Seattle musician Macklemore is about to blowup, and part of that success comes from his recently debuted anti-consumerist video ‘Thrift Shop’. Rarely does a song so deeply resonate with me. ‘Thrift Shop’ codifies into words feelings that have been bubbling inside of me since Kurt Cobain wore that sweater on ‘Unplugged’. This is the manifesto of the second-hand revolution.
It doesn’t hurt that this video features one of the best places for ‘digging’ in Seattle, the Goodwill Outlet (also known as ‘The Bins’). I plan to feature this establishment in future postings, but for now I wanted to write about something the video sparked inside of me – a chronicling of my favorite finds from there, particularly of the ‘sweatshirt’ persuasion.
First up, we have this teal hoodie emblazoned with the words “Camp Enumclaw”. Apart from the remarkably breathable fabric and the neckline (obviously scissored by a previous owner) – what really makes this sweater shine is the context of the words. For those outside the Pacific NW, or even folks from the neighborhood out of the loop, the nearby town of ‘Enumclaw’ is darn near synonymous with ‘bestial relations’ (especially those of an equestrian nature). Specifically in regards to this tragic incident: NSFW AND PROBABLY WILL BUM YOU OUT. Morally repugnant, yes, but let me tell you, this sweater is nothing if not a conversation starter! I wear it to any and all formal dinners, wrinkles and all!
Next on my list of high-brow cotton pullovers, the inevitable Christmas print! I’m not a particularly festive chap, but this particular article of clothing really spoke to me. Because if you read carefully the message Mr. Kris Kringle is sharing, you’ll see that this sweater is layered with much deeper and pressing issues than the consumerist Black Friday $2 dollar waffle iron kind of Yuletide.
“Greetings from Santa to the People of the World ‘Protect Our Oceans’”
Powerful words from a powerful man. And the best part about it (other than the quite valid message to care for the planet) – it gives a new reason for ANY Season! That’s right, I can pull out this treasure any time of the year and thankfully saving the Earth while in a sleigh pulled by a narwhal NEVER goes out of style!
But perhaps the greatest sweater find of my digging career goes to this humble beast. You may not think it much – a dark navy with a large print of a horned creature. But for some reason this particular Elk spoke to me and so I picked it up, going with my intuition. It never fit quite right on my body but I knew I had to have it. Because ultimately size does not matter. The single greatest fashion tip I can give you – no matter how it looks on you, if a piece of clothing can start a conversation or create a new human interaction, then IT HAS VALUE.
And now I know the purpose of this garment.
If you watch the Macklemore video ‘Thrift Shop’ one more time, there is a scene where he and producer Ryan Lewis are walking in the Bins with a large piano sticking out of a shopping cart. If you look closely you will see: MACK IS WEARING MY SWEATER.
What does this mean? Well, I’m not entirely sure, but here are the facts as I know them:
a) Macklemore filmed that scene at the Goodwill Bins.
b) I found my identical sweat shirt sometime within the last year at the same place.
Could this be the EXACT SAME SWEATER? Or could two identical vintage prints have ended up at the same clothing facility within the same year? Entirely possible. Likely even.
But to reflect the possibility that yes, perhaps this is the SAME SWEATER MACKLEMORE IS WEARING IN THE VIDEO (AND I’M NOT SAYING THAT – JUST OFFERING IT UP AS A POSSIBILITY – BUT REALLY IF YOU THINK ABOUT IT – I MEAN WHAT ARE THE CHANCES)-
I am now opening up the bidding at $200 on EBAY
Get it now before Macklemore really breaks out and the value of this sucker skyrockets!