More on Thrifting

I'd like to say a big "Thank You" to everyone who commented. Your comments and suggestions are invaluable, and I am definitely impressed by your spoils of thrifting. Here are some additional canons that emerged:

1) Grab first, inspect second--BrownEyedGirl is absolutely right. The good stuff will go fast, so grab first, mull later (before checkout, of course).

2) Weekdays are better, then early on the weekends--again, the early bird gets the worm. Thanks to La Pulga Diva for this and the next tip.

3) Don't forget to check Craig's List for garage sales in wealthy areas, and go early on the first day--in my opinion, garage sales are great because the goods are handled directly by the seller and not a chain of people who may or may not have tossed things around. Also, packrats who finally let go tend to let out some very old and interesting things. Lots of eBay sellers often got their merch from their granny's attics. [Ed.: BrownEyedGirl also recommends going at the end of the sale, since people who are looking to get rid of their stuff will sell the leftovers for next to nothing, if not free. This is really true--one time I was on the fence about buying a particular item from a friend, since I didn't think I'd want it anymore. Since she needed to move overseas, I ended up getting it for free. I felt guilty about my indecisiveness and the subsequent freebie, so I treated her to a drink.]

Finally, after visiting another thrift store today, I have to revise my "location matters" theory. I don't know if this particular store is a statistical outlier or not, but it's really messing up my analysis because my sample size is so small (n = 3). I'll have to visit more stores in the future to get a better generalization.

I went to an area that's somewhat more trendy. That Goodwill is definitely bigger, cleaner, and 10X more organized. There were lots of things with original retail tags still on (as opposed to none at the first store I went to). The clothes are also trendier, but not necessarily better in quality--most of the clothes are from mall stores, a few are from midrange designers, but nothing upscale. There was a linen Christian Dior suit set, but there was also a pair of ugly red Versace pants. In fact, I didn't buy anything because everything was rather "blah."

Resale/consignment stores might be the reason why there's less (or no) upscale items in rich area thrift stores, since people can get cold hard cash back for their used clothes. I have yet to hit one yet...that's a mission for another day.


Kristin said...

Best of luck, and, most importantly, have fun!

BrownEyedGirl said...

Some more good tips on garage sales are to go on the first day(like you said) for good stuff before it's been picked over, also go on the last day if you want to get things dirt cheap (sometimes even free) by this point they just want to get rid of the stuff!:)

Frapp said...

I'd love thrift shopping if there were any markets/charity stores round by me. Unfortunately there aren't, so I content myself with rummaging through jumbled up sales racks <3 You never know what you might find lurking under all that...

Diva on a Dollar said...

Great tips - you are spot on!

High Fashion Girl said...

Another tip is to ask the people that work at thrift stores what days they put new donations out. Some do a little everyday, some do it all in one day. In my area, the thrift stores all put out stuff on Mon/Tues. Going on those days guarantees amazing treasures.