I absolutely LOVE a good bargain. My motto basically sounds something like this: If it’s not on sale, and I mean 50% or more, I don’t buy it. Obviously, certain things like food and baby products don’t fall into this category. Although I do try to use coupons and club store’s weekly sales as much as possible. When it comes to clothes, shoes, or any sort of household item; I stand firm in my beliefs. And just so you know, I am still wearing designer clothes and shoes, and my home DOES NOT look like a collection of everyone’s discarded hand me downs.
Some of you may be asking, “How can that be possible?”. My answer is simple. Thrift Shops, Salvage Stores, and Clearance Racks. I try my best to stay away from anything hanging in a regular priced section of a store.
It must be a gene I inherited at birth. I cannot remember a time in my life when I wasn’t searching for the best “bang for my buck”. And that is what I am thankful for today; my ability & desire to get the best deal no matter what.
Let me go into detail a little more by starting with thrift shops. Everyday, in every city in America, people are getting rid of stuff. And a large percentage of those things are in perfectly usable condition. Those items typically wind up in a thrift store somewhere.
I walked into a thrift store not long ago. My daughter was about 4 months old, I had lost a good bit of weight, and I was looking for some nursing friendly clothes to wear until I got back to my pre-pregnancy size. I walked over to the dress rack, and walked out with two maxi dresses, totaling less than $7. When I got home I noticed that one of the dresses still had the original store tags attached. After some inspection, I realized I had paid $3 for a brand new, 100% pure silk Nicole Miller maxi dress with a retail value of $475. $475 for someone else = $3 for me This wasn’t just a one time luck kind of thing. I find very expensive, name brand items, just about every time I go.
Joovy Scooter x2, double stroller: $275
My price: $60 at a second hand kids store
Tag of the Nicole Miller dress I paid $3.00 for
Next, are salvage stores. There should be more of these. I didn’t even know what a salvage store was until after my husband brought me to his home town of Picayune, MS for the first time. It was called Hudson’s Treasure Hunt. One trip and I was addicted. We recently moved there and it has been awesome. I redecorated almost our whole house with “treasures” from Hudson’s, now known as Dirt Cheap.
•••salvages stores basically buy goods in bulk from other stores that have gone out of business, have been damaged in someway (ex. fire, flood), or overstocked in stores. They in turn stock their shelves and sell these items for fractions of retail value. While some of the things you find there are simply unusable, most of them are in brand new, non-damaged condition.•••••
Since our move, at least 95% of all clothing purchased came from there. I happened to have an entire maternity wardrobe, not one item cost me over $5. Not to mention all the other things I’ve found. When I make my weekly shopping list, I always stop by Dirt Cheap first. I never walk out without being able to cross out two or three items on my list.
Here are some of my most boastful steals, and their retail value compared to what I actually paid.
Charlie Banana Cloth Baby Diapers, a 6 pack of one size = $115, and a 6 pack of xsmall = $95. I paid $12 total.
An entire sock monkey themed bedroom for my son was purchased there. I got everything for $30. The comforter came from Kohl’s and it alone had a price tag of $198
And last but not least, clearance racks. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen something on a full priced rack and lusted after it. After swatting my own hand and telling myself no, I usually wind up finding that exact item 2 or 3 months later ON CLEARANCE. It pays to wait. How many times would you have worn that item in a couple if months? Once? Twice maybe? You can’t beat saving 50-75% just by not wearing something one time.
When we moved we decided to retire our old trusty sofa. Clay and I both agreed a sectional was the route we wanted to take. And it had to be leather, but I still wanted it to be funky and young feeling. What we came a across was a cherry red leather sectional…..price tag = $2,500. There was NO WAY I could ever pay that much for sofa. There is a Rooms To Go Outlet only 20 min from my house. And as luck would have it, they were unloading that exact red leather sofa as I was walking in the door. The only thing wrong with it was a tiny unnoticeable scuff on the backside of the sofa. I got my $2,500 sofa for only $600.
Whole outfit off clearance rack, shoes & necklace included for less than $15.
I am so thankful that there are and always will be bargains waiting to be discovered as long as I’m willing to make the effort. I’m also blessed to have a natural desire to always get the best deal.
“Buying something on sale is a very special feeling. In fact, the less I pay for something, the more it is worth to me. I have a dress that I paid so little for that I am afraid to wear it. I could spill something on it, and then how would I replace it for that amount of money?” ~Rita Rudner