Tag Archives: Treasures

treasures

June 2018 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallThe weather is beginning to heat up for the summer time and winter clothing is beginning to show up at the thrift stores. Overcoats, trench coats, sweaters, and more are good items to look for to store up for the upcoming winter a few months away. Think ahead! Once again, I was able to hit the magic triple digit number of having my monthly collection show a retail value of 117.7 times my purchase price. It’s a good feeling to be able to set lofty goals and meet them.

Treasures – Every month has their treasures and although the pickings were fewer than usual, only twenty-six items, there were a few worth mentioning. For less than a five-dollar bill, I was able to locate a cashmere / angora blend Ermenegildo Zegna dress jacket. It is best described as “butter soft”. One other jacket is from a favorite company I have grown to respect; Oxxford Clothes. This navy suit jacket is everything you would expect from this country’s better tailors with a heritage going way back.   One other name I have seldom seen but worth many goose bumps is from Luciano Barbera. These pair of brown pants match the brown jacket from the same company and will look great next week at work. One of my all time favorite names in neck ties is that of Hermès in part due to the scarcity of such an item. This beautiful, last minute $180 tie was purchased for $2.24!

Dress Jackets – A grey dress jacket from Burberrys’ with silver metal buttons showing the Burberry Equestrian Knight and word Prorsum were a definite pickup for me. This is another seldom seen item in my area as this is the very best from this well-known British company.

The blend of cashmere and angora produces a super soft and light but very warm suit jacket. Put the label of Ermenegildo Zegna on it and you have a fantastic suit jacket that will put a smile on any gentleman’s face. The $3,200 jacket was picked up for half price of only $4.99. A bargain in anyone’s pocket book.

One of my very favorite suit companies is the Chicago based bespoke producing high quality clothier Oxxford Clothes. Their suits can be found at Neiman Marcus or you can have one to your own designs made just for you. They start around four thousand dollars and one gentleman walked out with a bespoke suit costing him right around $63,000. The navy Gibbons 28tn Notch jacket was a bit wrinkled and missing a beautiful metal button with their coat of arms on it but I am sure I will be able to find a replacement and have it sewn on in no time. What a great buy for less than eight dollars that cost someone a retail value of $4,575!

Shirts – Nine shirts were located with some great names this month. One of my favorite brands is that from the Italian company Canali. Three shirts just my size were placed quickly in the basket with this name showing proudly inside the collar.

Another Italian shirt maker that I was not able to determine the name of but knew the quality was worth picking up looks something like “Enzo Mantinias”. Not sure about the name but I am sure how well it fits and looks.

Ermenegildo Zegna always comes through with some high quality shirts and I was able to locate a beautiful blue one just my size. They also had their name on an off brand I have never seen from Gritti. My curiosity got the best of me on this one and I had to take it home to see how well it worked in my collection.

Lorenzini is another high quality Italian shirt maker that is hard to pass up as these hand-made clothing items are well made and fit my frame just right.

Luciano Barbera is a name relatively rare to be found in my area and is a must to pick up when the size is close at best. This brand is considered to be on the higher rungs of the ladder of high-end clothing and went immediately into the buggy.

Another rare find in the shirt category are those from Oxxford Clothes. This company is best known for their quality and specialty made suits.

Sweater – It isn’t often I find a clothing item from Ermenegildo Zegna that isn’t a tie, shirt of a suit but you know the quality of a sweater is well made when you find the name on a sweater. This grey 1/3rd zipper sweater will keep me warm when the weather begins to cool down in a few months.

Pants – Always a great item to find with the names you like to see are high-end trousers. I was able to located two such items this month with the names of Ermenegildo Zegna with their Traveller μicronsphere and a pair of brown Luciano Barbera from Louis of Boston. Two names I always look for when cruising through the rows of trousers hanging with their hard to find labels. The Luciano Barbera pair matches very well with a brown jacket of the same name picked up last month.

Ties – I have been limiting my purchase of ties to only those that have a name I rarely see or of a higher brand that denotes the best quality in workmanship. I found four such neck ties this month. Coach is a name you seldom associate with men’s clothing but the quality and appearance are certainly worth picking up. A five star Ermenegildo Zegna couture dark blue tie was a given to find its way into my selective list of ties. The name of Sartori was found on a thick, black and gold checkerboard tie that will look great with any brown suit. One name that is at the top of my list is Stefano Ricci. This company is at the highest rung of the high-end ladder and you know that it is the best quality you will find anywhere. A beautiful blue tie was located and is on my list of look-at-me-first ties. A last minute surprise during a quick jump into a local Goodwill brought out a beautiful Hermès tie. When I was checking out, the couple behind heard me talking about the tie with the cashier and the lady had to see that it was real and that you could “actually find such a thing in this store.” That put a big smile on the cashier’s face.

Accessories – One of my hobbies that I’ve neglected the past number of years is that of sketching with pen and ink and water coloring. I was looking for a long frame to use for a landscape I have planned and found the perfect item. You can always find that perfect selection you need if you have time and patience to look through several of your Goodwill stores. All I need now is a large piece of water color paper to fit the size of the frame and the time to get it done.

Another strange item I have been looking for recently is a wooden cabinet with a glass front to protect and show some of the Goebel M.I. Hummel figurines I have been able to find for a great price. For a little more than a ten-dollar bill, I ran across just what I needed to enclose many of the older and larger Hummel figurines that were sitting out on the table in the living room. Now, the eighty plus year old pieces of art work are well protected.

Speaking of Hummels, I was able to find two of the older, hard to find, Crowns that I have been looking for. These two were purchased for a collective price of only $9.99 and have a combined retail value, according to a 2017 listing, of $925. That’s almost 1/100th the value. This was one of my better finds in this category. One of these is a larger version of the Village Boy with a marking of 51/I and the Crown incised in the base while the other is the Globe Trotter, number 79 but predates the marking of the figurines placing it with a production date of right around 1935.

These are becoming very scarce and well worth picking up, especially for the comparative price of a $5 Starbucks coffee. The kids coudn’t care less what grandma found so charming or about the artistry and labor that goes into each of these and you can find large collections at yard sales and the thrift stores for a great price.

HummelGifts.com has the following information about the current versions: “Hummel figures have stood for the highest manufacturing art for decades: each figure is handled up to 1,200 times to create the perfect “Hummel”. Each Hummel figurine consists of up to 40 individual parts. The production of a “Hummel” is done with the highest precision and without exception by hand.” I have a renewed respect for these expensive figurines.

I bought a like-new Fender guitar a short while back at the local Goodwill store and had it restrung per suggestion of a friend and it sounds fantastic now. Since it is such a nice instrument, it needed a protective cover and for $4.79, I found just what I was looking for to place the large musical instrument in to keep the dust off and make it easier to carry.

The last item I needed was a soft small towel to wipe down my automobile with due to the amount of dust we have to put up with in the area where I live. There is a lot of construction going on nearby and the dust settles on everything outside during the week. This towel, when moistened, will do just what I need to keep my car looking good through the rest of the week.

Be sure to check out the page of comparison prices for categories such as pants, shirts, shoes, suits, sweaters and ties. This page offers many valuable tools that I find convenient when looking up a name as to whether it is worth purchasing or putting back on the rack.

June 2018

$137.162 $179.46 $16,148.43 117.7x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Dress Jackets
9,960 Burberrys’ Prorsum 7.48 9.99 2,190.00 Grey USA
Ermenegildo Zegna Cashgora 4.99 9.99 3,195.00 Grey Switzerland
Oxxford Clothes Gibbons 2Btn Notch 7.98 9.99 4,575.00 Navy USA
Shirts
2,920 Canali 5.59 6.99 345.00 Orange Italy
Canali 5.24 6.99 345.00 Blue Italy
Canali 5.24 6.99 345.00 Blue Italy
Enzo Mantinias 7.98 9.99 200.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Sport 5.59 6.99 385.00 Grey Romania
Gritti 5.99 6.99 180.00 Blue Turkey
Lorenzini Neiman Marcus 5.59 6.99 295.00 Blue Italy
Luciano Barbera Louis Boston 5.59 6.99 425.00 Blue Italy
Oxxford Clothes 5.24 6.99 400.00 Blue USA
Sweater
450 Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 450.00 Blue Italy
Pants
890 Ermenegildo Zegna Traveller μicronsphere 7.18 8.99 495.00 Black Portugal
Luciano Barbera Louis Boston 5.59 6.99 395.00 Brown Italy
Ties
915 Coach 4.49 5.99 125.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna couture collection 3.19 3.99 275.00 Blue Italy
Hermès 7021 TA 2.24 2.99 180.00 Blue Italy
Sartori 1.00 1.99 59.90 Orange Italy
Stefano Ricci 1.75 5.70 275.00 Blue Italy
Accessories
1,014 Frame Frame 7.98 9.99 35.55 Silver USA
Glass Case Glass case 10.38 12.99 36.99 Wood USA
Goebel Hummel 51/I Village Boy 5.00 5.00 550.00 White Germany
Goebel Hummel 79 Globe Trotter 4.99 4.99 375.00 White Germany
Guitar cover Fabric case 4.79 5.99 14.99 Black USA
JC Penny towel 0.49 0.99 1.00 Orange USA

Knowing your brands, as to which command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the brands that sell well or have long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you a good net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

Key words: Burberrys’, Canali, Coach, Enzo Mantinias, Ermenegildo Zegna, Goebel M.I. Hummel, Gritti, Hermès, Lorenzini, Luciano Barbera, Oxxford Clothes, Sartori, Stefano Ricci

 

May 2018 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallThis month of May, once again, fell well short of the average but for the money spent was a real gainer with the retail amounting to 157 times the sum spent as opposed to only spending $78.31. With only thirteen items purchased as opposed to last month of forty-two, the retail value would have been right at $470 more. This was an ideal target to meet and was due primarily to the two items picked up from Oxxford Clothes and the two pair of pants from Ermenegildo Zegna and Samuelsohn.

Treasures – It is always a real treasure to find anything from the Oxxford Clothes company based in Chicago since 1916. You will always find the quality of material and workmanship to be the best made in the United States. The medium grey Fawnskin suit, though too small for me, was an immediate given at less than twenty dollars when I saw the gold sewn crest on the inside right pocket and the horn buttons. The same was true just a few jackets down on the rack for the canary yellow Emperor’s Cashmere jacket. According to the AskAndyAboutClothes.com blog, Emperor’s Cashmere is about the best in the world. The 165 steps or more to create a jacket where the collars and lapels are hand-stitched with 2,950 plus stitches and the finished product is then pressed by hand for more than an hour to ensure the best of the best. Each piece of cloth is hand cut with scissors.

One other treasure located in the same store on the same rack was the black and grey striped Versace V2 sweater. It isn’t often you find this name on the rack at a price just a couple of dollars more than a much cheaper brand.

Suit – This medium grey top quality suit from Oxxford Clothes was made for wearing in the summer with a minimal amount of lining inside to promote air flow. The Fawnskin material is soft but durable and should look good at any prestige occasion.

Dress Jacket – It isn’t often that you will find a canary yellow cashmere jacket but considering the fact that Tom Ford has gone to suiting us in many other bright colors, my curiosity took hold and I had to find out who created such a soft but bright colored suit jacket. I am glad I did look when I unveiled the maker as that of Oxxford Clothes. This one came from one of the Connolly’s stores from Oklahoma/Texas.

Shirts – My dad has a birthday coming up around the corner and though he doesn’t need much, he did ask for snap button shirts instead of the type for button holes. Giorgio Armani has some nice Armani Exchange shirts that fit just this request and dad will be glad to see this package of several of these shirts picked up recently including this black one with thin grey vertical stripes.

Ermenegildo Zegna creates some nice quality shirts that fit me well in that the shirt sleeves aren’t baggy under the arms and are pleated to fit a little trimmer shape. This $400 tan shirt was picked up for less than eight dollars

Sweater – The label popped right out at me as I walked by the end of the suit rack – Versace. The price was just a little more than nine dollars and I knew the retail had to be quite a bit more. I was right, it came in right at $525 as referenced from the Versace.com web site. There are a couple of small moth holes that are easily fixed with some black thread. There is usually a good story as to why top quality clothing shows up in the Goodwill stores. It’s usually a missing button, a soiled collar or a small area where a hungry moth caterpillar decided to have lunch. Easy fix!

Pants – It is always exciting to find a nice pair of pants that are just my size but when I find a top end pair made from Ermenegildo Zegna or Samuelsohn, it is all the more thrilling. It’s like the treasure hunt yielded a piece of gold. In this case, the gold was a pair of $695 pair of tan trousers from Portugal and another black Super 100’s made in Canada.

Ties – If ever I find a brand name that goes home with me, it is from the neck tie section of the store. Only two ties hit the cashier’s counter this month, one from Canali and another from Turnbull & Asser, Prince Charles pick for shirts and ties. Both brands are of the highest quality and look good with just about any shirt you tie one of these two around your neck.

Accessories –  Having purchased a number of Goebel M.I. Hummel figurines lately, I was looking for something to show them off but at the same time keeping them from catching the grease and dust that accumulates inside my place of residence. The glass domed container with a wooden base fit just the occasion for one highly prized figurine at a time to display.

I needed a shoe rack to match the other two I have to get the nicer shoes off the floor where I could see them better when choosing the next day’s apparel. This smaller version worked right in against the wall next to the other two and allowed for several pair of shoes to be elevated from the floor to better visibility.

Speaking of shoes, a matching pair of BLKSmith cedar shoe trees with brass heel knobs were picked up for a total of $2.38. The brass looks great inside the brown dress shoes they found themselves within.

May 2018

$78.31 $101.87 $12,260.64 156.6x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Suits
4,575 Oxxford Clothes Fawnskin 19.97 24.99 4,575.00 Grey USA
Dress Jackets
5,195 Oxxford Clothes Emperor’s Cashmere 7.98 9.99 5,195.00 Yellow USA
Shirts
493 Armani, Giorgio A|X 7.98 9.99 98.00 Black China
Ermenegildo Zegna ~Soft~ 7.98 9.99 395.00 Tan Italy
Sweaters
525 Versace Classic V2 9.39 12.99 525.00 Grey Italy
Pants
990 Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.59 6.99 695.00 Tan Portugal
Samuelsohn Super 110s 3.49 6.99 295.00 Black Canada
Ties
390 Canali 1.59 1.99 200.00 Yellow Italy
Turnbull & Asser 1.59 1.99 190.00 Silver England
Accessories
63 Glass Dome 3.99 4.99 13.82 USA
Shoe Rack Shoe rack 6.38 7.99 48.82 Wooden USA
BLKSmith Shoe tree 1.19 1.49 15.00 Cedar USA
BLKSmith Shoe tree 1.19 1.49 15.00 Cedar USA

Key Words: BLKSmith, Canali, Ermenegildo Zegna, Giorgio Armani, Goebel, M.I. Hummel, Oxxford Clothes, Samuelsohn, Tom Ford, Turnbull & Asser, Versace

 

April 2018 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallDue to the huge inventory I’ve accumulated this past year, it is time to look into getting rid of what I don’t need and spend less time purchasing. Since this isn’t as much fun and exciting as finding high end items hiding in the racks of other clothes but it has to be done. The purchases this month don’t come close to the record last month but here they are.

Treasures – My definition of a treasure changes over time with what I find but the idea stays the same. A treasure is an item that you long for and don’t expect to find. I don’t get as excited in finding an Armani or a Zegna shirt as I used to since I have more than I could ever wear. I do still get excited when I locate a seldom seen brand like Borrelli, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana or Stefano Ricci. These brands are recognized for their celebrity status in addition to their quality.

I was very fortunate to find ten brand new shirts from Stefano Ricci in a Goodwill outlet. They came from Las Vegas and I picked up the $700 shirts for $17.90 each. What a bargain, $179 for $7,000 of the highest quality shirts! Other hard to find items were a Borrelli Napoli shirt, an Armani Black Label pair of pant, and a couple of neck ties from Gucci and Dolce & Gabbana.

Shirts – A total of fifteen shirts were located with names like Giorgio Armani Collezioni, Borrelli Napoli, Ermenegildo Zegna, Ike Behar New York, Lorenzini and ten Stefano Ricci brand new shirts.

Sweaters – The Alabama football team is quite popular with their national championships the past number of years and this sweater from Nike will fit just right.

Pants – I saw the five stars on a piece of fabric at the back of the pants and knew right away that these might possibly be the top of the list that Ermenegildo Zegna has created. The tan pants fit great and look even better. The second pair of pants that I couldn’t leave on the rack were a pair of black Giorgio Armani Black Label cotton for those hot summer days just around the corner.

Ties – Only eight ties were found but the names were definitely right at the top of the list. These included an Giorgio Armani Emporio, Dolce & Gabbana Cravatte, three Ermenegildo Zegnas, a Gucci, a Italio Ferretti which I was not as familiar with and a quite rare Massimo Bizzocchi I was not about to leave. This name is also associated with the world renowned Kiton as he is the CEO for North America as I understand it.

Accessories – You never know what you might find and I located two never used, in the box M.I. Hummel Annual plates for the years 1974 and 1976. Although the Hummel figurines have lost the popularity they once had I am taking a gamble on grabbing these high quality German porcelain items at some great prices while I can before the price goes back up even more than before (I hope).

 

April 2018

$283.41 $309.31 $11,790.84 41.6x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Shirts
8,727 Armani, Giorgio Collezioni 7.98 9.99 445.00 Black Tunisia
Borrelli Napoli 5.59 6.99 367.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 7.98 9.99 395.00 Blue Italy
Ike Behar New York 5.59 6.99 225.00 Orange USA
Lorenzini  – 3.19 3.99 295.00 Grey Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Grey Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Blue Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Blue Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 White Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Blue Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Blue Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Grey Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Grey Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Grey Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 17.90 17.90 700.00 Blue Italy
Sweaters
40 Nike Therma-Fit 4.99 4.99 39.99 Cream Indonesia
Pants
1,220 Armani, Giorgio Black Label 3.49 6.99 525.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Couture 3.59 4.49 695.00 Tan Portugal
Ties
1,510 Armani, Giorgio Emporio 3.19 3.99 145.00 Orange Italy
Dolce & Gabbana Cravatte 7.99 7.99 195.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 1.59 1.99 205.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna 2.24 2.99 205.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna 2.99 3.99 205.00 Brown Italy
Gucci  – 4.49 5.99 200.00 Red Italy
Italo Ferretti 1.59 1.99 179.92 Black Italy
Massimo Bizzocchi  8.00 CM 1.59 1.99 175.00 Blue Italy
Accessories
294 M.I. Hummel 1971 Plate 11.98 14.99 209.95 TMK-5 Germany
M.I. Hummel 1974 Plate 11.98 14.99 33.99 TMK-5 Germany
M.I. Hummel 1976 Plate 11.98 14.99 49.99 TMK-5 Germany

Key Words:  Giorgio Armani, Borrelli, Dolce & Gabbana, Ermenegildo Zegna, M.I. Hummel, Goebel, Gucci, Ike Behar, Italo Ferretti, Lorenzini, Nike, Stefano Ricci

February 2018 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallFor the past few years that I have been keeping the statistics on my purchases, February has typically been a slow month. This was not the case this year however. Perhaps it was the early receipt of my tax refund that prompted me to venture out a few more times. This February was also a great month for some exceptional names in clothing as you will see below. Click the images for a full screen view.

Treasures – The items I consider as treasures may not be what you would see as gems to grab. Generally, there are two criteria I consider that define an item as a treasure. The number one is the price. Is the retail value of the item well above the average? The second benchmark is whether the item is scarce or easy to find in the local department store.

There were two overcoats picked up, both of which are treasures in their own right. One is an ankle length navy, wool and cashmere, Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura. I was not aware this version was even offered. The other is from Giorgio Armani Emporio made of 80% alpaca and wool. These two have special places to make sure they are treated with the respect they have earned.

I have more suits than any one man should ever need but it is hard to turn down a black pin striped made-to-measure suit just my size with surgeon sleeves (all four buttons work) and a ticket pocket from Samuelsohn. The pants are two inches too long but that can be easily modified in fifteen minutes and is preferred than being two inches too short which is usually the case. A second Samuelsohn jacket made for the same person was located but I was not able to find the matching trousers despite checking several days.

It is rare to find a brand new jacket with the manufacturer’s tags and the sleeve identifier still attached. It is even more rare to find a top of the line jacket within these parameters. I found a brand new Giorgio Armani Le Collezioni jacket, my size, on half-off day that had been on the rack for twenty-one days for my price of $4.99. Now, that was a great deal and is one of these treasures. Some of the other jackets located was one from Boglioli. I had never heard of this brand but the quality was unmistakable. Another was a heavy navy feather suede from Lanvin.  I always enjoy finding a great Oxxford Clothes jacket my size as they go with almost everything and fit move easily with you instead of constricting you like so many others do. This $4,800 example is in the Manhattan style and will look good with dark brown or navy pants.

There were a good number of treasures found in the shirt category. A name I am familiar with but have until now not had the pleasure of owning is that of Brunello Cucinelli. This shirt was purchased for $5.24 and retails for a whopping $725. Some of the other brands in the $500 plus class I consider goose bump producing names are those from Brioni (one of my favorites), Dolce & Gabbana, Isaia, and two from Yves Saint Laurent.

Although the personal selection I now have of ties has outgrown all storage places, I still love to find the names of Brioni, Canali, Gucci and Stefano Ricci. These will always have a special place to hang in my house.

It came as quite a surprise that I would come across a beautiful like-new Fender guitar for a very reasonable price. A friend of mine tuned the six strings but said it would sound even better if I were to replace them with a new set. My youngest plays a number of musical instruments and is now wanting to learn how to place this instrument. Boy, will she be surprised! She will be doubly surprised to find that I also located her favorite brand of purse clutch, Burberry.

To top off this last treasure hunt, I was able to find an older watch by Seiko for myself. The bracelet needed a pin to put it together and my favorite jeweler added one for no cost. The watch is a self-winding automatic version 5606 7170T from about 1971. The 23 jeweled workings inside it helps it keep perfect time so far.

Suits – There were two suits picked up this month. The first was a grey pin striped suit from Burberry. Although it is a size too small, I wasn’t about to let it slip away for less than sixteen dollars. The other was the made-to-measure pin striped suit from Samuelsohn with the working surgeon sleeves and extra ticket pocket. This suit fits like it was made for me with only a slight alteration that needs to be made to the length of the pants cuff.

Dress Jackets – Seven dress jackets were added to my collection with names like Boglioli, Burberry’s (silk), Canali Proposta, Coogi, Giorgio Armani Le Collezioni, Lanvin feather suede, a beautiful Oxxford Clothes Manhattan and another Samuelsohn made-to-measure. The brand new Armani still had the tags hanging from the buttons as well as the left sleeve cloth tag with the brand name on it. The price for the $2,895 jacket to me was less than five dollars.

Overcoats – The navy Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura was evidently made for someone at least six and a half feet tall since the bottom comes to just above my ankles. The name Su Misura means it was especially made for the previous owner. The other overcoat from Armani Emporio is made from the very warm and light grey and black alpaca fibers mixed with twenty percent wool. Worn over a black or dark grey suit fits it very well. Our temperate Winter climate finds our locality as a dumping ground for some very nice high-end overcoats.

Shirts – There were a total of twenty-six additional shirts that made it to my home this month. The names of many of these were hard to find and made the treasure list above. These were as follows: Apple, Giorgio Armani (3), Bagutta, Brioni, Brunello Cucinelli, Burberry (4), Charles Tyrwhitt, Dolce & Gabbana, Ermenegildo Zegna (5), Eton, Isaia, Psycho Bunny (2), Ted Baker, Yves Saint Laurent (2) and one from Zanella.

I was especially pleased to find the Brunello Cucinelli as it was the first I have seen and is of the best quality you can expect to find anywhere. I have a well-dressed friend that says that anything made by Cucinelli is right at the very top of the list in quality. The Brioni, Dolce & Gabbana and Isaia are quite rare as well but show up a bit more often. Any shirt that does not fit properly will find its way to the gift pile or someone else’s home through eBay and Poshmark.

Sweaters – The Luigi Baldo v-neck Argyle sweater is what you would expect to find in the Italian quality mix of silk and cashmere. It’s a beautiful example of a new name on my list to check from here on. The other sweater is for an acquaintance who has had past connections with NAU and will make it way as a birthday gift later on for less than four dollars.

Pants – A good pair of plain colored trousers can really set off a beautiful shirt if the colors match. Some of the best come from Santorelli and I was able to nail two great brown examples from this company. The third pair is a name that is rarely found but snagged immediately when found; Sartori.

Ties – With the great number of ties in my collection, I have become much more selective as to the brands I now look for. Fifteen of these silk ribbons were picked up representing some of the finer brands you can locate anywhere. These included Brioni, Brooks Brothers, Canali (2), Corneliani, Dormeuil (2), Ermenegildo Zegna, Gucci, Hermès, Lanvin, M.C. Escher, Stefano Ricci (2) and Turnbull & Asser. Stefano Ricci has a slogan that they begin in high quality where everyone else stops. Turnbull & Asser are selected by Prince Charles for his shirts and ties. Each week, I pick a specific brand and find five beautiful examples to match the five suits picked out for that work week.

Shoes – Since this item takes up a bit of floor space, I now purchase only those that might fit well my big feet or if the brand could be spruced up to bring in a substantial profit from eBay or Poshmark. A relatively new brand that has grabbed my interest is a comfortable representative from Donald J. Pliner. These shoes are very well suited for a long day at the office and now number more than just this pair on my floor. The other pair of shoes carries my very favorite, Allen Edmonds. This pair is marked as the Rambler but is no longer offered in their stores locally. The size is too small but will make a very nice pair for someone else later on.

Hangers – My curiosity prevails when the Goodwill sticker covers the name beneath on a nice plastic hanger. I have to see who it represents and this time is showed up as Burberry. The twenty-nine-dollar hanger was selected for a half dollar. Two other suit hangers from Setwell and a hanging cedar block rounded out my price of around three and a half dollars for the $107 selection.

Pocket Squares – This category has dried up a bit since the selection doesn’t require but a few of various colors and only the best companies. The exception here was a black silk item from China.

Accessories – My interest in watches has grown lately and I took a chance on a nice looking representative reflecting the name Audemars Piguet. The AP Royal Oak turned out to be a fake but nonetheless, it keeps good time with a replaced battery. I’m ashamed to wear it but it was worth the chance that it might be the real thing for this price paid. My research will have to dig deeper when the impulse has to be suppressed in favor of common sense. One other watch that made up for the mistake was a find in the jewelry case at a local Goodwill of an older pristine Seiko automatic made in 1971. The watch had just been added to the case that day and after looking it over for a few seconds and having the second hand begin to move due to the working pendulum, it made its way to the cashier for less than seven dollars. I wear the silver colored watch with black, grey or blue suits every other day to keep it running without having to reset it. A brand new Eventronic watch repair kit was located so that I could learn the basics of watch and bracelet repair.

My daughters will appreciate the Burberry Haymarket clutch and colorful Vera Bradley wallet. Luckily, each has their separate favorite of each of these two brands.

Other items in this category were the Christian Dior cuff links and matching shirt studs, a pair of Hestra peccary gloves, two pair of socks, a Shoe Gear shoe shine polish kit, a Resistol brown Cisco cowboy hat and a pair of silver Versace medusa cuff links in the original box.

Be sure to check out the page of comparison prices for categories such as pants, shirts, shoes, suits, sweaters and ties. This page offers many valuable tools that I find convenient when looking up a name as to whether it is worth purchasing or putting back on the rack.

February 2018

$593.88 $771.30 $44,732.40 68.4x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Suits
3,390 Burberry London 15.97 19.99 1,995.00 Grey USA
Samuelsohn MTM 14.97 16.98 1,395.00 Black Canada
Dress Jackets
17,348 Boglioli coat 11.98 14.99 2,995.00 Tan Italy
Burberry’s Silk 8.78 10.99 898.00 Tan USA
Canali Proposta 4.99 9.99 1,395.00 Black Italy
Coogi OG Jacket 4.99 9.99 750.00 Tan China
Giorgio Armani Le Collezioni 4.99 9.99 2,895.00 Green Italy
Lanvin feather suede 1.00 17.95 2,195.00 Navy France
Oxxford Clothes Manhattan D1 7.48 9.99 4,825.00 Blue USA
Samuelsohn MTM 19.97 24.99 1,395.00 Blue Canada
Overcoats
6,790 Armani, Giorgio Emporio 19.97 24.99 2,995.00 Grey Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura 9.99 9.99 3,795.00 Black Switzerland
Shirts
9,091 Apple  – 3.49 6.99 70.00 Purple China
Armani, Giorgio Jeans 0.01 12.99 189.00 Red Peru
Armani, Giorgio Le Collezioni 7.98 9.99 345.00 Brown Italy
Armani, Giorgio Le Collezioni 5.24 6.99 295.00 Grey Italy
Bagutta Collection 6.99 6.99 273.00 Grey Italy
Brioni Neiman Marcus 7.98 9.99 575.00 Brown Italy
Brunello Cucinelli Basic Fit 5.24 6.99 725.00 Blue Italy
Burberry Brit 3.49 6.99 295.00 Grey China
Burberry London 7.48 9.99 325.00 Navy England
Burberry London 5.59 6.99 395.00 Yellow USA
Burberry London 10.39 12.99 395.00 Brown USA
Charles Tyrwhitt Extra slim 7.48 9.99 110.00 Pink Malaysia
Dolce & Gabanna Slim 9.99 9.99 675.00 Black China
Ermenegildo Zegna ~Soft~ 7.98 9.99 395.00 Red Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Sport 6.99 6.99 365.00 Yellow China
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 3.99 4.99 395.00 Blue Spain
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 4.49 8.99 350.00 White Romania
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 5.24 6.99 350.00 Blue Romania
Eton French cuff 7.48 9.99 193.70 White Sweden
Isaia Napoli 5.24 6.99 495.00 Blue Italy
Psycho Bunny  – 7.48 9.99 135.00 Yellow Peru
Psycho Bunny  – 7.48 9.99 135.00 Blue Peru
Ted Baker London 7.18 8.99 165.00 Grey Hong Kong
Yves Saint Laurent  – 5.59 6.99 531.00 White Taiwan
Yves Saint Laurent  – 5.59 6.99 725.00 White Malaysia
Zanella  – 5.59 6.99 189.00 White Italy
Sweaters
164 Gildan NAU 3.99 4.99 32.00 Navy Honduras
Luigi Baldo Argyle 6.99 6.99 132.49 Grey Italy
Pants
950 Santorelli Romeo 6.73 8.99 475.00 Brown Italy
Santorelli Como 2 6.73 8.99 225.00 Brown Italy
Sartori  – 1.00 6.99 250.00 Charcoal Italy
Ties
2,667 Brioni  – 1.59 1.99 230.00 Grey Italy
Brooks Brothers Butterfly 2.99 3.99 60.00 Black England
Canali 1934 3.99 3.99 160.00 Purple Italy
Canali 1934 2.99 3.99 280.00 Red Italy
Corneliani 3.19 3.99 150.00 Blue Italy
Dormeuil JR custom 1.99 3.99 135.00 Grey France
Dormeuil  – 1.49 2.99 135.00 Copper France
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 2.99 2.99 195.00 Red Italy
Gucci  – 2.24 2.99 200.00 Brown Italy
Hermès 3.19 3.99 195.00 Purple France
Lanvin  – 2.24 2.99 165.00 Brown France
M. C. Escher Two fish 1.59 1.99 62.03 Blue Italy
Stefano Ricci Luxury Collection 5.99 5.99 275.00 Black Italy
Stefano Ricci Napoleon 1.99 1.99 235.00 Red Italy
Turnbull & Asser  – 2.99 2.99 190.00 Blue England
Shoes
464 Allen Edmonds Rambler 7.98 9.99 129.00 Black USA
Donald J. Pliner Loafer 6.48 12.99 295.00 Brown Italy
Mephisto shoe tree 1.59 1.99 20.00 Wood USA
Mephisto shoe tree 2.39 2.99 20.00 Wood USA
Hangers
107 Burberry London Tan 0.52 0.69 28.95 plastic Italy
no name Cedar 0.79 0.99 20.00 Wood/metal USA
Setwell Maple suit 0.99 1.99 28.99 Maple USA
Setwell Maple suit 1.19 1.49 28.99 Wood/metal USA
Pocket Square
15 no name plain silk 0.52 0.69 15.00 Black China
Accessories
3,746 Audemars Piguet Royal Oak watch 83.44 83.44 100.00 Gold Switzerland
Burberry Clutch 19.97 24.99 695.00 Brown England
Christian Dior Cuff links 0.01 1.99 83.00 Silver China
Eventronic watch repair kit 23.73 23.73 50.31 Black China
Fender guitar DG 8S NAT 63.91 79.99 274.99 Brown USA
Hestra Peccary gloves 1.99 1.99 400.00 Brown Phillipines
No name socks 0.99 1.99 14.95 Brown China
No name socks 0.79 0.99 10.00 Grey China
Resistol hat 4.79 5.99 104.99 Brown Texas
Seiko 5606 7170T watch 6.99 6.99 1,590.00 Silver Japan
Shoe Gear shoe polish kit 3.19 3.99 14.88 Black China
Vera Bradley wallet 7.98 9.99 59.95 Pink China
Versace Cufflinks 0.01 0.01 348.18 Silver Italy

Knowing your brands, as to which command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the brands that sell well or have long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you a good net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

Key words: Allen Edmonds, Apple, Audemars Piguet, Bagutta, Boglioli, Brioni, Brooks Brothers, Brunello Cucinelli, Burberry, Burberry’s, Canali, Christian Dior, Coogi, Corneliani, Charles Tyrwhitt, Dolce & Gabanna, Donald J. Pliner, Dormeuil, Ermenegildo Zegna, Eton, Eventronic, fender, Gildan, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Hermès, Hester, Isaia, Lanvin, Luigi Baldo, M. C. Escher, Mephisto, Oxxford Clothes, Psycho Bunny, Resistol, Samuelsohn, Santorelli, Sartori, Seiko, Setwell, Shoe Gear, Stefano Ricci, Ted Baker, Turnbull & Asser, Vera Bradley, Versace, Yves Saint Laurent, Zanella

January 2018 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallThe first month of each year is a great time to reflect on the previous year and determine what changes might be made for the upcoming days.  Last year was my best year yet with an monthly average of only 70 items purchased but with a value of 110 times what I paid. There is a definite learning response revealed in the chart below with the value times purchase price showing a definite increase. In comparison, here is what I have determined from previous activities over the past few years:

Monthly Averages per Year

Year –

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

Items –

70

59

77

72

55

Value –

110x

89x

89x

75x

23x

I have had a lot of fun with this but need to throttle the trips and expenditures down and begin to sell off the items I no longer need. Most of these will be clothing that doesn’t fit the way it should and the lesser valuable items that I will never wear. I have too much and this month is a good time to honor a new year’s resolution in this regard!

Treasures – One name I always get goose bumps with is that of Brioni. I located a white dress shirt with French cuffs in great shape and cannot wait to try it on to see how well it will look with a grey suit and red tie. You can find this brand of shirt at Neiman Marcus and that is the name in the label where it was initially sold.

It is always a thrill to see the name that is universally recognized as the most famous world around – GUCCI. I found a silky solid black dress shirt that is a bit too small but wasn’t going to let it get away even though the price was a bit higher than I thought it should be. It was priced at $19.99 but I picked it up for $15.97. Still a good buy for a $380 name brand shirt.

Shirts – Three shirts were picked up this month as I decided to keep the expenditures to only the first week this month. For a little over $31, I picked up just short of $1,100 worth of great brands. My father asked if I could find him some shirts with snaps instead of buttons as these are much easier to put on when your hands just aren’t what they used to be. I located a great Armani Exchange striped shirt that should fit him well. The other two shirts come from some of the best Italian clothiers in the world; Gucci and Brioni. You just cannot beat the quality of material or the workmanship of these two where I shop.

Pants – Another Italian brand to look for in the trousers department is that of Santorelli. For an “affordable” pair of pants that cost only $225 new you would be hard pressed to find a nicer pair of dress pants. These were found for only $6.99 and should look great with any one of my navy jackets.

Ties – The English company Burberry is a clothier that I enjoy seeing the name of whether it be a trench coat, shirt, suit or a beautiful tie. The tie I found for only $3.19 is a current higher end item and is the first item I looked to match a suit with for this coming Monday morning for work. Burberry has a great reputation and continues to honor it through to the new year.

Fendi and Burberry small pursesPurses – Here is where it gets interesting. My daughters are becoming easier to buy for when birthdays roll around or sometimes just for fun. I found a couple of purses that I know one or both will love to sport on their shoulders as each shows a definite pattern of who made each. Once again Burberry comes through with a beautiful little clutch with the Haymarket plaid and high quality workmanship I picked up for $15.97 but sells new for $695. The other is a small black over the shoulder from Fendi I paid a bit much for at $43.94 and sells new for $450 but is a brand popular with the girls. The problem now is who gets which one.

Accessories –Within the glass cases in the stores are typically the more expensive or smaller items that need closer attention to. One of these was a quickly recognizable glasses case from Ermenegildo Zegna. I asked to see the case and found that it had a pair of prescription glasses from Burberry. Not only did they work well for my vision but they also had a pair of clip-on shades of equal quality. I needed a pair of prescription sunglasses and grabbed the three-in-one package for $14.99.

Versace tinted glasses and caseAnother pair of glasses was located when I saw the black case with a relief of medusa carved in the end. I know right away this would be an expensive item and sure enough it was. I walked away with the $235 Versace yellow tinted glasses, microfiber cleaning cloth and Versace case for $47.93. A bit much but a great present for an upcoming birthday for someone hard to buy for.

Allen Edmond belts, Burberry glasses, Hummel glass show case, watch wooden boxSince I collect the older Hummel figurines when I can find them at a good price, I needed a place to keep some of them. A small wood and glass case fit the bill with a few modifications to store some of my collection. I look forward to bringing out some of these little figurines that a German girlfriend introduced me to long ago.

With all the ladies watches I have purchased, I needed a nice watch box to present one of the high-end time bracelets in. These little wooden boxes are great for a number of thing like rings, cuff-links and so on and are well worth looking for in the thrift stores. This one cost me less than a dollar and was well worth it.

Speaking of watches, I purchased a bag of fourteen assorted men’s and women’s wristwatches for $54 expecting to find a real Patek Philippe inside as the tag represented. Sure enough, there it was but instead, it was a nice fake. Surprisingly, there was a beautiful, gold Waltham 17-jewel automatic in great shape in with the rest of the selection. As soon as I picked it up, the watch came alive and on my wrist it went.  Dividing the $54 by 14 items, that comes out to only $3.86 each. By the way, the imitation ladies Patek Philippe works just fine with a new battery and should look very nice on some ladies wrist down the road.

Lastly, I can never turn down a like new pair of leather belts made from Allen Edmonds. Their attention to quality and detail are unmatched as far as I am concerned for a United States made craft. Whether it is a pair of shoes, ties, shirts or belts, these items always go into my buggy.

Be sure to check out the page of comparison prices for categories such as pants, shirts, shoes, suits, sweaters and ties. This page offers many valuable tools that I find convenient when looking up a name as to whether it is worth purchasing or putting back on the rack.

January 2018

$190.21 $227.72 $4,842.98 25.5x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Shirts
1,075 Armani, Giorgio Exchange 10.38 12.99 75.00 White China
Brioni Neiman Marcus 5.24 6.99 620.00 White Italy
Gucci  – 15.97 19.99 380.00 Black Italy
Pants
225 Santorelli Como 2 6.99 6.99 225.00 Navy Italy
Ties
415 Brioni 2.99 3.99 230.00 Blue Italy
185 Burberry London 3.19 3.99 185.00 Blue Italy
Accessories
3,128 Allen Edmonds belt 1.99 1.99 98.00 Black USA
Allen Edmonds belt 2.99 2.99 120.00 Brown USA
Bourbon cabinet case 12.99 12.99 139.99 Wood USA
Burberry Clutch 15.97 19.99 695.00 Tan USA
Burberry prescription glasses 7.00 7.00 210.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna glass holder 7.99 7.99 20.00 Black China
Fendi Clutch 43.94 54.99 450.00 Brown Italy
No name watch box 0.79 0.99 9.99 Brown China
Versace tinted glasses 47.93 59.99 235.00 Black Italy
Waltham Automatic watch 3.86 3.86 1,150.00 Gold Switzerland

Knowing your brands, as to which command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the brands that sell well or have long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you a good net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

Key words:  Allen Edmonds, Armani, Brioni, Burberry, Ermenegildo Zegna, Fendi, Gucci, Santorelli, Versace

 

December 2017 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallDecember is always a good month to locate Christmas gifts for family and friends. Luckily, I was able to find some great items the past few months that I held in reserve for just such this occasion. Knowing that I didn’t have to try and find as much money to purchase these gifts this month was a great stress relief. There is joy in finding hidden treasures for myself, but I find it much more satisfying to see the delight in others faces when they are suddenly presented with something very nice that I would not otherwise be able to afford. Only forty-five items were purchased for just over two hundred dollars and netted the lowest monthly retail price this year of just $12,432.22. This was still a good figure but fell well short of the triple digit goal with retail being only 57 times as much as I spent.

Treasures – Some of the nicest items this month must start out with the Canali 100% cashmere dark blue window pane suit jacket. The $4.79 spent on this item fell far less than the retail price of $2,795 retail price at Neiman Marcus. Canali is one of my very favorites but this jacket was just too small and will find it’s way to a friend or relative.

It is rare that I find so many great names in shirts but the like new, light yellow Brioni with contrasting collar and French cuffs was a definite find. Burberry was the next find with two identical blue hay market plaid long sleeve shirts and a grey crew neck. The check pattern Luciano Barbera Club was the second I have in my closet from this brand and is a great example of preferred quality.

In a most likely out-of-the-way place, I ran across a dark blue light sweater from Brioni. There were a couple of threads pulled loose which is probably why this item found it’s way to a charitable location. A couple of minutes with a bright light and a spoon full of patience had the sweater back in great shape. My $3.49 was well worth the purchase of this $875 excellence in winter wear.

The number of silk neck wear has exceeded the proper placement of such high-quality items, but I had to pick up the one Gucci, four Hermès and the Ralph Lauren Purple Label knitted ties. These names are always a must have but especially at the price they were listed at and the fact that each looked as though it had never been worn.

One of the better-quality names in footwear is that of Bally. They are made in Switzerland and do the people of that country proud with the quality that is always found with this name. They are light on the feet and glove soft. They are made for those special occasions when you want to “put your best foot forward” and not made to run through the rain in.

Last on this treasured list is an item at the top of my head; a Stetson felt cowboy hat. The chocolate brown 5X Open Road was just what I was looking for and my luck proved out in finding it on half-price day at an affordable $19.96. I have a black felt Stetson as well as a straw Gunslinger Stetson now to meet most any occasion I run into. I wear the Stetson brand with pride carrying on a family tradition my grandfather held firmly to.

Dress Jacket – As mentioned above, a beautiful, super soft Canali cashmere dress jacket was picket up on half-price day for less than a Starbuck’s coffee and more than worth it. The retail on this certain jacket alone, without pants is $2,795.

Shirts – Eight high quality shirts were located. The name of Brioni always brings on the chill bumps when I see the name, especially on a beautiful item that is just my size and works well with much of what I wear. The like new shirt cost $6.99 and retails for $620. Three shirts from Burberry London were picked up, two being identical with the blue hay market plaid and the other being a solid grey crew neck. Charles Tywhitt has a great way of showing their size right inside the neck area tag and I know that when I see a certain combination of neck circumference and sleeve length that it will fit me perfectly. This celery colored shirt should look good with any brown or grey suit. Only one Ermenegildo Zegna shirt was found this month and as usual has the quality you expect to find from this company that caters mainly toward the needs of men. Neiman Marcus carries the brand Ike Behar and though they do not fit as snugly as the Italian shirts, they are still great dress shirts. There are certain brands that you do not see many times unless you are in Barney’s or Neiman Marcus and are usually well out of your budget. One of these I was lucky to find for only $7.50 was from Luciano Barbera. The check pattern brown will look great as a dress shirt with a dark brown suit.

Sweater – Typically, this time of the year is a good time when the snow birds come to our area to permanently roost and we are able to find winter clothing such as heavy cashmere full length overcoats, trench coats, sweaters and gloves. Perhaps they will begin to show up soon but only one sweater made the list this month, but it was a beauty. The name of Brioni showed large and clear against the white label inside the dark blue sweater. Brioni makes some of the best clothing in the world and charges accordingly due to the painstakingly attention to detail by hand on each and every article they create. I could not believe my great luck in finding this Bluette crew-neck sweater late in the afternoon on half-off day but there it was waiting its place on the rack between two shirts. It pays to look in some of the Goodwill stores that are not in areas of affluence since most of the patrons are not aware of the names of some of the “out-of-reach” brands they may not be as familiar with. As an example, that same day, I was told by one gentleman that the best he ever found was J-Crew.

Pants – It appears that the Italians were the favored in this category with four pair of very nice dress trousers. The first was a great pair of Canali charcoal window pane twill flannel pants well suited for a contrasting dress shirt in most any shade of grey. I then found a light wool pair of navy pants made from Ermenegildo Zegna by Cantara. These should go great for the upcoming summer months. The last two were from Santorelli in navy and a light brown. I have been looking for another pair of quality navy pants to go with a couple of navy dress jackets and these should meet the requirements.

Ties – Sixteen high-end items of neck wear were picked off the wall of only three Goodwill stores. Two new Giorgio Armani dark blue and black ties were found. I have a large collection of vintage to new examples of this brand and am much more selective as to which ones find their way home with me. Two from Canali were located earlier and placed back on the rack and selected on “Senior Day” when I had a 25% off their retail price. One is a newer seven-fold and the other is a great classic that will go with just about anything. Ermenegildo Zegna once again took the bulk with five great samples. There was one dark blue Gucci with its name in large letters on the reverse holder that instantly knew where it was going. It is always a lucky day when I find anything from Hermès, but this day brought in four such items, two which appeared to be of the newer logo. Then there was the silver seven-fold Ike Behar and ending with a very lucky find of a silk knit Ralph Lauren Purple Label. You know when you see the purple tag with Ralph Lauren printed on it that you are getting top notch quality.

Shoes – It always pays to look through the different sections of some of the Goodwill stores even when you rarely find anything worth putting into your buggy. Some of the stores are known for glassware or shirts or even electronics where others rarely offer anything of the higher end you might be interested in. This was the case with this pair of new Bally Hudson lace-up dress shoes. The price was $19.99 but I took the $525 pair of shoes home with my discount for only $14.97 and they fit perfectly.

Hangers – Having the supporting tools for your wardrobe is important as to the preservation and presentation of what you have in your closet. It is always a good thing to have enough fresh cedar wood for not only the pleasant smell but the fact that the same odor repels wool eating moth grub worms. I paid right at one dollar each for nine Woodlore cedar pants cuff hangers even though I have enough for each pair of high-end trousers already. I considered this a small investment in the future unholy circumstance that might occur should even one female wool moth make its way into my place. These hangers from Woodlore show that they take their business serious enough to offer a great hanger that I would not consider due to the retail price but is well worth what I was able to pay.

Accessories – A popular name in women’s clothing and accessories is that of Coach. A belt with this name had just been placed on the rack when I approached it and saw that it had a heavy brass buckle attached. There was not a price tag on the belt and the attendant said she had just priced it and someone had probably pulled it off hoping to reduce the price. The amount asked was on the higher side at $24.99 but since it was Senior Day and we were able to purchase anything for a discount of 25%, this made it a better but still high price of $19.97. It just happened to be just my size. Go figure.

A favorite place in the Goodwill and one of the last places to look in the store is the rack with the wooden items. This is usually where I find the cedar shoe trees but there were two small cedar jewelry boxes with brass hinges that caught my eye. The Lane boxes were picked up for $3.19 each and I later found out that they sell for right at $89 each. These two items will go great on Christmas Day for each of my two daughters.

With the purchase of so many great shoes, my floor space was dwindling down to a narrow path from the closet to the bed to the doorway. The purchase of a wooden shoe rack enabled me to place eight pair of shoes in the space where two pair had been before and brought them up where I could see them better. A good purchase for less than eight dollars.

The last item on the list this month was a much sought after brown Stetson hat. One was located in the outskirts of the metropolitan area where I live nearer to the ranches and was in great shape. The price tag showed $39.95 but it was half-off Saturday and it went out the door with me for less than a twenty-dollar bill. This is a good place to put in an advertisement plug for our local Boot Barn store in that they will steam and lightly stretch your hat so that it better fits your head better and straighten out the brim and now it looks like a new one. They do this all for free and have even added some extra foam padding inside the leather band to make my black Stetson hold to my head tighter since it was a quarter size too large. Again, for free. Thank you, Boot Barn!

As with previous months, the following chart is broken down into different categories with the subtotal for each, the amount paid, tagged amount and the retail price with a link, where available, as to where the retail price was located. I hope this chart becomes a valuable tool for you in making a choice when locating that high-end item you might run across.

Be sure to check out the page of comparison prices for categories such as pants, shirts, shoes, suits, sweaters and ties. This page offers many valuable tools that I find convenient when looking up a name as to whether it is worth purchasing or putting back on the rack.

December 2017

$217.04 $284.06 $12,432.22 57.3x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Dress Jackets
2,795 Canali Cashmere 4.79 5.99 2,795.00 Blue Italy
Shirts
2,860 Brioni Contrast 6.99 6.99 620.00 Yellow Italy
Burberry London 14.37 17.99 325.00 Blue USA
Burberry London 6.38 7.99 395.00 Grey Italy
Burberry London 6.38 7.99 325.00 Blue USA
Charles Tywhitt Classic 7.98 9.99 110.00 Celery England
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 9.99 9.99 395.00 Tan Italy
Ike Behar Neiman Marcus 6.99 6.99 265.00 Grey Peru
Luciano Barbera Club 7.50 7.50 425.00 Blue Italy
Sweaters
875 Brioni Bluette 3.49 6.99 875.00 Blue Italy
Pants
1,370 Canali Twill flannel 6.99 6.99 425.00 Black Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Cantara 3.49 6.99 495.00 Navy Italy
Santorelli Como 2 4.99 4.99 225.00 Brown Italy
Santorelli Como 2 4.99 4.99 225.00 Navy Italy
Ties
3,165 Armani, Giorgio  – 1.49 1.99 150.00 Blue Italy
Armani, Giorgio  – 1.49 1.99 150.00 Blue Italy
Canali  – 2.24 2.99 280.00 Black Italy
Canali  – 2.24 2.99 280.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 2.39 2.99 195.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 3.19 3.99 195.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 3.19 3.99 195.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 1.99 1.99 195.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna  – 5.59 6.99 195.00 Gold Italy
Gucci  – 2.99 2.99 200.00 Purple Italy
Hermès 493 HA 3.19 3.99 195.00 Blue France
Hermès 7888 MA 3.19 3.99 195.00 Orange France
Hermès  – 3.19 3.99 195.00 Brown France
Hermès  – 3.19 3.99 195.00 Brown France
Ike Behar  – 1.99 1.99 115.00 White USA
Ralph Lauren Purple Label 1.99 1.99 235.00 Grey Italy
Shoes
525 Bally Hudson 04 649 14.97 19.99 525.00 Black Switzerland
Hangers
186 Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Woodlore Pants cuff 0.99 1.99 20.71 Cedar USA
Accessories
656 Coach belt 19.97 24.99 239.98 Brown China
Lane Jewelry box 3.19 3.99 89.00 Brown USA
Lane Jewelry box 3.19 3.99 89.00 Brown USA
No name shoe rack 7.99 7.99 48.82 Wood USA
Stetson Open Road 5X 19.96 39.99 189.00 Brown USA

Knowing your brands, as to which command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the brands that sell well or have long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you a good net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

Key words:  Armani, Bally,  Brioni, Burberry, Canali, Charles Tywhitt, Coach, Ermenegildo Zegna, Hermès, Ike Behar, Gucci, Luciano Barbera, Ralph Lauren,  Santorelli,  Stetson, Woodlore

Buying a jacket, Finding a suit

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallWhenever I find a beautiful dress jacket (suit jacket) in a thrift store, I find that it is well worth my time to next look for the matching trousers so that I can put together a suit as it may have initially came into the store. Most suit pants I have found do not advertise who made them inside the waist band and are very difficult to identify unless you have the matching suit jacket in hand to immediately compare.

Earlier this week, I found a top of the line Ermenegildo Zegna Trofeo suit jacket, a dark grey with faint blue stripes for less than ten dollars. It was very wrinkled and had been hanging on the rack for four days, judging from the date stamped on the price tag. This was quite an exciting find, especially since it fit me very well.

I was still excited, especially after finding three pair of Brioni dress pants earlier my size in great condition and decided to try my luck in the pants section.  Lucky for me, when I cruise through the pants hanging on the racks, the inside waist band occasionally offers the opportunity to identify the brand mostly by the pattern of the inside comfort band. I quickly recognized the possible Zegna pattern of diagonal lines and pulled the pants out to see if they matched the suit jacket carefully placed inside the buggy. Yep, they matched perfectly and I just created a suit.

Kiton Blanc Blue grey jacketYesterday, on a lark, I decided to hit the nearest Goodwill store to where I live. They typically do not have the higher end brands I look for now but on occasion you may find that rare item. I usually hit the silk ties first as this is the place where you will find the majority of high-end brand names. No luck there. I then move on to the suit jacket and suit rack. It didn’t take long before I found the holy grail of suit jackets, Kiton! Not only was it a beautiful example of the Best of the Best + One but it was brand new, not having been worn due to the shoulder and sleeve cuff tailor tacks (white thread) still in place. What a fantastic find and the price tag was only $9.99. It is fortunate for the buyer that a seldom seen name like Kiton is treated as though it is just another name and not marked up accordingly by the thrift store.

If finding a Kiton suit jacket wasn’t enough, and this was only my second of this brand in five years of searching, I also located a very nice Oxxford Clothes dark brown suit jacket. It is my understanding that Oxxford Clothes is one of the last bespoke tailor companies in the this country that carries a heritage of specialized suits back many years and takes pride as offering some of the best suits you can buy made in the United States. The dark brown with a faint dark red vertical stripe fabric on this jacket offers a warm appearance while slimming the wearer.

Clothes matching for a suitNow, it was off to the next section; the pants. With my recent luck in locating some really fine high-ended clothing, I decided to take the time in the dimly lit area to see if I could locate the matching trousers to these two fantastic finds. I draped the two coats in the buggy with the sleeves hanging along the edge so that I could quickly pull out a pair of pants and place them across the fabric to see if there might be a lucky match. After about twenty minutes, I had both pair of trousers that had been separated back together with their jackets to create two sets of very expensive suits.

The chances of finding the matching pants or jacket to create a suit are usually very good when you can take the time to walk between the isles of wool and slowly compare the fabrics of each. Be sure to walk through the sizes that are both larger and smaller than you normally would as most high-end suits are tailor made to the individual and may not be your exact size. If there isn’t much difference in size, it could be well worth the extra expense to ask a good tailor to make the necessary adjustments to fit you perfectly. Unfortunately, both of these suits are two sizes too small in both the jacket and the trousers so there just isn’t enough material to bring either up to my larger size.

In case you were wondering, I was surprisingly able to find both suits on a late afternoon of the Goodwill half-off Saturday and paid only $4.99 for each jacket and $3.49 for each pair of pants for my total price of $16.96 for the two suits. The Oxxford Clothes retails for $4,575 and the Kiton Blanc Blu has a price tag of $8,995 added together for a retail of $13,570. This is why you can find me in thrift stores every other day or so after work.

 

Note: I will be following up this post with a page showing the various pants waist band identifiers where available.  Hopefully, this will help when you find a great pair of trousers and would like to know who made them.

November 2017 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallNovember has been a great month, especially when I had decided to really cut back on my spending and concentrate on looking for just the very best in each category I ran across. The comparison of my paid versus the retail turned out to be 148 times as much as my payout for the fifty-five items purchased. That is a pretty good achievement in meeting my triple digit goal but ranks as only the fourth best this year. It’s been a good year. This is one of the ways by which I measure making sure my continuing education is working on finding higher-end items.

Brand new Kiton suit for 9 dollarsTreasures – There are some really nice treasures to list for this month. To top this list is the brand new, never been worn, Kiton suit. Never would I have dreamed that something like this nine thousand dollar highest of the high end suits wind up in the Goodwill just down the road from where I live. It was one of those moments when you see the label inside the coat and have to bring yourself to realize that the record moment just arrived you had been waiting for but never dreamed would happen. Of course, I had to share the moment with the employee that always likes to know what I find since they seldom see the names of the product they place on the racks. It was indeed a treasure. Add to that the Kiton tie I located this month as well. See also the article with more in-depth description on this find “Buying a Jacket, Finding a Suit“.

Chanel white quilted signature purseA second treasure has to be the Chanel quilted lambskin signature purse well suited for a Christmas present for my mother next month. It is a rare time when you can offer something to a family member they would never purchase for themselves but receive with great excitement when offered as a present. I can’t wait to see her expression when she opens the package and this can be considered to be my treasure.

Burberry backpackAnother Christmas present that fell into the Goodwill buggy this month is the Burberry backpack that garnered so much attention according to the attendant. The price was marked accordingly but well worth paying less than forty dollars for the smile and hug afforded me when the Christmas package is opened.

A fourth treasure has to be the dark grey Ermenegildo Zegna Trofeo suit that fits me so well. The fit and color looks fantastic and even makes me look a little more tolerable to look at. That makes it fit into the treasures category if for no other reason. The three-thousand-dollar suit cost me a total of $7.98 and that was money well spent.

Stefano Ricci ShirtA final treasure would have to be the goose bump causing shirt made by Stefano Ricci. The shirt appears to have come straight from Neiman Marcus or Barney’s and is just my size. It might even look good with the Trofeo suit just mentioned. Actually, I have the pair set out for this coming Friday’s clothing to wear to work.

Suits – There were three suits with a retail total of $16,565 (my cost was $24.95) located and all three were lucky finds in that I found the trousers separate from the jackets. The first suit was a beautiful Ermenegildo Zegna Trofeo dark grey with a faint vertical blue stripe. The Trofeo warrants the name from using the trophy winning example of the Zegna Couture collection, “a worsted fabric made of prestige Australian Superfine merino wool with long fibers.” The $2,995 suit was purchased for a total of $7.98 and fits very well.

Ermenegildo Zegna Trofeo, Oxxford Clothes and Kiton Blanc Blue suitsThe second find, and another name I look for, is that of Oxxford Clothes or Oxxford Crest. This suit is made in Chicago by hand and has been described as the best of the “quiet American” market. There are several models to choose from and feature the highest level of handwork and start at $4,000.

The third suit that I was able to put together was the grand prize of which I have been in pursuit of. There is usually a name by which all brands are measured against as being the best and this company is recognized worldwide as being the very best, Kiton. I was able to find a beautiful Blanc Blu version that had not been worn due to seeing the tailor thread still attached to the jacket on the shoulders and sleeves and the pants cuffs were unhemmed. A fantastic find! The $8.48 suit retails for more than a thousand times that amount ($8,995) in Neiman Marcus.

Samuelsohn and Givenchy suit jacketsDress Jackets – Only two jackets caught my eye this month. I couldn’t pass up the heavy, dark grey Givenchy Monsieur that fit so well. With the dark brown thread, it will work well with either dark grey or dark brown pair of trousers. The other jacket was a beautiful Samuelsohn window pane light grey with darker grey thread for those more formal occasions. The suit jacket was made for Marvin Brown, a previous member of our local City Council.

ShirtsShirts – Fifteen beautiful shirts were picked out from the many thousands available. These were from Giorgio Armani, Borrelli Napoli, Burberry (3), Ermenegildo Zegna, Eton, Ike Behar, Marco Brunelli, Prada, Stefano Ricci, Turnbull & Asser, Valentino and two from Yves Saint Laurent. This was my first Stefano Ricci shirt which is a name very hard to find retailing for $750 followed closely by the $695 Valentino but surpassed by the $760 Prada. I paid a total of $95.49 for the fifteen shirts retailing for $6,683 which averaged $445 apiece.

Ermenegildo Zegna sweaterSweater – Most of the cold weather garments are being snapped up pretty quick this time of the year but I was able to find a lone red Ermenegildo Zegna crewneck for the low price of $3.49 on half-price day. The retail for this great Italian find is $445.

Brioni and Burberry pantsPants – I cannot say that there have been many times when I found a pair of pants, then two more that I had to share my excitement with those around me but this happened in a very small, out-of-the-way Goodwill. I had already checked the area of pants with my waist size and decided to look to the next size larger and there they were, three pair of like new, dress trousers by Brioni! Each of these pair of pants retails for at least $850 and my price that day was only $5.59. The quality of this brand is of the best I have been able to find and high on my list of brands to look for. The fourth pair of pants did not have the name inside but were quickly recognized by their unique inside waist band as being from the company Burberry. I paid $22.36 for the $3,000 worth of four trousers.

Neck tiesTies – Fourteen ties were picked up this month representing some of the more highly recognized high-end brands sought after. These included Bally, Charvet, Ermenegildo Zegna (2), Fendi, Hermès, Kiton, Lanvin, Salvatore Ferragamo, Santorelli, Stefano Ricci (3) and Tiffany and Company. This was only the second Kiton tie ($1.99) I have been able to find and was a great example of the Best of the Best Plus One. It had also been a while since I last was able to find a representative by the 99 cent Hermès and this one appeared like new. I always welcome any time from the French companies of Charvet and Lanvin as they are about as perfect as you can get. A surprise came in locating the three Stefano Ricco ties, the Salvatore Ferragamo (99 cents) and the Tiffany and Co. My price for the $3,130 ties was $25.97.

Allen Edmonds, Coach and Donald J. Pliner shoesShoes – I have since discovered that shoes take up a lot of space on the floor and require a more discerning eye when looking for a pair that warrant placing in the Goodwill buggy, after proper inspection. One of my favorite brands for quality and comfort carries the name Allen Edmonds. This is the brand I look for when I know I will have a long day at work and want to be able to kick up my less than sore feet at the end of the day. A pair of beautiful $395 Sanfords were located and found the shoe polish and leather conditioner first thing when brought into the house. As usual, they now look like a new pair.

As I was ready to check out at the register, I noticed a pair of small kid’s sized Coach sneakers atop the “no, I guess I really don’t want these” last minute place to put items before the purchase. It was half-off day and the tagged price made these worth the $3.99 gamble that I might get my money back on a later sale.

Another first name to purchase was that of Donald J. Pliner. I had heard this brand was top notch and quite affordable. Although the $295 pair of shoes were too small for my big feet, they were worth another gamble of paying $4.79 for these obvious quality pair of shoes.

Hangers for suits and tiesHangers – Always on the lookout for a good set of cedar or maple hangers is usually my last place to haunt before exiting the store. Not only did I find a nice Setwell suit hanger and Hangerworld 24-tie holder but I also found a neat black plastic suit hanger with the name of Burberry London on it.

Steamfast clothing steamerAccessories – In the accessories segment of this haul, four much needed garment bags were located, two from Men’s Warehouse, and one apiece from Andrisen Morton and Pathfinder. These help keep the dust off and moths at bay of my better quality suits. Another item to keep the suits and shirts in better shape was a Steamfast upright garment steamer that works great in delivering a steady fog of hot steam to kill those pesky moths and smooth out any wrinkles without having to take any of my finer clothing to the expensive dry cleaners.

AccessoriesOf a lesser need than the garment bags and steamer were a couple of scarves that appeared very much like the pattern of the Burberry Haymarket pattern but were clearly not of the same quality. The two were well worth the little more than two dollars out-of-pocket expense to keep my neck warm while wearing one of my Burberry trench coats on those wet wintry days.

Burberry backpackTo top this list of accessories were the two lady’s items well suited for Christmas presents. The first was the like new $1,200 Burberry backpack I was able to have the lady pull out of the jewelry cabinet she had just placed an hour earlier. It makes a difference when you arrive at the Goodwill stores sometimes. She said it had already garnered a lot of attention in that short time it was on display.

Chanel white quilted signature purseThis second item requires a quick story. I walked into a local Goodwill store immediately behind a short stocky woman and we both made a bee line to the jewelry cabinet to see what “expensive” items were to be seen. I was looking through the glass cabinet and the lady asked the attendant to see three purses hanging from the wall. I couldn’t help but notice that the white bag had the appearance of a Chanel quilted pattern and then the gold double C really grabbed my attention. Lucky for me that she said she thought the bag was dirty and went on to the next purse. After close inspection when my turn came, I found a viable serial number inside and the high quality was definitely not typical of any run of the mill knock off bag you usually see. I told the lady my name and she put it behind the counter for me to ask for when I checked out. With my Sunday senior discount, the $6,650 Chanel lambskin signature bag was purchased for $26.21. It may not be this year’s current item but that definitely should not matter for that low price. What a nice, long lasting Christmas present this will make!

As with previous months, the following chart is broken down into different categories with the subtotal for each, the amount paid, tagged amount and the retail price with a link, where available, as to where the retail price was located. I hope this chart becomes a valuable tool for you in making a choice when locating that high-end item you might run across.

Be sure to check out the page of comparison prices for categories such as pants, shirts, shoes, suits, sweaters and ties. This page offers many valuable tools that I find convenient when looking up a name as to whether it is worth purchasing or putting back on the rack.

November 2017

$281.12 $434.63 $41,576.48 147.9x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Suits
16,565 Ermenegildo Zegna Trofeo 7.98 16.98 2,995.00 Grey Switzerland
Kiton Blanc Blu 8.48 16.98 8,995.00 Grey Italy
Oxxford Clothes Chocolate stripe 8.48 16.98 4,575.00 Brown USA
Dress Jackets
2,815 Givenchy Monsieur 4.99 9.99 1,320.00 Blue USA
Samuelsohn Bespoke 4.99 9.99 1,495.00 Grey Canada
Shirts
6,683 Armani, Giorgio Collezioni 4.99 9.99 345.00 Black Italy
Borrelli Napoli 5.59 6.99 367.00 Brown Italy
Burberry London 7.48 9.99 425.00 Black Hong Kong
Burberry London 12.49 24.99 325.00 Green USA
Burberry London 7.48 14.99 425.00 White USA
Ermenegildo Zegna 100Fili 7.98 9.99 470.00 Brown Spain
Eton Contemporary-Fit 3.49 6.99 255.00 Purple Sweden
Ike Behar New York 6.38 7.99 265.00 Blue Peru
Marco Brunelli  – 5.59 6.99 150.00 Black China
Prada garbadine 7.98 9.99 760.00 Black Romania
Stefano Ricci R1660 3.49 6.99 750.00 Green Italy
Turnbull & Asser Basketweave 6.99 6.99 395.00 White England
Valentino Tailored Fit 3.49 6.99 695.00 Plum Romania
Yves Saint Laurent  – 5.59 6.99 525.00 Yellow Malaysia
Yves Saint Laurent  – 6.48 12.99 531.00 Blue Maurituis
Sweaters
445 Ermenegildo Zegna Crewneck 3.49 6.99 445.00 Red Italy
Pants
3,000 Brioni Phi Flat-front 5.59 6.99 850.00 Black Italy
Brioni Pleated Classic Fit 5.59 6.99 850.00 Black Italy
Brioni Phi Flat-front 5.59 6.99 850.00 Tan Italy
Burberry Modern Fit 5.59 6.99 450.00 Black USA
Ties
3,130 Bally  – 2.39 2.99 305.00 Brown Italy
Charvet Place Vendôme 1.59 1.99 195.00 Red France
Ermenegildo Zegna Disegno Esclusivo 1.59 1.99 195.00 Green Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 2.39 2.99 195.00 Blue Italy
Fendi  – 0.99 0.99 165.00 Green Italy
Hermès 213 FA 0.99 0.99 195.00 Brown France
Kiton Woven dot-pattern 1.59 1.99 295.00 Blue Italy
Lanvin  – 1.49 2.99 165.00 Brown France
Salvatore Ferragamo 0.49 0.99 190.00 Red Italy
Santorelli  – 1.49 2.99 155.00 Black China
Stefano Ricci Cuzzens 2.99 2.99 275.00 Blue Italy
Stefano Ricci Napoleon 0.99 1.99 275.00 Brown Italy
Stefano Ricci  – 5.50 5.50 275.00 Blue Italy
Tiffany & Co. Scarf 1.49 1.99 250.00 Black Italy
Shoes
840 Allen Edmonds Sanford 6.48 12.99 395.00 Black USA
Coach Kate 3.99 7.99 150.00 Brown China
Donald J. Pliner Rush 120 4.79 5.99 295.00 Brown Italy
Hangers
119 Burberry London Suit 0.55 0.69 12.25 Plastic/metal USA
Cedar Wood/metal 0.49 0.99 7.50 Cedar USA
Setwell Maple finish suit 0.99 1.99 28.99 Maple USA
Woodlore 40-tie holder Tie hanger 1.59 1.99 70.15 Wood/metal USA
Accessories
7,980 Andrisen Morton Garment bag 1.00 2.99 16.65 Yellow Taiwan
Burberry scarf 0.79 0.99 8.00 Tan USA
Burberry Rucksack 39.94 49.99 1,190.00 Plaid USA
Chanel lambskin quilted dbl flap 26.21 34.99 6,650.00 White France
Men’s Warehouse Garment bag 1.00 2.99 16.65 Black Taiwan
Men’s Warehouse Garment bag 1.00 2.99 16.65 Black Taiwan
No name scarf 1.59 1.99 15.00 Plaid USA
Pathfinder Garment bag 1.00 5.99 16.65 Grey Taiwan
Steamfast clothing steamer 7.48 9.99 49.99 White China

Knowing your brands, as to which command a greater return on your investment, is good business sense. Become familiar with the brands that sell well or have long lasting international respect and when you find them in good condition, they will bring you a good net satisfaction. Good luck with your Goodwill hunting.

Key words: Allen Edmonds, Andrisen Morton, Armani, Bally, Borrelli, Brioni, Burberry, Chanel, Charvet, Coach, Donald J. Pliner, Ermenegildo Zegna, Eton, Fendi, Hermès, Ike Behar, Givenchy, Kiton, Lanvin, Marco Bruenlli, Oxxford Clothes, Pathfinder, Prada, Salvatore Ferragamo, Samuelsohn, Santorelli, Setwell, Steamfast, Stefano Ricci, Tiffany & Co., Turnbull & Asser, Valentino, Woodlore, Yves Saint Laurent

 

Found a Bentley

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallGoodwill Bentley     You never know what you will see at the local Goodwill stores. In this case, it was a beautiful, blue Bentley Continental GT Convertible just outside the door of my favorite haunt.  No, it was not for sale and even if it was half-off day, I still wouldn’t be able to afford to buy it. I did ask inside if it was donated and they were not able to get it inside through the doors. The manager just rolled her eyes.

This was a photo opportunity I just couldn’t pass up.

 

October 2017 Summary

Logo GoodwillBuyer.com smallOctober was a great month this year for finding some of the high-end brands that I seldom see, even within this metropolitan area. I call myself a brand buyer, that is, I look exclusively for the high-end brand labels when cruising through these oceans of cloth and wool. This month proved to be the worse this year in an attempt to meet the goal of having a triple digit value of the retail value being only sixty-seven times the amount I spent. On the brighter side, many of the items I found were great bargains despite the price paid and were worth picking up to pass along to family and friends.

Treasures – My idea of a treasure has been changing over the past few months as I educate myself to the value of certain items located in the realms of the isles of racks and shelves in the local Goodwill stores. Some of the items that come to mind this month are those that I can give my family they wouldn’t normally be able to choose for themselves.
LV and Burberry     Examples of items that come to mind are the Loro Piana sweater that offers fantastic quality and is so soft. The Burberry crossover purse and clutch my youngest will be so excited to carry. The Louis Vuitton wallet and belt that offer longevity in use and pride of ownership to my other daughter and the artist aluminum easel to show my son’s latest work. These are the items that I consider to be treasures now.
Names like those of the great Italian clothing designers also bring excitement when found represented by Versace, Canali, Armani, Brioni, Dolce & Gabbana, Loro Piana, Borrelli, Bottega Veneta, Gucci, Stefano Ricci, Valentino, and Salvatore Ferragamo. The French names like Hermès, Louis Vuitton, and Lanvin and the Swiss name of Bally and the British fashion house of Burberry denote the highest grade in quality. These are the treasures I like to find to share with those around me who can enjoy them as well.

Versace and CornlianiSuits – Two very nice suits were located from a couple of the higher end quality clothing houses; Corneliani and Versace.  The charcoal Corneliani has a light sheen with faint vertical stripes to slim up the wearer. The solid navy Versace Classic should go with any business or formal get-together. Both are very nice suits made in Italy but both are also a bit too small so they will be looking for a new home very shortly.

Dress Jackets – Dress jackets take up a bit of room but are the best buys at Goodwill in comparison to their suggested retail price averaging right at 212 times what I paid. I selected seven very nice jackets to add to my collection making sure they were from the better known clothing houses of Europe. They are as follows:
The name of Burberrys‘ is synonymous with English quality and the best of Burberry is their Prorsum line. The word Prorsum is Latin for forwards and signified with the Equestrian Knight logo.  When you see a really nice navy jacket of this type for less than five dollars, it’s a no brainer whether you pick it up or not.
Another blue jacket, in this case a lighter shade of blue, came from Canali. The silk and wool blend resists wrinkling and is cooler to wear,  and with a name like Canali, you know you have one of the best on the market. There is something about the way Canali fits in both their jackets, shirts and pants that I find to be more comfortable than any other brand. So when I find this brand in my size, it is a very good day indeed.
Canali, Christian Dior, Cornliani, Burberrys', Z Zegna, Versace and Giorgio Armani     Christian Dior is known for higher-end clothing and when you can find an earlier example of one of their suits, you know you have a great item. I found a navy double-breasted CD jacket with brass buttons for one dollar and it was just my size.  It found its way immediately into my buggy, of course.
Barney’s of New York sells a wide assortment of quality items and Corneliani of Italy created a very nice grey jacket for them. I also found a pair of pants that matches perfectly and now I can add one more suit to the closet.
I prefer to look for clothing made in countries like France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and the good ole USA. It appears that Ermenegildo Zegna is now making one of their lower lines in Mexico and China, the line of Z Zegna. Were it not for the fact that the black jacket fit me perfectly and was on half price for $4.99, I would have passed it up since it has the phrase, “Made in Mexico” on the neck label.
Another somewhat worn, grey jacket was almost passed over until I looked inside the lining for the brand name and saw that it carried the label, Giorgio Armani Le Collezioni. The inside pocket tag showed it was just my size, a difficult size to find of 43 long. The jacket will look great with a pair of jeans and loafers.
A beautiful black jacket from the Versace Collection closes out this selection of dress jackets. Versace is known for its choice of oranges and yellows and wild ties but this jacket is very simple and very well made, what you expect from this design house.

Shirts – Two new fashion houses are represented here due to asking my daughter if I should look into these names even though they are not made in any European country. The first is from 7 for All Mankind. An interesting name but a nice looking shirt that is quite popular these days. The other brand is from True Religion and brings a good price on the secondary market.
shirtsTwo additional shirts were picked out from the Giorgio Armani Collezioni line. One of these is a formal black shirt which will look great with most any occasion and the other is a nice quality blue shirt made in Hong Kong.
Any time I see the name of Brioni, it reminds me of one of the primary reasons I continue to shop the Goodwill stores in this location. Brioni is known for being at the top of their market in quality and the price the clothing sells for reflects this with the time and material they put into their products. The two shirts I found were white tuxedo style, very formal shirts with a retail price of right at a whopping $850 and I was able to shell out only $5.98 for each. One of these shirts will definitely be on my first pick for the next black-tie event I am asked to attend.
The Goodwill regularly places a slightly higher price on certain labels they call Better Quality and one of these is from Burberry. Even at the Goodwill price of ten dollars, the shirt is a great buy and hangs with the best of my other brands for those occasions when you want to look and feel your best.
Charles Tyrwhitt is not a high priced company in comparison but is one of your better buys for new shirts, in my opinion. They look great and feel good when you wear a shirt from this company. If the shirt is located in my size, it automatically walks toward the cash register with me.
Ermenegildo Zegna produces some really nice items with an emphasis on designing for men. They have a wide range of styles and quality of shirts with one of their more expensive being the Su Misura. I was lucky to find one of these my size and the quality is clearly evident. Three other shirts from this company were purchased this month ranging from a polo style to the more streamlined business shirts.
John Varvatos is beginning to show up in the area Goodwill stores with a more formal style in addition to their “cowboy” plaid shirts. One of the stores had a large selection of new shirts from a variety of brands and this brand was among them. I picked out a nice looking white business shirt made in China to see how well it performed.
A friend at work loves to wear polo shirts made by Lacoste. The French company is making their shirts in a variety of countries these days and this solid black piqué polo shirt comes from Peru.
At least once a month, I like to visit the local Neiman Marcus just down the street from where I work to see what brands they carry and the price tag they show as well. One of these brands is from Lorenzini, made in Italy. I have yet to try it on but the quality shows in how the cloth drapes and the attention to reinforcing the seams in certain stress areas.
The company Turnbull & Asser was founded in 1885 in London and is known as being a favorite of Prince Charles, Sir Winston Churchill, Ronald Reagan, George Bush, Charlie Chaplin and even Picasso. The two shirts I picked up for six dollars each are like-new and have a retail price of $365.
The last shirt on this list is from Yves Saint Laurent and, speaking of price, is second only to the Brioni shirts I found carrying a price tag of $550 which I was able to pick up for $6.99. It came as quite a surprise to find that it was made in Taiwan and I will have to look more closely the next time I see this brand as to where it was made.

Alpaca Connection, Dolce & Gabbana and Loro PianaSweaters – I always look to the sweater section when in the thrift stores and most of the time these are mixed in with the men’s long sleeve shirts. It is quite a shock to see how much some of these nice winter items bring in retail. I located a strange but large, black sweater with large letters of “D&G Jeans” at the bottom. I knew right of that Dolce & Gabbana had their name on this one and the price of $7.99 was a great price to pay out for a sweater that retails for almost seven hundred dollars.
Another high priced sweater that I found later this month had the much coveted name tag showing Loro Piana. The peach colored half zippered super soft sweater shirt was grabbed for only $5.24 and retails for almost nine hundred dollars. You will not find this name very often in this area and is the first time in almost five years I was able to put my hands on one of their items.  It will make for a very nice Christmas present in a couple of months.
The third sweater I found is a very colorful 100% alpaca item made in Peru from the Peruvian Connection. This company makes all kind of wearable clothing with the sheared fur from these beautiful South American alpaca camelids.

Pants – It has been unusual to find a good pair of pants but I was able to locate nine great examples, eight of these from Italy.
Two pair of pants from Giorgio Armani were located, one was a nice black pair of Collezioni tuxedo that will go great with the Armani tuxedo jacket I found a while back. The other is a tan pair of Le Collezioni with a ridiculous retail price of around $1,200. They are very nice and are certainly top notch, what you would expect from a name like Armani.
The company Britches makes a very wide range of trousers and are well made with some colors that match many of the dress jackets I am able to come across. This pair of brown pants match a Canali jacket I’ve been looking for a pair of pants for.
Speaking of Canali, two pair of these in navy and brown have the quality you expect from the Italian company. I often receive a nice compliment from the ladies when I wear this brand.
Pazoni is another Italian brand that looks nice and wears well. You can generally find a color that works well with some of those special events or just going to town for groceries.
Santorelli is another Italian brand to look for as they offer pants in around the two-hundred-dollar range as well.
My daughter told me that I couldn’t go wrong if I found a nice pair of True Religion Ricky Straight pants so I paid eleven dollars for this three hundred and fifty-dollar pair of black jeans made in China. We’ll see how well they do on eBay.
One other pair of Italian trousers I found comes from Zanella. The tan pair should go well with most of my dress jackets of a similar shade of brown.

Ties – Once again, this category came in with the greatest number of items; twenty-two. These are represented by some of the better quality producers;  Allen Edmonds, Aurelia, Luigi Borelli, Bottega Veneta (2), Brioni, Canali, Christopher Chronis, Ermenegildo Zegna (4), Gianni Versace, Gucci (2), J. Hilburn, Lanvin, Museum Artifacts, Stefano Ricci, Ted Baker, Tufelo Staufluimi and Valentino.
I always welcome the names of Brioni, Canali, Gucci and Stefano Ricci. There were a few new brands I thought I would try out, namely Aurelia, Luigi Borelli, Bottega Veneta, J. Hilburn, and Tufelo Staufluimi. I was aware of the hard to find Bottega Veneta and did not know they made ties and it was a nice surprise to find a tie from Borelli.

Shoes – This month has to be a record in the number of high-end shoes I was able to find. Allen Edmonds was represented by three pair with their styles of Cameron, Clipper and the Wilbert versions. This brand is by far the most comfortable example of shoes I own, is of high quality and the company stands behind their product to the point of even restoring the shoe to like new if it can be done so.
Another surprise was the fact that I was able to find four pair from Bally. These shoes, made in Switzerland, ranged in retail price from $495 to $650 and wear well, look well and are light on your feet.
On a different search, I have a friend that I was able to find a size 17 for him in a shoe from Mezlan. This pair of shoes are quite different in that they are open weave and have a cap toe made from crocodile. The shoes were picked up for only a dollar but show an incredible retail price of $1,295. A fantastic find and they look great, especially for someone who wears a size that is that hard to find.
A new brand for me is that of Santoni. I found a pair of these at a discount store with a retail of over six hundred dollars. This alone caught my attention. A week later I located a used pair at a Goodwill for only eight dollars and found the quality to be superb. The retail of this certain pair was $810. Another great find.
Several matching pair of shoe trees were picked up for the new shoes and were welcome for prolonging the life of these expensive shoes.

Hangers – I have a good number of wooden shirt hangers and am always on the lookout for some nice large maple suit hangers when they can be found, especially those from the company Setwell. I was able to find a good variety of these and others including a much needed Woodlore 40-tie holder to better view my growing collection of colorful silk.

Accessories – Here is where it gets interesting in the variety of items that can be found for not just myself but for family members and friends as well.
     It is always a good day when I can find an item for one of my daughters they will hopefully cherish or at least show a great big smile when they see what I was able to find for them. Burberry came to the rescue in this regard for my youngest when she celebrated a birthday lately. The like-new Burberrys’ crossbody Haymarket purse was just the size she wanted and the patented plaid pattern shows it is from Burberry. Shortly after her birthday, I found, on a half-price day, a very nice Burberry blue label Peyton clutch that will nicely match her purse.
When you have a lot of clothes, you tend to run out of places to hang them. A gold colored clothes stand came to the rescue and is also used to hang wet clothes on the porch to dry.
     My son has shown his talent in the field of art and I was able to find a large aluminum Freedman easel to show his nicer pieces or I might keep it to place a large framed piece of my own artwork. I was also able to find a neat wooden articulated mannequin he can use to pose for drawing figures. His birthday is coming up in a few months so he might find it in his room rather my mine.
Hermes bags     One of the brands that always carries a high price is from Hermès. Anything from them is typically of great quality and usually of a hard to find material. When I saw five cloth drawstring bags for less than a ten-dollar bill, I knew it was a good price as well as being very difficult to locate. The retail price for all five is about three hundred dollars. A ridiculous price for some cloth bags but they have that coveted logo on them.
LV and Burberry     Another name on the same scale is that of Louis Vuitton. There are a lot of fakes of this company’s products but when you find an original for a great price, it is what keeps you scouring the thrift stores for even more. I was lucky when I found not only a ladies long Sarah monogram wallet, like new, but also a man’s Damier 40mm belt. The wallet had a price tag of $79.99 with a retail of $1,000 and the belt was purchased for only $7.98 and retails for $415. Isn’t it nice that Christmas is just around the corner?
Stetson     My grandfather always wore a Stetson hat to cover his head. He believed in having less but what he had was the best. I was able to find not just one but two Stetson hats for those sunny days when the sun is just a bit too bright and hot. One is a black wool felt Bozeman, not an expensive hat but one that was needed. The other is a Stetson Gunfighter 5X straw hat to go with my brown outfits.

As with previous months, the following chart is broken down into different categories with the subtotal for each, the amount paid, tagged amount and the retail price with a link, where available, as to where the retail price was located. I hope this chart becomes a valuable tool for you in making a choice when locating that high-end item you might run across.

Be sure to check out the page of comparison prices for categories such as pants, shirts, shoes, suits, sweaters and ties. This page offers many valuable tools that I find convenient when looking up a name as to whether it is worth purchasing or putting back on the rack.

October 2017

$634.84 $844.18 $42,351.30 66.7x
Item Company Detail Paid Tagged Retail Color Origin
Suits
5,770 Corneliani Vogue 19.97 24.99 2,095.00 Charcoal Italy
Versace Classic 19.97 24.99 3,675.00 Navy Italy
Dress Jackets
11,175 Burberrys’ Prorsum 4.99 9.99 2,195.00 Navy USA
Canali Silk 2-button plaid 7.99 9.99 1,595.00 Blue Italy
Christian Dior Le Connaisseur 1.00 9.99 925.00 Black USA
Corneliani Barney’s New York 4.99 9.99 1,745.00 Grey Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z Zegna 4.99 9.99 895.00 Black Mexico
Giorgio Armani Le Collezioni 7.98 9.99 1,595.00 Grey Italy
Versace Collection 7.98 9.99 2,225.00 Black Croatia
Shirts
6,811 7 for All Mankind The Slimmy 4.99 9.99 169.00 Grey China
Armani, Giorgio Collezioni 6.99 6.99 325.00 Black Tunisia
Armani, Giorgio Collezioni 6.73 8.99 295.00 Blue Hong Kong
Brioni Tuxedo 5.98 7.99 850.00 White Italy
Brioni Tuxedo 5.98 7.99 850.00 White Italy
Burberry London 10.39 12.99 325.00 Blue USA
Charles Tyrwhitt Slim fit 6.99 6.99 110.00 Silver England
Ermenegildo Zegna 7.48 9.99 375.00 Blue Romania
Ermenegildo Zegna Polo 5.98 7.99 345.00 Olive Romania
Ermenegildo Zegna Slim fit 5.59 6.99 450.00 Red Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Su Misura 6.73 8.99 510.00 Purple Turkey
John Varvatos Slim Fit 5.98 7.99 228.00 White China
LaCoste Piqué Polo Shirt 5.98 7.99 99.50 Black Peru
Lorenzini Neiman Marcus 5.24 6.99 295.00 Brown Italy
Rag & Bone Beach shirt 5.24 6.99 225.00 Red China
True Religion Henley 6.73 8.99 79.00 Black India
Turnbull & Asser Turnbuline 5.98 7.99 365.00 Green England
Turnbull & Asser  – 5.98 7.99 365.00 Blue England
Yves Saint Laurent  – 6.99 6.99 550.00 Olive Taiwan
Sweaters
1,839 Dolce & Gabbana D&G Jeans 7.99 7.99 695.00 Black Italy
Loro Piana Roadster half-zip 5.24 6.99 895.00 Peach Italy
The Peruvian Connection Painted Desert Pullover 5.59 6.99 249.00 Black Peru
Pants
4,229 Armani, Giorgio Collezioni tuxedo 5.24 6.99 675.00 Black Italy
Armani, Giorgio Le Collezioni 5.59 6.99 1,195.00 Tan Italy
Britches Torino 6.99 6.99 195.00 Brown Italy
Canali Melange 5.59 6.99 425.00 Navy Italy
Canali Pantalone 5.59 6.99 425.00 Brown Italy
Pazoni Romeo 5.59 6.99 195.00 Navy Italy
Santorelli Romeo 6.99 6.99 225.00 Brown Italy
True Religion Ricky Straight 11.23 14.99 349.00 Black China
Zanella Duncan 3.49 6.99 545.00 Tan Italy
Ties
3,575 Allen Edmonds Neat medallion 3.99 4.99 95.00 Red Germany
Aurelia Milano 2.39 2.99 50.00 Blue Italy
Borrelli, Luigi Napoli 0.99 1.99 315.00 Tan Italy
Bottega Veneta  – 1.99 1.99 190.00 Grey Italy
Bottega Veneta  – 1.99 1.99 190.00 Grey Italy
Brioni Square medallion 3.99 4.99 230.00 Red Italy
Canali 1.49 2.99 280.00 Yellow Italy
Christopher Chronis Australia 1.59 1.99 30.00 Purple Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 1.49 1.99 195.00 Blue Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 1.59 1.99 195.00 Brown Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna Z 3.99 3.99 195.00 Silver Italy
Ermenegildo Zegna 1.99 1.99 195.00 Brown Italy
Gianni Versace  – 1.59 1.99 175.00 Purple Italy
Gucci  – 3.19 3.99 200.00 Orange Italy
Gucci  – 1.99 1.99 200.00 Navy Italy
J. Hilburn  – 1.49 1.99 89.00 Blue Italy
Lanvin Paris 1.59 1.99 165.00 Yellow France
Museum Artifacts Astronomy map 2.99 2.99 34.99 Navy USA
Stefano Ricci 5.25 5.25 275.00 Yellow Italy
Ted Baker London 3.24 6.49 75.53 Purple USA
Tufelo Staufluimi Firenze 2.39 2.99 50.00 Red Italy
Valentino Oliver 2.99 2.99 150.00 Brown Italy
Shoes
5,071 Allen Edmonds Cameron 1.00 8.99 195.00 Black USA
Allen Edmonds Clipper 5.59 6.99 175.00 Brown USA
Allen Edmonds Wilbert 9.73 12.99 295.00 Brown USA
Bally Hardy 6.38 7.99 550.00 Black Switzerland
Bally Hardy 6.38 7.99 550.00 Black Switzerland
Bally Phoenix 11.23 14.99 495.00 Brown Switzerland
Bally Sanaa 655 7.18 8.99 650.00 Black Switzerland
Benedetti shoe tree 1.99 1.99 9.98 Wood USA
Benedetti shoe tree 1.99 1.99 9.98 Wood USA
Mezlan Marina 1.00 12.99 1,295.00 Brown Spain
Nordstrom shoe tree 1.99 1.99 7.99 Wood USA
Nordstrom shoe tree 1.99 1.99 7.99 Wood USA
Santoni Lace up 7.98 9.99 810.00 Black Italy
Songmics shoe tree 1.99 1.99 9.98 Brown USA
Songmics shoe tree 1.99 1.99 9.98 Brown USA
Hangers
193 Natural Suit 0.49 0.99 1.75 Wood/metal USA
Setwell Maple finish suit 1.59 1.99 28.99 Wood/metal USA
Setwell Maple finish suit 0.55 0.69 28.99 Wood/metal USA
Setwell Maple finish suit 1.49 1.99 28.99 Wood/metal USA
Setwell Pants cuff 0.79 0.99 7.50 Wood/metal USA
Setwell Pants cuff 0.55 0.69 7.50 Wood/metal USA
Tom James Suit 0.75 1.00 18.00 Wood/metal USA
Wardrobe Management Suit 0.75 1.00 18.00 Plastic/metal USA
Woodlore 40-tie holder Tie hanger 2.39 2.99 45.53 Wood/metal USA
Accessories
1,785 Buberry Blue label Peyton clutch 17.49 34.99 625.00 Brown England
Burberrys Crossbody Haymarket 35.95 44.99 895.00 Brown Italy
Cambridge Classic socks 0.79 0.99 3.75 Brown Pakistan
Coat Rack clothes stand 1.99 3.99 34.99 Gold China
Freedman aluminum easel 3.74 4.99 185.99 Silver USA
Hermès 3.5″ Drawstring 1.83 1.83 10.00 Brown France
Hermès 4.9″ Drawstring 1.29 1.29 29.99 Orange France
Hermès 4.9″ Drawstring 1.49 1.49 29.99 Orange France
Hermès 8″ Drawstring 1.83 1.83 29.99 Brown France
Hermès 21″ Drawstring 1.83 1.83 199.00 Brown France
Louis Vuitton Damier 40mm belt 7.98 9.99 415.00 White France
Louis Vuitton Sarah Monogram 63.99 79.99 1,000.00 Brown France
Stetson Bozeman 19.96 39.99 78.00 Black USA
Stetson Gunfighter 5X 47.93 59.99 110.00 Tan USA
US Art Supply mannequin 4.79 5.99 24.96 Brown USA
 – mirrored  container 3.74 4.99 18.00 Brown Taiwan

 

Key words: Allen Edmonds, Armani, Aurelia, Bally, Benedetti, Borelli, Bottega Veneta, Brioni, Britches, Burberrys, Canali, Charles Tywhitt, Christian Dior, Christopher Chronis, Corneliani, Dolce & Gabbana, Ermenegildo Zegna, Gianni Versace, Giorgio, Gucci, J. Hermes, Hilburn, John Varvatos, LaCoste, Lanvin, Lorenzini, Louis Vuitton, Mezlan, Pazoni, Rag & Bone, Santoni, Santorelli, Setwell, Stefano Ricci, Stetson, Tom James, Ted Baker, True Religion, Tufelo Staufluimi, Turnbull & Asser, Valentino, Yves Saint Laurent, Zanella