A blog about "nothing"!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Girls Day Out!

Had a great shopping day in Pittsburgh yesterday with my favorite shopping buddy Heather--we covered a lot of stores!  I chuckle when I think about how Heather and I ended up being friends, we had known each other for years, she graduated with my sister-in-law and niece.  It wasn't until they were remodeling her workplace, she worked downstairs of where I worked, and while they were displaced, I offered her and her colleagues the use of our extra computer.  While she was in our office, we discovered how many things we had in common, and we've been great friends ever since.  I blame her for my thrift store addiction as well, so yesterday I introduced her to several places that she had never been to:  Trader Joe's, Whole Foods (my first trip too!) and Gabriel Brothers.  My station wagon was full of bags by the time we were on our way home with lots of clothes, shoes and goodies.  A fun time was had by all :)  In addition to some yummy food, I found this gorgeous hydrangea at Trader Joe's.  They are one of my absolute favorite plants, and I loved the idea of having it indoors to enjoy for a while and then I can plant it outside later.
The only brand new clothing items I bought were a jacket, a pair of Keds (yes another! I can never have too many) and a nightgown.  Thrift store shopping was difficult, it looked as though they had been cleaning out the racks lately, not a huge selection, but I still managed to get three shirts, a sweater and two pair of shoes.  The one pair of shoes still had the tags on!  The other pair doesn't look as though they were worn, maybe one time possibly, no wear at all on the bottoms.  I recently ordered a dress from Lands End to wear to a wedding we have to go to in May, and after I got it, realized that I didn't have shoes that really went with it.  I kind of had a particular style in mind, and was so excited when I found them yesterday--for $3.95!!! (the pair on the left)
I think with what I have purchased, I am officially ready for spring/summer!  I have an order from Lands End that is supposed to arrive today, two pair of pants and a pair of shorts, fingers crossed everything fits.  I am having a hard time picking what size to go with, I've lost just enough weight that some of the things I had from before are way too big, but other things still fit, it's weird.  I'm not 100% sure what size I really am either since no two companies are uniform anymore, argh!  I've weeded out a lot of stuff that didn't fit well from last season along with a few items I was just tired of.  I need to make one more trip to the Goodwill and the consignment store to drop off, and I think I'm finished.  Until fall!   Final tally for the day: three shirts, a sweater, a jacket, three pair of shoes and a nightgown:  $63.  The jacket at full retail was marked over $100 on it's own.  Not bad.
This morning I was thinking about all of the great reasons to shop at thrift stores.   There are so many!  I thought I would list some of my reasons here:
1)  The obvious one--to save money!  It is simply amazing how much new or near new stuff ends up at thrift stores.  The one pair of shoes I purchased would be $36 normally, I picked them up for $6.99--that's $29 I didn't spend and can keep in my pocket. 
2)  To find unique items.   Yesterday I found a Bradford Basket for $1.95.  Bradford baskets are comparable in quality to Longaberger, but the original company is no longer in business, it burnt down a couple of years ago.  I was so excited to find it as I knew exactly what it was, and it is a very useful size.  They also had two very large Steiff bears--they weren't cheap, $250 each, but to someone who knows about bears and collects them, that's a good deal.  I was surprised to see them, I can't imagine giving away a bear that was that valuable, I would love to know the story behind it. 
3)  Try out stuff that you might not otherwise.  I've found a lot of clothing brands that are generally more expensive than what I would normally spend.  A perfect example of this are the Denim and Company shirts I've come across, all of them brand new.  Denim and Company is a QVC brand and not super expensive, but by the time you add in the shipping prices, more than I am willing to spend for something basic like a t-shirt.  I have picked up several brand new ones for a fraction of the cost.  And my opinion on them is unchanged, I still wouldn't pay full price....but I'm only out $3 for a shirt instead of $20 or more.
4)  Find brands/items that are no longer manufactured.  Companies come and go on a daily basis, and it's especially sad when one of your favorites is gone.  I've come across several things from defunct companies as well as items that the style has dramatically changed on recently in their original form. 
5)  It's good stewardship.  Every time you buy something at a thrift store, that's one less item going in to a landfill.  And most thrift stores are run by companies that donate the money to good causes.  If you purchased just one item per month at $1 from a thrift store, that's 12 less items in the landfill and $12 to a charitable cause in a year.  Multiply that by 2500 people--30,000 items not in the landfill and $30,000 to go towards helping others.  Think about it!  And if that $1 item you purchased was a $10 item you saved $9 or $108 per year.  That's a low example too. 
Have a great week everyone!  We have snow in the forecast again for tomorrow, I'm starting to think winter is never going to end.  Hard to believe the first day of spring is only a little over a week away.


dan said...

Going shopping with a dear friend is one of the most pleasant things of life! So nice to share comments about clothes and eat together!!
And if it so happens you find something worth buying...even more pleasant!!!

Anonymous said...

One of my recent thrift store purchases was a RL ocbd for $7. It made my day.