Hand-me ups, downs and across.
Your friends and family are a fantastic source because:
- They know what you like or don't like
- They are not likely to have strange diseases
- Parents are a great source of retro and vintage items
The department store is an often overlooked source, but can provide a wealth of refashionable material. My local Sears store has a discount centre which sometimes has "extra 50% off" the already discounted price on their own brands. Quite often the super large sizes are left on the rack and you can get an item which has been marked down to $4.99 for $2.50.
The Company Bulletin Board
Some workplaces have a bulletin board or webpage where you can post a "wanted" or "for sale" ad. I've seen people who have lost a lot of weight put their entire closet up for one lump sum.
These are stores which buy up stock from other stores which are closed, have gone bankrupt, or are selling off their previous season's wares. They usually have a mish-mash of other household goods also, but many have a great clothing section. I've seen name brand clothes for well below the retail price.
There are lots of places to get your "before" items. You just have to keep your eyes open.