Getting my confidence from a thrifted jacket

Once in our lives, we come across things or pieces of clothing that adds further ooomph to our walk, more sway in our gait, further savvy in the way we talk. It could be the red matching lingerie from under your stuffy office wear, the f*ck me shoes that you saved just to acquire, or maybe it’s a new jeans that make your butt “bootylicious”.

In my case, it’s an old Zara Basic jacket which I bought for PHP200 (about $4.50) in the neighborhood thrift store. I was down to my last PHP400 and payday is still eons away when I chanced upon the thrift shop announcing 30% reduction on the price of clothes. So, throwing caution to the wind (and forgetting that I will no longer have money to tide me till payday) — I went inside and started perusing the racks and racks of clothing. And then, I saw it.

A black military style jacket done in velvet from Zara going for just PHP200. I knew I had to have it.

The jacket was lined with black silk inside and decorated with buttons. The enclosure were made of a series of hooks and rivets, while the black velvet was soft to the touch and looked so new.

After soaking it overnight, watching it twice then dousing it with fabric softener, then finally air drying it–I had the chance to wear the jacket to work. Twice.


For Tuesday, I wore it with tights from Forever 21, cotton over-all type dress from local brand Bayo, white long sleeved blouse from Bayo and Rockport ankle boots.


For Wednesday, I matched my jacket with black blouse from Forever 21, Jodhpur-type pants from Landmark, tights from SM and boots gifted by my sister bought in Abu Dhabi.

Both days, I received numerous compliments due to my jacket and my outfit. Both days, a crummy day was made more bearable courtesy of kind words and good natured wise cracks from friends and colleagues.

I never even know if it’s possible to get your confidence or even the energy to go through the day on a piece of clothing. Maybe it’s just impossible to process negative vibes when good words come your way one after another. Maybe it’s pointless to dwell on what’s ugly when people compliment you with the way you look. Maybe, this is what they mean when they say “why focus on the bad things when you have it so good?”

No, the jacket did not erase any of my money worries, the problems at work, my health issues and even my frustrations in life. But for two days, it made me feel pretty, worth a thousand bucks even…

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