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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

dot cuts back {guide to thrift shopping}

Today, I' excited to have Erika of Rouge & Whimsy here to share her words of wisdom about thrift shopping.  Don't forget to leave her some comment love below!

Hi Dot in the City readers! I'm Erika of the Rouge & Whimsy shop & blog. I am so excited to take part in Beth's money-saving series and especially talk about my love of thrifting.

I was raised on thrift stores and sales. My mom picked up clothes and toys for us at the local Goodwill and my dad is one of those people who goes to three different grocery stores to get the best deal on a can of beans.

With their help, I know a thing or two about navigating a thrift store.


1. Go with a list in mind. While sometimes it's fun to just check out what your local thrift spot has, it can take hours and you can end up with things you don't really need, defeating the whole purpose of shopping there. My suggestion is to consider the thrift store as another option for home goods and clothing. When you need a laundry basket, check out the Goodwill before Target.

2. Go often. My mom says that inventory at thrift stores are constantly changing and to get the amazing finds, you need to go repeatedly. Ask stores when they have sales or when they typically restock inventory to find the best or most affordable items.

3. Analyze what you're getting. This is most true of furniture. It's not worth it to buy second-hand furniture made of thin plywood or particle board. Check to see if it's real wood. Turn it upside down and check the joints. While you can repaint nearly any piece of furniture, you want to make sure you're repainting a quality piece.

4. Negotiate. My mom is the best at this. She notices the nicks and dents in an item and asks the thrift shop owner if she can have a discount. The point here is it never hurts to ask!

5. Think outside the box. What looks like an ugly table can be painted, what may appear to be a broken chair leg could possibly be easily fixed. And remember anything can be painted-- glass vases, bronze lamps and frames.

The things I thrift: furniture, lamps, rugs, baskets and bins, blankets and sheets, dishes, art and clothing (especially jewelry, belts and skirts.)

Who wants to go thrift shopping?


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