The 5 W's: Thrifting

I know I had written the 5 W’s of Thrift Stores before but I wanted to do an updated version.  Originally it was written for an old blog, and I think I deleted it because I really can’t find it.  Plus, it’s time for an update.  My attitudes and shopping tactics have changed since the last time I wrote about the thrift store, which I love.  When I was younger, I was almost afraid of the thrift store.  I had it built up in my mind that it was all junk and nothing was usable.  Why?  No idea but now, I can’t get enough of thrift stores.  So much of my home, library, and closet has been formed from finds at the Goodwill down the street, and my wallet really appreciates the overall savings.


WHO: 
Everyone, as long as you don't have a problem with previously used items.  Vintage lovers, budget-go’ers or avid crafters are the first who come to mind, however.  I love the thrift store for so many reasons.  Did you just move to a new place or perhaps your first place on your own and you need to furnish it? Everyone, as long as you don't have a problem with previously used items.  Vintage lovers, budget goers or avid crafters are the first who come to mind, however.  I love the thrift store for so many reasons.  Did you just move to a new place or perhaps your first place on your own and you need to furnish it.

WHAT:

 Thrifted Sweater and Agate Necklace: $12

Thrifted Sweater and Agate Necklace: $12

Everything from furniture to shoes.  Hosting your first Thanksgiving dinner and you need some stellar serving platters?  Go to the thrift shop! Have an obsession with vintage finds?  I’ve found loads of vintage goods at my favorite Salvation Army.  I’ve also found beautiful, brand new, Burberry Trench Coats and Chanel purses.  I’m not saying that's an everyday occurrence but it does happen and it feels like you’re a hunter who just scored a giant three-headed dragon and you’re the queen or king of the world.

WHEN:
Some people believe that it is best to go at certain times of the day, but I think it is hard to pin down that magical, specific time where all of the goods are for the reaping.  The Goodwill by me will bring out new items almost every hour during the weekend when it’s super busy I’ve noticed. 
 The most important aspect when scheduling to go to the thrift store is the daily sale.  Most thrift stores offer discounts on items every day and sometimes it’s as great as 75% off the entire store and okay as 40% off women's clothing from 3pm-5pm.  Whenever you decide to go, call first and see what the sale is.  I’ve gone to a thrift shop on a Wednesday when it was only senior discounts and Im not ready to try to pass as a 65-year-old.  

WHERE:

I still believe that the thrift shops near big cities but not directly in the middle get a lot of great stuff and usually really reasonably priced.  Especially near the fancy-shmancy neighborhoods.  My favorite area to thrift continues to be on the outskirts of Los Angeles. I have found everything from the infamous Chanel Purse to movie props.  It is just a cool area that resembles the city it hugs.  Palm Springs, CA is notorious for mid-century and fur everything.  Up here in the PNW, I’ve found a lot of cashmere and wool.  Depending on what area you're shopping in is usually a reflection of the demographic that lives near, because that is usually where a majority of the donated items are coming from.  This is just my observation though.  Keep in mind, I have never thrifted on the East Coast either so who know what it really is out there compared to the wild west of thrifting where I'm from.  

WHY:
For the hunt and to make the most of a dollar.  That is probably the biggest motivator for myself to go.  I love it when I stumble upon a pair of Prada kitten heels or an awesome cookbook!  Doesn’t have to be a designer, doesn’t have to be vintage.  It just should be something that you will use and love.