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Buy Quality Clothing and Gear on a Shoestring Budget

Sheryl McGlochlin - Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Utah is home to thousands of outdoor enthusiasts who are always getting rid of expensive, gently used clothing and gear!

1st Priority: VERY IMPORTANT!  Go to quality retail ski shops and learn about current gear and clothing – even if you can't afford it.  Learn about the fabrics, the brands and qualities in the gear and clothing.  Talk to employees and owners.  Find out when they sell last years models, close-outs, clearance items, etc.  Ask if they have a bulletin board of customers who are selling their stuff, etc.

When I don't have much money, I also take what I've learned from the pros and keep my radar up at places like:

Kid to Kid Clothing Stores, Second Hand and Thrift Stores i.e. Deseret Industries, Thrift Town, etc.

Ski Swaps, KSL. com, Craigslist.org, Play It Again Sports, Outdoor Retail Store sales i.e. REI and Black Diamond Yard Sales, Lost and Found Sales at Ski Resorts, Consignment Shops, etc.

 

Watch for ski swaps, yard sales, garage sales, etc. in or near ski towns like Park City, Heber, Deer Valley, or anywhere near the Wasatch Mountains, especially during the spring, summer and fall.  

Especially be on the lookout for product a few months BEFORE ski season starts.  When it hits, everyone starts looking for treasures, so beat the rush!

 

What to look for when buying quality winter clothing: 

Look for clothing with 3 important qualities: 1) Breathability 2)  Waterproof and water repellant  3) Stretchy

Some of the best fabrics to find are Wool, Marina Wool, Bamboo and other natural fibers.  Other fabrics include polyester, nylon, non-bulky fleece.  These fabrics are soft and dry quickly.  Avoid cotton.  Look for stretchy fabrics i.e. lycra and spandex. 

Look for fabrics i.e. Entrant, Gore-Tex, Thinsulate, PrimaLoft and Cordura.  Do a google search on these fabrics to see how they are used in today's Outdoor Clothing and why they are so great!

Look for clothes with "sealed seams" so snow can't get in.

Layer up underneath but make sure your outer SHELL is waterproof.

Play It Again Sports has a 7-day return policy so if you try something and don't like it, take it back and try another item.

REI guarantees your happiness!  Become a member for only $15/lifetime.  Then if you buy something at REI, if you don't like it, for whatever reason, you can return it for a full refund or exchange.

St. Lawrence Thift Shop ski sale this weekend in Heber and a sale at Deer Valley the first Thursday in December.

Look at events, used clothing, gear swaps, resort deals, and more at skiutah.com

Put it out there!  Tell friends, family, co-workers and anyone you know that you are looking for ski stuff for cheap. 

Obermeyer has a line of kids ski wear with a built in hem that can get unpicked and released to add at least an inch in length to things like snow suits so that they last longer.

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