Unlike fast-fashion hubs or niche boutiques, thrift stores are rarely organized by size, trend, genre, or even designer. It's category collections — like every pant, skirt, shirt, or jacket together on one section of rack — or no division at all. And, after one shopping trip that culminated with sore arms, most thrifters know how important it is to economize the search. Start with the good stuff, and breeze through those unlikelier sections last.
A good starting place? Skirts. Throwback-style skirts are typically a little more free-flowing, roomy, and made with a not-so-luxury-feeling fabric, which is charming in its own right. As long as the piece is big enough to wrap around your waist, it can be yours. A good tailor can do wonders with taking it up, letting it down, slimming the silhouette, or adding to it. And, armed with that mission, you'll leave with a new skirt nine times out of 10.
The five outfits we've profiled here do 'em up in grand style: modern-cut tops; statement shoes; and fun, slick accessories for days. If you notice that some of the skirts in this slideshow are current or recent season — good eye! But, they're made in silhouettes, prints, and materials that litter any good thrift store. So, sift through for the vintage dressing tips and get hunting for swingy styles to make your own.