I visit thrift stores a lot. Usually to drop off donations for my clients. I don’t often venture inside. But once in a while I plan a shopping trip. It’s an adventure for me – Kind of like a treasure hunt. But it’s easy to lose focus and start buying just because you are there. There is an art to shopping at thrift stores.
3 Tips to the Art of Thrifting
1. Pick the right store. Look for a location that is clean and organized. The front of the store will reflect what is going on in the back of the store. If the shop and it’s employees show attention to the small details on the retail floor, they probably run a tight ship in the back also.
2. Unlike retail shops, all items are one of a kind. You can’t ask the sales clerk if something comes in your size or if another shipment will come in soon. A cut-throat attitude is important when looking though the inventory. My rule is “it has to be perfect” or I don’t buy it. That means it has to fit with no alterations, clean, not worn and the perfect color.
This holiday weekend I ventured into a few local stores and I was prepared! I cleaned out my closet of all the items that I no longer wear or have worn to death. Here’s my pile.
I selected stores that were having sales over the holiday. I visited Unique Thrift in Falls Church Virginia. They sell everything at 50% off on holidays, so the bargains were many, but the crowds were huge. Be prepared. There are a lot of people who want a bargain.
I also went to Community Thrift of Manassas, since they were also having a 50% off sale. It was later in the day, so the crowds were less, but the bargains were many. They had a wonderful sofa and chair I would have loved to take home, if I needed it. But I do follow the rule of “don’t buy it, if you don’t need it.” I couldn’t justify a reason for a furniture purchase, so it stayed are the store. Someone else will love it!
Lastly, I visited Plato’s Closet in Chantilly Virginia with my niece. It is not a traditional thrift store. It is a resell store that caters to teenagers. Totally out of my element, so I listened to the review my niece had. She loved it!
I enjoyed my day of hunting and found some bargains by following the art of the thrift.