How to Thrift Store Shop

Over the last few years I have found a love for “the thrill of the thrift hunt,” and have received numerous questions from my friends on what thrift stores I go to and how I find such great pieces. Keep reading to get my top tips for digging through the trenches and coming out a shopping heroine on the other side.


1. Come with an objective 
Okay so I know most people would say that you shouldn’t be too picky or precise with what you have in mind when hunting through a thrift store, and I agree. However; you should have some sort of objective in mind before hitting the racks to ensure that you are not getting overwhelmed as well as some things are better to look for in a thrift store vs a regular store and vice versa. For example: my last objective was to find a few denim jackets. I noticed that a lot of the denim jackets I was seeing in the stores were over priced, and under styled. I remembered that I had a lot of amazing jackets in the past that I had given to Goodwill, only later to realize that I wish I still had it. I figured I couldn’t be the only one who did this and decided to check out what I could find in the thrift stores.

2. Dress for battle
Okay so maybe the title for tip three is a little extreme but I had already made a few war references in this post and I figured I might as well keep going with it. When heading to the thrift store it’s important to wear clothing that you can easily try items over; I suggest leggings and a fitted t-shirt. Over time I’ve discovered this little trick after realizing that a lot of thrift stores don’t have dressing rooms (not to mention a lot of the clothes you don’t really want to wear before washing either).

3. Check for defects. Everywhere
This tip might seem obvious but as a new thriftier I think it’s one of the mistakes I made the most. If your not accustom to shopping at second hand stores it’s easy to forget that since this is not new clothing, it might very well have some obscenely large hole or copious stain somewhere. The first time I ever went thirfting I purchased an adorable oversized sweater that I later realized had a huge hole in the front that I didn’t notice until after I had already taken it home.

Some examples of items to look out for are: stains (especially in the pits area), pockets with broken seems, shoes missing taps on the heels, holes anywhere in the garment, missing buttons, etc. Hint: (if you find something that has a defect but you still really love, talk to the cashier and they will probably lower the price on the item for you!)

Comment below and let me know if you like to go “thrifting”!!




4 Comments on How to Thrift Store Shop

  1. Mikki
    July 2, 2012 at 1:00 pm (5 years ago)

    I enjoy shopping at these stores too! Not quite ready to be seen in pubic in leggings though ;0

    Thanks so much for joining Flock Together on 6/12 at Mom’s Best Nest . You’re welcome to join in this week at 6 p.m. tonight! I am now your happy GFC follower!

    • FancyFrancy
      July 10, 2012 at 9:17 am (5 years ago)

      Thats understandable, I usually wear a long shirt over the leggings so it’s not as bad :) thanks for following!

  2. Otisserie
    July 30, 2012 at 9:39 am (5 years ago)

    Definitely picked up a neat jean shirt myself last winter.

    • fancyfrancyfash
      July 31, 2012 at 8:31 am (5 years ago)

      I love denim/chambray shirts! Be sure to check out the post I did a while back showing how to style them!


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