Thursday, July 23, 2009

All Things Thrift

Okay. A new obsession. Or shopportunity, you could call it.

Thrift stores!

Really, why pay retail prices (those cute new shoes you just bought? Yeah, they've been marked up at least 300% from cost)
when you can pay 1/10 of that? Okay, so it has been used. Who cares? It has character! I will admit that there are things that should not be bought second hand (car seats, underwear and -lets all cringe- toothbrushes). But, in "this economy" (can you hear my booming, political voice?) it will not only save you money, it will help you get more for your money! And, ladies, you can brag about the amazing treasure you paid only pennies for!

Here are a few secrets to get more for your buck at a thrifty shop:

You must decide if you're the sort of person who likes thrift store shopping. Thrift stores require a lot of rummaging, which can be time-consuming and tiring. Often they smell musty or are dusty, so if you have allergies, be sure to spend only short amounts of time visiting. Also, you won't always find an item in your size. You won't always find something you like, either.

Color and texture should leap out at you just by running your eyes over the top or sides of the clothing racks. This takes care of the need to pull out every item.

Check closely for stains, tears, mended parts, stretched stitching (often hard to repair) and marks. Do pants have a shiny seat, are beads or buttons missing? If you see these, ask yourself if are they easily reparable or are they so damaged that the rag bag would be a better place for these clothes? Only get items in good condition or capable of an easy repair. And never buy anything with perspiration stains - they're permenant.

Bring a friend! One whom you trust so he/she can offer advice, critique and a second opinion. This will save you the unfortunate experience of purchasing something you don't actually want. If you end up having a day where nothing amazing presents itself, it's good to have a friend along so you can show them all the humorously horrible things you find.

Best Times to Shop
Many thrift stores have regularly scheduled discount days. Many shops do color coded tag discount days, seasonal discounts, or discount by department. Shop regularly or get acquainted with the employees to be alerted about sales. Or you can try tracking the sales in your thrift store notebook and see if there is a schedule.

Pay It Forward
Donate items you no longer want to your local thrift store and encourage others to do the same. Many of these donations help support programs in your community. You can contact your local thrift store for their donation policies. These donations are tax-deductible. Here is some information on determining the fair market value of your donated items:

Check out some of the previously-loved goodies I've found! They were purchased from a local second-hand shop called The Advocates.

A cute halter-top style dress

Rocketdog Flip-flops

Teva sandals, size 5

The best part of shopping at The Advocates? A major part of their proceeds go directly to the local shelter for battered and abused women. Rock on.

Malachi gives thrift shopping a thumbs up! Well, sorta...
You can find these hints and more by visiting this site.


Anonymous said...

I give it a thumbs up too!

My favorites:

Plato's Closet
Once Upon a Child

Sara Noel said...

Sazaran said...

Thanks for that link, Sara! I got most of my hints from there but went to so many sites I couldn't remember where I got the info from! Much appreciated, lady :)

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