How To: Be A Savvy Thrift Store Shopper
The door creakily swings shut. The smell hits first, that old musty smell of bygone years. Racks spread out into the shadows in no visible order, bending under the weight of bulky pantsuits and full-length woolen dusters. It’s a far cry from Abercrombie, but the possibility of $3 sweaters, pairs of shoes for $1.50, and the authentic hipster classification has lured in many.
One hour later, after pawing through masses of denim overalls and suede jumpsuits, it can be easy to get discouraged. Thrift store shopping demands high levels of motivation, determination and patience. A strategic plan to print out and take with you on the next trip can’t hurt either!
- Head to the shoes first. These shelves are the least daunting, since it doesn’t require any work on your part to sort through the offerings besides a keen eye. Plus, I almost always find a great steal here, which gives a nice boost of shopping self-confidence before heading off to more treacherous racks.
- Section it off. Tasks are always a little less painful if you don’t have to do everything all at once. Work through the row of clothing by chunks at a time, allowing space for breathers and contemplating the finds.
- Allow room for your creativity. If the jacket is perfect except for the monstrous shoulder pads, it’s an easy fix! Consider that minimal cutting and sewing might solve what little problems there are with certain genuine decade garments. Emphasis on the word ‘minimal.’
- Always, always, always try it on. That perfect little black dress looked so cute on the hanger, it’s sure to fit you. What if it doesn’t? It was only two dollars. Throw that sweater on the counter too, it has potential and it’s only three dollars. It’s easy to overcharge yourself in the face of such cheap delights. Just remember that it all adds up and you might end up paying more than you bargained for if you aren’t careful.