A blog about "nothing"!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

The Subtle Benefit of Thrift Store Shopping

If you read this blog with any regularity, you know I love to shop at thrift stores.  The reasons are varied--finding unusual stuff, saving money, the thrill of the hunt.  But there is a benefit that isn't so obvious at the time of purchase--learning the pros and cons of a particular brand or style without the expense.
I've mentioned before that a huge benefit of thrift shopping is being able to try brands I might not otherwise try because of the price.  One example was a t-shirt that I only paid a few dollars for that was brand new, but would have been closer to $20 had I purchased it from a retail store.  It was a nice shirt, but not worth $20.  With another purchase I discovered a brand that I wasn't familiar with because it was made for a large retailer that I don't regularly shop at.  Now that I know, I seek out this brand when thrift store shopping because it not only fits me well, but holds up well too. 
Several months ago, I bought this sweater set.  It was brand new, and at full retail would have been over $100.  I paid $7.95 for both pieces.
I am really glad that I only paid $7.95 for it as opposed to the $100.  Why you ask?  Because after a couple of trips through the laundry, it is looking rather dingy.  Not what I would have expected for items that cost that much.  I have other similar items from other companies that didn't cost as much that are holding up better.  This isn't my first experience like this with this particular line either, a year or two ago (can't remember) I bought another sweater made of the same fabric (same company) at a thrift store (also brand new) and it pretty much did the same thing. 
Yes, disappointing.  But not to the point of being distressed since I don't have $100 invested in it.  At the end of the season I will donate the items to charity, there will still be plenty of wear left in them if someone else doesn't mind it.  For me it does bug me, but that's just one of my "things".  The upside is that from this set and the other item I purchased, I've learned NOT to buy them at full retail, or simply not at all.  For the 3 items I have just over $12 invested, had I purchased at full retail, it would have been close to $150.  I can deal with $12, $150-not so much!
The new year is here, I hope everyone had a great holiday season!  Our holiday was a bit messed up, just after I wrote the last post, Miss Laney got sick with some sort of intestinal bug--and then so did I!  A trip to the vet and some medication and she was fine, but it was a bit of a messed up Christmas.  Someday I'll learn not to write posts like that! LOL!  What I did learn is that recent studies are showing that Norovirus may be transmittable between dogs and humans, makes me wonder if perhaps that is what we both had.  Fortunately we are both back 100%.
Do you have anything you want to work on in the New Year?  I'm still working on getting rid of some of the excess around here.  I've come a long way since I started, but there are still things that can go, and I'm going to work on that.  My word for this year is "clean"--I think it applies to so many areas in my life, and now that we are getting things thinned out, it's time to do a floor to ceiling cleaning.  I spent some time organizing things in 2015, now it's time to finish that and fine tune it.  We are getting there.  I have to say that I definitely like this "word of the year" concept a whole lot better than resolutions. 
In the spirit of "clean", I'm going to attempt to limit myself to one thrift store outing per month.  I will go to several stores in the same day, but that's it, when the trip is over, no more till next month.  I'm also going to be far more choosy about what I buy too.  Most of what I've purchased has been useful,  but I've had a few things that I've ended up hating or getting rid of because it was a frivolous purchase.  More fine tuning I guess.  The upside is at least I didn't pay full price.  It makes it a little easier to donate those items knowing I don't have a lot invested.  I simply look at it as a monetary donation to the organization I originally purchased it from.
I hope all of you are well and I just want to wish everyone a Happy New Year!  To 2016!


dan said...

We don't have good thrift shops in Italy and the items, if they are of famous brands, are often expensive, so I prefer buying at outlets or online...
The red twin-set is very nice! what a pity it got ruined ...
My goal for the new year is to improve my knoledge of English!!I say the same every year...let's hope that 2016 will bring a significative difference!!

Flo said...

Here it seems to depend on if the staff is knowledgeable about clothing brands or not Dan, I've seen prices all over the place. Fine by me, makes it that much better when I find a good deal.

I think your English is very good! I know it's far better than my French, I wouldn't even begin to try and do a blog in a foreign language like you do.

dan said...

Your words about my English ... really made my day ... many thanks!!