|image via google images|
It's memorial day and aside from barbequing and remembering our fallen veterans it's also 50% off thrift store day. If you, like me, plan to brave the crowds and score some deals this memorial day here are few tips I have for participating in these bargain hunting escapades.
1. Know What's on Sale. Yes they're called sale days but that means different things to different retailers. Make sure you know what is and isn't on sale at each thrift store. This ensures you don't end up falling in love with an item you thought was on on sale. If you're in the Twin Cities metro area Meghan of High Plains Thrifter has a round up of local thrift stores and what they're offering on sale today.
2. Expect Crowds and Crowding. Believe it or not your not the only one who loves a good deal. So, on sale days all the bargain hunters descend on your favorite thrift stores in search of great deals. This means lots and lots of people. If your not in the mood to brave the crowds don't go and save your sanity. People can be pushy and irritating and there will be lots of them.
3. Know Your Limits. Don't just buy something because it's on super sale. Make sure that even if the item is a measly $1.50 it's something you really like, fits you well, and you have room for it. If you can, make a budget for the day and try not to overspend. A tip I got from Sammy of Sammy Davis Vintage is to budget a set amount for each store you're planning to go to and stick to it. Sammy rations out $20.00 a store, which I think is a pretty good amount, if you go over that amount at one store subtract your overages from your budget for the next store and spend accordingly. You can read more of Sammy's thrifting tips here.
4. Be Prepared. Another tip I got from Sammy Davis Vintage is to be prepared. Make sure you've eaten before you go and bring a snack. Bring along some tunage if your favorite thrift store has less than desirable tunes. One of my favorite thrift stores' station of choice is a christian radio station. I don't have anything against christian music or radio stations they're just not something I listen to on a daily basis. Sometimes the music a store plays can really get to you, so bringing along and iPod just in case never hurts. Also be aware of what your wearing, this is especially important on sale days. Sale days are notorious for long dressing room lines, so wear something form fitting so you can try on clothes outside of the dressing room. Many people recommend leggings, a tank top and maybe a skirt.
5. If Your Unsure Grab It Anyway. I do this sale day or not but it's even more pertinent on a sale day since the amount of people in store grows significantly. Try on the item or carry it around with you, but don't put it down unless you've though it over and are sure you don't want it.
6. Be Courteous and Keep a Cool Head. I can't tell you how many sale days I’ve gotten irritated by my fellow thrifters. Someone blocks the aisle with their cart, moves slowly, pushes you into the aisles with their cart etc.Try and keep a cool head. People are going to irritate you, being amongst so many energetic bargain hunters will do that to you. Breathe deep and if it's really getting to you leave. No bargain is worth your sanity.
7. Carts Only When Necessary. Personally I hate carts in thrift stores, especially on sale days. I generally try to avoid carts like the plague no matter when I'm thrifting. But, sometimes rules are meant to be broken. The last sale day I participated in I ended up getting a cart of sorts (one of those weird roll-y shopping carts they have at savers) because I found a piece of Pyrex I wanted and didn't want to put it back as doing so may mean losing it. If you get a cart be courteous of other people and try not to push them around with it. Carts are also necessary if you plan on stocking up on lots of items or are having a particularly fruitful day at the thrift store. Also, if you end up with a cart also be sure to guard it well and don't leave it unattended, doing so may lead to missing items.