1. have a clear idea of what you’re trying to find.
Having a list prepared before visiting a secondhand store or antique mall is a huge time saver. By doing so, you can avoid getting sidetracked by things that won’t add any real value to your life and instead concentrate on the things that will. Recently, I went thrift shopping with the express purpose of finding a new pair of jeans and a white button-up shirt. If you’re more of a visual learner, you might find it helpful to think of a Pinterest board as a list.
2. run a lap.
Make a quick circuit of the aisles to see if anything on your list can be found there. Put in your shopping cart whatever catches your eye. Then, return to the sections of the store where you’ve had the most success in your search for a particular item and want to spend more time exploring. There are details you might have missed on the first pass that you won’t want to miss on this one, so take your time.
3. Edit with a critical eye.
After browsing the aisles, pare down your purchases by putting back anything you don’t plan to use. Put some questions to yourself and give detailed answers.
- Where in my house could I put this on display or keep this?
- If this is an article of clothing, how would it complement my current wardrobe?
- Is this a new want, or have I had it on my wish list for a while?
- I’ve found a lot of cool stuff while thrifting and antiquing, but most of it is stuff I don’t need right now. It’s true that many of these stores have lower prices, which can be enticing, but if you don’t edit down what goes in your cart, you might end up with some things you don’t actually use.
4. Always maintain uniformity.
If you go thrifting or antiquing frequently, you’ll quickly become adept at finding what you’re looking for and avoiding distractions. To make the most of my time, I like to visit multiple stores in a single afternoon. Sometimes I only have fifteen minutes to kill, so I’ll briskly walk into a store and peruse a single aisle. Thrift and antique stores should be consistent in their pricing and selection.
5. Put your faith in the procedure
Sometimes when I visit a secondhand store or an antique mall, I come away empty-handed. I guess that’s fine. You can’t hurry the process; you’ll find the things on your list when they appear. Hunting is at the heart of thrifting and antiquing. To me, decorating or furnishing with one-of-a-kind items is all about adding a touch of my own unique style. When I finally discover something that truly fulfills me, I don’t care how long it took to get there.
6. Don’t forget to bring a donation on your trip.
Get the most out of your visit to a thrift store by bringing an item or two to donate.
7. For the love of all that is holy, never go thrifting or antiquing when you’re hungry. Going through the effort of browsing the store’s seemingly endless aisles of merchandise will be more pleasurable if you’ve had a good meal first. Just go with me here.