Thrift Shopping Rules: 5 Tips for Scoring Great Finds

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Thrift shopping's endless possibilities at such low prices can be a rush, but it can also be overwhelming. Style writer Natalie Timperio shares her sure-fire ways to score some great thrift store finds for your closet!

Thrift shop outfit
(Photo and article originally published on thegirlwithbangs.com by Natalie Timperio)

I have a confession… I love cats. So it’s no surprise that when I spotted this crop top for $7 CAD at Plato’s Closet I just had to make it mine – and that I did (in addition to this high-waist chiffon skirt for $4 CAD).

On a good thrift shopping day, I can buy just about everything and anything in sight. On a not-so-good day, I can still find a piece or two worthy of purchase. There’s always something to be found when shopping second-hand clothing, the question is, “how does one shop thrift without losing one’s mind”? It’s all too easy to become overwhelmed so in an attempt to maintain your sanity, I’ve compiled five tips to shop thrift that I’ve learned along the way.

1. Have a Wish List

For beginners, always walk into a thrift store with an idea of what you want (or need) to buy. This may be true anytime you shop, but it’s especially true when you shop thrift. While you may not always luck out, at least you’re not blindly walking into a thrift store that is full of seemingly endless options. Many times racks will be organized according to colour, so if you have an idea of what colours you want – or don’t want – it’s a good starting point.

Thrift shopping outfit

2. Inspect Your Finds

When you’ve found a piece, quickly give it a 360 scan. A good way to detect stains and snags is by holding a piece against light. Naturally, given that you’re shopping second-hand, nothing will be fresh off the clothing express but you can definitely find items that are like new or at the very least in good condition.

3. Stick to Your Budget

Another thing to consider is budget. How I loathe that word, but until I scratch my way to riches, budgeting is ever so important. If you can, leave your plastic at home and only bring cash with you. When prices are so low it’s easy to want to buy everything in sight, but believe me when I say even thrifting (not an actual word, FYI) can get expensive if you don’t tread wisely.

4. Don't Settle

Budget goes hand-in-hand with buying only what you love – would you buy that shirt if it was double the price or is your only motivation the fact that it’s being sold for under $10?

5. Keep Your Closet in Mind

Finally, visualize how you can wear each and every piece you pick up with items you already own. When shopping thrift, it’s easy to look at an item as ‘drab’ – after all, once upon a time those jeans sat upon someone else’s hips. But if you can mentally create an ensemble that incorporates said thrift item, it can really help you to forget the whole second-hand fact!

Thrift shopping outfit

Share with me your tips to shop thrift in the comments below. Happy thrifting!

Natalie Timperio is a freelance writer of anything and everything related to life and style. You can follow her blog The Girl With Bangs or visit natalietimperio.com to find out more about her writing and related experience.

 

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