“Creativity is making marvelous out of the discarded.”
Every now and then, it’s time to purge your closet. Trends come and go, but certain closet staples stand the test of time. A classic white shirt, a navy peacoat, a wool blazer, a good denim jacket, a worn pair of Levi’s. I bet your mom wore Doc Martens in the 90s because she’s cool like that. In fact, if you pilfer through your dad’s closet you’re sure to find a few distressed band tees he picked up at the “hair band” rock concerts he attended in the 80s.
If you flashback through your mother’s college photos you might spot some classic 90s trends: combat boots, bucket hats, fanny packs, high-waisted mom jeans, matching plaid sets, wide-leg jeans, denim jackets, scrunchies, headbands, white sneakers, overalls. Flash forward to spring 2021 and many of those same trends are being worn by influencers on TikTok.
Whether it’s your boyfriend’s hand-me-down flannels, your mom’s acid-washed denim from the early 2000s (that your grandma discouraged her from buying), or a classic piece you recently thrifted, there is something timeless and fun about upcycling and combining fashion trends. The cutest thrifted treasures can be paired with the latest boutique arrivals for a fashion-forward look that doesn’t break the bank and supports recycling and sustainability.
Upcycling is creative reuse and includes the process of transforming “unwanted products into new materials or products perceived to be of greater quality, such as artistic value or environmental value.” So the next time you decide to purge your unwanted clothing, consider creative or artistic alternatives for those items. Think about updating your old denim by adding some distressing or creating a raw hem. Cut off or crop your old favorite t-shirts. Create raw hemmed, distressed, cropped flannels out of your dad’s oversized, discarded shirts. You can also upcycle your denim - jeans, shorts, and jackets - with paint or embroidery. Pair an upcycled clothing piece with a trendy boutique purchase and Bam! You’re an influencer - in an adorable, positive, and responsible way.
Recently, our North and Main babe Corrina decided to upcycle a thrifted denim jacket. She wanted to paint sunflowers on the back of the jacket in anticipation of sunnier, summer days. We followed her progress and the outcome was nothing short of stunning.
Corrina is a freshman at Young Harris College in Hiawassee, Ga, majoring in communications. She is a valued North and Main Clothing Company team member, and in addition to being one of our most popular sales associates, she is the artistic designer for our windows. Corrina sees art as a creative outlet and seeks to make the “world a prettier place.”
Fashion is an aesthetic and artistic expression of our personality, lifestyle, and values. What we choose to wear is frequently a reflection of the color palettes and styles that bring us joy or make us feel calm. Our clothing choices oftentimes benefit our mental health, helping us to feel more confident, happy, or relaxed. And an upcycled piece that belonged to your mother or grandmother - well that has us feeling all the nostalgia.