If you are looking to get a little thrifty, you’ve come to the right place. Today I am sharing the best top 5 thrift tips for beginners! These top 5 thrift tips have helped me score the best thrifted items I have ever found.
I started thrifting when I was sixteen years old. My friends in high school often thrifted and always told me about these awesome gems they would find. I had to learn how to do it for myself, but I was very intimidated! When I wanted to learn how, I began by going along with my friends that enjoyed thrifting. I slowly learned their techniques and how to do it on my own.
Once I was in college and had my very own space to create, I began thrifting for inexpensive furniture (because almost all of us can relate to those budget living college days).
From decorating my dorm room to now furnishing our Fixer Upper, I learned through the years all the best tips and tricks it takes to find THE BEST items out there.
I am a firm believer that you can achieve style and follow the latest home design trends while staying in budget.
Grab your favorite drink to sip and come along as I share my top 5 thrifting tips that have helped me score some of my favorite finds.
Thrift Tip | 1
Create a list of what you’re looking for. I typically will create a running list on my “Notes” app on my iPhone. I’ll write down some of the items that I am hoping to find at the thrift store.
So often when I chat with my friends and family about thrifting, they tell me they don’t enjoy going because of how overwhelming it feels. Let me tell you, I understand where you’re coming from. Don’t let that turn you away from thrifting though. Having a running list on my phone helps create a little bit of organization for me while I’m out shopping.
I know what I’m looking for the second I walk into the store, which gives me a goal.
Here is what is currently on my Search List:
1 | Vintage bookends
2 | Pottery (mugs, bowls, pots for plants)
3 | Vintage Twin Bed Frames (I’m hoping to find two of the same kind)
4 | Mid Century Modern furniture
5 | Copper pots + pans
Thrift Tip | 2
If it draws your attention, throw it in the cart. For now. This doesn’t mean you’re fully committed to this item just yet. Usually if I find something interesting, I’ll throw it in my cart and continue shopping around. This will allow you to have some time to think about this item.
Is it worth the price it’s selling for? Does it match any of the style/colors you already have in your home? Will it serve a purpose the minute you bring it home?
These are just a few of the questions I ask myself when I find an item that draws my attention. Usually if it causes me to hesitate, I will put it back on the shelves.
Thrift Tip | 3
Go to the thrift stores that are off the beaten path. Going out of your way to visit the thrift stores that people tend not to go to will reward you! I like to go to the ones that people are less likely to travel to. Often, I’ll skip out on the bigger chain thrift stores only because they will often already be picked over and their prices tend to usually be higher.
I still enjoy going to stores like Salvation Army or Goodwill, but they usually are the first ones to be visited by others.
Thrift Tip | 4
Scan the aisles first before you shop. This is one of my thrift tips that I follow almost every time I go. When I walk into the thrift store I will grab a cart and then begin scanning through the aisles. Typically, I will first begin in the furniture section, then through the home decor shelves, and then sometimes through the clothes (if I’m in the mood to shop for clothing).
If anything catches my eye during this scan, I’ll put it in my cart and carry it around with me to think about while I continue to shop.
Doing these scans has helped me find some really awesome items (and usually gives me first dibs before someone else may find it).
So how do you master the skill of scanning? Time and practice.
Before you scan, know what you’re looking for. Know what your aesthetics are and your preferred color palette. When you know these things, you’ll know what to look for during your scan.
Practice makes perfect! Don’t give up after the first time. The skill of scanning has scored me some of my BEST finds!
Thrift Tip | 5
Avoid impulse buys. They will happen. I guarantee it. Impulse buys are bound to happen, especially when you first start in thrifting. They still happen to me and I’ve been thrifting for 10 years!
Thrift stores are made for selling used items at an inexpensive price. You’ll find how easy it is to find something, buy it because of the low price, bring it home, and then have no idea what you’re going to do with it. Now you just started a collection of thrifted items serving no purpose in your home other than now just taking up space.
It’s very easy to be in the mode of “buy everything cute that you see for a cheap price”. If you end up buying something unnecessary, it’s okay. Give yourself grace. This is a new thing you’re trying!
Buying frivolous items still happens to me. Find out if the thrift store you bought the item from has a return policy. More often than not, thrift stores offer a 7-day return policy or even will offer store credit. Just be sure to save your receipts!
Enjoy these thrifting tips?
I feel as if I have only began touching the surface of all of the tips and thrifty tricks I’ve learned along the way.
Here are some of my favorite thrifted scores I have found so far:
- vintage couch
- MCM 6-drawer dresser
- modern wooden accent chair
- arch golden floor mirror
I hope that you continue to follow along with me on here as I have many more posts planned that cover the skill of thrifting.
You can follow me over on Instagram where I post more thrifting tips and hauls at The Happy Home Project.
Do you enjoy thrift shopping? What are some of your favorite thrift tips that you’ve learned along the way? I would love to hear them in the comments!
My scanning route is the same. Furniture, home goods then maybe clothing if I feel like it. I also agree about finding shops that aren’t as heavily trafficked. Thanks for sharing!
It has been my most effective way to thrift! Glad we agree on these things 🙂