1. Be Open Minded: And by this I mean about your stores. We have a few standards (Value Village being one of them) but we are always open to the little, funky non-profit stores (The Assistance League of Bellingham is a favorite of the smaller stores in town). When I say be open minded don't disregard cleanliness or things of that sort. I am thinking more of what you may find that would work for you. The smaller stores tend to have smaller prices, and an interesting mix of stock.
2. Be Flexible: I'm not talking like a gymnast. Be flexible as to go into the store with an idea of what you are looking for (palazzo pants, light coat, ect.) but then be open to what you find and where your wanderings take you. We have found staples such as t-shirts and jeans, but more often than not, it's the surprise finds that have been the best additions to our closets.
3. Go often: We tend to hit the thrift stores on Fridays which is just our way of relaxing and starting off the weekend. But we go as much as we can as stock turns over a lot and you never know what you will find.
4. Take photos: Sometimes (often) I need to see myself in an item to see how it looks on me objectively. It sometimes help to remove yourself a bit to make a final call on a piece of clothing. (this coat by the way was a big YES before I even took the photo!)
5. Have fun!: This is our number one rule for thrifting. Somehow it's turned into an outing that the whole family enjoys. We are either laughing over sayings over t-shirts, trying on ridiculous shoes, or squealing over an amazing find! (the above is Sam trying on a beekeepers jacket! We almost couldn't stop laughing!) A general rule I have about my attire is that it should include an element of fun. A talking point makes your clothing a point of connection. And shouldn't our clothing make us happy?
Do you thrift? Do you have any tips for me? Or any questions? It's a favorite topic, so I would love to talk more about it! (ps. When this post goes up we should be returning from San Diego...hopefully there are some thrift finds in our baggage!)