Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Tips for Finding the Best Things at Thrift Stores

I love to go to thrift shops.  I really enjoy hunting for bargains and the thrill of finding unexpected items at a great discount.  I've been a faithful thrifter for over ten years.  I have learned some things along the way to ensure you find treasures the majority of the time.  Ideally, I'd shop by myself and stroll through the aisles.  My reality is more like shopping with my kids in tow while I scan the store quickly.  My shopping trips usually involve Dum Dums and snacks for my kids.  They're pretty good tag alongs and help me spot fun things.

My favorite thrift shops are: Goodwill, DI, Once Upon a Child and an occasional yard sale.

Let me give you my tips:

1. Check all the sections.
I quickly look through all sections - home decor, womens, kids, linens, shoes, etc.  You just never know what you'll come across.  The only section that I skip is the men's clothing because my husband does his own shopping and is particular about how his clothes fit.

2. Be prepared to buy things out of season.
Pick up a winter coat in the summer.  Or buy Christmas nativity in the Spring.  Buy clothes ahead for your kids if you have a good idea on their sizing.

3. Don't pass up something you love because it'll be gone when you go back.
If you really love an item buy it when you see it.  Things turn over very quickly in thrift shops and it'll likely be sold when you come back.  You can also put an item in your cart and think it over while you shop.

4. Quickly scan for your favorite things.
I always have an eye out for vintage floral. I check the art work, the dishes, the bed sheets, the clothes all looking for florals.  Some times I find them and some times I don't, but I always look for them.

5. Don't buy things to gather dust in your closets.
I try hard to buy items that I can use in the very near future.  I buy clothes that work for me now instead of clothes I hope might fit me one day.  I buy clothes that work for my kids in the next season or two instead of a couple years down the road.  I only buy home decor that I'd put out now.  Don't buy tons of stuff to clutter up your house.  Only buy things you love.

Some of my favorite thrifting finds over the years:

Vintage floral sheets.
I've started switching out our winter sheets for florals.  It's so cheerful!  I rarely find a full set of sheets so I mix and match sheet sets.

Wooden Bead Garlands.
They weren't priced so the cashier asked if I'd pay $0.50 for each one.  Yes!!  They go perfectly with my Easter decor every year.

Kid Clothes
I get so excited to find Olive $2 dresses or $2 name brand shirts for Fletcher.

Metallic Dress
I found this dress for a couple of dollars and I knew it'd be the perfect cookie sheet.  I made a ton of chocolate chip cookies, added a chef's hat and my students thought I was a great pastry chef.

This sweet strawberry art was just $2.50 and it's been hanging in my house for years.  I just love it and know someone spent hours making it.

Skirts & Dresses
I've found some really pretty skirts and dresses over the years.  This striped skirt was one of my all time favorite clothing finds.

Do you have good luck in thrift shops??


  1. You have found some great deals over the years. I have recently caught the antique store bug. I love looking for mason jars, and décor pieces I can repurpose as something else. I will have to try thrift shops so I can look for clothes and other items as well.

  2. I love those vintage sheets! I'm going to be hitting up thrift shops hard to find things for the new house!

  3. I love vintage sheets. My grandmother actually had the ones on the left in your picture. I remember them like it was yesterday!

  4. I love vintage sheets too - their softness cannot be beat!! Henry still manages to find fun toys almost every time we go. Things that we would never buy new, but for a dollar or two, fun to buy and play with for awhile before re-donating. We also buy a lot of books while thrifting.

  5. I love thrift shopping. Probably my most prized find is a pair of ugg boots, but I've found some great things for the boys, too!

  6. Love the sheets, blankets and I have had great luck with placemats, cloth napkins and table cloths there too. I use the place mats and napkins for photo props and they are usually super cheap!



I LOVE hearing from you!! Thanks for taking the time to leave sweet comments; I enjoy reading every one of them.