Okay, so girl's gotta SHOP! I have been on a Pretty Little Liars kick lately--- and I have to say I *love* Spencer & Aria's wardrobes. I was looking for a fun vintage shirt or something at the Daphne Goodwill today... well I didn't find a shirt, but I found a super cute BRAND NEW Merona purse from Target! And, yeah, you can sometimes find new items at thrift stores--- but you have to understand that I eyed this purse on numerous occasions at Target when it was $29.99, but never allowed myself to buy it.
So, Goodwill, and $5.99 later, this ostrich leather purse is mine! And did you know that the Daphne, Alabama Goodwill receives final markdown/clearance/closeout items from Target? They had super cute BRAND NEW items from Target, from ballet flats, purses, wallets, and clothing items that I can recall seeing in stores mid-summer! ;) I know that the Hudson's Treasure Hunt in Mobile is the same way with Target markdowns, but often Hudson's prices are equal to what you would have paid with them on clearance at Target... :/
Speaking of thrift stores, my top six tips:
1. Sanitize! This is a given, but you can find some AWESOME clothing items at thrift stores for pennies and maybe a few dollars! I am talking White House Black Market, Anthropologie, Ann Taylor, Calvin Klein, Free People, etc if you just take the time to look. Sometimes it can be a hunt, but nothing more fun than browsing... ;) Wash it, hot water! Although thrift stores do this--- it's always good and sanitary for you to do it yourself... or maybe I'm just OCD? ;)
2. Inspect the item. Another given. Typically thrift stores will sort through items to check for any damages, tears, etc, but sometimes they can be overlooked. Look at seams, look for stains, check zippers, inspect for all buttons, etc. I'd hate to waste even pennies or a dollar on something I couldn't even wear once because of stain, broken zipper, etc.
3. Think of "happy surprise" gifts! While in Goodwill today, I saw the Harry Potter books (all of them), the Twilight saga, and many more series they had organized next to each other on the shelf. Granted, they are "used" and may have a dog-earred page, but for someone who you know very well and loves books or hasn't gotten to reading them, they'd make what I call a "happy surprise" gift. Not the gift for Christmas or birthday, but a "Hey, I know you so well, and I saw this, and knew you had to have it!" ;) I also bought the first Charlene Harris True Blood Sookie Stackhouse book for a friend who wants to read it- $1.99. I'm pretty sure it'll make her day and get her started on the series of what, all 12-13 books?
4. Check and see if your thrift store offers discounts. I haven't checked since moving to see if any of ours do, but the ones in Montgomery, Goodwill offered a 20% off entire purchase coupon when you donated a bag of items, Faith Rescue Mission had happy hour every day with half off certain color tags, etc. Most all offer a senior day which is a discount too!
5. PINTEREST Ladies! Haven't you seen fabulous DIY crafts on Pinterest but you don't have that wooden crate shelf/curtain rod/old belts whatever to make it with? Keep on the lookout for fun items that you can repurpose a-la-Pinterest!
6. Feel pretty! Sometimes, when I get in these fashion buzz moods (Thanks Pretty Little Liars!) and I dont want to break the bank, I'll scope out thrift stores. Finding a cute shirt makes my day, and if it's only $2 and I wear it only 2 times, heck, that's a $1 a wear... and HOW MANY clothing items do we have in our closets that we paid full price for and haven't even worn or only worn once?