You guys shared so many fabulous thrifting tips in my Thrifty Diva Survey they deserve their own post!
Discover some groovy new ideas and let’s get thrifting!
1. Get to know the people who run your favourite charity shops. If they know you and what you like, you can ask them to look out for stuff for you and keep it aside.
2. When looking for clothing, look at the material. Don’t worry about the color and shape as much, as those can be changed (as long as you can sew and dye things, that is). Sometimes, all it takes is a few seams down the sides to completely transform the look of something. Other times, a piece might require a total overhaul, so you have to use your judgement as to whether you are up for the refashion.
3. For clothing, look at fabrics instead of sizes or genders.
4. Go often and on bargain days.
5. Look over items carefully. Stains may not come out!
6. Don’t buy it if you don’t love it or have a use for it. Cheap isn’t a plus if it sits around unused.
7. Make a list of things you are looking for. Pay attention to condition and check for things like rips, stains and alterations. Things like wooden and metal furniture can be cleaned up and painted. Do not forget to look for things for the other people in your life as well.
8. Always put items in your cart when you first see them. If you want it, someone else will too.
9. Go early, and never pass up the opportunity to shop at a “by-weight” thrift depot! It’s amazing what you can find, and how inexpensively you can buy things just for doing a bit of digging on your own. It’s worth the extra work!
10. Patience, patience, patience.
11. I’m plus size so I always start in the clothing section with the largest sizes and/or start in the men’s section! I like to thrift things with as much fabric as possible to keep as many transformation possibilities as I can! You can always adjust the fit and make it smaller later!
12. Don’t look at the shape or color of a garment, check out the pattern & the fabric and dye or refashion to your taste and style. Always take a look through your family or friend’s cast offs, they might be full of treasures!
13. Go often – at least once a week. Location, location, location – check out the wealthy neighborhoods, and those with aging/downsizing residents. Can’t decide? What a few days – it’ll either be gone or reduced in price. Don’t find what you’re looking for in your size? Be sure to check all the other racks for mis-stocked items. Don’t trust size labels. It may say XS yet be a M in modern sizing. Or vice versa. If you can’t resist buying everything that fits or might be useful one day, try the “Do I love-love-LOVE it?” test.
14. To get through the racks more quickly when shopping for clothes, I find it easiest to first look for fabrics that ‘speak to me’, then choose among the styles of these fabrics; finally eliminate by putting back the things I know I cannot fit or have altered.
15. Patience, and if you’re not sure you can wear it as-is, that it will work with other items currently in your wardrobe, or you will definitely refashion or up cycle it – let it be. Don’t only buy something because it’s a good deal, it also has to fit into your current life.
16. I would say to be open and be willing to look around at everything. It is nice to have a list with measurements for furniture or clothing sizes. Look at the potential not just what the item is at that moment. Have a sense of humor and have fun! My family plays a game of find the weirdest/ugliest thing when we are there and it is amazing what we find! Remember that is a treasure hunt!
17. Don’t buy something that doesn’t work for you thinking if I was slimmer, if I had a sewing machine, you’re going to make it into something else if you’ve never done it before. Know yourself.
18. You have nothing to lose by looking, but if you see something you really like, get it then, don’t wait. It won’t be there the next time.
19. Spray paint can completely transform home decor items! I also love refashioning or tailoring a clothing item to make it perfect for me.
20. Keep an open mind, set your limit on what you’ll spend, don’t buy something just because it’s cheap – will you ever use it if you don’t like it?