Feeling Thrifty

In general I hate thrift stores. ?There is the exception of the used clothing store downtown that I find utterly fascinating, but have never purchased things from. ?I find second hand clothing (from someone I don’t know) blicky. ?I would like to think that most places wash the clothing prior to putting it out, but I can’t be certain of that. ?I don’t want to try on something that may or may not have been washed and I don’t know where it came from. ?I also don’t purchase clothing on ebay for the same reason. ?I can’t touch it or smell it prior to purchasing. ?I know, smell it right. ?This is the point where you say, “so that’s where your kid gets if from.” ?Actually we’ll blame my mother. ?She abhors second hand items because of the fear of the originating house. ?When I would ask to go to sleep overs at friends houses she would ask if they are clean. ?She has some issues about cleanliness.

In late August we had family photos taken by Willow and in December we finally got the prints. ?This isn’t to say that Willow is slow in getting prints to customers. ?Just the opposite actually. ?I just happen to be fairly low down on the list of gets their stuff because I work in trade with her and with Christmas coming up I wasn’t going to push it. ?Instead of purchasing large prints, as I’m apt to do, I opted for 9 different 8x10s. ?Trouble is prints need frames. ?Frames cost money. ?Money is something I don’t have, or I have very little of it.

This is where overcoming my fear of thrift stores comes in.

I figured I was handy. ?A frame is a frame right? ?As long as it is structurally sound (as far as a frame goes) and has glass I’m good. ?Paint does wonders for things. ?I’ve stained frames in the past, why not paint some. ?Nearly every frame in my house is black so I figured I could buy a bunch of different frames and paint them all black. ?I happen to have a can of black paint too. ?So yesterday the boy and I set off to find a collection of frames for our prints at the Goodwill. ?I considered going to the dollar store, but I’ll save that for glass if we need any. ?I scored 9 8×10 frames and 3 11×14 frames for $26. ?The 11x14s don’t have glass, but that’s ok. ?I’m using those in my office at the church and I don’t have the prints ordered yet. ?I’ll have those foam mounted so I won’t need glass. ?Now I just have to paint all of the frames and put on a few hangers and I’ll be set.

While I was at the Goodwill I also looked at some chairs. ?I’m redoing my office at the church and even though there are two desks and a file cabinet I am thinking I might be able to sneak in a small comfy chair to sit in. ?I want to make it look as much like a real office as possible so people stop thinking it is a storage closet. ?At the current moment I have about 20 clocks, 2 old computers, 1 old monitor, the as-built plans for the church addition, 5 boxes and flip chart paper stored in there. ?Granted it used to be the old copy room, but it is now my (shared) office. ?I have waited 5 years for a space of my own. ?Sorry about that tangent. ?Chair, right. ?I found an IKEA chair at Goodwill that would fit the bill. ?I can recover it to make it presentable, but I didn’t walk out with it. ?I might go back today to look again. ?It was only $14.99. ?I’m just not sure if it will actually fit in the office or not.

I’m liking this new thriftyness. ?I don’t think I’ll go purchase a new wardrobe at a thrift store (yet), but if I can decorate a little on a budget then well done. ?So what is your opinion? ?Thrift store or no?

9 Comment

  1. I love finding good deals. I’m not good with Goodwill because I rarely think of it but I buy 80% of the girls clothes at consignment sales. I will admit to not purchasing my own clothes that way but I wear them longer than 6 months.

  2. Joel413 says: Reply

    There are several dollar stores along 6th ave between Mildred and Pearl, and all carry picture frames from 11 x 14 and smaller. All for a whopping $1 each!

    Too bad I needed 11×17….

    But I’ve been known to browse Goodwill and thrift stores.

  3. mom says: Reply

    I’ll have you know my wanderings have led to the goodwill now and again, but the smell. Food appliances? Eehw… where have they been? Clothes? It’s that smell thing again. Now chairs, pic frames, and other assorted miscellaneous? Uh huh!!! Even I have found some treasures.

  4. lauri says: Reply

    I am the youngest of three girls… I don’t think I ever owned a stitch of new clothing until I could buy my own. As soon as I made money, I would not be caught dead in resale items. But overtime and being adoption broke changed my view

    These days I am Totally a thrift store gal….I have bought very few of Livi’s clothes new.I buy her clothes and my clothes from thrift stores, resale or consignment shops, I also buy to resell on ebay.

    Try it… if you get it home and after a good washing.. it still creeps you out… then ok..

  5. Kevin M says: Reply

    Hey there. We are looking to give away one of our red Ikea chairs with the footrest if you want it.

  6. Elle says: Reply

    Kevin, I may take you up on that. It is smaller than the chair I was looking at. The red might be a nice contrast to what I’m painting a decorating with too. $14.99 is good, but free is better.

  7. I have bought used designer stuff from ebay that I know I love and that fits well, otherwise I can barely shop at a regular store without loosing my patience, goodwill would push me right over the edge.

    Now, I do want to go to some junk stores to find some cute furniture/mirror etc..maybe eventually.

  8. Jenni says: Reply

    I actually love thrift stores. Jeff and I have found some great 50’s style mugs and other retro kitchen items at thrift stores for dirt cheap. We’ve also found some cool frames and I got a pair of socks that are PERFECT for making a sock monkey (like I’ll ever get around to that!). I’m not brave enough to try the clothes, unless they are costume items for a 70’s party or something.

  9. sr says: Reply

    Hey elle, long time. I used to feel similar, then I thought hmmm and why do I think new clothing is so sterile. How do I know it hasn’t been sitting in a warehouse with rats. So now I’m paranoid of all merchandise (I kid). Anyway, it did make me realize the used stuff is probably no more likely to be clean than new. IMO. Happy new year.

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