My New Favorite Thing

If there was any uncertainty, I’m here to tell you that I’ve been completely and totally converted to buying all my stuff used. Like everything but my underwear is coming from the thrift shop. Ok, that’s a lie, since truth be told I’m not that good at it yet (the art of finding stuff) but I want to be that good. I aspire to be that good. For instance, my friend Jessica, she is THAT GOOD. This woman is a thrifting prodigy.

So, in an attempt to learn this woman’s ways, I begged her to go thrifting with all the girls one weekend and show us her hints and tricks πŸ™‚ And man alive, did she wear off as a good luck charm cause I came home with a literal boat load of stuff and I only spent $25. Hoollllaaaa.

Secrets to Thrift Shopping

We decided to hit up two stores on our thrifting escapades – Kiwanis (downtown Ann Arbor) and the Salvation Army store (off Broadway, for the locals). I had it in my mind that I wanted to buy a few specific things while we were out 1) bed sheets (WHY are these so dang expensive!?!? Sorry, I’m not willing to pay $100 for a small piece of fabric I lay down on every night) 2) If I was divinely blessed (i.e. I didn’t think this one was likely) a fitted bed skirt.

Lucky stars above me, I found them all, amoungest lots of other goodies.

Linen Fitted Bedskirt

Here is the bedskirt in action – it is perfect and it set me back $3. That makes my heart so dang happy.

Inexpensive places for sheets

And here are the gorgeous sheets I got – (4) flat sheets and (1) fitted, also $3 each. Since they are all white, I can mix and match these pretty easily, so I wasn’t quite as worried about finding a bunch of sets while thrifting, which made finding these a lot easier. Check out the sweet little lace detail on the middle one – worth way more than 3 bucks to me!

To put that into perspective, when we were looking at the cheapest options at Target last week, it would have set us back about $40 for some generic white sheets. Sa-weet.

Some of my other favorite finds were these bread baskets for $2.

Vintage Bread Baskets

Here are some gorgeous marble (?) bookends that I found to help accessorize our future bookcase up in the attic Master Suite conversion.

Marble Bookends

And this sweet little print of Salem, Massachusetts that we put in the entry area to our kitchen.

Antique Art Thrifting

Since it’s the middle of winter, my absolute favorite find of all is probably my new $1 knitted scarf! That’s right, America. One green back and I got a warm and cozy neck. I had Jay snap a photo on our way to a friends house for dinner (cinnamon rolls in hand).

How to Thrift Shop

After all this thrifting action, I’m pretty much ready to say adios to my store buying days. If I bought all this stuff new, I’d be easily looking at $200 bucks! I’ll take $25 over that any day. Although I’m still learning the ways of the thrifting world, I’ve put together some of the things I think are essential to finding the good deals that keep you coming back for more.

Secrets to Thrift Shopping

1) Different strategies work for different people. Personally, I’ve found my best deals, and the best selection, when I arrive right when the stores are opening Saturday morning at 9am. My friend Jessica goes with shopping often. An extra 15 mins on your lunch break, navigating a few blocks over on your grocery run, searching for new thrifting locations on vacay or when you’re out of town – all are good strategies to finding your next gem.

2) Don’t just frequent the same shops all the time. Mix it up every once and a while – you might find a new favorite!

3) It never hurts to negotiate! If it’s under $5, I usually just ask for the next dollar down. $10 or more, I ask for a percent off (usually 20) to get the conversation started. Sometimes they are willing, sometimes they shut you down. Can’t win em’ all! Just know your bottom dollar that you’re willing to spend and walk away if it’s higher.

4) Know your style! You can’t return anything to the thrift shop, so make sure you LOVE it before you commit and walk out the door.

Other than saving tons of money, buying used makes us feel great about wasting just a bit less and having our money go to a local charity, vs. a Chinese sweatshop, quite frankly. Plus – it’s way more fun to find things via your mad thrift-dar skills vs. just buying something full price off the rack!

I’m totally converted – anyone else out there a recent thrifting maniac like myself?

8 thoughts on “My New Favorite Thing

  1. Those are great finds! I’m curious to see what you do with the bread baskets. I see them all the time in thrift stores but tend to pass them over because I tend to gravitate to more chunky woven baskets. I also love those marble book ends and the floral linens! Great job!

  2. I love shopping for the best deal! Eric and I go to estate sales each weekend, in the last hour or so and get things at prices you would not believe. We got a like new, contemporary brown leather couch for $150 last weekend! (We found out they were asking $1200 on the first day.) Can’t beat it. You could always try estate sales in your area for good stuff.

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