Wednesday, January 20, 2016

intentional thrifting

Something became pretty obvious early on this year. Even though I'm not shopping for anything new, my thrifting needs to be very intentional. I don't want to end up buying anything (no matter how good the deal is) if it's something I don't really need or won't significantly improve my life in some way. My solution? Go in with a solid plan!

I downloaded a grocery shopping app on my phone awhile back and added a new list just for the thrift stores so I can refer to that before I even start to browse. It's great as a reminder of exactly what I'm hunting for so I can really look more closely at those areas of the stores and just quickly browse the other areas since things do get misplaced fairly often. If I find a great deal on something not on my list, I really question myself if it's something I need before I dole out the cash to bring it home, no matter how great that deal is. I'm not saying I never buy off-list, but I keep it to a minimum. The funny thing is, once I made a list, I started quickly finding exactly what I needed. It's almost like I'm shopping in a regular store!

I decided I wanted a stovetop popcorn maker. I don't do microwave popcorn because for one, I don't have a microwave, but also because I wouldn't want the extra packaging. It was only on my list a couple weeks before I found this:
Whirley-Pop! And just in time for National Popcorn Day!

Excellent! New, these run $25-35 depending if you catch a sale. I snapped this one up in new condition for $4.79. I stopped in the grocery on my way home and picked up some bulk popcorn using one of my fabric bags.

I've seen a lot of crafty folk using salad spinners to aid in drying newly washed knitwear and handspun and since I didn't want to use the spinner I use for food, I decided to look for one secondhand and found this nice, larger one:

I checked and it sells for just over $37 new. My price? $3.99. Sold! If I don't love it, I'll happily redonate it but I have a feeling it'll be pretty handy. Who knew these things were so expensive new?! The smaller one I use for greens was a gift.

I often use my cell phone while shopping for secondhand items. Since Amazon has such a wide variety of items and usually pretty decent prices, I use their app to check new prices to see if the used price is reasonable or not before I decide to buy. I love buying secondhand because it saves resources, but I love saving money too! :-)

Do you shop thrift stores with a list? Or just stay open to what you might find?


  1. I have to shop with a list. If I don't, I always end up with things that I don't need. I try not to window shop or browse. If I really want to something, I will ask the lady who manages it to let me know when something similar comes in.

    1. Oh, nice! I've had the most luck at our main Goodwill so far, but there are definitely no ins to be made there so it's all just having good timing. My list is super short at this point though.


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