Monday, May 19, 2014

Thrifting Tips

I often brag about share the items I save on when I go thrift shopping so I figured it was high time to share my suggestions and advice. It's mostly a bunch of common sense mumbo-jumbo. I normally stick with Goodwill stores so I'll be catering these tips to that chain.

--Obviously, troll the half-off Saturdays. I can hardly bring myself to shop there on any other day.

--Be open-minded about what you may find there. Sometimes I go with a list in mind, but usually I just mosey around and let the options remind me of what I "need".

--^which leads to the tough decisions. I don't hafta tell ya that just wandering around a store and dumping whatever strikes your fancy into a cart is not a great plan for frugality. If I'm not immediately in love with it, it's not coming home with me.

--Unless there's something I specifically came and need to go searching for, I will just start at one point in the store and make my way around the entire place. Though I usually skip over the clothes because there are just so many. That's another shopping trip altogether. So be ready for a long morning/afternoon of standing. This also encourages me to only skim over all the junk, putting only the things that really grab my attention in the cart. 

--If you're on a tight budget, don't get a cart. Duh.

(this cart is being shared with Ali, double the fun, don't judge me!)

--Always try on the clothes. If the line for the dressing rooms is long enough to dissuade you, the clothes aren't worth your time, therefore, you don't need them.

--Also take a minute to inspect the clothes. Look over the seams, hold it at arms length to spy for stains, try out the zippers and buttons, make sure it's all in working order.

--Again, in the dressing room, if you put it on and don't immediately love it or envision yourself wearing it in daily life, then you probably don't need to spend the money on it. Even the $2 it may be. 

--After you've filled your cart and had your go around the store, take a minute to run over your newly acquired treasures and cut ties with the crap. By now you're probably getting tired and you've been mingling with the entertaining and oft not-as-entertaining company of your local goodwill for nigh an hour and you're thinking fondly of your couch at home and maybe a tall, icy cold dirty Dr. Pepper. You'll be much more likely then, to put back that porcelain cat with the chinese markings painted all over it that would look mighty perty in your guest bathroom. It's the magic of Goodwill. Junk turns into treasure. 
Sometimes it's not, though.

--Considering thrift stores and their constantly revolving stock, the best way to find the best to go often. And different locations.

Honestly, the only reason I end up with so much stuff for so cheap is because I go often and I really look. It's a legitimate treasure hunt and you gotta dig through the monotonous to find the special. Diamond in the rough, so to speak. Most often I blame it on luck, though.
Last month I was there with Ali and next to the children's clothes was a stack of stuffed animals, which I would normally never touch because 1) ew and 2) no children. But that day there was a pristine Easter model Thumper with the official Disney Store stamp on his foot and he was like, $1.50 I think (identical on ebay for $20) so /shrug. I just happened to get to it first. It's the name of the thrift game.

I realize "skim the junk!" and "really look" are two contradicting statements but it is possible to do both. It's the trick of finding the balance between spending half an hour studying the shoe rack and checking behind that ugly, scratched up plastic water pitcher to find the perfect teacup to fulfill your Pinterest DIY succulent planter dreams.
Also, do not for a second think that I did not spend probably five full minutes debating that cat clock framed picture creation. The closeness to Umbridge decor tugged at my nerdy strings as well as the whimsical. But that's what I'm talking about when I say "tough decisions". It's an inner battle of epic proportions.

Happy Thrifting!

*--Bonus tip for making it this far through the post! "My" goodwill, the one closest to my house, is without a doubt priced by a rabid monkey wielding a price sticker stamper because it is the most inconsistent, illogical pricing I have ever seen of any of the Goodwills in the valley. But it works to the consumer's favor because usually it's way cheaper than it needed to be. So...if you can make the drive, shop the AJ Goodwill (apache trail and signal butte). You're welcome.

1 comment:

  1. Hahahaha hello Superman-shirt-I-stole-from-the-husbter-picture! And the brown thing in the cart was the formal dress I wore to the AYT Masquerade Ball for $15! SCORE!! Also, CHILDREN'S BOOKS!! Sooo many awesome ones!