I tweeted the other day that I was spending my lunch hour doing some shopping…thrifting to be exact. I’m sure I’ve said it before, but I LOVE THRIFTING! What can I say, it’s exhilarating! There are a couple of shops around my job that I frequent now and then and I was lucky enough to find the Chanel inspired bag I’m wearing today. It was practically brand new. The gold hardware was mint and the heavy black leather was untouched. Jackpot! I’ve received a few questions about thrifting, so I thought I’d share three easy tips with you.
PATIENCE: One of the most important tips is to be patient. Some of the best items I’ve found were shoved under piles of randomness, stashed in the menswear or hidden in the kids racks. If you’re visiting a store for the first time, you want to take your time and go to each rack, especially if you’re not looking for anything in particular. As you frequent the store, you’ll become more familiar with how they distribute their items. You’ll be surprised that not everything is where you’d think it would be. Still, patience is key here.
SET YOUR EXPECTATIONS: Remember that the items you’re rifling through are used, so chances are they’ll need a little TLC when you get them home. Make sure you try the items on before you purchase. Factor in the cost to launder (professionally if needed) into the sticker price and determine if it the item is really worth it. Be sure to check and double-check the items so that you don’t purchase them only to find that when you get home there’s a dirty little surprise. And always find out the store’s return/exchange policy. You’ll be surprised to know that many stores honor do.
AVOID: I typically avoid all white clothing. My experience has been that the white garments in thrift stores are dingy or just not the crisp white that I love, so I skip them. If I don’t LOVE it, I don’t buy it…simple as that. I don’t buy any undergarments (that might go without saying). Avoid pleather. Thrift stores usually shine pleather up to make it presentable for sale, but after you get it home many times you’ll see the material is cracked and damaged.
My friend, Kimberly, at Fab Finds Under $50, shared some of her awesome thrifting tips she learned. Kimberly expressed her initial hesitations and of course her thoughts of the stereotypical “Thrift Store”, which I’m sure most of us share. She suggests, striking up conversations with fellow shoppers and employees. You never know who you’ll find at these stores to help you in your treasure hunting. Just mention what you’re looking for and chances are you’ll have four sets of eyes searching instead of just your own two. She also revealed that most Goodwill stores offer brand new Target brands, like Mossimo, typically in the shoe racks. Check out her blog to see what other tips she has to offer.
- top: Old Navy
- leggings: Hanes
- shoes: Me Too
- purse: Emilio Bernini