Guest Post from Laura Peterson of Mums From Mars
As Moms, we find ourselves at the bottom of the priority list. We wear 10 year old jeans, our husbands old t-shirt or our sisters/friends hand-me-downs – and we gladly take them even though they are 100 years out of style because, lets face it, we don't have the money to shop at high end retail stores all the time (if ever!) Well guess what? I have a solution!
Thrift store shopping! I know, I know, thrift stores smell of moth balls and are only full of outdated, old lady clothing, right? WRONG! (well, apart from the moth ball part). I can show you how to go thrift store shopping and look fabulous while only spending a FRACTION of the price you would normally pay in the mall! Thrift store survival guide
Thrift store shopping can be very frustrating unless you know what you are doing. You can walk in and be instantly overwhelmed with the endless racks of clothing that seem to have no order to them at all. When I made my first thrift store venture I was overwhelmed too, but then I gradually figured out some pretty helpful tricks to make my shopping trip a success, and I would like to share them with you!
Outfit #1 Top: Express- $3.00 Skinny Jeans: Levi's – $6.00 $9.00 total
Outfit #2 Top: Gap – $4.00 Skinny Jeans: Mossimo – $4.00 = $8.00 total
Outfit #3 Top: Banana Republic – $4.00 Skinny Jeans: Express – $8.00 = $12.00 total
There are 11 rules to follow to ensure successful thrift store shopping.
1. Location, location, location To find your ‘go to' thrift store(s), it is a good idea to find one in the nicest neighborhood near you. Thrift stores in nice neighborhoods tend to have nicer clothing. It's just the way it is.
2. Time of day Find out when your thrift store brings out the bulk of their donations. Go then.
3. Be prepared To be there a while! Unfortunately, but this takes a bit of time and patience. No way around that one. I normally like to give myself 1 hour, depending on how big the thrift store is.
4. DO NOT GO WITH YOUR KIDS! Unless you are shopping for them, in which case I would suggest only one at a time. If you have to bring your kids, find the toy section and let them play. Just make sure they know not to wander and they also know exactly where you are at all times.
5. Size doesn't matter whatever size you are, be prepared to ignore it some of the time. Remember, these items have been worn and washed and may have shrunk or stretched a little. I typically look in the Medium AND large sections.
6. Locate the fitting rooms Make sure your thrift store has fitting rooms. If not, ask to try clothing on in the bathroom, but whatever you do, DO NOT spend money on something you have not tried on first
7. TRY IT ON I've been surprised to find something looked fabulous on me when it just looked ‘ok' on the hanger. **Make sure to check for holes and stains while its on**
8. Pile it up! I like to fill my whole cart full of clothing before I head to the fitting rooms. The law of averages say that “one tries to increase the probability of a rare event occurring at least once by carrying out more trials” – or in other words, the more clothes you try on, the higher the likely hood of finding something awesome!
9. Price isn't everything The price shouldn't be the deciding factor. Only buy something if you truly like it otherwise you won't wear it again. What a waste of $3!
10. Space it out You'll need to space out your store visits to give them enough time to receive more donations! Once a month is awesome, but I've been lucky sometimes with 2 weeks spacing.
11. Don't be disappointed Sometimes you walk out with nothing. It happens. Don't give up! If you are finding the same scenario every time, you may want to change your ‘go to' store
Check Yelp.com for a list of Utah Thrift Stores in your area.