You’ve heard the old saying “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” and believe me, there are lots of treasures to be found while thrifting. Browsing through a thrift or resale store may seem fruitless at first glance and you may find yourself a tad underwhelmed, but the most seasoned thrifters will tell you that the key to a good find is a little bit of luck and a lot of looking. In order to find fantastic deals and ideas for restoring items to their former glory or better, follow these tips and tricks.
Tip #1: Keep an open mind. You are not doing yourself any favors by judging an item in its current condition. Don’t disregard an item because the paint is chipped or you don’t like that crazy color. Even the saddest looking items can be spruced up with a vibrant paint job. Look for pieces that you like the shape and size of, or that need a simple touch up. For outdoor and smaller décor items, there is an array of spray paints that can turn almost any item from boring to beautiful. On bigger furniture pieces, chalk paint is your new best friend. It has the rustic farmhouse look, is easy to apply without prior sanding and is extremely forgiving over scratches and nicks. Experiment with colors, types of paint, and sanding techniques for a piece that will have others asking, “where’d you get that?”
Tip #2: Repurpose an item. 50% of my personal thrift store finds are not being used for what they were originally intended. Let your imagination go wild or take an idea that you’ve seen before and make it your own. Old windows are extremely popular for their versatility, and can be repurposed as photo frames, chalk boards, or coffee mug holders. An old wooden crate can be painted and used as an indoor or outdoor coffee table for that cute coastal look. Find an old real wood dresser? Paint it, distress it, and replace the bottom drawers with decorative baskets for a unique TV stand. The possibilities for repurposing are endless!
Tip#3: Shop off season. If you follow the trends of thrift store donations, you will find that most people are donating the seasonal items that they aren’t currently using. It is much easier to purge summer items in winter and vice versa. If you are conscious of this, try shopping a season ahead to get first pick on those items. Shopping for winter clothes and Christmas décor in June will allow you to get all your winter items at a reasonable price before the cold rolls around.
Tip #4: Thoroughly inspect your items. While it is not expected for second hand or discounted items to be in perfect condition, make sure you check your items for functionality. Look for wood rot on furniture, holes in clothing, and ask an associate to plug in appliances to ensure they are in working condition. There is nothing worse than a purchase that you can’t use, so take your time to look over your items. I would never advise going into a resale store in a rush as it can be easy to overlook the best bargains and end up with something that you may not use.
Happy Thrifting everyone!
You can try these ideas and find your supplies at any of our 4 ReStores!
710 S. Bay Street
Eustis, FL 32726
205 Woodfield Court
Groveland, FL 34736
200 N. Lone Oak Drive
Leesburg, FL 34748
6761 County Rd 148
Wildwood, FL 34785