Contest Winner!

Well that was fun! First off, I have to express my gratitude to all of you who entered my custom portrait contest. Your creativity and enthusiasm has ensured that this contest won’t be the last of its kind. The variety of personalities, styles, and stories that came through were a delight to read. In fact, I’m going to publish all the entries and photos I recieved over the next few weeks, because all of you deserve generous accolades for your own first-hand tales of second-hand style.

And so, without further adieu, I present to you the winner of the Thrifty Custom Portrait Contest. Drum roll please!


Congratulations, Tara! I selected Tara for several reasons. Firstly, how adorable is that dress? She looks demure, yet sophisticated; classic yet quirky. A winning combination all around. The real highlight of Tara’s entry is the accompanying explantion she sent with her photo:

 Hi Julie,

Good morning from Vietnam. This is my submission to the custom portrait contest. My name is Truc Nguyen, but you can call me Tara. I have just started my blog since…yesterday, although I have thrifted for many years. This dress is one of my favorite finds during my thrifting adventures. In Vietnam, we don’t have nice thrift stores, with shelves and mirrors and fitting rooms. You have to go to the wet markets and literally dig into the mountain of clothes on the ground to find your luck. Imagine doing that in the heat of 30 Celsius degrees plus. And fitting them onto what you’re wearing, and using your best imagination to decide if it looks good on you. Anyway, I bought this dress from one of those markets. I like it because everything about it is cute. It has two cute pockets, a cute collar, and came at a cute price, only 50,000 VND (2.5 USD). The hem was originally longer, I shortened it a bit and it looked just fine.

I love this story. Who’d have thought I’d have a reader all the way in Vietnam? Tara cemented the universality of thrifting. It’s a world-wide lifestyle, and she wears it so well! I also commend her for sifting through mountains of clothes in sweaty temperatures and busy crowds. She’s patient, resourceful, and imaginative! Tara proves that persistence pays off – not only does she have a lovely dress, she’ll soon have custom portrait too.

To Tara: Thank your for your inspiring entry. Laura is working on your portrait as we speak!

To my fellow readers: Make sure you follow Tara’s adventures in the wet markets of Vietnam and beyond on her blog. Thanks again for entering!

#contest #illustration #thrifting

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