Do you frequent thrift stores? As you all know, I do. I find great deals for me and my family. I just love the thrill of the find. I know some people have just recently joined the frugality thing. I, however, have always had the frugality gene. ;) When I was a teen, I worked at a thrift store. I used to find the coolest clothes ever! People would pry and ask where I got things because they wanted something I had on. Now when you are a teen and trying to fit in, most would have said they had purchased the items at some big store so as to not be embarrassed at the place they purchased them. I didn't. I told the truth. Seeing the difference in facially expressions about my nifty clothes, I knew they thought less of thrift stores. I obviously didn't care. I was happy with the great buys I found. The thrift store would get sooooo much stuff coming in on a constant and consistent basis. I loved that I got a 25% employee discount on top of the incredible tag price. I remember finding the COOLEST pants I had ever laid my eyes on, and they were only $5! Scoring them for only $3.75 was incredible. I would constantly come home with new to me clothes. At that price, you couldn't beat them.
I'll never forget hearing a classmate had begged her parents to buy some designer pants at some specialty store, and they willingly spent over $80.00 on them! I immediately thought of how many pairs of pants and items I could buy with that amount of money at "my" thrift store. I just couldn't believe that they happily spent that and she was bragging over her pants, which truth be told, didn't seem so different than everyone's pants. They were blue jeans. Nothing too special, other than some fancy "designer name brand". Of course all sorts of girls wanted the designer pants after that and hoped they could talk their parents into buying them. I, however, didn't even think twice about it.
I was happy and content with my thrift store clothes. A lot of the clothes coming in looked like they were in awesome condition. On top of my satisfaction for the clothes I had, I didn't have the luxury of my parents offering to give me money to pay for clothes. They established a specified amount for allowance and that was it. The money I got from my job was my spending and food money. Right before school started, my parents set up a certain amount of money for school shopping. This money was to cover our clothes, supplies and the like. I could have gone to the mall and gotten designer name brand items, but I thought carefully about my purchases. At that time, a lot of teens wouldn't be caught dead in a thrift store. Shopping for USED clothes?!? Oh my goodness, how could someone even possibly think of doing such a thing ;) *grin.
Now that so many people in our nation are pinching their pennies and trying to stretch a buck, things have significantly changed. The thrift store I used to work at doesn't get as many donations I think. The conditions of clothes are much less than they were. People are simply making the things they have on hand work for them. They are using things for longer than they did in the past. Spending money on unneccessary items isn't as easy as it was before for some.
I still enjoy thrift storing. It is fun. Some stores tend to be better than others. What is your favorite thrift store and why?