbury Street alone. The store carries brands such as Chanel, Ralph Lauren and Massimo Dutti, but the prices actually start as low as $25 for other items like a classy black jumpsuit. The price range jumps around, but it is definitely the place to go if you’re looking for a party dress.


5.     The Closet

175 Newbury Street, Boston


The Closet is the most high-end of the list (pun intended), carrying Ferregamo, Jimmy Choo, Louboutin and Donna Karan. Prices here are not extremely cheap, but reasonable, and you can still snag good deals such as $69 for a DK coat. I’ll let you in on a secret: prices go down after 30 days. A little bit of waiting can go a long way.


So, beautiful-but-broke fashionistas, go forth and thrift!


Photo source: Dian Mak