“I’m gonna pop some tags, only got $20 in my pocket”…that line in Macklemore’s song Thrift Shop is pretty fitting, and that’s all you really need if you want to thrift shop like a champ, folks.
I’d like to tell you about our recent trip to a popular Thrift Shop – The Salvation Army. But first, some history. I never used to go thrift shopping. The idea of wearing someone else’s already worn clothes didn’t exactly…fit…with my way of thinking I guess. Someone else sweat in this shirt? No thanks!
Then I grew up. I realized something. Clothes get washed. They come clean. They can be worn over and over and over until death do you part.
Coming from Panama, my minimalist wardrobe consisted mainly of shorts and t-shirts, along with one pair of pants. I heard a line from a TV show that resonated with me…Al, “You have clothes like a d!ckhead“. It was true. Which also meant it was time to get some fresh duds.
I haven’t tossed any of my Panama-worn tees or shorts. I’ll save those for the gym. But settling down in Canada requires some cool-weather clothing. So, we needed some sweaters. As luck would have it, The Salvation Army was having a blowout sale!
They seem to do this about once a month, or maybe every other month. In fact, two months ago clothing was 50% off (and there’s never tax). I got a pair of $6 Levis jeans that are in super-great shape. Anyway, the Sally Ann (Salvation Army’s nickname here in Canada-land) was having a “4 for $15” sale. Buy any 4 pieces of clothing for $15 (excluding coats/jackets).
There’s a bit of a trick to thrift shopping, mainly one trick, and many others have figured it out too. If you want name brand clothing that’s in decent shape, hit the thrift shops in the swanky areas of town. I’ll never try to convince rich/very well-off people to become minimalists. Hey, if they want to buy name brands and seldom wear them, have at it – I’ll be waiting to scoop that up at my local thrift shop for roughly the cost of manufacturing it! So if you’re reading this article for that one tip on how to thrift shop like a champ – you found it. But read on anyway and see how we saved over $200.
Okay, enough rambling.
What was our 4 for $15 score?
- One Banana Republic zip-up sweater: The cost of this new at BR would probably run around $90-$100 at least. Our cost: $3.75.
- One Jones New York women’s knit cardigan. Retail costs likely $75+. Our cost: $3.75.
- One Eddie Bauer women’s knit cardigan. Retail likely $75+. our cost: $3.75.
- One hoody-dress-jammy pullover. Not sure if it’s supposed to be jammies, but Shell’s treating as such. It’s super-soft and barely worn at all. I’ve never heard of the brand, but this piece of clothing likely would be over $20 new, and that’s on the conservative side. Our cost, $3.75.
- Add to this we scored a large golf umbrella for $4 and have already put it to good use here in
But that’s not all…
My wife needed a light jacket because, well, she’s always cold. So we scooped this snazzy little number below. Retail, again, likely in the $50-$60 range. We paid $15.
So after spending $30 on 5 pieces of clothing, I had to scold Shelly for spending so much on her jacket. As for me, I’m taking home the title of Thrift Shop Champ. Oh, and the prices we paid are in Canadian dollars, so if you’re in the US, that’s like, basically free after the exchange rate!
The best part – none of these clothes are pilled, stained, stretched, frayed, smelly, dirty, ripped, torn, or worn by Rip Torn. They’re all in impeccable shape and should last us several winters! Finding deals isn’t that hard. You too can thrift shop like a champ, just open your mind rather than your wallet.
Now go sell all your stuff and thrift shop like a champ!