Day 338: Thrifting Tips

If I was ever to have a hidden talent, it would being able to find the most amazing items at Goodwill. I’m not sure I’ve ever come out of Goodwill without at least a couple pieces of clothing and if I can’t find anything, it really truly shocks me. I know I’ve done a post quite like this before, but here are my tips for finding the best quality clothing at a thrift store.

  • Go through Every. Single. Item.

When going through the racks, it can be a really daunting task to look through all the clothes there. Especially since they’re often smashed together very tightly without much wiggle room, but it is so worth it. Shopping at a thrift store is never like shopping at a normal store, because there is a lot more clothing to go through with seventy percent of it being pretty poor quality. There are amazing pieces in there, you just have to weed out everything that’s not good quality first.

  • Pick up everything that catches your eye.

Get a cart and pile it high. When there were fitting rooms open before the pandemic, this was the best way to shop because the dressing room always narrowed down your finds. But when it’s hard to find a store that has open dressing rooms, grab a cart and put everything that catches your eye in it. At the end of your shopping trip, go to a back corner and go through everything and slip on what you can to narrow it down. Remember that a lot of thrift stores have a seven day return policy.

  • Look at different sizes.

This is incredibly key for two main reasons. For one thing everything tends to be mixed up so a small might end up in the mediums and vice versa. But the main reason is because of vintage clothing. Sizes have changed overtime so a shirt that has a larger number on it might actually be a small because it’s vintage. I hardly ever find vintage in smalls, but in the mediums and larges because of how the sizes have changed with time.

  • Feel the fabric and let your fingers decide.

You can feel quality, it’s just a fact. As you’re going through everything on the rack try and grab a little bit of the fabric as you go. This lets you feel the quality of the shirt before moving on to the other shirts. You’ll be able to tell when you land on something silk or cashmere because it just feels more expensive than the spandex and nylon all around it.

  • Keep your eye on the tags.

Watch for well known brands that will be made better than most things. I’ve found many Brook’s Brothers pieces at goodwill by feeling for the quality and then checking the tag to see what brand it is. Vintage pieces will also have different tags that just look older, usually they’ll be bigger with more design to it than the smaller brand tags of today.

Shopping at Goodwill is one of my favorite things to do and like today, I can easily find some of the most quality pieces of clothing for a very reduced price. It just takes time and knowing what you’re looking for. Always remember to check for stains and tears that might have resulted in the pieces being at the store. Otherwise, happy thrifting!

Until Next Time,
Lillian Merritt

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