December 8, 2011

thrifting tips

Some call it an illness. Others call it a curse. I call it a gift.

You may have heard me say that I'm descended from the original leather fairy because of my knack for finding great leather. But after pondering the title, I've decided to crown myself queen of the (local)(part-time) thrifting fairies. Not that I'm bragging or anything - but it's for real. I am the embodiment of thrifting lucky-ness - at least in my little world.

Below, a sampling of past acquisitions. (If you'd rather skip to the meat of the post, just scroll past the display of one upmanship)

This hutch - found and painted

Of course the belts and amazing buckles

My audacious cowboy boots

Jessie's audacious cowboy boots AND Frye boots - found on the same day.
Psst...I saw the exact pair of Frye boots at Nordstrom recently - score!

My Ethan Allen turquoise hutch

A sweet little W.J. Gordy creamer- signed on the bottom.

A terrific pair of red leather Dansko Professionals - in my size. Wore them today.

And this is what I found today...

A silver platter to begin my collection for this.


Two large trays to use for this.

Two scrumptious leather coats :-)


Now, the tips...

  • Before you go, look through your inspiration boards, whether they're on Pinterest or in a file you keep at home.
  • Carry either a backpack, small crossbody - not a regular handbag.

Because all you need is...

  • Your ID
  • Credit Card and/or Cash
  • Keys
  • Measuring Tape!!!

Take your time and...

  • Find out when they have 1/2 price day, or daily specials.
  • Think outside of the box.
  • Rarely is something used as it was intended.
  • Skirts and dresses can be used for quilts, pillows, scarves, bags.
  • Old framed pictures can be spray painted white or black.
  • Old LP's can look fantastic framed and grouped.
  • Old game boards can also be framed.
  • Lamps, tables, bookcases, chairs can be repainted, reupholstered, or used in a completely different way.
  • Candlesticks and odd plates can become pedestals.

Now it's your turn.
Do you thrift? What's your best thrifting tip?
Best score?

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  1. I am absolutely a "thrifter"! Best tip - never go at lunch. Thrift stores are full of folks at lunch. If you have thrift stores in your area that are open on Sunday, go then. They will be putting out all the stuff that folks didn't sell at their yard sales on Saturday. I have picked up so much silver plate flatware and ironstone pieces on a Sunday or Monday. Best score? Two actually. One was at a large community yard sale. I bought an entire set of vintage silver plate flatware in mint condition, service for 12 with serving pieces for $5. I felt like a criminal. Best score from a thrift store is a pair of never worn Chico jeans for $4.50. I did a happy dance that day!!

  2. My best score was a lovely wood jewelry armoire for only $35!!! I design jewelry and I keep all my finished pieces in the armoire. It keeps them organized and easy to retrieve when sold. I found a nearly identical armoire at the mall for $345!

  3. Love those frye favorite score happen to be some tourquoise boots just my size...for $25.00 in just my size

  4. to picture of boots..

  5. to picture of boots..

  6. Suzan, Linda, and Lisa...

    Fantastic scores! Kudos.

  7. Too Cool... hey .. I have boots just like those.. love the metal on the toe and they are the softest leather!
    I myself am a boot freak.. as my daughter calls it.. what does one say when you see a pair of turquoise and purple boots.. ya gotta have em'!!!
    Love the pottery another one of my fetishes!
    The turquoise hutch - gorgeous - would not have thought to paint Ethan Allen but WoW that is really awesome!!
    Great idea with the trays! How do you hang them do you suppose?
    I have always felt I (well sometimes my mom does out do me) am the Thrifter Supreme but I do believe I may have met my match.. good thing we are on opposite ends of the country.. I am sure it would come down to a duel!!!!

  8. Amazingness! I love thrifting! My daughter and I have a blast. But, have to say, your treasures are wonderful, can I go with you?????

  9. I love thrifting and garage saling - it's the thrill of the find. I usually don't go with any special goal in mind. I often look for wool sweaters and my best score was an Irish cardigan that I wear all winter long.

  10. Wow, you have acquired some wonderful pieces! Thanks for all of the great tips.

    My mom and I did a lot of second hand clothing shopping when I was growing up, and I do still have some amazing finds from that. Two of my favorites are a big blue Kate Spade bag ($10) and a Ralph Lauren skirt with the tags still in it (also $10).

  11. Oh, you are a girl after my own heart. Most of our home for years and years has been furnished with thrift finds. I absolutely love finding homes for the wee bits that no longer fit in their previous homes. My very best find, ok two, finds, are mirrors. One is an oval mirror formally a dresser top painted white in several layers. Stripped back to the quarter sawn oak and refinished it's been in our entry way for years. At $5 purchase, a steal. The best of all is a freebie found on the curb. It's a mirror from a wardrobe door painted in ucky yellow. Again, quarter sawn oak ---- beautiful. I really do love the cast off bits and bobs and giving them new homes.

  12. First, I have that exact silver tray, like a pewter, has a glass dome with it, was a cheese serving tray of my Mom's from the 70's. Down here we don't have any thrift stores around, but we do go to auctions. My best score was a carved oak sideboard that was so dark and coated with layers of paint and stain that you couldn't see the drawers. I was busy chatting, my sister was standing next to me paying attention to the auction, and she hollered my name and startled, I threw my hand up and the auctioneer said sold for $10. I had no idea what i even bought, it was funny. But the piece refinished is gorgeous and presides in my dining room.


I love reading each one of your comments. Thanks for your visit and have a wonderful day.

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