Saturday, February 6, 2010

Goodwill Hunting

These are my latest thrifting finds.  The railroad posters/signs were .99 each, the mini bowling pins were .99 for all 4 (aren't they so cute), the little vase thingy was .99 and the plate was $3.99, I know I splurged on it a little.  All of this for $10.85!! 

Many of you have left sweet comments about some of my thrifting transformations and many have also said that you don't have much luck at Goodwill.  So, I want to offer some Goodwill hunting tips.

1.  Broaden Your Horizon

 I typed in Goodwill & my city in Google and it pulls up a map of the closest stores.  I couldn't believe it, but there were about 11 in a 35 mi. radius of my house!  And to think I usually only go to 3, oh what I have been missing!!

2.  Go Often & Savings Secrets

Because the inventory is always changing, I go to the store closest to my house almost weekly.  Find out when the sales are. I  know the last weekend of the month is 1/2 off weekend-1/2 EVERYTHING!  My area stores also offer various sales throughout the month and a senior citizens discount day. 

3.  Make a List

I have a list on my fridge of what I want to do in each room of my house.  I have this for 2 reasons; 1-to remind me of what needs to be done and 2-if I happen to have a light bulb moment of something great I want to do in a room, I want to write it down before the bulb blows.  This list also helps keep me focused when I go in a thrift store if I am slightly overwhelmed with all of the stuff.  It is also a good idea to have measurements of spaces you are trying to fill on this list, just remember to take a tape measure with you to the store.

4.  Don't Always Follow the List

Just like rules, lists are sometimes meant to be broken.  If you see something you just love, love, love and it's $3 but you don't know what you are going to do with it, get it.  If you really like it in the store you will find a place for it at home.

5.  Don't Cast Judgment Too Soon

For instance, if you see a piece of furniture that is a horrific color don't walk away too fast.  Look at the "bones" of the piece.  Is it solid?  Could a coat of paint make this beautiful?  How much money will I have to spend on the transformation?

6.  Be Patient

Ok, I realize this could be the hardest tip yet, but Rome wasn't built in a day and your house wont be either.  I have been married 11 1/2 years and have never felt like my house was "finished".  I know that's very encouraging (sense the sarcasm).  Don't get stuff just to fill up space cause you wont be happy with it even when it's filled.  Take your time and enjoy the hunt.

7.  Take a Friend or a Camera Phone

It is always nice to have a second opinion or some reassurance about a potential purchase.  And it's nice to have someone along to share the thrill of a great find!

Good luck on your hunt!!


  1. I was "this close" to asking Dh to stop @ a GW today but passed it up for Hobby Lobby (mostly b/c it was closer to where he was going & he would drop me off & leave me unattended rather than rush me thru as he would have in GW) But I definatly plan to stop the next time I am in the City!! thanks for the tips!!!!

  2. I went to the thrift store today too! The goodwill by me has been raising their prices it seems, and I've yet to hit a 50% off day there. Directly across the street however is a Salvation Army that is 50% off every Friday & Saturday. I score there all the time. Awesome finds today for $4.25. :) Gotta love it! (Oh, and I love those bowling pins- how cute!)

  3. OMGOSH!!! I love those bowling pins! Super cute! Where I live, we have 3 thrift stores within 10 minutes of my cool is that? Thanks for all of the tips, I've never thought of some of them! Happy Hunting!
    Baby I'm On My Way

  4. Great tips! I especially like the idea of having a list. I usually keep my list in my phone so I have it at all times. However, I don't have one for this purpose. I will certainly make one. I have been married 18 yrs & my house is finally getting to where I want it. I too am on the same page...I'd rather have an empty wall then something up there just to fill space. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Love the plate and little urn! I have tried to look at things in different ways when I'm at Goodwill. I also make sure I scour every single shelf. Sometimes there is good stuff on the bottom shelves.

  6. I am coveting the bowling pins! AND please take me with you on your next trip!

  7. These are great tips on shopping Goodwill.
    I think you last couple of statements sum it up best

    "Don't get stuff just to fill up space cause you wont be happy with it even when it's filled. Take your time and enjoy the hunt."

    Thanks for the tips.

  8. Great tips! =) My love for thrifting has been revived thanks to you. My dad is proud. Haha! I wish I could say the same about my hubby. Haha! He'd rather get things free at the landfill I suppose... We need to have a thrifting Saturday at least once a month. The guys can keep the kids. (0=

  9. Nice thrifting! You got some fun things!

  10. I love the plate! My wife and I both like to cook, and it's always fun when she goes thrifting and finds new serving plates, platters and dishes for us to fill.

    She brings home a new platter, and we sit and try to think what kind of food would taste good on that one.

    Great finds.

  11. All great finds! Especially love the plate! Great Tips, too! It seems Thrift Stores in Texas are cashing in on the Thrifty Shoppers and it's getting to harder to find really good bargins....GoodWill has stopped their 'ColorTag Sale' and seldom have 50% off sales. Salvation Army is some better, but also taking advantage of the economic depression. But, I keep lookin and finding the occasional SuperDeal.

  12. Great advice. I have two Goodwill Stores within a few miles of my house. It sure is fun!

  13. Great tips! Looks like you know what you're doing! :) I occasionally go to Goodwill over my lunch hour at work, but there's another one a couple miles away from my house that I really need to go check out. You're right about having to go often and be patient! I'm hoping to score some furniture soon.

  14. Great finds!! You are lucky to have so many stores close to you! I only have one Goodwill close to my house and it's a dud. I seem to have the best luck at Savers.