The DIY-er’s Guide to Thrift Store Shoppin’

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Chronic-Girl Crafts / Uncategorized

Welcome all!  If you’re reading this it is probably because you are a craft person, or you want to be a crafty person.  Either way, thanks for stopping by.  I’m going to show you a few of my favorite little tricks for thriftin’.

First Things First

Map out your route.  Know your favorite thrift stores in town and make an easy route to hit your favorites without back tracking multiple times.  This is especially important if you’re taking a man with you.  I know that my man in particular is not a fan of back tracking at all.

Take Your Favorite Company

Don’t go alone.  It’s way more fun to grab a friend and a coffee and make a day of it!

thrifting-car  thrifting-car2

Never Forget


You must remember hand sanitizer.  If you’re paying 2 dollars for something instead of 50, it’s going to smell different.  That’s just a fact of thrift store shopping.

Sections to Hit

Always swing by furniture!  You might see an end table or coffee table for less than 15 or 20 that you can refinish fairly easily and resell for a bunch more.  Essentially you’re looking at the material it is made off and shape, not color or finish.  It can all be re-stained or re-painted.

Don’t miss the picture frame section.  Similar to furniture, you’re looking for shape.  Picture frames are versatile.  They can be used as texture on a wall, when painted the same color.  They can take up space on a blank wall adding a bit of color, or simply frame one object.

See what I mean?


So when you look in the frame section… this is the kind of thing you are looking for:


Interesting and different shapes.  Here’s another example, plus look at these cute tiny pinecones.  In retrospect, I regret not buying it.  I think it would be adorable in white chalk paint.
























Another good section is the kitchen section, but for a slightly odd reason.  Pretty much any wood cutting board is a blank wood canvas for paint or wood burning.


Another fun part of the kitchen section is the jar section.  Jars and vases, even while plain and simple, can be super cute with a ribbon tied around the mouth, and while housing a few flowers from the garden.

Don’t miss the ‘old rusty crap’ section just because you never now when you might find a treasure.  Rusty things are much cooler to some buyers than others, but it’s always worth checking.  Finding a milk can is exciting, finding a rusty milk can is even better! Anything with a company name on it is also more intriguing to many buyers.

Lastly, don’t miss the crates, baskets, and buckets.  Same goes for baskets that they can be painted any fresh and fun color.  I found a cute galvanized bucket for 1.99 at a thrift store.  At Hobby Lobby it would have been at least twice as much.  If you add some acorns or pinecones, you have easy décor or a cute centerpiece.

Avoid These Sections

It seems a lot of thrift stores have massive yarn and string craft sections.  Keep in mind that those fibers will hold the smell that they currently have, whereas a piece of wood will soon smell like paint or stain.

The upholstered furniture section is also pretty much useless as it’s much harder to clean and remove the smell.  If you happen to know all about re-upholstering, have a party.

I tend to avoid the artificial flower type décor because again, it can retain a certain smell fairly easily.

Learn the Daily Specials

Thrift stores typically have discounted sections for each day of the week.  Get to know the best discount days.


Ok those are my best thriftin’ tips.  What are your favorite finds from thrift stores? What are your favorite tips?

Please share!





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