I love thrift store shopping and have found several little treasures there but it’s definitely an acquired taste.
I think people see all the fabulous treasures people find there then go and find nothing or real value and get discouraged. Here’s a few tips I’ve learned about thrifting…
1. Visit often and don’t give up. If I had to give an average I would say every third or fourth shopping trip I will find something that I can work with. The other times I come out empty handed. Not every trip is a score. I had a friend that visited everday at her lunch break for a quick walk through so always knew what was new.
2. Always take something to donate. Keep in mind the donations you give and money they make are for charities. I always have a donation basket accessible in my house where I can throw things we no longer need. Many stores will give you a discount coupon that you can use the same day. This comes in handy because I will admit some thrift stores think they’re Target. Maybe thrifting has just become so popular that they feel they can justify raising their prices. I hate to balk too much because I know my money is going to a good cause but I also need to be a savy consumer when it comes to being a responsible steward over my own funds. With that coupon you will get around 20% off your entire purchase!
3. Look out for mark downs. Many thrift stores will color code their tags so one week they’ll advertise all orange tags are 50% off. Others might just say all books or home furnishings are 50% off.
4. Make friends with the employees. If you’re looking for something specific they might just keep an eye out for you and inform you when that item or something similar come in.
5. Be careful about what you bring home. I remember a few years ago reading about a blogger who brought home a piece of thrift store furniture which had bed bugs (unbeknowst to her at the time). Her whole house became infested and, if I remember right, she had to throw everything out. Don’t bring anything in the door until you’ve given it a through cleaning and inspection. There’s a few things I won’t buy. Shoes being my number one. You can’t easily throw shoes in the washer without ruining them and I’m leary about fungal feet.