ONE little MOMMA: Thrifting Tips- How to Find the Good Stuff at Thrift Stores: Part 1

Thrifting Tips- How to Find the Good Stuff at Thrift Stores: Part 1

|
Top 10 Thrifting Tips- part 1: Lots of awesome tips on finding the good stuff!

I have been shopping at thrift stores since junior high- before it was cool. I still own and wear some of my favorite high school thrifting finds- vintage sorority sweatshirts, the perfect green pencil skirt, washed out graphic tees. The thrill of the hunt, the one of a kind items, and the prices are all part of the thrift store appeal for me. These Wrangler boots were a recent unexpected find for $3.72!!! Talk about thrilling!

Top 10 Thrifting Tips- part 1: Lots of awesome tips on finding the good stuff!

Because I think it is such a great way to shop and add character to your wardrobe, I wanted to share my top ten tips for thrift store shopping. I’ll post 6-10 next week in Part 2.

1. Go with a wish list in mind. Start there. I always have a running wish list in my head of items I would love to find and add to my wardrobe. It could be a white blazer, or leopard flats, or a fur vest (all recently on my list), but the important thing is knowing what is on your list. When I go to a thrift store, I keep those items in the front of my mind while I browse. I may be looking for a fur vest, so I will start in the vests or outerwear section of the store. Then as I browse, I’ll keep my eye out for other interesting or unexpected treasures. Then I move onto the skirts if I am looking for a pleated skirt. I may not find anything on my list in one trip, but by keeping my mental list out, I will find something if it is there.

2. Comb sections you wouldn't expect. Look in kid’s and men’s sections.  Once I have gone through my mental checklist, I often will look in unexpected sections of the store. You can find some of the best treasures in the men’s or children’s sections. I don’t always find shirts that are big enough, but often you can find the coolest vintage graphic or baseball tees in the XL boy’s section. I always check the men’s sweaters in size small or medium for cool oversized sweaters that are so in right now. The men’s belt and hat sections also usually have better find’s than the women’s.
3. Go often. The more often you go thrifting the better it gets. You get better at browsing quickly and effectively, and you find the treasures before other people do. Merchandise at thrift stores changes constantly so your odds of finding just the right thing go up the more often you browse.

4. Take a risk. You can afford to re-donate it or throw it away if the refashion or fit doesn't work at home. You can’t always try things on at smaller thrift stores or you don’t have the time. Sometimes you will find things that don’t fit yet, but you can see the vision in them. I found the best dress the other day that had quite a few brown stains on it that I had no idea if I could get out. The great thing about thrifting is that you can usually afford to try it out and afford for it to not work too. I did happen to get those stains out so the gamble was well worth it. But I also bought a purse without smelling the inside until I got home. Once I found out it smelled like cat pee- it was a goner, and guess what? Oh well, it was less than a dollar!

5. Try stuff on if possible. Like I said, you can’t always do this, but if you can try it on. You eliminate some of the risk of it not fitting and can then be more selective in what you bring home.
Feeling motivated yet?!!?? You can do it! Thrifting is so fun for many reasons. In high school I did it because I was so poor and now I do it, yes to be frugal, but more to find those one of a kind treasures that give me such a rush. Stop by next Tuesday for Part 2 of my Top 10 Thrifting Tips series!

Looking for Part 2? Find it here.


19 comments:

  1. I have always loved thrifting too! I loved thrifting in high school because I had a really quirky style and I loved to wear old grandma shirts. I think my style as evolved a little since then!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love this, and i agree with all your tips! especially compiling a mental list!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Some great tips here - love the blog

    ReplyDelete
  4. Good reminders - I came here from Sugar Bee Crafts.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I don't thrift much for myself because finding stuff for chubby gals is hard, but I love consignment and thrift shopping for kids pieces, even though she is just a baby!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love thrifting! I find the best stuff at my local one. There is no dressing room though so if I want to try on pants I wear leggings when I go or I find an oversized dress to put on so I can try on pants underneath.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Great thrifting tips, can't believe these boots were almost for free:)
    Elena
    http://dcinstyle.com/blog/

    ReplyDelete
  8. What do you do about shoes? Is there a trick to cleaning them when you get home?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Emily,
      I usually wipe down the shoes with a wet cloth. As far as the boots, my husband loves polishing shoes so he heated them up with a blow dryer and rubbed them with mink oil to clean them up.

      Delete
  9. Thanks for offering these tips and not overwhelming us by putting it all in one post... hope to catch your next post... we love thrift stores but don't shop regularly like you suggest and I agree... maybe we can someday! Enjoy those boots :) Kathi

    ReplyDelete
  10. Great tips! I love thrifting as well. :) I'm looking forward to my next big thrifting day in a few weeks (gotta save a little first) - hopefully I'll find a treasure or two.

    I'm a new follower!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I always love an awesome thrift store find!! Thanks for the tips! You rock!!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I love this article. I found this on pinterest. I shop at thrift stores as well. Please check out my recent thrift store haul on my blog. flysista.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love thrifting!! I find such amazing stuff for a fraction of the cost...and yes, CHARACTER! I totally agree with the "go often" part!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Great tips! I often have the worse luck at thrift stores, so I need this! :) Thank you for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hey! I am so delighted to find your blog through your guest post "pinterset told me to"! I love thrift store shopping and this post is so great!!
    Excited to be your newest follower via bloglovin!
    Rebecca :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. I have probably been thrift store shopping for 20 years now! I Definitely think the more you do it, the better you get at it! I really like thrifting for kid's stuff, now that I have kids. I also love consignment shops.

    -Hannah

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thrifting has been my thing since I was in college. Now I'm into online buying and selling gently kids clothes since I had my first child. She grow so fast and her closet is so full that I need to sell them and find clothes the next size up. No need to hop from one store to another just to find great stuff. I can shop using just my smartphone.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Going with a wish list in mind is definitely a good idea. Not just because you're more focused and determined to get what you came for. It also helps because sometimes you have so many affordable clothes available that you get things you didn't plan on buying.

    ReplyDelete