Tried and True Thrifting Tips

I am all about these little things called ‘hobbies’ and finding ones that you are passionate about; ones that can breathe new life into you when you need it and ones that can bring ways to de-stress when life gets a bit heavy.  One of my favorite hobbies is thrifting!  

To me thrifting includes second hand shops, Salvation Army, antique stores, flea markets, garage sales, Craigslist, etc.  Below I will share with you some of the goodies I found this month on my thrifting adventures, as well as some of my tips!  

Vintage aprons; basket.

Terracotta pots; farmhouse painting; small, dainty floral plates (for an upcoming party!)

Small floral bowl; wooden plate (using both for candles.)

Antique dresser (Craigslist) – painted with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint; teeny tiny rocking chair; gold deer figurine; various children’s clothing; vintage blocks (antique store).

Cedar chest (Flea Market); more children’s clothing.

(Unless noted, all of these items were picked up at the thrift store.)

I do want to say, I know that thrifting is not for everyone; some just do not feel comfortable buying 2nd hand items and that is totally fine.  In fact, I remember going to Salvation Army with my mom as a kid/teen and thinking gross!  However now that I am an adult (living on a budget!) I can truly see the magic in these stores.  First of all, items are cheap.  Where else can you find an almost new, Carter’s snowsuit for $1.99, or a set of four plates for $2.99??  You are also going to find one-of-a-kind pieces that no one else is going to have.  And, when buying large items (like dressers or chests) that are antique, you know you are getting real wood, quality items that are going to last you a long time.

Here are some ways I am successful at thrifting….(in no particular order!)

  • I typically have larger items in mind that I am looking for.  For example, I was looking for a short dresser for months when I finally found the one above on Craigslist.  Same with the cedar chest; since we moved in (a year and a half ago) I knew I wanted to find one to place at the foot of our bed.  We finally found it two weeks ago at a local Flea Market – for $45 bucks!  It takes patience to find items like these you are going to love, but once you do it is totally worth it.  Have certain things in mind you want and they will eventually come to you.  I am now on the hunt for a rocking chair and a small bookshelf!  
  • I have four thrift stores I visit frequently.  I have Friday’s off and probably every other Friday I spend the afternoon shopping at some (or all) of these stores.  Have a few on your radar and visit them every couple weeks as they get new stuff!  (Again, I enjoy doing this!!)
  • These are some items I typically look for at the thrift store:
    • Linens (table clothes, pillow cases, floral sheets, curtains, small lace fabric, quilts)
    • Larger furniture items (chairs, dressers, book shelves, rocking chairs)
    • Children’s clothing (shoes, baby clothes)
    • Small home items (dishes, paintings, baskets, things that can be used to hold candles, candle sticks, pretty bake ware and serving platters, pots for plants, vases)
    • Books (classic children’s books, floral illustrations, cookbooks); records
  • You can find great items on Craigslist!  (And there are non-creepy people on there I promise!)
  • Antique stores are going to be more expensive; Flea Markets are SUPER cheap (if you’re up for a little more digging!)
  • Estate sales + garage sales are great places as well.  
  • Obviously, make sure things are in good shape – no chips, no stains, etc.

So, there are my tips; I hope I can inspire you to give life to a second hand item!  I will continue to share goodies I find every so often here!


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