I don't remember a time when I wasn't a little crazy about Frye boots. They're boot branded classics, and their history, one of the oldest American leather goods companies (since 1863!), is pretty proudly American. So, when I saw these Victoriana style boots on their website about 5 or 6 years ago, I had to have them. In fact, they are the most expensive item in my wardrobe, setting me back nearly $500. Yup, you read that right, this fancy-pants lady paid $500 clams for these beauties.
Never before have I spent that much on clothing or accessories, and most likely, never will I again. They're boot treasures, so very vintage looking, and unique. In fact this style is no longer available, having been made just for one season. But my rationale was this: they were an American company, and the boots were American made. I was going to support that commitment but plunking down a rather heavy chunk of change. It was Christmas, and in thanks of baby Jesus, I decided to treat myself.
When they arrived, I won't pretend I wasn't a bit disappointed to see the stamp of manufacture was "Made in Mexico." Um Hecho en Mexico, not the United States. The quality was still there, however, and I quelled my disappointed. The boots quickly went into sartorial rotation, still worn to this day. I adored the beauty of the boots, and I still do.
But, I'm going to be honest here. The more I have learned about the Frye Boot Company, the less enamored I am with this formerly American owned company. A casual Google search turns up some information, and bottom line is that it's a Chinese owned holding company, and the limited line of American made boots are manufactured in an undisclosed non-Union factory in Arkansas (source). Even more disappointing is the fact that the Frye marketing is still pretending to be from America, and that good ol' American hands are the ones making their shoes. While a limited line of boots are made in the U.S, the reality, is that most are manufactured in China and Mexico (likely in less than ideal working conditions.) So, if you want to make sure you're getting an American made Frye pair of boots, you're probably best off buying a pair of vintage ones.
So thank goodness for thrift stores (and eBay)! There, for maybe a twenty spot, you can rustle up a beautiful pair of American shoe history. Which brings me to the SCORE part of this post.
As worn by Jean, beautiful up-cycling goddess from Dross into Gold. HER Frye boots are a wonderful cocoa brown leather, and are the same rare style as mine. HER Frye boots looked brand new when she found them. HER Frye boots were found in a thrift store. And she bought them.
For FIVE DOLLARS. <---Ya read that right, kiddos: Jean got a pair of $500 boots, gorgeous, well made Frye boots, for less than the price of a latte and a cookie. A pretty sweet deal, yeah?
Well that's a benefit of shopping SECONDHAND FIRST.
Now, it's YOUR turn to share! What recent Secondhand First finds have got you sizzling?