Things To Buy At Thrift Store: The bumper stickers that say, “I brake for yard sales,” are those, right? My personal statement is, “I brake for thrift stores.” I also do.
Thankfully, I’m too picky to be a hoarder. I buy only what I need or what I know I can sell for a profit online. And though every secondhand store is unique, there is a standard set of items I’m always on the lookout for.
Things To Buy At Thrift Store
Here are some things you too should always buy at thrift stores.
Hands-down, jeans are the finest value in any secondhand store.
Where I reside, high-quality old jeans retail for less than $20 and occasionally less than $10. And although that may sound pricey for “pre-loved” jeans, consider this: According to Statista, a consumer market research business, the average retail price of women’s jeans was $165 way back in pre-inflationary 2018.
Think all thrift shop pants are junk? Think again. There are tonnes of high-quality garments in thrift stores if you know what to look for – as I detail in “11 Secrets To Finding Quality Clothing at Thrift Shops.”
Tools are go-to things at thrift stores and something I usually acquire at estate sales. I’m not talking about circular saws and welding torches here, just basic equipment everyone should have.
Since most of what gets given is older, it’s simple to acquire secondhand instruments that are well-made and that have shown their usefulness over years of dedicated service.
Look for authentic made-in-America things, like your parents or grandparents had. Furthermore, don’t be deterred by a little surface rust. Most older tools may last for one or two more generations with just a little TLC.
3. Baskets, trays, and totes
Other items I always use for storage are trays and baskets. Trays work well for holding creative items, arranging TV remote controls, or showcasing perfume. To store bath towels, food goods, and pet supplies, use baskets.
4. Decorations for the holidays
If you cut your Christmas décor costs, you’ll have extra money for presents!
I’ve accumulated a respectable assortment of handcrafted Christmas tree ornaments over the years, all of which I got for around 50 cents apiece at charity stores.
And every year, for a dollar or two, I locate a box of brand-new Christmas greeting cards, like clockwork. (I apologise to the shopkeepers, but I just can’t justify paying $6 to $12 for a box.)
But why end there? Artificial trees, tree skirts, wreaths, and wrapping paper are all available at thrift stores. The best part is that your purchases from charitable stores support deserving charities. And it’s a smart move throughout the entire year.
5. Materials for arts and crafts
Artists and craftsmen have several alternatives when it comes to thrift stores.
I search for vintage photos, wallpaper samples, cloth, yarn, china, silverware and old canvases that can be painted over.
Almost anything you find in a thrift store may be recycled and reinvented with a little creativity. Additionally, you may unleash your creativity because the basic ingredients are so cheap.
6. Hardware: Things To Buy At Thrift Store
I’ll declare with pride, “I purchase all of my dishes from thrift stores.” It’s true that nothing quite matches, but that adds to the enjoyment.
The skill of arranging tables with carefully chosen “mismatched” tableware sets is created by creative designers. You can get the exact same appearance in a thrift store for pennies. Here’s how to do it:
- Pick an accent colour, like navy blue, and a primary colour family, such traditional whites and creams.
- Purchase intriguing items that go well with the colour scheme you’ve selected, letting your imagination run wild.
- Although every plate, bowl, cup, and saucer is unique, they all function as a set.
Choose an antique, one-of-a-kind replacement cup when yours breaks. Zero stress. Almost nothing at all.
7. Fragrance: Things To Buy At Thrift Store
Many of my friends and family love perfume, even if I’m not a huge lover. Finding a bottle of Burberry or Dior among the usual Avon and Charlie offerings at secondhand stores is a pleasure.
And contrary to popular belief, it occurs more frequently. The majority of big-box retailers donate their scent testers. Seek for the obvious missing cap. (Because caps are removed, old bottles cannot be exchanged for new ones.)
The finest aspect? High-end scent labels are unfamiliar to many charity stores. Certain bottles retail for $3 or $4 each.
8. Unique products
I’m constantly searching for the unusual and amazing.
Handmade things such as children’s pinch pots with colourful glazes, worn-out silk carpets, and a collection of monochromatic photos contribute to the distinctiveness of our houses. And thrift stores are where you may find them all.
I came discovered a hand-painted picture of a dozing dog a few years ago. Despite its simplicity, I couldn’t resist it because of how well it was done. That $4 bargain is now among my most valued belongings.
The takeaway? Embraced by thrift stores are the modest and handcrafted. Purchase whatever you find appealing. Heck, make a windowsill herb garden out of ten pinch pots. Yes, I did.
9. Books: Things To Buy At Thrift Store
Try your local secondhand store if you’d rather read books the old-fashioned manner. For a little portion of the retail price, you can get modern titles and out-of-print editions here.
Pro tip: You’ll usually find greater book options in thrift stores in or around college towns. And every academic year ends with an exponential increase in the options!
10. Old jars and vases
I prefer to always have a good number of glass jars and vintage vases on hand. They are the ideal hostess gift or anniversary present, filled with a straightforward arrangement of flowers and foliage from my neighbourhood grocery shop.
Most thrift stores charge $1 to $3 for vintage vases. Even less expensive are used canning jars. I once paid $2 for five blue-green Atlas jars.
11. Paper napkins: Things To Buy At Thrift Store
It’s time to relearn how useful cotton napkins are for regular usage. They’re not only inexpensive and environmentally friendly since they do away with the need for throwaway napkins, but they’re also simple to maintain. Simply pick hues that you know will wash well with your other bedding.
The majority of secondhand stores offer napkins in sets. A set of four will likely cost you one or two dollars.
12. Workplace materials
An authentic Gen-Xer, I’m somewhat digital and partially analogue. Thank goodness, secondhand stores (sorry, Staples) have my analogue supplies covered. Really, where else can you get a stack of legal pads for a dollar or a box of business-sized envelopes for 49 cents?
13. Materials for packing and shipment
During my time in Portland, Oregon, I would often visit Carton Service, a remote warehouse that offered extra moving, packing, and shipping goods. Carton Service, which was basically a one-product line, secondhand store, saved my internet resale business.
While not every city is fortunate enough to have a company of this kind, a lot of thrift shops have started to sell old labels, padded envelopes, bubble wrap, and other relevant products. The pricing are unbeatable when compared to retail.
14. Light fixtures: Things To Buy At Thrift Store
The number of donated lights that have functioning lightbulbs attached constantly surprises me. These are sold individually for 25–50 cents each at a lot of resale stores.
I use these cheap lights in the garage, basement, and closets, depending on the wattage and shade.
15. Pet supplies: Things To Buy At Thrift Store
It’s uplifting to put pet supplies to good use, even though it might be upsetting to think about why they wind up in thrift stores. I’ve found food and water bowls, leashes, coats, and other accessories for my four-legged pal over the years.
Not a fan of cats or dogs? For all species, big and tiny, there are “pre-loved” products available. Look out for habitats for hamsters and gerbils, as well as aquariums and birdcages.
16. Cooking implements
Do you need a spatula? Whisky? Melon baller, huh? Rather of shelling out $3 to $5 for each new kitchen staple, purchase pre-owned items. Remarkably many high-quality aluminium and stainless steel cutlery, each costing fifty cents or a $1, are sold at my neighbourhood thrift store.
Does anyone else find MDF furniture to be too expensive? Yes, I certainly am. Particularly with the amount of antique solid wood furniture that is lingering at thrift stores.
Nightstands, workstations, coffee tables and bar carts abound in thrift stores, but it may take some time to discover the perfect item. Scout around and gradually assemble a distinctive furniture collection you’ll be happy to possess rather than buying new.