Thursday, April 9, 2009

Thrift Store, How I Love Thee

Awhile ago, I was watching Jon and Kate Plus 8. Kate stated that since she doesn't work to bring in money, her job is to save in whatever way possible. That is how she contributes to the family financially. I have adopted this philosophy and put it to practice all the time and one way I do that is to buy used and save the difference. This is how I have come to love ‘thrift storing’. I do not understand why people buy things new. If you have the time, patience, a strict budget and love to shop then thrift storing is for you.

Here are a few tips and tricks to make thrift storing successful for you.

1.) Go, and go often. Items change ALL THE TIME.

2.) If you see something you are thinking about getting, PICK IT UP. Sooooo many times I have seen something (usually bigger toys for Claire that I don’t want to carry around) and when I come back for it when I am done shopping, it is already gone.

3.) Try things on. This is not gross. If you have ever gone bowling and put on those sweaty shoes, then you can try on an outfit that was most likely washed before it was donated.

4.) Before you buy a clothing item, make sure the staple used to attach the tag (at Goodwill only, Savers uses regular plastic tags) didn’t make a hole in the garment. Do this at the check out so the clerk won’t think you are trying to switch tags.

5.) Know your weeks and colors. Each week Goodwill has a different colored tag and week # on sale for 50% off. Here is a rotation of the Goodwill color tag sales. Today starts week 12.

6.) Know what day you want to shop. There are certain days that are better to shop then others. Here is what I have discovered. (Goodwill only)

-Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are no sale (just 50% off the special color tag or week) -Thursday is dollar day the selected color tag and week # is only 1 dollar no matter what the
original price.
-Friday - the color and week # change.
-Saturday - every other Saturday is a 50% off sale on the entire store. These are crazy and you
have to go when they open to get anything good.
-Sunday is 25% off your purchases if you are a student and have a student ID.

Savers has 20% off all used items on Tuesdays, Wednesdays are senior days, and Fridays are 50% off a selected color tag. (I do not have a rotation on this yet)

7.) The earlier in the day, the better. After about 3pm is just a waste of your time.

8.) Remember, items that are dirty can be cleaned. Some of the things I bought looked like they had been collecting dust in a garage for years. Obviously, you are going to clean it when you get home so try to envision it after a good scrub.

9.) The goodwill website always has a coupon for 20% off your purchase of $10 or more.

The more you are acquainted with your stores, the easier and faster it is to shop. Savers is redoing the layout of their locations to make them all the same. That is helpful.

Here are a few pictures of things I have found in the recent past at thrift stores - and this is only some of it. The priciest thing out of all these pictures was the blue mate with stars. It was $10. (or you can buy it on amazon for $99)

Here are a few clothes for Claire...

Since I took this picture I have tripled the amount of these that I have. The most expensive one was $3.

I don't feel like taking picture of all my clothes because literally 99% of them are from a thrift store. I have been finding a lot of Banana Republic, Ann Taylor Loft and American Eagle in my size lately. It seems to go is shifts somehow. All of Josh's dress shirts are also thrift.

Oh, I almost forgot... There is a thrift store called Deseret Industries in Mesa and there is one in Phoenix as well. They have amazing prices on everything but their clothes are always pathetic.

For those of you that live out on the west-side, there is a new store that just opened in February called Swift Thrift, (Swift like the trucking company) on 75th and Thomas. I have only been in there one time but it was very large and seemed to have excellent prices and selection.


  1. What great tips! I bought a ton of our kids clothes at Other Mothers, which is all kids and maternity/women's clothing. Especially for the first year when they grow out of stuff in 3 months and none of it gets worn enough to look "old." I hated paying $10 or more for a little sleeper when you could get them for $1 used.

  2. This is a treasure trove of money-savin info!