Tuesday, 12 November 2013

When a bad thrift store turns good

Whew!  Just finished unpacking my bags from our little weekend getaway to Duluth.  I've got a mountain of laundry and sorting to do.  So, what's a girl to do when she has oodles of housework?  Why blog about her thrifty finds of course!!!

One of the things I love to do when I travel, is visit thrift stores in other cities.  It gives me a sense of the people there.  Plus you never know what unexpected treasures you will find.

But, what if you do not find a good thrift store.  What if it's a bad thrift store?

Have you ever been to a bad thrift store?  One with poor selection?  One with crappy, over-washed, fast-fashion?  I've visited such a store several years ago, the last time I went to Duluth, MN.  I went in hoping to find treasures, but I came away empty-handed and disappointed.  Even the granny chic clothing (which is usually a guaranteed bonanza of long skirts with fussy prints) was lacking.

This was the Savers (American equivalent of Value Village) in Duluth, MN.  

I was in the neighbourhood recently, so I thought I'd pop into this Savers to give it another chance.

I popped in on Saturday evening, and I found a set of 6 FireKing Lustrewear teacups and saucers.  My opinion of this store immediately rocketed.  Especially when I saw that each cup and saucer was reasonably priced at $3.50 each.

I also saw that Veteran's Day was going to be a 50% off at Savers.  That put me in a tricky predicament, as that was the day that my darling boyfriend and I were hitting the road to return home.  With some careful planning, I managed to squuueaze in a 20 minute shopping spree.  My strategy was to go in, check out the tops and sweaters, then check out the purses last.  I would have no time for pants, skirts etc.

This is my thrift store haul.

Intricately patterned Nordic sweater, $6.50

Nordic sweater

What is old is new again.  The softest sweater with the most gorgeous beading.  You can't buy this quality anymore.

Vintage 80s sweater, $3.50.

Beaded Angora sweater

Glittering bugle beads and seed beads..for $3.50!!

I wasn't sure about this grid patterned coat.  Then my darling bf saw the price and said that for $5 I should snap it up.  I may wear it as is, or turn it into a vest.  Hey, what's that purse?
Grid patterned coat and handbag

Could this clutch be a genuine Celine?  I spotted it amongst the hodge podge of purses.  The horse shoe clasp caught my attention.  The leather does have some damage, but I think it is a keeper.

How much?  Try $2.
Celine bag???

Gorgeous LL Bean mohair sweater, prolly from the 80s.  The funky design reminds me of the Northern Lights.  I'm looking forward to wearing it belted over skinnies.

LL Bean mohair cardigan, $4.50

Funky oversized mohair cardi

Intricately knit cotton and ramie cardi with lilies, $4.50

Summer sweater with lovely lilies

Graphic Nicole Miller blouse for $6.50

Vintage, oversized chambray shirt with FAB block print.
Eddie Bauer $4

Loove the block print on this chambray shirt!!!

Larry Levine ruffled shirt. Bad news, it may be a wee bit too small.  But that's the price you pay when you whip through a great sale without trying things on.  $4.50

Flowy, abstract print blouse $4

Whew, that was a fun thrift shopping spree.  Have you ever hit a great sale, but had very limited time?  What was your strategy?  

Happy thrifting!


  1. No charity shop is ever all bad, it might just be having an off day, always good to pay it regular visits before dismissing it out of hand.
    I always snap up Icelandic knitwear, it's popular with the hipsters at vintage fairs! x

  2. Very true Vix, no charity shop is ever bad all the time....LOVED the pics of Jon's wardrobe!!!