Welcome to my blog on thrift shopping. I have been dreaming about writing this blog for a very, very long time and I am excited to finally be starting it. Please bear with me as I am new to blogging so this will be a learning experiece. Thanks in advance.

I thoroughly enjoy shopping in thrift stores. I have spent countless hours in numerous Goodwill, Salvation Army, and many, many other various thrift shops and consignment shops (although I do favor the thrift shop over the consignment shop).

The thrill of finding that little black dress that I otherwise would never have been able to afford and those occasional trendy pieces that I normally would never even think of purchasing are pure enjoyment to me (yes, one of life’s pleasures for me). There are so many things that I have learned from my countless excursions and from talking to other “thrifters”. I will never claim to be an expert; just an overenthusiastic thrift shopper who loves learning how to get the best buys. I hope that you enjoy my blog and find some interesting bits of information that you can use.

In later blogs, I will share my favorite thrift shops with you but for now, I hope to share some useful information with you.

Thrift shopping has changed over the last few years due to the recession. More and more people are using consignment shops for their designer clothing and accessories so that has cut into thrift shopping quite a bit. Also, websites like Tradesy (www.tradesy.com) are making it easy to buy and sell designer clothes and handbags at competitive consignment prices. Not to mention Facebook has many groups in your area where you can buy and sell clothes, accessories, household and many other items online. Times are tough for many and people are looking to make some extra money to help with the bills, that is totally understandable. But don’t worry; there are still plenty of bargains to find and plenty of places to find them.

I have visited countless places in Manhattan, the Bronx, Westchester County and lower Connecticut. I will try and include websites and addresses/phone numbers wherever possible.

The first thing that I must emphasize is that you cannot go thrift shopping in a rush. Patience is the key and the most important factor when thrift shopping. You must take the time to look and most importantly, inspect, inspect and inspect again. You can find an amazing piece of clothing but if it has a stain that won’t come out or a tear that can’t be repaired, it is just wasted money and then you are defeating the purpose. The same goes for household, what might look good from far away may have chips or cracks that can’t be repaired and wont look good on that shelf/furniture in your home. The dish set in the box may say eight dishes but upon inspecting the contents, you find mismatched pieces. I have found some pretty spectacular home furnishings and décor in my travels and the best part is that most of them are unusual and end up being conversation pieces.

While in a thrift store in Connecticut, I learned the best piece of advice from another shopper. She and her husband went through the departments/racks that they were interested in and then pulled the clothes that they were considering and put them in a shopping cart. They then went to the back of the store in a quiet corner and inspected and I mean thoroughly inspected each piece of clothing to make sure that it was in good shape and worth the asking price. What impressed me most was the fact that her husband helped and really seemed to be into it. They were both happy and animated when they were talking to me and eager to share their thoughts. I wish that I got their names; they definitely deserve a shout out and lots of thanks.

You must also be open-minded. You are not going to find items that you like every time but you can use the time to find out which stores are carrying things that are in “tune” with your life and style. You pretty much know what name brands fit you well and look good and that also makes it easier when thrift shopping.

Much more to share so until next time!