Thrift Store Alert

February 17, 2007 at 9:54 pm (Parenting)

I am a bargain shopper. Always have been. Probably mostly because I grew up having to pay for the things I wanted. I learned at an early age how to make money (odd jobs around the house until I was old enough to work) and since my mom shopped sales, that’s how I learned. And I’m not talking about the $100 purse that’s on sale for $75. I’m talking the $100 purse that’s on sale for $12.50 (theoretically – I’ve never found that deal).

When it comes to my kids I shop mainly at resale shops and thrift stores. I’m sure many of you shop resale shops, most people aren’t hard to convince on that one. But there is a whole ‘nother level of thriftiness required to shop the real thrift stores – Goodwill, Salvation Army, and – our favorite – Savers.

It really started with my husband. He LOVES to go thrifting. In fact, you’ll laugh, but we often do it on date night, even on vacation. He has the uncanny ability to sniff out the thrift stores no matter what town we are in. Every trip to San Diego requires much shopping.  At first I whined about how there was never as many "fashionable" clothes for women as there were for men, and I didn’t want to sort through all the racks, blah, blah, blah. A few good fines and I was quickly over that. Remind me sometime and I’ll post a picture of the stunning Ann Taylor sun dress I got for $8.95.

I’ve learned in the last year or two that there is a very interesting trend between these 2 types of stores. Resale shops are obviously particular about what clothes they will choose to sell (for which I’m glad). However, this seems to make it very difficult to find boys clothes once you reach about the 3T, 4T size. They say it’s because boys are harder on their clothes and they don’t look at nice. (Completely valid statement.) So I found lots of very cute clothes for my 4 year old girl at the resale shops.

But the thrift stores are a virtual carnival of boys clothing. Yes, there’s plenty of faded and piling clothes but I find almost all my sons jeans and shorts at thrift stores and quite a few shirts. I always get his winter jackets here as well. Interestingly, there is never quite as many nice girl things – or maybe they just get snapped up really quick.

For example last night I purchased:

4 dresses – including one linen, one corduroy and one that reminded me of a Hanna Andersen
2 shirts
5 pairs of shorts for son – including Bugle Boy and Levi brand…almost all with the coveted adjustable waist
2 pairs of pants – one for each kid

ALL FOR $35…that’s about $2.69 for each item. How can you beat that! So next time you need to get some new clothes for your kids, find your closest thrift store. If you’re very brave, find out when they’re 50% off day is. Most of them will have one Saturday a month where EVERYTHING is 50% off.



  1. Stacey said,

    Pretty good deals! I never pay the real price even in regular stores though. I love clearance racks and usually shop when they are doing the extra 30-60% off. It’s sometimes better than thrift store deals and the stuff is brand new! My theory is get a bargain wherever you shop : )

  2. Susie said,

    I shopped 2nd hand stores out of necessity when my girls were young. To this day, I enjoy stopping by and trying to discover a hidden treasure!

  3. Shane said,

    I totally agree with ya! My biggest find was a Douney & Bourke purse for $6.50! I recently posted about this very same subject on my blog…. . By the way, I found you through BloggingBasicis101.

  4. Lady Di said,

    Hi Diva,
    I love your site! I grew up as a thrift shopper. Nearly everything in our home was purchased second-hand.

    Then God blessed me with the opportunity to start up and run a thrift shop for my church :o)

    Check us out! People find underpriced treasures with us frequently. I refer to these serendipitous events as “training issues” and “WOW – you scored!”

    North Coast Church Thrift Shop
    1421 N. Santa Fe Ave.
    Vista CA 92084
    (760) 631-7467

    Located at the corner of Bobier and Santa Fe Ave., in the CVS shopping center.

    Tuesday – Saturday, 10:00AM – 4:00PM

    Please ask for me!

  5. Lady Di said,


    I posted on March 11 about the North Coast Church Thrift Shop. Unfortunately, our store has lost its lease and we are closing our doors on April 14, 2007.

    This is heart-breaking for our entire staff.

    However, our racks are still loaded with clothing, many designer labels, prom gowns and unique/retro fashions. Our close-out sale begins Tuesday, April 3 at 10:00AM. At this time, all clothing is $1.00, with the exception of the prom gowns – $12.00 each. Jones NY and a beautiful Jessica McClintock.

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