In a tough economy, everything frugal is "in." That includes roaming the aisles of consignment shops and thrift stores. Perhaps you are a working Mom? It becomes quite difficult to keep up appearances when your little guy or girl is involved in sports and extracurricular activities that put a major crimp in your budget. PLEASE - Don’t sign up for yet another store credit card that will bleed you dry with high interest rates. You can still dress to the nines and keep your family finances on track. Thrifty Moms shop in consignment and resale stores in order to save thousands on their annual family budgets. It’s not a rare occurrence to find the original retail price tag still dangling from your latest score at these places and it’s not as daunting as you may have thought.
Here are some tips for shopping at consignment, thrift or resale shops in Cleveland Ohio.
Know your brands!
Savvy thrift-store shoppers know how to distinguish a great product at a bargain price from a mediocre purchase. Be ready to grab and go. Those Michael Kors and Coach bags won’t wait. You don’t have to be a label snob, but when you see something marked down to $20 that you had seen for well over $1000 at Saks – you better jump and jump fast. I do NOT however, recommend going gangbusters over a Target or Kohl’s brand for $5 to $10. Know your brands to find your deals!
Have Bleach Stick – Will Travel
Let’s be honest, people often get rid of clothing because of a stain, unraveled hem or missing button. I personally can’t make it through a meal without something landing in my lap. We are in an age of being ON THE GO where “ain’t nobody got time for ‘dat”. But in the aisles of a resale shoppe, if I’m holding a Ralph Lauren dress in my size, with a small stain on it, you’d better believe I’m going to put a little elbow grease into cleaning that sucker. Here’s where that Bleach Stick comes in: if you can make any progress at all right there in the aisle, chances are, you will be able to bring on a full blown miracle when you get to your laundry room at home. If you can thread a needle, then the hem or missing button will be a cinch as well.
Try it on.
Most shops have dressing rooms, so get in there and make sure you “love it”. Sizes can be misleading, and it’s always best to try something on to see if it really fits. Which brings me to my next point… If it isn’t just right, don’t buy it! When thrift shopping, a pretty regular happening is to come across something that would be perfect if only– if only the button wasn’t missing, it didn’t need hemmed, it didn’t gap in that one spot across the chest, etc. I know, I know.. it’s cheap, so it’s extremely tempting to buy things that are almost right. But paying $3 for a shirt that is only going to hang in the closet because it doesn’t really fit truly isn’t a bargain.
Take a friend
Shopping with a friend actually maximizes browsing potential when you are “looking out for each other”. Hold up finds you think would work for each other across the isles. It makes the whole process a bigger blast.
Planet Conscious Reminder
It’s the age of “GO” but it’s also the age of “GREEN” Remember that frequenting your local thrift and consignment stores keeps recycling in the forefront. Unwanted or gently used items are given a second chance to find greater use while simultaneously diverting unnecessary waste from our landfills. Encourage more people to participate in the reuse market. There is also a Petition for National Thrift Store Month on Facebook that is hungry for names, just do a Facebook search and join the cause.