How to Dress as a Garage Sale Shopper

If you were a garage sale host and saw someone step out of their Porsche dressed in a long fur coat, with their little dog under their arm, would you be inclined to give them any discounts or leeway in bartering?  Probably not -- they can clearly afford to pay you the full $3 on that silverware set.  Dressing to yard sale shop is very important for both your first impression to the host and your own comfort; you should choose your outfit carefully.

Dressing like a yard sale shopperTake a step or two outside, and check the weather forecast, before you decide on a shirt to wear.  You may want to start by layering -- wear a t-shirt over a tank top, for instance -- and then you can remove layers as the day warms up.  For appearance's sake, you should probably wear something casual, like a plain tee or one of your old favorites.  Anything that you can't wear to the office is acceptable, and probably the most comfortable anyway.  (Remember: you're not trying to deceive the hosts of the sales you visit; you're simply avoiding pitfalls that will give them the wrong impression and make them treat you differently or even rudely.)

The same weather-checking tip goes for pants.  Jeans are a classic choice, but make sure you pick a pair that are well-worn and broken in -- otherwise, you could end up chafing by the end of the day!  You want something that is easy to move in, but sweats are just a bit too casual.  Shorts are also a good choice, as are capris.

Do not wear flip-slops.  This is for your own safety and comfort.  Flip-flops require you to squeeze your toes to hold them on, and provide no support whatsoever for your arches.  A comfortable pair of tennis shoes is your best bet for garage saling, especially if you plan on walking instead of driving your routes.  Fancier shoes are not recommended either, as they make you seem "too good" for garage sales (and are rarely as comfortable as sneakers).

Women can wear a dress or a skirt, if it's casual, but anything fancy is out.  The same goes for suits; it just makes you seem as if you're deigning to stop by a garage sale, and you may be met with hostility.  If you've got a casual watch, you can wear it if you need it, although in this age of cell phones it might be more efficient to carry yours around to check the time.  Caps are useful to keep out the sun, along with sunglasses, but designer items should be avoided.

Whatever you wear, make sure you can accurately measure to it.  Since clothes at garage sales are generally not available to try on, you'll need something to compare it to that you know fits you.  If you wear a too-big or a too-small shirt, pair of pants, or other article of clothing (like a jacket), you won't get an accurate idea of how the potential purchase might fit you.  If you are dead-set on wearing something unusual on your expeditions, take another shirt or pair of pants along and keep it in your car.

When it comes to dressing your kids to take with you, keep these tips in mind.  Help them choose comfortable, casual clothing that will keep them warm or cool enough and allow plenty of movement.

Check out GarageSaleCow for some other great resources.  You can design your own sign, read up on more tips, or list your garage sale for free!




Comments (14) -

Theo Campbell
Theo Campbell
2/24/2013 2:27:48 AM #

I remember a line from the movie - Crazy Stupid Love. Ryan Gosling said "Be better than the GAP" It just says it all, improve how you dress and don't settle. If you look good then you'll feel good. Your fashion defines what kind of person you are.

Rashad Miller
Rashad Miller
2/24/2013 2:32:21 AM #

Wear something comfortable while shopping because you will spend a lot of time roaming around and searching through boxes. Just don't be too comfortable, wear a decent outfit without having provocative or seductive outfits especially if you're a woman. A simple shirt and jeans would do.

Neville Bryant
Neville Bryant
2/24/2013 2:38:24 AM #

If its raining, you could cancel your trip to the sale or you could wear a jacket and put on some layers of clothing to fight off the cold. While if it's hot and sunny, then wear something loose and don't forget to bring an extra shirt to change if you need to. Dress according to what the weather demands Smile

Delilah Fread
Delilah Fread
2/28/2013 8:36:02 AM #

Don't wear too formal attires when going to garage sales. Your outfit should make look like you need a discount or bargain from the host. You don't want to give the impression that you can definitely pay for the item because that would make your bargaining harder. If I'm the owner, why would I bargain with you if you can afford these items? You need to have a good disguise of sorts to be able to get the best deals possible.

Dominique Current
Dominique Current
2/28/2013 8:38:18 AM #

Choosing clothes for a garage sale is not that big of a problem. You just need to be yourself and dress according to what you like and what you're comfortable in. Maybe you could put on some perfume and make yourself look presentable because you'll never know, you may meet the girl or guy of your dreams in a garage sale Smile

Karen Burns
Karen Burns
2/28/2013 8:46:08 AM #

Wear thin clothes if it's your typical sunny day but don't wear sandos and tank tops because you will look like a tourist having a vacation in the beach. Also, don't wear flip flops because there's a tendency that your feet will be stepped on, sooner or later. There are a lot of people in a garage sale and you can't always look out for people who might step on your feet all throughout the event. It's better to have protection for your feet by wearing a nice and comfortable shoes.

Monique Foxman
Monique Foxman
2/28/2013 8:57:07 AM #

Never wear suits or lavish attires in garage sales. I would immediately think that you're lost because this is not the place for you, maybe you're going to a conference meeting or business presentation. Just dress simply but elegantly.

Always wear a wrist watch to keep track of time and see you progress, if you're making any. You don't want to spend so much time roaming around without accomplishing any of your objectives. You could set time tables for these goals and evaluate them if they've been met and if not, what are the thing you could change to achieve those.

Raven Bloomberg
Raven Bloomberg
2/28/2013 9:03:19 AM #

Choose light colored clothes since these kind do not absorb light which means less heat and sweat. Compared to dark colored shirts like black, violet, these are all opaque materials and tend to absorb all the light coming from the sun. If possible, wear cotton shirts and bring a towel or handkerchief to wipe off sweat from your face.

Elijah Haney
Elijah Haney
2/28/2013 9:07:39 AM #

I usually go with jeans and a shirt with something under the shirt. I sometimes put a towel or wear an extra thin shirt underneath to prevent me from sweating too much and prevent the sweat from sticking to my clothes. I bring an alcohol with me in case I need to freshen up a bit and some perfume to make me smell good for all the girls in the sale. I can't be caught off guard, even in garage sales, I need to look good.

Precious Teaff
Precious Teaff
2/28/2013 9:12:24 AM #

This is the best time to experiment with your clothes. You're not obliged to wear presentable clothes like in school that you can't wear your favorite shirt because it's faded and that would be social suicide. But in garage sales, it's your chance to wear your old clothes and experiment a bit with your pairings with jeans.

You could show your fashion sense and wear your own accessories while in the sale. You could paint old shirts with cartoon characters or memes and make them look new. Let your creativity and imagination loose.

Tyrone Mackler
Tyrone Mackler
2/28/2013 9:17:47 AM #

There is no particular dress code in a garage sale so don't worry if you don't have new clothes with you. Learn to wear old clothes but wear them confidently. It doesn't translate that if you're wearing an expensive shirt, your more attractive than someone who's wearing a simple shirt. Sometimes, it's not about what you're wearing but who's wearing it and how is he/she wearing it. If you feel good, then you it will show that you definitely look gorgeous.

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Amy Wolin
Amy Wolin
2/28/2013 9:29:53 AM #

I prefer to shorts over jeans when I go out and join garage sales. I can move freely and I'm comfortable. I don't wear those short shorts because I look like a stripper or hooker and you can't move freely as want if it's too tight. I then pair it with my nike sneaker or chuck taylor to have like a rock star princess aura. I just wear light make up with mascara. Just enough to attract cute guys Tong

Suzie Campbell
Suzie Campbell
3/5/2013 9:42:00 PM #

First and foremost, when you dress you should always match it to the occasion but also not to forget that the essence of FASHION is COMFORT before STYLE. A lot of people are always concerned with what they wear and that they tend to forget how it may affect their planned activities. Wear those things that makes you feel good as well as it makes you feel comfy.

Keira Malich
Keira Malich
4/8/2013 6:42:33 AM #

Wear something lose for you to move freely. That's the best advice I could give. It will help a lot for you to have the best find in the sale.

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