Wednesday, February 15, 2012

5 Tips for (Probably) Successful Thrifting

 In a recent conversation with one of my bffs, she mentioned she was going on her very first thrifting/vintage excursion. I took it upon myself to give her some unsolicited advice, because who doesn’t love that? At the end of said advice, we decided that it might be a great thing to turn into a post for those of you who want to try your hand at something a little different. I'll also introduce you to a few of my favorite places along the way.

Here are my top 5 tips for your thrifting pleasure:

1.       Be Patient: Successful thrifting takes a certain thoroughness. The fact that there is only one of everything is great because you know you are getting something unique. However, because there is only one of everything, that could mean looking through just about everything to find something that makes you happy. Take your time, and enjoy combing through racks of sui generis - awesomeness that could end up in your closet!

2.       Get Creative: Again, since there is only one of everything – this requires you to be creative, to think outside the box. If you are medium and find something you really love in a large, think of how you would tailor it to fit you. If there’s  a dress you really love the pattern on but don’t particularly like the style, consider wearing it as a top. Let your mind run free to dream up some sartorial goodness.

Everyday People because I am, in fact, an everyday person. Every day.

3.       Be Discerning: This is the other side of being creative. While sometimes you find something with a slight tear that can be mended or in a size that can be tailored, don’t be so married to something that clearly won’t work that you get it home with a bag full of clothes, take them out and then wonder what the heck you were thinking, collapsing on the floor into some sort of conniption. Ok – that was a little dramatic, but you catch my drift. Feel free to Tim Gunn a piece  (make it work), but also be realistic.

Buffalo Exchange: Though the name is deceiving (you don't really get to exchange buffalo, ya'll. Imagine my disappointment) it's a great place!

 4.       Keep Care in Mind: When I started going vintage and thrift shopping, I was overwhelmed by all the great stuff I could find. I built up a small collection before it really sunk in that everything had to be dry cleaned. I felt like I was going to need a second job to  foot the new bill I was going to incur. I worked it out, but keep in mind the care for your purchases. You want to make sure you care for your garments correctly and keep them in good shape, just don’t be surprised by the extra cost. Like I was. 

B-Squad Vintage, a place in which awesomeness abounds.
5.       Fortitude is Fashionable: Part of the fun of thrifting or going vintage shopping is the thrill of the hunt. Some days it seems everything in the store is just for you. Some days you search and search and end up with nada. Don’t fret. Remember to go in with an open mind realize that some days are just better than others. Don’t give up, go to a different store or go back to the same one a few weeks later. Something is bound to have your name on it – you just have to be in the right place at the right time to find it.

There you have it party people. These tips won’t guarantee you success, but at least you’ll have some things to keep in mind.  Hopefully this was helpful for you. If not, blame my bff. It’s ok, she won’t mind. 

Where are your favorite places to go? 

Also, congratulations to Eva for winning the Forever 21 Gift Card Giveaway!! Happy shopping!


  1. This is a great post with tips for thrifting newbies like me. I just moved to saint paul and have a big Goodwill super close so I went on my first thrifting adventure. Hopefully with these tips there will be many more of those in my future!

    1. Welcome! If you ever venture to Minneapolis, the Salvation Army downtown is a great place too! Happy thrifting, hope you find some good stuff :)

  2. These are very great tips! I wish someone would have shared something like this with me when I first started thrifting!

    When my friends ask me about thrifting tips again, I'm gonna direct them to your site :) Thanks for sharing!

    1. I'm so glad you think they're helpful! Definitely feel free to share, I wish I would have known this stuff right off the bat too :)

  3. Very good choices for places to go - there's a couple on your list I haven't checked out before so I'll have to do that!

  4. Awesome post! I feel so special! Everyone thank me for the post byyyaaahhh!! Lol


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