DIY · Financial Advice · Fun-Day Friday · In Decor

Fun-Day Friday: The Art of Thrifting- Tips & Great Locations

If you’re looking for something fun and thrifty to do this weekend, hit up local yard sales, thrift stores, and flea markets. If you’re in the process of decorating your home or need some “new-to-you” clothes, there is nothing better than finding something you love for very inexpensive prices.

Here are some of my own yard sale, thrift shop, and flea market treasures:

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Here are some tips to keep in mind so you can get the most out of your time and money while thrifting:

  1. Make a list of the things you NEED/are looking for.
  2. Set a budget for yourself- take your money in small bills, but don’t allow yourself to use debit/credit cards in the process (some places accept these now with apps like Square available).
  3. Check out Craigslist and your local newspapers to find locations for upcoming yard sales then make the battle plan for where you’re going to go.
  4. Don’t use up all your money in one flea market or yard sale- go slow, you’ll find incredible little treasures along the way.
  5. Be ready to haggle! At flea markets and yard sales, oftentimes the people selling things are willing to haggle, especially if it’s late in the day. It’s better for them to make SOME money than no money. When you haggle, be daring to go low in the price so they’ll haggle back. You could save plenty of money this way.
  6. Be sure to check what you’re buying for any damages. If you’re willing and able to fix the damages, awesome, but a lot of people aren’t, so make sure to check carefully. Vendors won’t always warn you if there’s an issue.
  7. Think creatively and think about the potential of an item. The color might not be exactly what you want it to be for purposes like decor, but that’s okay. Remember that many things you buy can be re-purposed for repainted to fit your needs.

Now that you have some tips to help you get started, here is a list of local, regular flea markets & thrift stores you might be interested in finding some treasures:

  1. Brightleaf Flea Market, Smithfield, NC: They have flea market vendors inside and they have a HUGE outdoor section for “yard sale” tents. This section wraps all the way around the building. You can always find some fun little treasure.
  2. Harper’s Flea Market Mall, Smithfield, NC: This has to be one of my favorites. They have all different types of vendors. You can get used furniture & decor, great clothes and shoes, pop-culture items, and more. This one is my go-to. I’ve gotten a 1960s teal typewriter, personal-sized metallic teapot, faux leather fringed boots, a wall mirror for our bedroom, and more for VERY inexpensive prices.
  3. Selma Cotton Mill Flea Market, Selma: I have never been to this one, but I’ve heard some good things about it. They have folk art, pottery, a garden center, antiques, and other flea market vendors.
  4. Raleigh Flea Market at the NC State Fairgrounds: This one is FANTASTIC! There are so many neat things you can get, everything from wholesale items to antique furniture and decor. This one is huge and it’s indoors and outdoors.
  5. Goodwill: Of course, these franchise thrift stores are great. I have found some GREAT name-brand clothes that are brand new, hardly worn, and paid very little to update my wardrobe.
  6. Guardian Angel Thrift Store: This one is in Fuquay-Varina. This is a non-profit thrift store. The money goes to fund Alzheimer’s research. I’ve only been a few times, but I’ve heard from others that you can find some great clothing items.
  7. Serendipity Consignment, Fuquay-Varina: I have never been to this one, but many of our ballroom dance students go…and every time they do, they always show up at dance parties in some GORGEOUS dresses that they got for only a few dollars. They accept donations, pay you for your consignment items, and even give you an itemized list of your donations afterwards.
  8. Pizazz Thrift Store, Smithfield and Clayton: This is a great thrift store, there are 2 locations and every time I go by they ALWAYS have really great clothes in the window and on the racks. The profits go to the Harbor Shelter of Johnston County for women and children getting out of abusive situations.

Lots of great tips and lots of great locations to check out. Go and have fun!!

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