Fashion Over 50: Thriftstore Shopping

To mix things up a bit and share some different styles, my friend, Vicki, is back today to model a few things that she has found at the thriftstore.  She started shopping at the thriftstores many years ago and has found some great deals there, adding to her wardrobe at very little cost. She shared the brands she has found there and I too have found some good brands at the thriftstores. If you are willing to dig a little, treasures are there!

Vicki and I have been friends since we were 15 and she wrote this beautiful article about her weight journey through life and I just know that so many can relate to her words.  So, I’m going to let Vicki share her thoughts:

While browsing the clearance rack at Macy’s I struck up a conversation with a fellow shopper. Imagine that! She commented how she was shopping for her mother-in-law and she wore a size “W” for WIDE! Yes, she said that! She was totally serious. She truly thought the W meant WIDE! Well, bless her heart! I almost slapped her. How could any woman in today’s society be so uninformed about women’s clothing sizes? Granted she appeared to have never experienced any sort of weight issue and I’m happy for her. Sort of! But what about the 100 million plus sized women who wear size 14-34? Yep, that’s the figure quoted in an article by Margaret Bogenrief, December 21, 2012, Business Insider.

During my 30’s and 40’s, I took care of everyone but me and neglected my mental and physical health, resulting in obesity and a very negative body image. I just could not bring myself to spend money on fashionable clothing while so overweight. Maybe subconsciously I felt I didn’t deserve to dress better, feeding into the self loathing overweight women fight everyday. I think it was more about being wasteful not wanting to invest in larger sized clothes because surely I would lose the weight just any day. Now in my late fifties, I have finally accepted myself, my body, and want to dress fashionably for my age and weight!

My life long friend, Rhoda, has always been very fashionable and trendy and I have learned a lot from her over the years. Specifically, Rhoda introduced me to shopping at thrift stores. Now, no matter my size, I can spend very little money on clothing but enjoy dressing in name brand quality pieces for a fraction of what they would cost at original retail price. About 75% of my clothes these days come from a thrift store. So as I lose weight and move into smaller clothing sizes, I’m confident I’m not being wasteful at all.

Accepting and loving myself while weighing over 200 pounds has been life changing. Consequently, I have begun to lose weight and feel so much better about my appearance as I dress for my size and age. For me, forgiving myself for the damage done was necessary for change. I encourage all women, no matter your age or size, to accept your bodies and work with where you are and what you have right now. Don’t put off enjoying life until…you lose 5 or 50 pounds!

Dress to enhance your hair and eye color. Determine your best features and showcase them. One of my dear friends is about my size and age and she has great legs! She looks fabulous in shorter dresses and skirts, while I hide my knocked knees! Know your best colors, experiment with accessories or a new hair cut and color. You’ll be surprised how a new shade of lipstick can brighten your smile and your face! Spring is a great time of year to try new pieces, new styles! You are worth any time or money you spend on yourself!

As for the “W”, it represents “Woman”! I’m not sure what that says about all those who wear sizes 0-12! Happy Spring, y’all!

How I Shop:

I shop by color first. If the color catches my eye and is one that I feel compliments my hair and eye color, then I consider the garment. So I’m scanning the sale rack at Belk and the color and print of a dress caught my eye. I have a pair of brown leather boots that might work with this so I grabbed it and brought it home. The dress has chocolate brown trim so I found some chocolate brown tights to wear with my brown boots. I wore the outfit to church and definitely got the “wow” reaction from several friends. My daughter-in-law was the most enthusiastic with her encouragement. Mother Mom breaks out! 

Vicki and boots

While I’m still over 200 pounds, my feelings about myself have improved from the positive changes in my style. My confidence is boosted and I’m encouraged as I begin a new project of self improvement…weight loss!

I loved hearing from Vicki’s heart and I know many of you did too.  So today, we are going to share how just adding a colorful top with a basic pair of black pants can enhance your closet and allow you to mix things up for some fun just by adding different colors.  Black pants are also slenderizing.  This is especially good for this time of year, with Spring here now.

thriftstore fashion

All of these thriftstore fashion items were found for under $10.  This cobalt blue tunic blouse came from the thriftstore and it is by Calvin Klein.

thriftstore fashion2

Adding simple jewelry dresses up a blouse.

turquoise jacket

Another find that Vicki scored thrifting is this aqua leather jacket by Dialogue.  Definitely her color (and mine) adding a pretty colorful scarf is a great way to bring color up to the face and highlights the hair and eyes.  Vicki said she has had this polkadot scarf for years and wears it with so many things.

green thriftstore blouse

Here it is again with a lime green blouse from Chico’s.  So keep those scarves in mind to add punch to a spring outfit.

green thriftstore blouse 2

Another longer scarf with aqua, red and green really wakes up that lime green blouse.

So, get those spring colors out and wear them proudly right now.  They will wake up your complexion and make you feel better.  I love spring colors and adding jewelry and scarves to accessorizing.

Vicki is on a weight loss journey now and I can’t wait to see where she lands!

Do you look for clothes at the thriftstore?


- Rhoda


  1. Barbara Hunnicutt Moore says:

    I’ve known Vicki (and Rhoda) since high school. They are both just as beautiful on the inside as they are on the outside. You look mahhhhhvalous, sweet friend!

    • Thanks, Tiny! Congrats on the new grand! They are our conciliation prize for growing old! Our youngest will be one next month and Brandon (my overachiever) and Lauren are considering #4! Would love to see you! Take care sweet friend!

  2. Thank you Vicki. You are inspiring lots of us size W’s and you are absolutely right, that stands for Woman!

    I am Woman and this past week with another health crisis for my husband in the midst of selling one home and buying another, and moving, I have roared!:-) And if I do say so myself…did it with style.

  3. Vicki your look is fantastic. As I approach my 50th birthday with more than a few pounds to lose, my daily wardrobe consists of beige, grey and white (and no it is not a uniform!). I am trying to just blend in with the background. You have encouraged me to add some colour to my wardrobe and wear it with confidence!

    • Maureen, Yes, you must experiment with color. You will feel so much better about yourself! Do it! Now! Add a smile and your appearance will dramatically change!

  4. Vicki, you’re beautiful (especially in aqua!). All of these clothes look extremely flattering on you, and I applaud you sharing your story. I look forward to updates on your journey of self-love.
    Rita C at Panoply

    • Hi Rita,
      Due to the overwhelming responses to my article, I decided to share my blog site. I haven’t posted much lately until I began my weight loss journey in January. Drop by and say hello!
      Thank you so much for your thoughtful comments! They are such an encouragement to me.

  5. Mary Anne Russo says:

    Thank you for sharing your feelings Vicky! So many of us feel just this way, waiting to lose the weight, before we can really live life. I, as you, took care of my family, neglected to take care of myself, thinking that it would be selfish to take time, or money away from my family, not realizing, that I need to take care of myself in order to take care of others.
    My last year in my 40″s and I have finally realized , it is okay to take care of me., and it feels good! You are a real inspiration to us W” woman.
    You are truly beautiful!!!

  6. Teresa H. Fields says:

    What a great post. You look fantastic and this was so,encouraging!

  7. Vicki… You absolutely are gorgeous in those bright colors…. the aqua and the bright green with those scarves are stunning!!! Thank you so much for being transparent…. I am now 62 and just a little overweight… compared to what I was my whole adult life that is…. ( attempting to lose 25 lbs. ) …. the clothes / hair / make up say a lot at my age!!! You really encouraged me!!!! Excited for you !!!!

  8. Thank you all so much! I am very blessed by your positive comments! But…Wow, I feel bad about my neck! The natural lighting does not lie, does it? And…I should have worn my body smoother for the photos. That’s another tip for those of us who are a size 14 or over. A body shaper/smoother does help smooth out the bumps and bulges. I don’t wear a body smoother every day but when dressed for church or a special event I’ll squeeze into one. My sweet mother, almost 83, always wore a “girdle”. Bondage! I’ve been delivered! I experienced a brief detour on my weight loss journey. You know if you don’t work the program, any program, the program doesn’t work. But I’m back on track now focusing on my goal of 199 lbs so I can feel less like a male professional athlete and more like a WOMAN! Thank you again for your sweet comments. My enduring friendship with Rhoda is a tremendous blessing to me and I have enjoyed her blog journey as you all have. Happy Spring!

    • Vicki, it’s not the natural lighting, per se, but the fact that it was in full sun. It does lie! Shade is better for photographs, as it casts less shadows. You look great in everything you showed today and it will inspire so many women struggling to look good…woman of all sizes!
      Cut the poor woman some slack about the W. 🙂 I guessed that, but it’s sort of insulting to those of us who wear smaller than a 12 and consider themselves women, as well. It’s all marketing; can’t we just have sizes?

      I’d love it if you could share what prompted you to get in better shape physically and how you’re going about it. I have a schoolgirl friend who’s very heavy and I so want to encourage her. I invite her for walks, to come swimming, but she’s too embarrassed to put on a suit and walking tires her. I tell her joining me would help keep me on track, but she doesn’t bite. I know it has to come from within, so I just wonder what was the turning point for you.

      • My heart breaks for your friend. My health has been the primary motivating factor for me. Turning 58 in December, just 2 years from 60, intensified my motivation. But life gets in the way of our best laid intentions! Your friend is blessed to have you care so. Maybe she can articulate what she thinks she CAN enjoy as an exercise. The recumbent bike helped me when I was recovering from surgery. Yoga can be done in a chair. If you go on line you might can pull up some exercise videos for obese people and maybe you can do them with her for encouragement. Walking at a local mall may be a safe place to start. Good luck as you seek to help your friend. Thanks for posting.

  9. I think she looks so pretty, and love all the different colors she choose. All the outfits look great on her!

  10. What beautiful colors and style! They are gorgeous on you (an already beautiful woman). I love shopping thrift/consignment stores and have found some amazing pieces. You are inspirational no matter what size. After all, it’s just a number. It truly is what is on the inside that counts.

  11. Vicki, you do look great. Certain colors and styles always bring out our best features. I just turned 66 and I have had a weight problem for years. Right now I have it under control but it is a battle. I truly understand where you are coming from. I had to start changing my eating habits because of health problems about ten years ago. Now I feel great. I try to walk on the treadmill 30 minutes/day which is the key for me to control the weight. I still eat the foods I like but only when I visit with family or on special occasions. God gave us fabulous bodies didn’t He? Happy spring and good luck!

    • Hi Susan,
      I live in north metro ATL. I prefer Goodwill stores because they do have “plus size” racks. However, let me caution you, it is not always organized accordingly. If I have the time and am in the mood, I also browse, by color, the blouses on the regular size racks. Sometimes I can wear a regular XL. Goodwill is not the cheapest, but having the plus sizes separate is helpful and less time consuming. Also, Goodwill offers 25% discount on TUE to shoppers over 55! Love it! Another helpful bit of info is each garment has a colored tag or “barb” attached. Each Sunday a new color is chosen for a 50% discount. I love to drop in after church on Sunday when the color has just changed and the selection is best for a
      treasure hunt. This color discount applies to everything in the store, not just clothing. Be aware, not all Goodwill stores are the same! The selection often depends on the area of town. I hope this is helpful. Enjoy!

    • Hi Tricia,
      Congrats on getting healthier! Your consistent exercising on the treadmill is an inspiration to me! I prefer to walk outdoors, which Rhoda and I do together about once a week. But we do have a small elliptical I should be using more so maybe I’ll try that today. Thanks for your post!

  12. Thank you, Rhoda for sharing Vicki’s story with us! So inspiring and encouraging. I enjoy shopping at consignment shops, too.
    Vicki, you look beautiful in all yours looks. My fave is the leather jacket, stunning!
    One bit of advice that I learned from watching the tv show, What Not to Wear. You need to define your waist!! Try adding a belt or clothes with an empire waist. Wrap dresses, dresses with color block panels, peplum tops, are also slimming.

    • Hi Penny,
      I love your ideas and have a wrap dress I bought at a thrift store (probably Goodwill) that didn’t fit at the time and hope it will when I try it in the next few weeks. As for belts, I have a mental block about wearing one when I’m so overweight. Maybe I’ll overcome it. I agree with you though, I’m just not ready. Thanks for posting and the great tips!

  13. LOVE this blog post ~ Vicki looks wonderful in each of the outfits! The turquoise jacket is gorgeous: it definitely compliments her hair & skin color. Thanks to both ladies for sharing stylish tips that are helpful and practical for everyone.

  14. Rhoda, please feature Vicki again. She is beautiful and her transparency makes her very relatable. I look forward to hearing more about her.
    And Vicki, you rock! You will definitely meet that 199 goal! I’m looking forward to celebrating with you!

  15. Loved the post, loved the different options shown. I also put my family before me…had a brief but not lasting weight loss. Working on getting healthier and losing weight as a side effect.

    My question is, where do you go thrifting for Women sizes? I am in the Atlanta area.

    Thank you for an inspiring post. Just what the day needed.

    • Susan, I know Vicki hits the Goodwills regularly. I’m sure they have Women’s sizes at all the thrift stores too.

      • Hi Susan,
        I live in north metro ATL. I prefer Goodwill stores because they do have “plus size” racks. However, let me caution you, it is not always organized accordingly. If I have the time and am in the mood, I also browse, by color, the blouses on the regular size racks. Sometimes I can wear a regular XL. Goodwill is not the cheapest, but having the plus sizes separate is helpful and less time consuming. Also, Goodwill offers 25% discount on TUE to shoppers over 55! Love it! Another helpful bit of info is each garment has a colored tag or “barb” attached. Each Sunday a new color is chosen for a 50% discount. I love to drop in after church on Sunday when the color has just changed and the selection is best for a
        treasure hunt. This color discount applies to everything in the store, not just clothing. Be aware, not all Goodwill stores are the same! The selection often depends on the area of town. I hope this is helpful. Enjoy!

  16. Wow……..What a knockout in the aqua Vicki is! Go buy more of that color it is gorgeous on you. Love the lime green color also on Vicki. YOu have beautiful blonde hair and complexion also. Good luck on your journey of weight loss……once you start losing you just keep on losing I hear.

  17. Vickie looks great! I also like to wear scarves to bring some color up near my face now that I have embraced my white hair! I think it perks a lady up and hides a neck that has lived for almost 60 Thanks for sharing!

  18. Mary Ellen says:

    Hi Rhoda and Vicky,
    I would love to know what Atl thrift shops you frequent and wonder if you do consignment shops too? I lost a lot of weight recently and wanted to share a great source. Embellish Plus Size Consignment used to be a storefront in Kennesaw but closed. They still have a great ebay shop and they are very easy to shop from still. There is such a niche for plus size consignment. There was a great store in Roswell that closed back a number of years ago and I still think that if someone wanted to do it they could make tons and offer a great service statewide.

    Although i am still in my 40’s i appreciate your commonsense advice to dressing while still being trendy.
    Thanks and have a great day
    Mary Ellen

  19. You look great..and the colors you wear are inspiring.however….
    Why…is your weight brought up every time I see mention of your name? I never even thought twice about your weight. Your home, clothes. …..have nothing to do with your weight.

    • Terry, I can answer that. I’ve introduced Vicki on here numerous posts, she has been with me on trips and other adventures over the last couple of years. Her weight was never a topic on those posts, it was girlfriends sharing time together. However, with these fashion posts, weight can be an issue for so many people and that’s why her weight and body image issues have been shared and talked about in these fashion posts. And I know that many women relate to Vicki’s story, so I was happy to have her share here. It’s that simple.

  20. Love the aqua leather jacket….great find and the color is great on you.

  21. While looking at magazines yesterday with a friend we discovered that several had articles featuring how to look good at 30, 40, 50 or hairstyles for 30,40,50. What happens after 50? As I approach 60 this year I was discouraged. So today your comments about body image and fashion were extremely inspiring. Thanks Vicky!

    • Thank you, Leslie! I have really enjoyed sharing on Rhoda’s blog. Based on the response to my article I decided to introduce my blog today.
      I’d love for you to drop by. I’ll be posting more now that it’s “out there”.
      Blessings to you and yours!

  22. Thank you for sharing Vickie’s story. What an inspiration she is! I am embracing that fact that I am 55+ now and not as thin as I use to be, and love thrift store shopping. I’m getting out my accessories and dressing for spring!

    Signed a “W” !!

  23. I’ve been shopping at thrift stores for years….more than 30 to be exact 😉 I’m 60 now. Good deals are always to be had there. One of my secrets is to look for good quality name brands because often they’re been given away by someone who’s merely gotten tired of them (or possibly outgrown them)…and there’s lots of wear left in them. 😀

    I frequently will get hundreds of dollars of clothing, all stuffed in a bag, for around $30 🙂

    I LOVE this story. I think Vicky looks stunningly beautiful!

  24. Vicki, you’re doing a great job of dressing the body you have with style! Your message “we all deserve to feel and look our best at every size”, rings true for me too.
    I don’t do much thrift store shopping (recently scored an adorable dress and sweater for three year old granddaughter) because I’m too busy shopping my own closet. I’ve got a lot of gems to dig out and wear. Nothing new can come in until a few more go out…

  25. My husband was shopping for a Christmas present for me and he asked a sales clerk what the W stood for and she told him wide also…he said he thought about that and then said “I really think it stands for WOW! because my wife is not wide”. According to him, he said it jokingly but wanted to get her attention. And he came home with a beautiful red dress suit for my present and I still wear it.

    I do think that the fashion industry does a big disservice with the styles and even fabrics they use for plus size clothing. I am a 14-16W and some of the things they have are just atrocious in my opinion. It has gotten bad enough that I have started sewing again just so I can have nice basics to build around. And goodness knows I wish they would raise the waistbands on jeans so that awful little fat roll would stay under the jeans instead of popping out on top. And all the super clingy fabrics, who wants to accentuate every little bump and bulge? At 50, I am trying to DE-emphasize those things!

    Thanks for listening to my mini rant on fashion for plus sizes. 🙂

    I love your choices of color, they make you look so healthy and vibrant!!

    • I love this story! Your husband sounds amazing! Thanks for sharing and try a body shaper for help with those little bumps and bulges! Thanks for posting.

  26. Thank you for a beautiful post. I have shopped at the thrift stores on and off over the years. I’ll be making a stop now after seeing this post. Please tell your friend she is beautiful.

  27. Vicki, you are absolutely stunning. Rhoda, I love your Fashion over Fifty and I mentioned you in my blog today along with my Wednesday’s Closet Tips. Thanks for reminding women that fashion is always fashionable at any age.


  28. Another classy lady no matter her size. Great restraint too on not slapping the *W* lady!

  29. Rhoda, I think you and Vicky make a dynamic duo for these fashion posts! I’ve been so inspired to “perk up” my wardrobe with some pretty spring colors that Vicky was wearing today!

    • I think size, like age, is just a number. I’ve had weight struggles most if my life as well. I’m currently at my highest weight ever. It’s not always easy to be happy with the way I look, but I have always had confidence and worn trendy clothes, bright colors, embellished/blingy things, bold statement jewelry, and I think I came out if my Mom’s womb in a leopard-print diaper! LOL. I think it is possible to look attractive and stylish at any age or size. You just have to find what works for you and makes you feel good! I haven’t bought many clothes for myself at thrift stores, but I did find a new pair of walking shorts from Christopher and Banks recently. I used to find designer shirts by Izod, Polo, and even Charter Club for my ex-husband for just a few dollars each.

  30. Vicki looks great in the bright colors and scarves bringing the focus up to her face (great hair and eyes). Rhoda- you have always inspired me with your “finds” at thrift stores and tag sales but I have not had the same experience. Perhaps it’s the area of the country I live in but I find the thrift stores are smelly and full of out-of-date clothing in poor condition. There was one upscale shop in a former hometown that had quality merchandise (and I sold many of my personal out-of-season/size clothing there) BUT it was a small town and you were very likely to be seen in someone else’s clothes. Maybe I should move to ATL! But seriously, I love your blog and inspiration and I’ll keep giving thrift shopping a try!

    • I have a tip that takes care of the “smelly” issue AND sanitizes at the same time…
      In a plastic dishpan-type container, mix a solution of 1 part white vinegar to 1 part water in the quantity you need to soak the garment. Soak it 12-24 hours and any odor will almost always be gone. Then just wash the garment as you normally would. (It’s safe to use straight vinegar, but usually not necessary.)
      Love the post today, Rhoda (and Vicki)…so much good information AND inspiration! To me, thrift store/Good Will/garage sale shopping is like a treasure hunt: some days you might not find anything you like, but other days you find something fantastic!

  31. Theresa Kane says:

    Thank you so much for highlighting someone who represents a large part of the population! Vicki is beautiful… inside and out! And her words encourage me today to love myself as I am and not worry about the scale so much. I am a 12-14 so I can definitely relate.

  32. Dearest Rhoda and Vicki,
    You have no idea how much I needed to see today’s post. I am much older than you two…69!…but have always tried to be fashionable. As most ladies who have ever had a weight problem know, age, bad knees etc can add to our problem. I have clothes from size 8 to size 22 in my closet. I hang on the the smaller ones hoping one day I will be able to wear them…HA. I tend to wear only black these days…trying to be less conspicuous. You have encouraged me to bring out the colors and keep smiling.

    I was wondering if you might have a blog, Vicki. I would love to learn about your weight loss adventure and see more photos of your lovely face and wardrobe.

    Thanks for brightening my day.

    • Hi Sylvia and thank you, sweet lady, for your thoughtful comments! I do have a blog but I have not posted much on it until recently. Because your your inquiry, I am encouraged to “go for it” and work at posting more! I am a writer and plan to feature my published articles on my blog but need tech support handling this. So for now, check me out at I do have posts regarding my weight loss efforts. Say hello! I recommend you purge your closet of the size 8 clothes. Is that small size relevant to your life today? I don’t mean “give up” on being healthier, just be realistic. I was very thin in my 20’s but do not strive to reach that size again, rather a healthy weight for my age and height. Of course any weight less than what I way today will be healthier! It’s all relative. Blessings to you!

  33. Becky in 'Bama says:

    That turquoise jacket is the bomb on Ms. Vicki (and that is a good thing). Okay…so I’m reading here -over and over- those of us who have passed the 55+ age and suddenly have pounds/bulges in places where they have never been! Our bodies change, obviously, but for the most part fashion is so geared to being rail thin. I have struggled over the past year with this issue and it is a daily mind-game of learning to accept the new bulges and throw out the clothes I wore just a couple of years ago. ~ Heavy sigh ~ I work a very busy job (9-10 hours a day/5 days a week) and spending time searching through racks and racks of clothing in thrift stores is too daunting, so I try and purchase all my clothing on the 30-50% off sale rack which helps somewhat. Happy thrifting to those of you who have the time. Thanks for the pics of your attractive friend, Vicki.

    • Hi Becky in Bama! My husband lived in Huntsville until he was 12! Yes, I get it about the time element involved in shopping at thrift stores. I did not shop thrift stores until my sons were out of high school. As a home school mom, they were with me all the time and shopping was strictly a necessity, not a pleasure. The year my youngest graduated from high school, we bought a house in a tiny town in Florida where there isn’t much to do except fish. The ladies at the marina suggested I check out the Goodwill store. I found a pair of brand new shoes for $4.00 so I was hooked! I had been to garage sales and thrift stores with Rhoda when we hung out but not with a purpose for myself. One idea for you with your busy schedule is determine the brand and style that fits well and you feel confident in then order it on line. Many of the name brands have on line clearance sales. and free shipping! Good luck and happy shopping.

  34. What another fantastic fashion post! Vicki I applaud you and wish you the best on your journey! I have that same lime green Chico’s blouse for a few years now and have never teamed it up with a scarf! Aha-Light bulb moment! Thank you!

  35. I look forward to your Wednesday posts, Rhoda. You always look marvelous in your clothes since you are tall and thin. But since I am not, I really enjoy Vickie and her upbeat attitude is a real example to others. She is beautiful just like she is but I am confident she will meet her goal since she is so happy and confident. I lack willpower but I believe she has it! Good luck to you, Vickie!!

  36. I loved this article! I can relate to Vicki! I have 4 children and 8 grandkids, so I’ve always put their needs before my own! Now that they are more independent, I am discovering my independence! Trying to lose the extra weight, for health reasons.
    I, too like to shop thrift stores! Vicki, you are beautiful! I appreciate your honesty!

  37. Ann Weisman says:

    Thrift store shopping is my sport. I challenge myself to score big time every time I go and usually succeed. It can be great fun and I have found some phenomenal things for my home and myself. The best part is when you tire of them you can pass them on with no guilt!

    • Amen! When I have some extra time or am a little more wound up than usual and need to unwind, I go to the thrift store! It is relaxing for me to just browse even if I leave empty handed. My husband asks why I am so compelled to share with people how much I pay for my clothes. It’s no different than when he shares a fish tale on how long it took him to land a whopper or what bait he used, or how big the fish was! The hunt relaxes me and if I can leave the store with a great find…even better! Thanks for posting! Happy thrifting!

  38. Awww. Thank you for this post. I have not commented in a long time, but I really appreciate this post. I am 42 and am over 200 lbs. as well. My body image is in the gutter and has been for awhile. I do not invest in clothes and shopping seems to be relegated to shoes, accessories and purses. These days, though, that has been minimal because my money will soon go for my oldest who is starting college in the fall. Thank you to Vicki for her willingness to share and encourage and to you for providing her with a forum in which to do it.

    • OK, Lori! Time to get positive! Congratulations on your oldest beginning college! A definite change in the family budget and dynamics! But you can still take time to improve your health and your appearance. I encourage you to find a few fun pieces this spring that make you smile! Or a change in hair or make up works! Just something, just for you! No matter your weight, you deserve to feel good about YOU! So please accept my challenge and indulge yourself with something personal and special. Even a bottle of nail polish can brighten our appearance and our spirits!

  39. Thank you Vicki for such an inspiring post! Love all the outfits you modeled but that aqua jacket is just gorgeous on you! Believe me you are not alone on your journey. I am 56 and have put on 22 pounds since going through menopause. I am a size 14 but my goal is to get back to at least a size 12 again.

    We recently bought a exercise bike and I just started using the I-Fitness program daily. I am also trying to eat healthier as well in my goal to lose weight. My husband and I also love to ride bikes so I cant wait for the warmer weather. Regardless of my weight, its not going to stop me from dressing well or enjoying life. We just had a upscale consignment store open in our area and it is fabulous!

  40. Rhoda and Vickie, you are two beautiful and inspiring women. I enjoy these posts!I

  41. Jewell Massey says:

    One of the best articles so far. I am 68 now and have not always been confident about dressing for the occasion. My sister and I LOVE thrift stores… Two of my best finds were 1) a two-piece, silk jungle print outfit and 2) a red silk kimono top that I wore at judging in the MS WHEELCHAIR AMERICA PAGEANT two years ago in Houston, Texas. My FERRAGAMO shoes were NOT a bargain by any stretch of the imagination but were made possible by the kimono and black silk pants finds :). PS: YOU are beautiful — thanks to you both for the inspiring article.

    • Hello Jewell,
      Sounds like you have the knack for treasure hunting! I agree on the fact that when we save so much money on an outfit or special piece as you did, we can feel more comfortable splurging now and then. Back in the day, I never ever splurged on a mani pedi, (time was also a factor back then), but now I do indulge occasionally! Thank you for posting and enjoy a springtime treasure hunt!

    • I’m laughing be cause I have a couple of Ferragomos that I bout brand new at thrift store! One is a bronze and another black patent leather. One never knows what the hunt will bring!

  42. Thank you Vicki for sharing your heart. You are a beautiful woman and I love those fabulous, vibrant colors on you. I think as women we are entirely too hard on ourselves. I know I have some weight I’d like to lose that I seem to have found through menopause and it’s no easy task when temptation lurks every where. I wish you all the best on your weight loss journey and we will be right here cheering you on!

    • Hi Lisa,
      Your comments are so encouraging to me! Thank you! After reading all of the kind posts today, I’m highly motivated to reach my immediate goal of 199! As for menopause, my weight did not dramatically change with menopause, but my waist size surely did. Good luck with your efforts as you seek to lose a few pounds and achieve healthier lifestyle. It’s a process! God bless you and thank you so much for posting!

  43. First must say, Vicky is a beautiful lady and she is so right in shopping for color first. Love her coloring and her hair, she is a very pretty lady. Loved reading her story and I think it resonates with many, many women. Rhoda you are so wise and Vicky is so generous to do this for your readers. Thank you Vicky for being such a wonderful model and the turquoise and lime are definitely your colors.

  44. Nancy Garner says:

    Vicki– I haven’t seen you in years, but as always, you look GREAT! Keep up the good work!

  45. Lades –
    Vicki, thank you so very much for sharing your story! It’s similar to my story. I’m 51 and I started to gained weight from one emotional relationship related mishap after another. All the while not truly noticing that I was slowing packing on the weight until my clothes started to get too tight or worse, I saw a full body picture of myself. Denial sets into body imagine issues which turns into self loathing, it’s a vicious cycle. All the while knowing that I deserved better than this but the change didn’t come until God help me to see my path to a healthier, happier person. And I’m glad to say that I’ve lost 15 lbs. in 10 weeks! And even though I still have 40+ more to go, the 15 lbs. is a VICTORY….so I’ll take it! It’s all a part of my new lifestyle change. Again, thanks for sharing! God Bless

  46. Love this post! It is all about loving who you are no matter your size. We have been blessed to have these bodies and we need to love them and take care of them no matter what they look like. Wearing fun clothes makes me feel happy inside….I too am over 50 and really enjoy colorful fashion. I do a Fashion Friday post every Friday and would love to have y’all come join in on the fun! Great fashion tips here!!

  47. This was a celebration post!
    A gentle reminder to all us ladies to not be so hard on ourselves.

  48. Shopping thrift stores is a way.for me to use well what God provides.
    I am in that 14-16 slot & find victory shopping in the correct size (petite) & focus on skin care, a good haircut. Pretty scarves & JACKETS.

  49. Beth in the City says:

    I’m so glad you shared your story. I’m 44, I take care of others, and I struggle to take care of myself. My weight is creeping up and I’m debating the sense of buying clothes that I like NOW, although I love to shop thrift stores. I’m so glad you reminded me to buy clothes that fit well and flatter NOW. I am also thrilled that you are encouraging other women. We get so bogged down with the message of perfectionism and you are fighting that with truth and love and joy. And beauty! You look fabulous. Thanks Rhoda, great choice for today!

  50. I was just thinking it would be nice if someone “like me” gave fashion tips….thanks Rhoda for asking your friend Vicki to be a guest today! I needed the encouragement. For the last 5 years I have struggled with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and weight gain….for someone whose max weight was never over 120 lbs…except when pregnant…it has been very discouraging. I never realized how much my body image affected me because I never had to deal with weight. All of that has changed. But recently…maybe because it’s Spring… I’ve decided I have to work on my wardrobe. I do shop thrift stores because, like you, I hate to waste money with my ever-changing weight. It’s nice to see we dress the similar, Vicki and use scarfs to brighten our look with pretty colors around our face. Thank you. And thanks to you, too, Rhoda… Love

    • Hey Renee,
      I’m so sorry to hear about your thyroid issue. I recently began medication for the same. I have been encouraged by all the online info and books offering healthy advice for thyroid problems. It can be discouraging but wearing something you feel good it will help your mindset! Give it a try and take heart!

  51. Wendy Cooley says:

    What a wonderful post!! This is so very inspirational! I will definitely do some thrift shopping! Vicki landed some awesome pieces. LOVE the aqua jacket.

  52. Vicki, you are beautiful and inspiring and have awesome taste! In friends as well as clothes! :o)

    I have been heavy from the get-go; literally, the first thing Mama wrote in my baby book was that the nurses all said I was the biggest eater in the nursery. So, yea. I’ve always been fat! And what made it worse growing up is that my family on both sides are almost all petite. Sigh.

    But at 51 I’ve made my peace with it, and have gotten really in to accessories like scarves lately. They kind of make me feel sassy and want to branch out a little more in my clothes.

    At this point, my biggest concern, aside from my weight, is that people will think I am trying to look too cute and dressing too young. I mean, we all want to look nice, but I don’t want to come off as trying to look like I’m trying to pass for 20 again, you know?

    Thank you both for these is so encouraging. I am 185 now and this has me thinking I might try for 150, one more time. Bless you both!

    • Tammy, I don’t know if you will see this, but when you try to lose weight again, please look into doing low-carb. It really works! I’ve lost 45 pounds on it, and have maintained for 6 months now. I know I can never go back to eating the way I used to, but that’s ok, I can deal with that. Please look into it, ok! Good luck, ladies, we can lose weight at our age!

  53. Karla Neese says:

    I grew up with parents who were Salvation Army ministers so I grew up in thrift stores, literally, and have always loved the treasure hunt! My almost 20-year-old daughter has kept on the tradition and she is truly an amazing thrifter. When we need clothes, the first place both of go is the thrift stores. Such lovely things to find! Thanks for this wonderful post. I have gained quite a bit of weight in the past year as a side affect of some anti-anxiety medication I’m on. But I am finally realizing that I am truly happy for the first time in years so it’s worth the extra pounds. I love the outfits you’ve shown and can’t wait to find my own versions of some of the lovelies.

  54. Ronda Kaufman says:

    I go to church with Vicki and she is just as lovely in person as she is in the blog. She always looks wonderful and has the best smile of anyone I know..

  55. Dear Vicki

    You are very pretty !! all the colorful outfits are adorable on you, for I myself love colors and prints!!
    I feel no matter what size a person is they should feel confident enough to wear whatever makes them feel good !! Set little goals for yourself because you are worth it !!
    Take Care of You!

  56. Great post!

  57. KimberlyJ says:

    Very nice blog. I hate to say this BUT…I’d knock a woman down to get that turquoise jacket.
    Just sayin’!

  58. Segreto secrets says:

    This was such a pleasure to read! You are both beautiful and oh so stylish!!
    xo. Leslie
    Segreto Finishes

  59. Loved this article. She needs to write a weight loss blog!

    • Hello Fay and thank you for your encouraging comments. I am writing about my weight loss efforts at my blog I’ve been so blessed, yet overwhelmed by all of the positive comments and they have definitely motivated me to strive harder at losing weight and writing about it. I hope you’ll drop by and say hello. Thanks for posting!

  60. Vicki,
    You’re so pretty! Whatever your weight issues are, you project a powerful, attractive woman. I shop at thrift stores, consignment stores, Belk, anywhere I can get a great piece at a bargain.
    Rhoda, keep up the fashion blogging, whether it be your finds or Vicki’s. As spring is finally around the corner, we can use some lighter, funky clothes..

  61. Diane in Wis says:

    Lookin’ great Vicki! I love all those colors on you! Thanks for sharing some great pointers Rhoda! Love your blog!

  62. Someone said they would knock a person down to get the turquoise jacket. It is pretty, but I just want the dotted scarf!! What a great accessory!
    Seriously, though, I really enjoyed this post and all the comments. I have shopped at thrift stores a few times. I have a nice linen shirt from Harold’s that I got from Goodwill. All of this enthusiasm makes me want to go on a thrift store hunt soon.

    • Hi Kim,
      The scarf has been such a fun accessory for me because it matches coral, lime, aqua, and black so I can wear it with a colorful top and my “uniform” black pants. I got so tickled when a young man, like 20 something commented on my cool scarf. I think I spent about $10 on it at Ross many years ago. Thanks for posting and enjoy your treasure hunt!

  63. I love your fashion posts, and this weeks is so great for many of us plus size ladies out there. I was just at the thrift store tonight after work, found a Talbots top for spring, a Chico’s 3/4 sleeve top, and a brand new pair of pants with the tags! It is so easy to let fashion slide if you put on some weight, but pulling together some key pieces and accent with some great jewelry, just makes you feel so nice! Nice post!

  64. When will people understand that everybody was not created to be thin? Just because you’re not a size 6 doesn’t mean you can’t be stylish and look beautiful. Some of us won’t ever be thin…our bodies just weren’t made that way.

  65. Love this! Thank you so much for sharing your style. I am 52 and about 40 pounds overweight. I shop at the thrift stores because we have little income for clothing so I can have a variety for little cost. The other day I found 6 tops for spring for under $20. I have already worn the printed blouse and silk jacket to church and the cute pink button front t-shirt embellished with a little ruffle to tea with a friend. I also tried on a Dana Buchman blouse, but it was too small around the middle. I need to lose some of that 40 pounds!! 😉

  66. That aqua jacket is just beautiful on you, Vicki. And I love the dress with the brown leather boots. Gorgeous and very in style. You’re right, that having stylish clothes while losing weight is a huge confidence boost, and buying at thrift stores often scores not only excellent prices but trendy styles. In the past year and a half I’ve lost a lot of weight and wish I’d had the advice to wear the styles and colours I loved while doing it. Thank you for this post, and for sharing your story and your style.

  67. As I have aged I have come to realize that what society/magazines/Hollywood says is beautiful is not necessarily how I see beauty. I don’t look at size at all. I see the sparkle in someone’s eyes, the glowing complexion, the way someone carries herself and yes the kindness that radiates from within. Be true to yourself ladies. You are all beautiful no matter your size. Vicki you are lovely and I thank you for an excellent blog.

  68. Melesa Garrison says:


    Congratulations on the magazine gig (Too fun!)

    I think Vicki looked just lovely in the outfits she shared with us and I loved reading what she had to say, and she gave some great tips!

  69. I love it when you showcase Vicki in your fashion blogs. She just radiates beauty from within.
    I have a mommy tummy from carrying four children. When I get discouraged about it, I try to remind myself that being a fashion model is not my goal in life. Being a happy, healthy, well adjusted woman is.
    Vicki, I am still in my 40’s. I hope that I am as lovely as you when I am older, no matter what I weigh!

  70. Jane Ellen says:

    Love, love, love your courageousness and perseverance! Also love that you decided to go for it and live life to it’s fullest right now. You look beautiful in all your outfits! I’m 56 and I have been shopping thrift stores for years, long before it became popular. I used to tell my children that I was shopping “green”! To me it’s a form of therapy… you can go in and spend $25 and come out with such great finds. Now that’s my kind of retail therapy! I can’t even go in the regular stores anymore. Besides, it’s so much fun putting together outfits that no one else is going to have! At Goodwill, I only look at the color barbs that are 50% off, that’s my quick way of going through the store, if not, holy cow I would be there all day! I also like hitting other thrift stores, some of them have everything in the store is one price each day with the lowest being fifty cents up to a buck seventy-five! You have to dig, but it’s so rewarding when you find that treasured piece!!! Keep up the good work!

  71. Sandy Corbin says:

    Vicki, what an inspiration you are! I was going to suggest that you start a blog but I believe I saw that you had posted the link in one of your responses above. I do hope you will share your ‘living life to the fullest’ ideas and of course your fashion ideas. These you’ve shared today with us are beautiful! Love the Aqua jacket, definitely your color. You are beautiful inside and out. I’m 59 years old and my sister introduced me to thrift store shopping a few years ago. I love it! It’s an adventure because you never know what you’ll find.
    Thank you Rhoda for sharing Vicki with us!

  72. I think Vicki is a very pretty woman and looks wonderful in all her outfits. I gained weight as I entered menopause, and lost it after joining Weight Watchers . I learned new eating habits and exercise and live a new lifestyle, and have kept the weight off for 12 years. I buy most of my clothes from charity thrift stores. I find the best brands there such as L. Bean, Chico, J. Crew, Karen Scott etc. I could not afford most of these brands new. Last weekend I even found a pair of Jack Rogers leopard sandles. Most of these clothes are in perfect condition, some still with tags on. I even found a beautiful pink designer dress and matching coat for the Mother of the Bride dress I wore for my daughter’s wedding. I’ve also bought wonderful shirts for my husband and great baby clothes for my Grandson’s first year. It’s such a money saver, and the money all goes to charity. Rhoda, I always enjoy your blog so much. Your light really shows through on your blog, and your friend Vicki seems to be a shining star as well!

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