A few months ago (this post has been sitting the queue for a while) I joined some serious thrifters for a day of shopping in downtown Salt Lake City. I’m talking an opportunity to watch Kami, Melissa, Carina and Allison in action. These girls are pros and always find the niftiest, thriftiest things. Take Kami’s collection of milk glass and Melissa’s Brazilian leather shoes, not to mention the buttery yellow Titleist golf bag Carina snagged at the D.I.
That was my first foray into the world of vintage clothing and eclectic thrift stores…and I quickly discovered I wasn’t born with the thrifting gene. I enjoy a good deal and don’t mind buying gently used, but I could browse the aisles for hours and hours and maybe find a cute hair clip or pair of jeans for a best friend’s daughter (true story—they didn’t fit either of my girls so off to Florida they went).
Of course, I was born with the relative of the thrifting gene known as the “serious steal” gene. I have mad skills when it comes to bargain shopping, and I’m not talking about the occasional $3.84 pair of clearance toddler shoes from Target. (Whoo hoo! Found those during my last trip to the Bullseye Boutique.)
No, what I’m talking about is suh-weet “thrifting” like I did when I found these babies:
* On the left we have a pair of BCBGeneration suede boots in tobacco purchased for $49.97, regularly $170.
* On the right we have my most favorite shoes of ALL TIME even if Nathan doesn’t love them. (What does he know about Italian shoes?). I purchased these Vince Camuto suede ruffle front pumps in stone for $49.98, regularly $120.
Overall that’s a savings of almost $200. Remember, it’s not how much you spend, it’s how much you save! (My husband loves it when I say that, and by “love” I mean “wishes I changed my perspective on shopping.”)
Both pairs were purchased from SmartBargains.com, one of my favorite sites for bargains on designer labels and top brands. I have an addiction to a love for denim and this site lets me add pairs to my collection in an affordable and fashionable manner. I also scored an awesome dark chocolate leather storage bench; we love it so much we’re hoping to add a second one soon!
Other Emily-style “thrifting” sites I love are Overstock.com (I purchased this little Jessica Howard dress for Nathan’s 20-year reunion—not a huge savings but HELLO…cute dress!) and Bluefly.com, the original online store for designer-label bargains.
Don’t forget all the fab membership sites popping up online:
- Rue La La (my all-time fave members-only site so far featuring the likes of Betsey Johnson, Michael Kors, Timex and lots of designer denim; now they even have resort and spa vacations)
- The Mini Social
- BabySteals and KidSteals (one featured bargain a day; when it’s gone, it’s gone)
And of course, check eBay for your favorite labels. I’ve even searched eBay for a specific Anthropologie shirt Anthro’s site didn’t have in my size—and I found it! One piece of advice if you’re looking for jeans: make sure you know your measurements before buying (waist, inseam, rise) and DON’T buy a pair from a buyer who hasn’t listed (or won’t give you) the measurements. It will save you lots of reselling, trust me.
Feel free to mention your faves in the comments section below. Of course, Nathan wishes you wouldn’t share any new sites with me, but he never reads my blog so he doesn’t get to have an opinion.
Maybe when I grow up and have more time to spend wandering those fabulous shops downtown (and don’t have kids in tow so I can spend more than 15 minutes in a thrift shop), I’ll find more joy in the hunt and more hidden treasures among the racks of vintage clothing and shelves of bejeweled hair combs. Or perhaps I’ll make it easy and bring the pros with me whenever I go. I mean, Carina is the one who found a fabulous leather—purple, no less—Banana Republic skirt for me at The Green Ant!
P.S. I love that skirt. You’d love it too if I you saw it. Promise. It’s my first leather skirt ever. Did I mention it’s purple? And that I love it? Thank you, Carina.
P.P.P.S. Don’t forget RetailMeNot.com! This is a virtual clearinghouse of coupon and discount codes for just about every online site imaginable. Before placing an online order I always search this site for any extra discounts. I’ve scored free shipping more than once!