Although Camila Alves enjoyed showing off her rose-cut engagement ring—fiancée Matthew McConaughey popped the question on Christmas Day—while she waited for Yigal Azrouel to start, she insisted that she’s not just a diamonds-and-furs girl. Besides the occasional shopping stop at T.J. Maxx and Marshalls, the model admitted that she’s also a serious thrifter. “I like to go to the middle of nowhere—I found really good places in Arkansas! I love Austin for vintage shopping, and there are some really good places in L.A., too,” she says.
The key, according to Alves, is endurance: “You have to make sure that you have plenty of time and patience, since there can be a lot of stuff to go through. Just the other day, in Texas, I walked into a place and had no patience—I was like, ‘I gotta walk out of here and come back another time.’” She attributes part of her thrifting success to seeing the potential in items that aren’t perfect. “A lot of times you find pieces that are really great, but people—because it has rips or it doesn’t fit them right—go, ‘I’m not going to get it.’ But with vintage you pay, like, $2, and then you pay a little bit for alterations,” Alves explains. “You get it, then you take it to someone to fix it, and then it’s worth it—and it ends up being less expensive [than something new]!”
But her vintage obsession has created one problem: an over-stuffed closet. “I have vintage things that I got nine, 10 years ago, and every time I clean my closet, I can’t get rid of them,” says Alves, adding, “I think, ‘I will never find this again!’”