KNOWLEDGE IS POWER!!!!!

People often ask me how I am able to find such awesome treasures at the thrift store. My answer to this question is KNOWLEDGE IS POWER! In all aspects of my life I try to come to the table with as much knowledge of my subject as possible. That is especially true where thrifting is concerned. I go thrifting armed with my knowledge of fashion, fabrics, designers, current trends, vintage design, jewelry, etc. These things are important because they give me the ability to recognize phenomenal thrifty treasures. I can recognize fabulous finds even when the thrift stores themselves don’t realize what they have. Example in a previous blog I discussed a sheared mink coat I got for my mom for $39.99. It was obvious the thrift store did not realize the coat was mink. If they had I guarantee you the price tag would have been much higher. Fortunately my knowledge of fur allowed me to recognize the coat for what it was and know it’s value. I quickly took the coat of the stores hands. ūüôā

Thrift store 101, most thrift stores have a basic list they use to price their merchandise. They use these list because not all of their employees are knowledgeable of the value of things. The list allows their employees to easily price the loads of merchandise that come through their doors. Most thrift stores also make it a part of their practice to keep up with popular brands. For example you may see a Coach purse (which is a well known brand) priced higher than your average fashion purse. In this case the store recognizes the value of a Coach and prices it accordingly. The flip side of this scenario is that there are brands that they have NO clue about. This is definitely to your advantage. An example of this is St. John Knit. For those that don’t know St. John is a pricey clothing collection sold in higher end stores. A pair of St. John pants may cost you upwards of $350.00. To the untrained eye St. John may look like any other knit suit. However this is where being knowledgeable comes in handy. A month and a half ago I was perusing through the suit aisle in my local thrift store. I get half way through the suits when I put my hands on a 3 piece knit suit. Closer inspection revealed that it was a St. John Knit. The price on the yellow ticket was $8.99. The thrift stores lack of knowledge was my personal gain. I got a suit that¬† retails for $1,000 for $8.99.¬† Can you say AMAZING FIND! Remember a true FASHIONISTA knows all things fashion. I will end this post as I began, KNOWLEDGE IS POWER. Take your knowledge and let the treasure hunt begin.

Smooches,

The Thrifty Fashionista

Thrifty From Head to Toe

Half Price Monday I payed $3.50 for This Vintage Coat

I Love a Pair of Cute Shoes

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As Seen on T.V.

Hey, my fabulous fellow thrift enthusiast. Recently I made my television debut as a guest on a local TV show called Perspective. The topic was of course THRIFTING. Myself along with two other veteran thrifters gave some of our top thrifting tips and showcased some of our favorite thrift store finds ( I posted the video link in a previous blog but unfortunately it was not working. Please check out the video below to view the show). One of my FAVORITE finds that I showcased was a beautiful sheared mink swing coat that I bought for my mom for $39.99. Yes you read that correctly I paid thirty nine dollars and ninety-nine cent for a sheared mink coat. If you are wondering how the he.. I lucked up on this fabulous find let me tell you the story.

It was¬†a Wednesday morning and I was as usual in one of my favorite local thrift stores. I had been there about 30 minutes perusing the aisles to see what might catch my eye. That day I found a beautiful BCBG sweater for myself and a cute pair of Pastry gym shoes for my daughter. I was happy with my selections and decided my thrift addiction had been satisfied for the day. Just as I started to walk to the front of the store¬†a sales lady rolled out a rack with something that caught my eye. On the rack was¬†a beautiful black coat with vibrant colors and a big gorgeous button. I walked to the rack to check out the coat and when I touched it to my surprise I felt sheared mink. If you are wondering how I knew it was sheared mink,¬†it’s because my mother owns one. ¬†I looked at the collar to see the price and was amazed to see a yellow tag with $39.99. The coat immediately came off the rack and went into my cart. I called my mom to share my amazing thrifting treasure and she could not believe HER good fortune. I did say I bought the coat for her lol. A $5,000 coat for $39.99, can you say FABULOUS, FABULOUS, FABULOUS. The ironic part of this story is that although this was an awesome find, discovering¬† great thrift treasures is not a rarity for me. What can I say I AM GOOD AT WHAT I DO!!!!! Check out tomorrows blog for a thrifty tip that keeps me at the top of my thrifting game. Knowledge is power and trust me the knowledge I’m dropping tomorrow you don’t want to miss.

Smooches,

The Thrifty Fashionista

My Cute Mom in The FABULOUS Thrifted Sheared Mink Coat ($39.99) That I Found Her

This Coat is AWESOME!!!!!!!!

My Television Debut

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The Thrifty Fashionista’s Television Debut

How To Shop Resale

Happy Monday my fabulous thrifters. Yesterday I made my television debut on My 50 Chicago’s Perspectives. I sat down with guest host Kimbriell Kelly to discuss my favorite topic, THRIFTING. Please check out the interview to see some of my fabulous finds and hear my top thrifting tips. I must admit I was a little worried about how I would do. However, I have to say I think I did pretty good for my first time out. Check out the link at the bottom of this post and tell me what you think.

On to today’s thrifty conversation. Today is the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, which for a lot of us means a non working day. What this translates to¬†in the world of thrfiting is SALE, SALE, SALE. Today a lot of your local thrift and resale stores will be having a MLK sale for amounts up to 50% off. If you are a veteran thrifter you are sure to be in the stores. If you are a thrifting¬†newbie today would be a good time to start your thrifting adventures. To help you on this journey here is a list of my top thrifting tips.

EXPLORE all the resale shops in your area to find out which ones best suit your needs. Each shop has it’s own personality, so your certain to find several favorites.

ALLOW yourself ample time to shop. Resale shopping takes time and patience. Resalers¬†have a vast selection, much more than a “new” store could afford to stock. You’ll want time to look through all the choices to find your prizes. Look at it as a treasure hunt. Have fun and explore.

SHOP OFTEN for the best selection. Resale shops change inventory daily and the most savvy shoppers know¬†to check out their favorite shops weekly. Don’t miss out on the new arrivals. Resale stores have sales so don’t forget to ask what their sale days are. If they don’t have¬†one ¬†particular sale day ask when there next big sale is. Resale shopping is already a bargain so shopping when there is a big sale just gives you more bang for your buck.

CHECK OUT ALL SIZES not just the size you usually wear. Keep in mind that not all manufacturers cut their clothing the same and some clothing may have already been altered. Ladies this means just because it says it’s a size¬†10¬† doesn’t mean it won’t fit like a 6. If you really like an item don’t let the number stand in your way, truly take the time to check it out. This rule is especially true for vintage clothing. Vintage clothes tend to run smaller. A vintage size 12 may be equivalent to a size 8 by today’s size standards. So again don’t be afraid of what the tag says check it out.

ASK ABOUT varied payment options. Cash is always welcome, but credit and debit cards are also accepted at a lot of thrift stores now.

BE FLEXIBLE don’t limit yourself by looking for one specific item. This is why it is so important to have ample time¬†when resale shopping. If you only have the time to look for your one specific item, I garuntee you are going to miss out on lots of great stuff. You may miss those key pieces that will complete your wardrobe or that great painting that will look good over your fireplace or that vintage coat that looks exactly like the $500 coat you saw in the magazine. Another helpful tip, when you see something that calls out to you buy it. Provided the item is within your price range. The reason I say this is because chances are that item will not be there the next time you visit. Resale shopping is an untapped goldmine. I hope these tips will help as you explore the world of thrifting.¬† I would love to hear about your fabulous finds so please post a comment on my blog or post a message on my Face Book page Confessions of a Thrift Store Fashionista. Please add a picture of your find as well. Okay now READY, SET, GO THRIFTING.

Smooches,

The Thrifty Fashionista

Getting Ready For My Television Debut ( Thrifted From Head to Toe)

On my way to tape Perspectives in my fabulous thrifted coat ($8.00)My Television Debut

 

 

 

My Television Debut

Thrifting Experts Share Their Tips: My50CHICAGO.com

 

Previously Owned vs Previously Worn

Hello all, today finds me with no confession, just some food for thought. In these ever-changing¬†economic times we need to be more conscious of how we spend our hard-earned¬†money. Our dollars need to be stretched further¬†than ever before. The larger portion paying for lodging, food, transportation, education, healthcare, etc. The smaller portion to be¬†used for clothing and personal needs. If you are a fashionista like me you never want your personal appearance¬†to suffer because¬†you can’t afford retail prices. I know for me when I look my best I feel more confident. This is where my thrifting¬†skills¬†come in.¬† Now I know there are actually some¬†people in the world that are completely opposed to shopping thrift or resale stores. A lot of them¬†feel if it’s not “new” they don’t want it. To these people I pose this question, is your “new” outfit really new? I ask you to take a moment and examine the clothing you are wearing. It may have been purchased at Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s,¬†Sak’s, Marshall’s or whoever your favorite retailer may be. Now ask yourself how¬†many people tried it on before you bought it? Who wore it and then returned it for a¬†store refund? You paid full price or bought it on sale. You bought a “New Item”! Did you wash it or have it dry cleaned before you wore it? The answer to that question is probably not. I wash or dry clean all of my thrifted or previously owned items. However your¬†“new” item which¬†¬†may have been tried on by 50 people¬†(previously worn) never makes it to the laundry room. You take it out the bag and hang it in your closet and wait for the perfect time to show off your¬†“new” duds.¬†The primary difference between previously¬†owned and previously worn is perception and¬†cost.¬†We perceive the¬†“new”¬†garment to be more valuable because of what we paid for it and where it came from. When in fact the better value¬†lies in¬†the previously owned garment that someone paid a lot for but you got it for a steal. Even if you add laundry or dry cleaning fees your bank account still comes out on top. In addition you have an outfit that may not be “new”, but it’s NEW to you.

Smooches,

The Thrifty Fashionista

Thrifty Confession # 3: I Thrift For More Than Just My Fashion Fix!

Fashion is my passion and thrifting is my addiction hence the name of my blog Confessions of a Thrift Store Fashionista. However I am often asked if I thrift for more than just fabulous, fashionable apparel. The answer to this question is YES. I thrift for any and everything that will benefit my family and keep money in my pocket. Which brings me to today’s fabulous find. One of my main practices when thrift shopping is to check the merchandise behind the counter.¬†In a lot of thrift stores the merchandise behind the counter¬†is usually¬†higher end products. You may find jewelry, higher end electronics, designer hand bags and some higher priced toys and video games. Sunday’s thrifting excursion produced great items from “behind¬†the¬†counter” for my son. ¬†

My son Jackson is 3 and I am always looking for the next toy or educational game to hold his very short attention span. Sunday I hit the toy jackpot. Behind the counter slightly hidden was a child’s MP3 player. I asked the sales girl to hand me the box only to discover that it was a brand new, never been open Fisher Price Kid Tough FP3 player. This device allows you to download books and music for your child to listen to. The item was only $6.90 so of course I had to buy it for my little man. Then just as I am about to leave the counter I spot another item. I have the sales girl bring it closer and see that it is a Fisher Price Smart Cycle for $2.90. This was a very popular Christmas item a couple years ago. My son already has a thrifted one that I found a couple months back. However for $2.90 he can have one at his grandparents house too. He was SUPER excited when we left the store and couldn’t wait to get home and play with his “NEW” toys. Once we got home I pulled out my laptop to google my son’s 2 new distractions. I always like to find out how much money I have actually saved. To my complete suprise and utter joy I discovered that I had saved a small fortune. The Fisher Price FP3 player retails on Amazon.com for $179.88 and the Smart Cycle retails for $156.99. I paid less than $10.00 for both. Needless to say I am on a thrift high. My son is happy and I’m not broke, ahhhhhhhhh the joys of thrifting. Until next time everyone.

Peace, Love and Happy Thrifting,

The Thrifty Fashionista

You Can't Beat the Price Or The Smile On His Face

Hey Everyone Look At My "New" Toy

Another Thrift Blessing ūüôā

My Son On His "New" Smart Cycle

Thrifty Confession #2: I Can Look Fabulous for Less Than $2.00

Friday morning’s exploits find me taking my daughter to an audition on Milwaukee Avenue. Fifteen minutes and Jordan’s fabulous audition was complete. This left us with a lot of time to kill before I needed to hightail it back south to pick up my son. So I pulled out my trusty smart phone to see what new thrift experience could be found in this neck of the woods. You know I have to feed my DAILY thrifting jones. I have to admit this is new territory for me as I am rarely on the north side. My phone generated several thrifting possibilities so I  picked the one closest to my location. Off we went to 2500 North Milwaukee Avenue. I pulled up to the front door excited to go in and start my treasure hunt. One hour later I walked out with a baby blue 9 West wool coat and a grey Bromley Collection coat for $.90 a piece. Yes the decimal point is in the right place and no I am not missing a zero. I got 2 fabulous coats for less than $2.00. I have definitely earned my moniker today.  Ahhhhhhhhhhh addiction SATISFIED! Make sure you check back tomorrow for my next thrifty confession and fabulous find.

Smooches,

The Thrifty Fashionista

What Can You Buy for $.90? I Bought a "NEW" Coat!!!!!

Check The Tag Baby

I Am Serious About Thrifting!

Why Show My Face When The Ticket Just Steals The Show

Thrifty Confession#1

Happy New Year all my fellow thrifters and thrift newbies. Thank you for checking out Confessions of a Thrift Store Fashionista. I will be your eyes, ears and guide to everything hot in the world of thrifting. Make sure you stay tuned as I take you on my thrifting exploits and give you my daily thrift confessions. This year is already off to an exciting start for me. Tuesday I was interviewed on a local T.V. show for an episode about thrifting. I discussed my upcoming business venture as an image and personal thrift consultant  as well as gave some of my top thrifting tips. I will get back to you soon with show date and time. 

Now on to the good stuff, My Daily Confession. Can’t you just hear¬†Usher playing in the background? Okay but I digress. Confession # 1 I thrift DAILY. I realize¬†to some this may seem¬†extreme¬†but for my¬†die hard thrifters I know you feel me.¬†As the old adage goes¬†I don’t smoke, drink, or get high, thrifting is my fabulous addiction. The thrill is in the treasure hunt. I rarely go looking for anything in particular which leaves me open to all the possibilities. I spend very little cash daily but I have NEVER met a thrift store¬†that didn’t have something to offer me. Sometimes it’s just that one great item that catches my eye and I know it has to go home with me. Today’s item was fabulous beyond belief. Are you ready for it? I found a JIMMY CHOO leather and suede purse for $8.90. ¬†Now for all my fashionista’s you know I could not leave JIMMY all by his lonely sitting on the shelf. He absolutely had to go home with me. I know you would have done the same. On top of¬†that I get home and google the purse and get the news that the bag retails for $1,995. Yes¬†I typed it correctly not $19.95 but $1,995. ¬†I have to be honest my money is not plentiful so who knows when I would have ever been¬†able to afford JIMMY CHOO. I consider this my thrift blessing for the day. Did I meantion I LOVE THRIFTING and I’M GOOD AT IT!¬†If you are not a thrifter you should be. However stick with me and I will make¬†you a convert.¬†Thanks for reading my confession. Check¬†back tommorow for my next confession and another thrift miracle.

Smooches,

The Thrifty Fashionista

P.S. The green vintage coat is thrifted too.

Expandable purse zipped

Lovely Price Tag!!!!!!!

Lovely Price Tag!!!!!!!

JIMMY CHOO purse expanded