The Status Symbol

Fall is my favorite season. In fashion, it’s the time to wear boots, sweaters and my favorite clothing item: coats. Many years ago, a woman told me that in New York, your coat is like your car. It shows your taste and your status and makes a major first impression.

When shopping, I never let a great coat get away. When I’m thrifting, I won’t even think twice about it. My thought process is: “if I can wear it, a customer will wear it. Therefore, buy it. I refuse to count how many coats I own, it would declare me as having a problem and what some may define as a problem, I have declared a specialty in hoarding. Why call it hoarding? Well, if you have more than one of something and you still purchase it, “Houston, we have a problem.”

CapeThis cape, which I bought at the Livingston Goodwill store in Brooklyn, is very similar to another vintage cape I have. They are even similar in the trimming, and fabric – heavy wool herringbone. As I mentioned before, you can’t give something like this up. It’s classic yet original and for the past few seasons, a cape like coat has been in your well know retailers.

This past Halloween I wanted to wear this cape and go as a Fashionista meets Dracula but, I passed, I want this cape whether it stays with me or not, to have a better debut than a holiday. In the end, this vintage cape scored at Goodwill on Livingston is a statement, and like a car a status symbol. This cape is a vintage classic Rolls Royce, so let me pull it out the garage and stroll down the street.

Native New Yorker Shaunya is the owner and curator of VintageShaun, a collection of vintage clothing with a contemporary vision that has been featured in NBC’s The Today Show. She is a longtime Goodwill fan and style expert. Last May, Shaunya collaborated in Goodwill’s Spring Fling the Excess, our Earth Day/spring cleaning promotion. Most recently, she styled models for Goodwill Suits You, a fashion show to mark October, National Disability Employment Awareness month.

You may also read her blog: or follow her on Twitter @vintageshaun

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