Ask the Readers: What Are Your Favorite Thrift Store Finds?

By Ashley Jacobs on 5 April 2016 69 comments

Editor's Note: Congratulations to Mami2jcn, Gina, and Alan for winning this week's contest!

One of the best ways to save on purchases is to buy them second-hand at a thrift store. Depending on the area, you might even find designer clothes, sturdy furniture, and vintage goods at rock-bottom prices! Of course, the best part is scoring a thrift store treasure when you least expect it.

What are your favorite thrift store finds? What criteria do you have for the goods you buy at a thrift store? If you don't shop at thrift stores, what other money saving strategies do you use when you go shopping?

Tell us about your favorite thrift store finds and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

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Guest

My favorite thrift store finds are ones that I didn't even plan to buy. Yes, that makes them more impulses, but I've never been successful going into a thrift store and looking for something specific.

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Tricia

My favorite finds are clothing. As long as it fits well and I love it I buy it, at the right price of course! I love the thrill of the hunt!!

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Robin

I only purchase like-new jeans at thrift stores - I usually get name brand, high-end jeans for around $3.50 to $7.00

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Guest - A Baker

I found this exact chandelier last summer at a Habitat for Humanity ReStore for $40...

https://www.kathykuohome.com/Product/Detail/3495-Katrine-Gustavian-Iron-...

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Donna Sako

The best find I had was a piazzelle maker. I got for $2.00. New they run close to $50.

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Julie Wood

I love shopping at Thrift stores. And I got a whole new summer wardrobe for myself for hardly any money. New tank tops and shorts! I am all set for summer. I saved hundreds on clothes. I also bought my son some new shirts that were brand new!

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Mami2jcn

My favorite thrift store finds are books.

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Elena

I don't shop at thrift stores, but I use coupons and shop sales

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Elle

I like finding cute sweaters and tops at thrift stores.

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Jenny D

I love thrift stores and will purchase most anything that I'm needing from one. My happiest find was a Vera Bradley purse with a matching wallet - I'd been longing for one for a long, long time, but I just couldn't justify the cost. I love the style of the purse as well as the fabric colors and design...and it only cost $4.00 for both! :)

My criteria when shopping is the price, but I also factor in the value for my dollar. My favorite thrift store has some wonderful donors. One restores antiques and then donates them and I was fortunate to purchase an antique rocking chair that he brought in. There are a group of crafting women who weave rugs, sew quilts, and knit various items which they donate. I love to purchase these items not only for my home, but also as gifts. The quality is top of the line.

When I shop at regular stores, I like to use store coupons and stack them with sale and clearance items. I'm a careful shopper and try to buy what I love, what fits me well, and is in the colors that I look good in...the same is true for my home.

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Gina

My favorite thrift store finds are clothes. You can find nice ones super cheap.

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Christie

My favorite things are clothes! I do a lot of my clothes shopping at thrift stores -- you can find a lot of nice things, some with the tags still on!

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Olivia

As we live in a walkable town and our thrift store is just a few blocks away, it was a frequent excursion with our pre-school aged kids. Probably the most consistent bargains were kid's clothes. I would have spent a small fortune, the way they grew, if we hit retail places. The boys would probably say they liked the book and small toy sections the best. I also found quite a few vintage serving bowls, Christmas ornaments, picture frames, and hand crocheted doilies.

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Amy L

My favorite thrift store find is a pair of GAP brand khakis. I love finding top name-brand items that I prefer not to pay full price for.

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Carly Beard

I love finding cheap old furniture that could use a fresh coat of paint or new upholstery to freshen it up. It makes my eclectic home decor affordable and gives each piece a story.

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Bethany

I like getting good jeans. They cost way too much in the stores.

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Kelli

I don't shop at thrift stores. If I need something inexpensive I'll usually go to Target, Walmart, Kohl's, JCPenney, etc. and use coupons if at all possible.

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Monique

I love finding unique kitchen items like French or Italian glass jars with vintage motifs. Also, I've found small great small kitchen appliances in excellent condition, like a yogurt maker and a toaster. I just love the kitchen items and go for stuff made from durable and stain-proof materials like glass or stainless steel.

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SKB

I had already checked out but my eye noticed a pretty crystal clock sitting near the register. The cashier said the lady decided not to buy it because she would have to buy a battery for it. I could see a bit of a green sticker on it and when I looked at the bottom it was signed Waterford. For $2. 99 I bought the clock and went to get a battery.

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Julie Lundstrom

I always look for good finds for the home. It can be something I need at home like a lamp, furniture or decoration. I also look for kids toys & clothes.

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amanda sakovitz

My favorite thrift store finds are jackets

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Wade

I bought a seriously sweet 1980s "boom box" at the local thrift store for $2.99 + tax. I sold it on eBay for $310.

It was a very high end model that retailed for around $400 in 1983-84. It was hard to part with, but for that price it wasn't too hard.

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Annmarie W.

Best thrift find ever: my hubby & I were invited to one of those murder mystery parties. His character was to be some european duke. And he found the most amazing old-fashioned smoking jackets...for $5!!! And he even picked up a horse (a kids broom-style horse) for another $2! Instant costume!

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Susan P.

I have found so many good things in thrift stores, from my favorite Totes umbrella to Ray Ban sunglasses to name brand clothes to kitchen items. My sister and I go to one in her town whenever I visit and we even go to thrift stores when we go on road trips. We try to go to ones in more affluent neighborhoods, since the items are usually better quality.

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Mary W

I have shopped at Thrift Stores my entire life. I have a hard time shopping at a "real" store. I like that clothes at the Thrift Shop are pre-shrunk so I know when I try them on , they will continue to fit long after the purchase. My favorite finds have been high end clothing, shoes and furniture and especially my antique mirror framed in mahogany.

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CF

I don't usually go to thrift stores.

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Jeff

board games

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Tracy Hirsch

Board games and home decor!

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Donna D

I don't have any great finds, but my friend always found great clothes and looked like a million bucks. One time she found a twenty in a pair of pants she bought.

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Tina in NJ

This is not my find, but my mother's. And I think it was an antique store rather than a thrift store. Anyway, she found this nice ceramic vase with a moon scene and Spanish moss for 75 cents. It would be lovely to put her lilacs in. (I think this was the mid 1960s.) The vase was made at Newcombe College by Sadie Irvine and is now worth thousands of dollars. And Mom can't put flowers in it anymore. Years ago, I saw trio of similar vases on the Antiques Road Show.

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BRB

When I've been wanting something forever and find the exact thing I was hoping for practically new and for a fraction of the cost.

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Pam Ricks

My favorite thrift store finds are books. My store has books 4 for $1 so I always find something!

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Susan Smith

I purchase jeans and shoes at thrift storesI usually get name brand, high-end jeans and shoes for under $10.

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Suz_Glo

I am lucky enough to have several very nice thrift/charity stores in my area. I usually drop by on a whim to search for gently used designer purses. I look for and prefer bags in like new condition and have found several. I also love that my purchases at these stores mean $$ is getting to charities that can put it to good use in my community.

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Guest

My 100% camel hair blazer for $5.

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Jess

I love finding scarves in the thrift shop.

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Cynthia

My favorite thrift store find is jeans!

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Karen

I look for out-of-print knitting and crocheting books at thrift stores.

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Dara

I just found a vintage gold filled needle case for $1 at my local Liberty thrift! Best find so far this year!

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Lisa

I like finding picture frames I can paint to match my decor and add my family pictures!

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Heather

I normally don't buy shoes from thrift stores, or even look at them for that matter, but last summer I happened to glance at the flip flop pile at my local thrift store and found a pair of thick rubbery black flip flops that are now my favorite pair. Okabashi flip flops are the best and I never would have known had I not checked the show pile that day!

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Catseye

My all-time fave thrift store find is a set of gold-rimmed drinking glasses that I bought nearly 20 years ago. I've only broken one out of the original seven and they all still look great.

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Renee

Books are usually a great deal as well as wooden furniture and small kitchenware like tea kettles. I also have found super cheap, gently used baby clothes and gear for friends' baby shower gifts.

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Rebecca Ross

I shop at thrift stores all the time, for all sorts of things, but I really like it when I find something that I hadn't thought about looking for there. For example, I wanted to get some perler beads to try and melt down, to make earrings out of them, and I ended up finding a big bag of them for 99 cents at the thrift store. That would have cost me at least $5 at a regular store.

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Rebecca Ross

I shop at thrift stores all the time, for all sorts of things, but I really like it when I find something that I hadn't thought about looking for there. For example, I wanted to get some perler beads to try and melt down, to make earrings out of them, and I ended up finding a big bag of them for 99 cents at the thrift store. That would have cost me at least $5 at a regular store.

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Kim

Clothes and books! I like the consignment and 'nearly new' shops too and have found some great finds there.

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Jennifer G

I find so many great things at thrift stores, but right now, I'm ridiculously happy about a hand crocheted NUN in full detail that I got for 50 cents! Did I need it? Nope. Does it add a smile to my face when I see it sitting on my desk? You betcha!

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Liz

I found a really cute sweater once.

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Tabathia B

My daughter has found great brand handbags at a resale/thrift store geared towards college students and teens

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Michelle D.

I love thrifting and have found so many good steals! I recently got a giant light up snowman for $20! I was really happy. lol

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Guest

The best thrift store find I have purchased to date is two pair of Frye boots at 2.50 cents a pair.

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Kristin Goodson

I love to find brand new clothes at thrift stores. I frequently shop at thrift stores and get excited to find top brand names for really cheap. Sometimes I can find good shoes as well. I also find most of my son's clothes at thrift stores because they are really cheap there.

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katherine

My favorite thrift store find is a full PB Kids nursery bedding - crib sheet, bumper, and pillow (yeah I know about bumpers and pillows for a baby) for $10. It didn't even look used. And it's amazing how expensive that stuff is new. It costs more than my pima cotton queen size bedding.

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Ernest S.

I'm not much of a thrift store shopper, but I do use coupons all the time. My favorite coupons are the ones you get when you move -- those housewarming coupons from the post office are usually the best!

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Samantha

My favorite thrift store finds are the odd little chachkies that I really dont need but bring a smile to my face.

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Sarah

I found some Japanese fashion magazines for 50 cents each. I bought them all!

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Miss kim

I have found good children's special occasion clothes like fancy dresses for the holidays. They only wear it once so it makes sense to buy it used for a fraction of the price.

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Michael K.

I'm not really a thrift store kind of shopper.

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Elaine N

My favorite thrift store finds are high quality items that last for many years - buy it once items. My best find ever was a milk crate containing four Le Creuset pots for $8.00. It was the deal of a lifetime.
The store stayed in business less than a year. No wonder!

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Stephanie

I have found some good linens

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Erin

I haven't found anything remarkable but I have gotten some clothes

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Erika

I once found and purchased an almost new Lands End insulated puffy vest. Not earth shattering but a great deal for a quality product.

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GB

I like finding decor for my home.

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Susan Renton

I was at the check out of my local Goodwill and almost paid when I spotted a beautiful 7 piece coral collection on a window shelf by the exit door. I asked the clerk to wait a moment and took my cart over and fiendishly loaded it up. It was a $800 set for $100. I was in heaven. I had been looking for coral for years and had only found small pieces. These were large mounted museum pieces. I hit the jackpot! I look at them every day and am thankful I went thrift store shopping that day!

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Laurajj

My favorite thrift store find is jeans! Love that they are prewashed and shrunk already...and I know if I try them on...they will fit perfectly!!! I also LOVE to find books!!!

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Happy Love

I like to buy baskets.

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Carmen N

I love finding quality clothing second-hand, but I don't always have success and it's difficult when I'm shopping with a little one. I do like picking up children's clothing and I've also had good luck finding books to read and craft supplies. My greatest find was a cute flannel polka dot sheet for 50¢, split it in half and made curtains for my daughters room (with some white lining I already had on hand).

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Bert @ DividendDiplomats.com

Random decoration pieces for our apartment. They are unique to each store usually, have some character, and are typically a great price. We have a painting, vases, and a record storage holders from various thrift stores in the holder.

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C Hui

I found some clothes and also some
Antique furniture.

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Rich

I don't do a lot of shopping but my Mother finds great shirts and ties for me - some still have the tags on. She also has found very nice wine glasses and crystal bowls - some are signed pieces.

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Guest

Some beautiful dresses and a great pair of pants! The pants were $2!

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Lynda

quirky house decor and random books

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Ana

I haven't really found anything good.

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Kat

I usually find some pretty good clothes

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Thomas Murphy

my favorite thrift store find was a coat

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Marcia

Last year on 4th of July, I scored everything for 50 percent off! 4 summer shirts and a vase with delicate green beading which I keep my wooden yellow tulips in for spring and summer. I spent about 7 dollars that day and got stuff I wear and use all the time! Thrift
stores are wonderful!!!

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April

Books, toys and kids clothes.