thrift stores http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/10291/all en-US 7 Smart Money Challenges You Can Totally Do http://www.wisebread.com/7-smart-money-challenges-you-can-totally-do <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-smart-money-challenges-you-can-totally-do" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_pumping_fists_celebrates_success_under_money_rain.jpg" alt="7 Smart Money Challenges You Can Totally Do" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Are you up for a money challenge? How about several?</p> <p>Make no mistake, some of the savings challenges below are tough. Some may even drive you a little bonkers. But they are all achievable if you put your mind to it, and can leave you with more money for your financial goals &mdash; in some cases, considerably more. They may even leave you healthier and happier.</p> <p>So, if you think you have what it takes, here are seven money challenges. Which ones will you take on?</p> <h2>1. Use thrift stores whenever possible</h2> <p>Of course, there are necessities you can't get at a thrift store, like groceries. But for clothing, household items, electronics, and a whole host of other products, thrift stores are a gold mine.</p> <p>Thrift store clothing is usually in excellent condition, and sold for a fraction of the price you'd pay at a retail store. Simply pop the garment in the wash when you get home, or get it dry cleaned, and you're good to go. Thrift stores also have special offer days &mdash; Goodwill runs 99-cent tag days every week. You can actually pick up a winter coat, a great watch, or a coffee maker for less than a buck. Do this challenge for one year, and see how much you save.</p> <h2>2. Do the 52-week savings plan</h2> <p>Often known as the &quot;52-week money challenge&quot; or &quot;a dollar extra every week,&quot; the plan eases you into saving a substantial sum of money over the course of one year. It's simple enough, and very easy to stick to, at least at first.</p> <p>In January, at the end of week one, you'll put $1 into your savings account (or jar). At the end of week two, you pop in $2. Week three, $3. And so on for the whole year. By the time you reach the end of December, you'll have saved almost $1,400.</p> <p>The only drawback to this plan is that the amounts get larger and larger as the year goes on, and they're the most expensive during the December holidays. But stick with it, and you'll have a nice chunk of money to celebrate with. Even if you bail at the end of November, you'll have collected over $1,100. That could pay for a lot of those gifts and special events.</p> <h2>3. Cancel Amazon Prime</h2> <p>Look, we all know how good Amazon Prime is: free two-day shipping, a massive library of free movies and TV shows, and some great prices on thousands of items. <em>But</em>, and this is a big but, for some people it can become addictive. Having instant (or almost instant) gratification is incredibly satisfying. Admit it, how many times have you casually hit the &quot;Buy now with 1-Click&quot; button when you saw something you liked?</p> <p>The website and app are designed to make impulse buying easier. One woman recently documented how she spent over <a href="https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/spendingandborrowing/a-woman-who-spent-dollar41000-on-amazon-highlights-a-critical-money-lesson/ar-BBBzSX8" target="_blank">$41,000 on Amazon Prime</a> from 2008 to 2016. In 2015, she bought 427 items &mdash; more than there are days in a year. And not only did she find it very easy to do, she was at a loss as to what most of these items were.</p> <p>So if you feel like you are too often tempted by Amazon Prime, then try giving it a miss for a while. See how much you save. You may find it is a temptation that sucks money away from you.</p> <h2>4. Stop eating out, and no more fast food</h2> <p>According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2015, the average American family spent over $3,000 on takeout and dining out. That's $250 every month!</p> <p>That same year, the average family spent just $4,015 on groceries. And the gap between those figures continues to narrow. As a nation, we're addicted to quick and easy meals and it's really hurting our wallets.</p> <p>So, make a pledge right now to give it up for a month or two. No more restaurants. No more quick stops at the drive-thru. For at least two months, give up the notion of getting food from anywhere but your own home. Bring lunches to work. Pack lunches for the kids. Plan meals for every night of the week, and get creative with leftovers. You will miss the quick fix and the ease of eating out, but you will save hundreds of dollars. Furthermore, you will not be eating all those preservatives, fats, and chemicals that come with fast food. You'll be healthier <em>and </em>richer.</p> <h2>5. Do your shopping on just one day of the week</h2> <p>When I was growing up, Friday was grocery shopping day. My parents would take us all to the local supermarket with a list of things to buy, and that's what we bought. That would have to last us for the week, and there were no exceptions. If we ran out of fruit or cereal, we'd find substitutions. If we wanted candy or soda, and we ate what we had by Tuesday, then we had to wait to get more.</p> <p>This taught my sister and I that we had to ration what we had, and that we could not simply rely on an endless supply of whatever we wanted. Plus, every time you pop into a grocery store, even if it's just for bread or milk, you inevitably get caught up in special offers and eye-catching deals, and come back with more than you need. So, set a day of the week to shop, even if it's done via a home delivery service, and stick with it. What's more, this challenge makes it much easier to budget for the month.</p> <h2>6. Spend one month haggling over as much as you can</h2> <p>This one is tough for people who don't like confrontations or talking to customer service. However, if you persevere, you will come out of it saving a whole lot of money.</p> <p>Spend the first week haggling with every service provider you have. Your cable, internet, and phone providers have something called a customer retention department. Their role is simply to keep you as a customer, and they have some significant discounts to offer just to keep you on board. All you have to do is call and say you want to cancel, and you will be offered rebates and lower rates almost immediately.</p> <p>Next, hit up your credit card and banking providers. Can they <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-lower-your-credit-card-interest-rate" target="_blank">lower your interest rates</a>?</p> <p>After that, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/negotiate-better-prices-on-these-6-grocery-store-buys" target="_blank">start haggling in stores</a>. If you go grocery shopping in the evening, you will be able to make the manager some offers on food that is about to expire. Sometimes, perfectly good food destined for the garbage can be acquired for pennies on the dollar.</p> <p>Be brave. Aim high, and if you get nothing, guess what? You've lost nothing. But chances are, you'll come out on top most of the time.</p> <h2>7. Clear out the pantry and fridge once a month</h2> <p>Take a look in your fridge, freezer, and pantry when you finish reading this article. You will probably be amazed at what you find in there. For a start, many of the items at the back of the pantry and fridge will be expired. That is cash in the trash. You will also find things you completely forgot you bought, and perhaps a few items that should never have been in there in the first place.</p> <p>Sort through everything and then stick to using up everything in the pantry and fridge for one week. Don't go to the store. Don't eat out. Get creative! You will come up with all sorts of weird food concoctions, but that's half the fun. You can also search recipe sites, input what ingredients you have available, and receive recipe suggestions that use those ingredients. Some people do this religiously, and it leaves them with a well-organized kitchen and very little food waste each month.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-smart-money-challenges-you-can-totally-do&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Smart%2520Money%2520Challenges%2520You%2520Can%2520Totally%2520Do.jpg&amp;description=7%20Smart%20Money%20Challenges%20You%20Can%20Totally%20Do"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Smart%20Money%20Challenges%20You%20Can%20Totally%20Do.jpg" alt="7 Smart Money Challenges You Can Totally Do" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-smart-money-challenges-you-can-totally-do">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-personal-finance-skills-everyone-should-master">12 Personal Finance Skills Everyone Should Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-you-can-cut-costs-right-before-you-retire-0">6 Ways You Can Cut Costs Right Before You Retire</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-apps-turn-saving-money-into-a-game-are-they-worth-it">These Apps Turn Saving Money Into a Game — Are They Worth It?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-a-spending-ban-can-help-and-hurt-you">Here&#039;s How a Spending Ban Can Help (and Hurt) You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-improve-your-finances-using-social-media">How to Improve Your Finances Using Social Media</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance amazon prime food costs games groceries haggling money challenges negotiating saving money shopping thrift stores Mon, 03 Jul 2017 08:00:08 +0000 Paul Michael 1971280 at http://www.wisebread.com Ask the Readers: What Do You Look For at Thrift Stores? http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-what-do-you-look-for-at-thrift-stores <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/ask-the-readers-what-do-you-look-for-at-thrift-stores" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shopping_shirt_520567651.jpg" alt="Woman looking for shirts at thrift stores" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>Editor's Note: Congratulations to Jessica, Kim, and Jenny for winning this week's contest!</em></p> <p>You can find a ton of great stuff at thrift stores, from gently used designer clothing to top-of-the-line kitchen appliances (still in the box!) to antique furniture that only need a little TLC.</p> <p><strong>What do you look for at thrift stores?</strong> Do you buy things to use at home, to flip, or both? What are your thrift store shopping tips?</p> <p>Tell us about what you look for a thrift stores and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</p> <h2>Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards</h2> <p>We're doing three giveaways &mdash; here's how you can win:</p> <ul> <li>Tweet about our giveaway for an entry.</li> <li>Visit our Facebook page for an entry.</li> </ul> <p>Use our Rafflecopter widget for your chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards:</p> <p><a class="rcptr" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/79857dfa301/" rel="nofollow" data-raflid="79857dfa301" data-theme="classic" data-template="" id="rcwidget_jzj74bl3">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a> </p> <script src="https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js"></script></p> <h4>Giveaway Rules:</h4> <ul> <li>Contest ends Monday, May 29th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific. Winners will be announced after May 29th on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook or Twitter.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You must be 18 and U.S. resident to enter. Void where prohibited.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Good Luck!</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tell us about what you look for a thrift stores and we&#039;ll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card! </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-what-do-you-look-for-at-thrift-stores">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-to-look-for-every-time-you-visit-a-thrift-store">10 Things to Look for Every Time You Visit a Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tj-maxx-giving-away-500-in-gift-cards-to-wise-bread-readers">TJ Maxx Giving Away $500 in Gift Cards to Wise Bread Readers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-back-to-school-items-you-should-always-shop-for-at-the-thrift-store">6 Back-to-School Items You Should Always Shop for at the Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beyond-goodwill-the-different-types-of-thrift-stores">Beyond Goodwill: The Different Types of Thrift Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-how-did-you-spend-your-first-paycheck">Ask the Readers: How Did You Spend Your First Paycheck?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Giveaways Shopping Ask the Readers thrift stores Tue, 23 May 2017 08:30:08 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1950277 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Decorate Your Christmas Tree for Under $30 http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-decorate-your-christmas-tree-for-under-30 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-decorate-your-christmas-tree-for-under-30" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/family_christmas_tree_614873318.jpg" alt="Family decorating Christmas tree for under $30" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When I moved into my first &quot;grown-up&quot; apartment after college (many moons ago, now), I wanted to do everything just right &mdash; including the holidays. But between travel expenses and a growing gift list, my holiday tree-trimming budget was tight.</p> <p>Without years' worth of accumulated ornaments, I had to get creative and keep my spending in check. Here's how I did it &mdash; and here are 10 ideas to decorate your own Christmas tree for under $30.</p> <h2>1. Take a Walk in the Woods</h2> <p>Potential ornaments are all around us &mdash; even outside. Pine cones are classic holiday decorating fare. Even better, they're sustainable, biodegradable, and entirely free.</p> <p>Add dimension to dried pine cones with flocking. Just dip the tips of the pinecone scales in glue and brush with white, silver, or gold flocking powder. Fresh out of flocking supplies? Leftover household or craft paint (applied very lightly) works too. When done, attach a twine or satin loop to the broadest end and hang!</p> <h2>2. Tie One On</h2> <p>Simple bows all in the same color add drama and elegance to a tree. Use them as ornaments in their own right or to fill in sparse areas between traditional ornaments. At this very moment, my local dollar store is selling a package of 18 small red &quot;velvet-like&quot; bows for $1.00.</p> <h2>3. Get Thrifty</h2> <p>You really can find anything at thrift stores &mdash; including Christmas tree ornaments. Oddly enough, many ornaments that find their way into secondhand stores are handmade (donated during estate liquidations or as part of a family's downsizing project, I suspect). Give these little one-of-a-kind treasures new life by making them part of your annual holiday tree. Most secondhand ornaments can be picked up for $. 25 to $. 50 apiece.</p> <h2>4. Pick Up Sticks</h2> <p>Have a yard full of leaves and twigs? Me too. Arrange five 3&quot;&ndash; 4&quot; long sticks into a rustic star shape, securing each of the five points with thin wire or twine. Use wire or twine to also reinforce the five areas where two sticks intersect/overlap. Nestle completed ornaments into the boughs of your tree or feature a large one as a tree-topper.</p> <h2>5. Frame It</h2> <p>Recycle tiny photo frames by turning them into unique ornaments. Insert vintage holiday scenes cut from old greeting cards or trim family snapshots down to size. Then, hot glue a loop of nylon ribbon on the back for easy hanging.</p> <h2>6. Fold It</h2> <p>Mastering basic origami forms like stars, hearts, cranes &mdash; and even Christmas trees &mdash; doesn't take much time, and it's an activity kids will gladly try with you. As I write this, there's a 1000-sheet set of origami paper for sale on eBay for $9.73 (shipping included). That's a lot of ornaments!</p> <p>Nestle finished creations in the boughs of your tree, but remember, fresh-cut trees can dry out quickly and pose a fire hazard. Use extra caution when combining paper ornaments with natural branches and hot holiday lights.</p> <h2>7. Uncap It</h2> <p>Don't toss out those bottle caps. Instead, arrange three into a snowman shape (concave sides up) and connect by hot gluing a single strand of ribbon the back. Paint the concave sides white then add frosty facial details with permanent marker or paint.</p> <h2>8. Unlock It</h2> <p>Though they're quickly getting snatched up by jewelry designers and collectors, vintage skeleton keys can be still be found at garage and estate sales for a dollar or two apiece. Add a unique look to your tree by spray painting the keys a glossy white and hanging with a bright red satin ribbon.</p> <h2>9. Break Out of the Mold</h2> <p>Small vintage aluminum baking molds can be had for less than $. 50 in most thrift stores. Collect a dozen or so in classic heart, leaf, and star shapes. Turn them into quaint tree ornaments by simply hot-gluing a loop of ribbon to the back of each.</p> <h2>10. Throw a Party</h2> <p>Why not crowdsource your tree decorating duties? Host a potluck style ornament party where guests exchange ornaments with one another. Keep the vibe lighthearted by encouraging homemade, secondhand, and comical contributions.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-decorate-your-christmas-tree-for-under-30">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-creative-ways-to-upcycle-used-baby-furniture">8 Creative Ways to Upcycle Used Baby Furniture</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-cheap-and-easy-diy-kitchen-improvements">20 Cheap and Easy DIY Kitchen Improvements</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-budget-challenge-2016-how-to-live-frugally-when-you-have-no-time">My Budget Challenge 2016: How to Live Frugally When You Have No Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/help-for-the-decoratively-hopeless-or-the-cheap-myscha-theriault-on-btr">Help for the Decoratively Hopeless (or the Cheap): Myscha Theriault on BTR</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-wrap-gifts-with-leftovers">How to wrap gifts with leftovers.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living DIY christmas trees crafting decorating Holidays ornaments pine cones thrift stores Tue, 29 Nov 2016 12:00:14 +0000 Kentin Waits 1839212 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Sell Your Kid's Stuff at a Consignment Sale http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/hanging_baby_clothes_61959774.jpg" alt="Learning to sell your kid&#039;s stuff at a consignment sale" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you have kids, clothing and toys seem to multiply by the minute. One way I like to stay on top of decluttering is to sell my kids' outgrown items at consignment sales. Here are my top tips to cash in on your kid items through local sales.</p> <h2>How to Find a Local Consignment Sale</h2> <p>I have sold my kid items at an actual consignment shop and a semiannual consignment sale. The latter is better. With a consignment shop, you are limited and do not tend to make as much as you'd hoped. However, with a semiannual consignment sale, you are able to set your own prices, drop off your items, and then pick up what does not sell at the end of the week.</p> <p>Find a local consignment sale by doing a web search of &quot;(your city) + consignment sale&quot; to see if there are any in your area. You can also go to the&nbsp;<a href="https://www.jbfsale.com/home.jsp">Just Between Friends</a> website and search local consignment sales. It will cost $10&ndash;$20 to sign up to be a <em>consignor</em>, and most sales happen at the beginning of spring and fall.</p> <h2>Make Your Items Shine</h2> <p>There are several volunteers who will look over your items for sale, and they can be picky. Make sure your items are in the best shape possible. Spot treat and wash clothing and shoes. Wipe down toys and books. The better your items look, the quicker they will sell.</p> <p>Try using a <a href="http://amzn.to/2ad1S3m">Magic Eraser</a> for spots or scribbles on dolls or plastic toys. I also like to use fabric softener and a laundry brightener when washing the kid clothing to make it look even better. All battery-operated toys will also need to include batteries, so be sure to stock up on packs from the .99 Cent Store or Dollar Tree.</p> <h2>The Brand Name Sweet Spot</h2> <p>More common brand names like Cherokee, Circo, or Carters will sell, but at lower prices. For example, a cute outfit from Target might have cost you $20 and would sell for $3&ndash;$5. Higher end brand names like Gap and Gymboree will sell for more, especially if it is a recent style. Specialty brands such as Naartjie, TEA, or Isobella &amp; Chloe might be better sold online, since many shoppers are not familiar with these brands.</p> <h2>Group Like Items Together</h2> <p>Grouping similar items together for one price helps you to sell more of your stuff and earn more money. I try to group same-sized outfits or pieces together to increase my chance of selling. At these consignment events, there are generally a lot of baby clothes, and there is a good chance no one wants to buy a single onesie for $2. However, if you put together five onesies and five pairs of baby pants for $10, there is a better chance that a shopper will buy it.</p> <p>I also like to group together books to make a better profit. I have found that the books should be related to make the most money. For example, putting an early reader book with some baby books will probably not sell. However, if I put several of the Magic Treehouse series together or several board books together in a bag, then its salability increases dramatically.</p> <h2>Discover What the Best and Worst Sellers Are</h2> <p>If you know of individuals who have consigned in the past, ask them what sells and what doesn't sell well for that particular sale. In my experience, maternity clothes and generic baby items do not sell well. Usually my local consignment sale is full of baby equipment and baby clothes, making it hard to compete.</p> <p>However, for the sale that happens right before Christmas, toys are hot sellers. Shoppers seem more inclined to splurge with the holiday season in mind. I have also found that attractive, brand name clothing in sizes 4-7 sell better than the smaller sizes. I also have good luck with my book lots.</p> <h2>Don't Be Afraid to Discount</h2> <p>Many consignment sales will offer a 50% off day at the end of the sale. Take advantage of this and mark your items for discount, unless you believe you can get a better price on eBay or Craigslist. For most of my items, I price them to sell. Usually my best items are gone before the discount day. The discount day then allows me to sell the rest of my stuff rather than having to take it home.</p> <h2>Get a Bigger Cut</h2> <p>If you volunteer to work the sale, you might get some benefits. For my local sale, volunteers get into the pre-sale early and receive an additional 5% back on their sold items. I will only volunteer if the 5% would equal a nice amount of money and if I want to get into the pre-sale.</p> <p><em>Have you ever sold in a consignment sale? How was your experience? </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-earn-extra-cash-from-thrift-stores">11 Ways to Earn Extra Cash From Thrift Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-life-skills-your-kids-wont-learn-in-school">7 Life Skills Your Kids Won&#039;t Learn in School</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-bad-money-habits-youre-teaching-your-kids">4 Bad Money Habits You&#039;re Teaching Your Kids</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-awesomely-fun-toys-you-can-diy">15 Awesomely Fun Toys You Can DIY</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/downsizing-with-kids">Downsizing With Kids</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Family Lifestyle clothes consignment sales kids selling thrift stores toys used Mon, 25 Jul 2016 09:30:34 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1753336 at http://www.wisebread.com My Budget Challenge 2016: How to Live Frugally When You Have No Time http://www.wisebread.com/my-budget-challenge-2016-how-to-live-frugally-when-you-have-no-time <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/my-budget-challenge-2016-how-to-live-frugally-when-you-have-no-time" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_retro_clock_69446673.jpg" alt="Woman learning to live frugally when she has no time" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>[Editor's Note: This is another episode in Max Wong's journey to find an extra $31,000 this year. Read the whole series </em><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/max-wongs-budget-0" target="_blank"><em>here</em></a><em>.]</em></p> <p>One of the assumptions that my friends, who earn more money than me while still living paycheck to paycheck, make about my frugal habits is that they are too busy to actually make these lifestyle changes themselves.</p> <p>This total garbage assumption keeps so many people poor. Many of my friends insist that I have to be totally wasting my life scrimping all the time. This just isn't true. In fact, I have a lot more free time than any of my friends who argue that every financial tweak costs them too much of their precious time. With very few exceptions, I also have more savings. Here's how I keep a tight budget on a tight schedule.</p> <h2>I Don't Waste Time on Researching Things That Don't Matter</h2> <p>To quote Asiz Ansari: &quot;Every toothbrush I bought on a hunch has been fine. I've never been disappointed in a toothbrush. Why waste my time trying to find the best? Have you ever run into someone with no teeth and asked, 'What happened?' And they replied, 'Bought the wrong toothbrush. Should have done more research.'&quot;</p> <p>I spent an hour <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-job-creation" target="_blank">researching a car part</a> for my Volvo. If I bought this part refurbished locally, it would have cost me $765. I found a brand-new, aftermarket version for $45 online that had stellar reviews. I saved $720 by spending one hour of my life exploring my options. I would not spend this amount of my time researching the shovel I just bought at my local hardware store for $70. I bought the shovel based entirely on the fact that there was just one model to choose from.</p> <p>Part of saving money is stripping away the marketing message that you need to buy the best of everything or suffer dire consequences.</p> <h2>I Focus on Saving Money on the Things I Already Do</h2> <p>There are so many money-saving activities out there that it's easy for me to screw up my schedule by trying to do them all. While I am always trying to level up on my savings game, when I am crushed for time, I focus on making the things I must do more financially sustainable.</p> <p>For example I have to weed my garden or risk the wrath of the Los Angeles Fire Department. Since many of the weeds in my garden are edible, I am saving money and time on growing vegetables by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-finding-food" target="_blank">eating my weeds</a>. If this sounds disgusting, please note that Chef Magnus Nilsson of Fäviken Magasinet, one of the world's most acclaimed restaurants, serves an entire menu of foraged foods. In fact, Nilsson would probably be distraught by the fact that I am composting probably delicious moss and pine resin. As much as I hate weeding, eating my plant enemies provides a primal and peculiar satisfaction, which makes all the kneeling in the dirt worthwhile.</p> <h2>I Keep an Aspirational Calendar for the Future</h2> <p>As much as I wanted to harvest the green walnuts that grow on wild trees around my neighborhood, I missed my window of opportunity. The nuts are already too mature to make the pickled walnut recipe I wanted to make for holiday gifts this year. Alas, I just didn't have the free time last month to work on my new hobby of preparing wildcrafted food.</p> <p>So, I am adding &quot;pick walnuts&quot; to my 2017 calendar. By adding reminders to make money-saving moves to my schedule a year in advance, I set myself up for ever-improving financial habits for the future. While I can never do all the aspirational projects I schedule for myself, just creating a plan in advance ensures that I can add at least one new skill to my life each year. I think of it as a wish list with a deadline.</p> <h2>I Get High-End Retail Service at a Low Cost</h2> <p>It does not take me more time to buy a shirt at a thrift store than it does for me to buy a shirt for full price at the mall. In fact, buying used is often quick business because my local thrift stores have customer wish lists. For example, the workers at my neighborhood consignment store know that I am constantly on the hunt for a specific <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-denim-expert-reveals-why-you-only-need-3-pairs-of-jeans" target="_blank">style of discontinued jeans</a>. Whenever a pair in my size shows up, I get a phone call, letting me know they have a pair of jeans on hold for me.</p> <p>People assume that low cost means poor service. Unlike a lot of retail workers, thrift store clerks often revel in the thrill of the hunt. They love finding the perfect thing, even for other people, so they end up acting like personal shoppers for their favorite customers.</p> <h2>The Off Season Is My Friend</h2> <p>When I lived in Florence, my Italian neighbors told me to wait until November, between tourist seasons, to buy clothes. Everything gets cheaper in November. Hotel and restaurants drop their prices and stores put merchandise on sale. Let me just say that the offseason in Florence is fantastic. The museums emptied out, the lines to my favorite gelato stores got short, and I could walk across the Ponte Vecchio without being part of some tourist's upskirt panty video. I see no point in ever returning to Florence during the high season.</p> <p>Even if I lived in Podunk, America and never traveled, I would take advantage of the easier access and the discounts on merchandise, entertainment, and education during Podunk's offseason.</p> <h2>I Buy and Make Gifts All Year Long</h2> <p>I start <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-january-is-the-right-time-to-start-planning-for-christmas" target="_blank">planning for Christmas in January</a>, even though I personally don't celebrate a winter holiday. This extremely early jump on things gives me plenty of time to make handmade gifts and source inexpensive presents for every occasion for pennies.</p> <p>This last weekend I attended the baptism of a friend's baby. I used some of the $100 trade credit I got from a local consignment store to &quot;buy&quot; several sterling silver baby spoons. I gifted one of the spoons to the new kid, and stashed the rest in my silverware drawer where they quietly await future babies. I also bought a scrimshaw pin for my husband as a reward for his especially thrifty behavior this year. Total cost of these gifts: $0. (And I still have trade credit left over)!</p> <h2>Coupons Are for Crazy Cat Ladies</h2> <p>Okay, you know, I save enough on cat food and cat litter each year to buy a plane ticket to New York City. So all those people who don't want to see Hamilton on Broadway can just keep on buying Friskies at full price. Be my guest.</p> <p>Although there are some coupon queens who still get a thrill from dumpster diving for newspaper inserts, grocery stores make it so easy to get discounts now. Most big grocery chains even have phone apps that give a curated selection of coupons based on previous purchases. One of my store apps actually makes my phone beep when I pass a sale item on my list. Seriously, I just used a coupon to buy grass fed beef at Whole Foods for $5 a pound. Grass. Fed. Beef. Whole. Foods.</p> <p>One of my friends lives in DC where his favorite brand of Dennison's Chili is not available. I always send him a flat of cans for his birthday. It does not take me any additional time to buy that chili when it goes on sale, with a coupon, than it does when it's full price. And, even though my friend knows I always buy his chili at a discount, he doesn't enjoy his lunches any less.</p> <h2>I Batch Process My Errands</h2> <p>Mr. Spendypants is saving hundreds of dollars on gas this year by carpooling to work a few days a week. But I save money by carpooling even though I work from home! At least once a week, my awesome neighbor Patria picks me up in her car and we run errands together. Not only does this save me on gas, it turns trips to the post office, the bank, and the pharmacy into a nice afternoon with my friend. Patria started this good habit over a year ago when she realized that she's much more efficient with her errands when I'm in the car with her to keep her on schedule. She also saves money on gas because she's incentivized to batch process her errands.</p> <h2>I Work Less So I Have More Time</h2> <p>I have many friends who work insane hours so they can make enough money to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-9-people-in-your-life-who-are-keeping-you-poor" target="_blank">pay for the entourage</a>&hellip;that enables them to work insane hours. I have one friend who hates his job so much that I actually worry about him stroking out from stress. He and his wife both work full time to pay for the maid to clean their house, the gardener to do the yard work, and the full time nanny for their kid. Even though I ran the numbers for him, he still can't wrap his head around the idea that he could work fewer hours for less money at his dream job, and that would give him enough flexibility that he could take care of his own child, house, and yard, instead of paying outside help.</p> <p>The concept that working less can mean more money in the bank seems counterintuitive, but how much I spend is as important as how much I earn. If I spend all my money, it doesn't matter if I make $100 or $1,000,000. I will still have zero savings and possibly less free time.</p> <h2>Progress So Far</h2> <p>Alas, Mr. Spendypants threw a spanner into my already maxed-out schedule. He forgot to pay the yearly $30 bribe, ahem, fee to the fire department to avoid the brush clearance inspection. So we were inspected and given a warning. We have just a few days to trim every tree in our yard by 30%. Did I mention that we have 14 trees in our yard? If we miss the deadline for re-inspection, then we will be fined $356 and I will still have to trim every tree in our yard by 30%. So, instead of working for money, for the last two weeks I have been working a volunteer gig as an angry amateur arborist.</p> <p>If my blog posts stop abruptly, it means that I have fallen off a ladder to my death. Wish me luck.</p> <p>As my Mormon friend puts it, I did receive a few #tender mercies during the last pay period in the form of three tiny payments. I earned $9.45 from a book sale on half.com, I sold $51.99 in clothing at a consignment store, and I got a whopping $31.13 as the payout for some random, class action lawsuit against Wells Fargo that I don't remember joining. (I haven't been a Wells Fargo customer in five years, so thank God I wasn't waiting around for that check to arrive).</p> <p>Since Mr. Spendypants and I were out of town for the baptism, he hasn't balanced his books yet. His savings and expenses for last month will be chronicled as part of my next post.</p> <p><strong>Goal:</strong> $31,000</p> <p><strong>Amount Raised:</strong> $19,998.41</p> <p><strong>Amount Spent:</strong> $10,653.66</p> <p><strong>Amount Left to Go:</strong> $21,747.82</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-budget-challenge-2016-how-to-live-frugally-when-you-have-no-time">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-living-skills-i-wish-my-parents-would-have-taught-me">8 Frugal Living Skills I Wish My Parents Would Have Taught Me</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-decorate-your-christmas-tree-for-under-30">10 Ways to Decorate Your Christmas Tree for Under $30</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/double-coupons-they-could-cost-you">Double Coupons – They Could Cost You!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-reasons-to-last-minute-holiday-shop">9 Smart Reasons to Last-Minute Holiday Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/things-you-might-not-know-about-your-local-thrift-store">Things You Might Not Know About Your Local Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living calendars consignment coupons Holidays max wongs budget product research shopping thrift stores wasting time Fri, 22 Jul 2016 10:00:09 +0000 Max Wong 1753339 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Find Ethically Sourced Products You Can Afford http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-ethically-sourced-products-you-can-afford <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-find-ethically-sourced-products-you-can-afford" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_clothes_shopping_000049977904.jpg" alt="Women finding ethically sourced goods they can afford" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I think that most of us are appalled every time the issues of slavery and trafficking come up in the news. We know that people around the world are working under terrible conditions, often to produce goods that we buy cheaply and use or wear regularly.</p> <p>We know this is a problem, but we feel helpless to solve it.</p> <p>Sure, we know we can buy ethically sourced items, but that's a daunting task, especially when we see and hear how much extra it can cost us to purchase these items. And then we have to <em>find </em>them... it's enough to make most people give up.</p> <p>It's unfortunate that most people don't know just how easy it is to stop supporting slavery and trafficking, and that it doesn't have to cost any more than you would usually spend.</p> <h2>1. Visit a Thrift Store</h2> <p>Most people don't realize that the easiest (and often cheapest) way to stop supporting slavery with our purchases is to <a href="http://daniellelvermeer.com/blog/how-to-buy-ethical-fashion-on-a-budget">buy used goods</a>. Now, before you say it, I know that all of the items at a thrift store are not, in themselves, ethically sourced items. But (and that's a big but), when you buy used, you are stopping the cycle of buying inexpensive goods, not using them up, and instead discarding and buying more. In fact, you are making it so that fewer inexpensive items need to be made which, over time, could lead to fewer of those awful factory situations.</p> <p>Thrift stores can be sources for more than just clothing. I know people who have gotten fabric, dinnerware, appliances, and even furniture via thrifting.</p> <h2>2. Utilize Flash Sale Sites</h2> <p>You know those websites that offer clothing deals until an item is gone? Those can be great resources for buying ethically sourced items. You will need to do some research before you hop on some of these sites and buy something, but a little poking around should help you know which brands are safe when it comes to working conditions. Some sites will actually label clothing from certain manufacturers as ethically sourced or made in America.</p> <p>Not sure where to start? Try <a href="http://www.zulily.com/">Zulily</a>, <a href="http://purecitizen.com/">PureCitizen</a>, and <a href="http://www.fab.com">Fab</a>.</p> <h2>3. Buy American</h2> <p>One great way to make sure you are buying items where workers were paid an ethical wage and had decent working conditions is to buy goods made in America or Canada. Because of the labor laws in those countries, it's almost guaranteed that workers are not slaves and, in fact, are compensated fairly for their time.</p> <p>Not all American goods are cheaper than the unethical imports, but, because you reduce the shipping and transportation costs, these items can sometimes be priced competitively with the cheap, unethically sourced items we are used to.</p> <h2>4. Participate in Swaps</h2> <p>There are all sorts of ways to get involved in clothing swaps. You can usually find a Facebook swap group in your area through a simple search, or you can set one up with some friends. The idea, again, is that wearing used items helps you step out of the vicious cycles that encourage slavery and poor working conditions.</p> <p>To set up a swap, start by finding some friends who are about your size (this is important unless the swap group is large). Set a date, and have everyone bring items that they no longer want. Then &quot;shop&quot; through each other's clothes. Everyone is almost sure to find at least one or two things that will work for them. If all of the clothing finds a new home, great! If it doesn't, donate it to a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-best-thrift-store-finds-of-all-time" target="_blank">local thrift store</a>.</p> <h2>5. Co-Purchase Some Large Items</h2> <p>Sometimes, there's not really a way around buying unethical goods. I'm thinking specifically about technology, appliances, and some household items. If you need to make a large purchase and you can't find a way to make it ethical, try to find someone who you could share the item with. This means that you would buy one of the item, rather than two, thus reducing the number of items that need to be made.</p> <p>I have some friends who have made this work with a printer. The live on a cul-de-sac, and went in on the purchase with the neighbors on either side. The printer lives at their house, but everyone has access to the Wi-Fi network it's on. When someone needs to print, they send the document to the printer and pick it up when they can. A scheme like this could work for things like lawnmowers and other pricey, rarely used tools, and so much more!</p> <h2>6. Set Up a Borrowing System</h2> <p>I think the idea of borrowing and lending makes a lot of us nervous. I know I feel that way! If I lend something, I wonder if I'll ever give it back. And if I borrow, I worry about returning it in the same condition, etc. But, when it comes to ethics, borrowing is a great way to, once again, step out of the consumeristic cycles that support low wages and poor working conditions.</p> <p>Try starting a lending group with people you trust. Talk it over, and decide how you want it to work. If you're borrowing and lending clothes, take some time to get a feel for what the other person has. If you're thinking about borrowing and lending kitchen appliances, tour each other's homes. Set up some rules so that everyone is comfortable with the situation. Then, when you want something that you know your friend has, put the system you set up into use.</p> <p>Some folks I know do this with yard equipment. One family owns a lawn mower, another a snow blower, and another an edger. They rotate these items around so that everyone has a nice yard in the summer and clear pathways in the winter.</p> <p><em>How do you buy or use ethically sourced good without breaking the bank? Would you recommend your methods?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-ethically-sourced-products-you-can-afford">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-stores-with-the-best-price-matching">10 Stores With the Best Price Matching</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-skills-you-need-to-survive-black-friday">8 Frugal Skills You Need to Survive Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-the-best-back-to-school-sales">How to Find the Best Back to School Sales</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-black-friday-deal-without-leaving-home">6 Ways to Score a Black Friday Deal Without Leaving Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-save-loads-of-money-using-credit-cards">7 Ways to Save Loads of Money Using Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping borrowing deals ethically-sourced fair trade made in america retail secondhand thrift stores Wed, 06 Apr 2016 09:30:29 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1682553 at http://www.wisebread.com My 5 Best Thrift Store Finds of All Time http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-best-thrift-store-finds-of-all-time <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/my-5-best-thrift-store-finds-of-all-time" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_building_furniture_000029863722.jpg" alt="Woman painting best thrift store finds of all time" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I was raised by parents who loved antiques, amassed wild collections, and roamed auctions and thrift stores for sport. Destined for the same weird passion, I thrift-shopped across the Midwest for the first 22 years of my life, hunted honey holes in Chicago for a decade, and picked all over the Pacific Northwest for a few years after that.</p> <p>Nothing gets my blood pumping quite like crossing the threshold of a hopelessly disorganized junk shop piled high with all things dusty, rusty, and forgotten. And like all thrifters and pickers, I have a personal hall of fame &mdash; objects that are special because of their rarity, value, or shear splendor. Here are my five best thrift store finds of all time:</p> <h2>1. Eames Chair</h2> <p>Furniture is usually one of the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-deals-in-every-thrift-store">best deals in any thrift store</a> &mdash; especially when you find a piece you can flip for a handsome profit. Last year on a road trip through eastern Oregon, I stumbled across an authentic Eames dowel leg desk chair from the 1950s. Though the wooden legs had been slightly damaged by a chew-happy dog, I took a chance and picked it up for $14. Once photographed carefully (warts and all), I listed it online and sold it for $400. This find reinforced an important lesson: If the item is rare enough, a little damage is entirely forgivable.</p> <h2>2. Experimental Fiestaware</h2> <p>In 1999, I found a Fiestaware relish tray at a Chicago thrift store. The piece was covered in an unusual iridescent glaze that made it look exactly like metal (in fact, it looked so much like metal, that it had been tossed in with the pots and pans). I was familiar enough with Fiesta to know the relish tray was not standard-issue, so I happily forked over 90 cents for it. After a bit of research, I learned the glaze was experimental and there were very few surviving examples. A few weeks later, I sold the piece on eBay for $280. Remember, it pays to follow your hunches and devote some time to research!</p> <h2>3. Two Pine Harvest Tables</h2> <p>Granted, this find didn't come from a thrift store, but it did come from a very old department store. During a picking trip in Iowa, my brother and I happened upon a closeout sale of one the last remaining Ben Franklin stores (a Midwest five-and-dime chain that peaked in the 1970s).</p> <p>The owner was selling everything that wasn't nailed down. After convincing her that we had cash and weren't afraid to get dirty, she let us explore the store's stone cellar where we found two hulking eight-foot long pine harvest tables buried under 50 years of junk. Carefully clearing off the tables and hauling them up was part of the bargain &mdash; a very good bargain at only $50 each. We loaded the tables, advertised them locally, and sold them as a pair for $1000. Discovering these beauties illustrated an important picking tip: Sometimes the best stuff is tucked away out of sight. Don't be afraid to ask permission to explore.</p> <h2>4. Adrian Pearsall Chair</h2> <p>Ahh, this one's my biggest success and my most profound regret rolled into one. At a neighborhood thrift store in Chicago in 1996, I discovered two matching mid-century teak club chairs. Each was low, sleek, beautifully designed&hellip;and covered in the ugliest upholstery I'd ever seen. I must have been on a budget that particular day, because I violated the first rule of buying secondhand: Never separate a pair. A few years later (after I had my single chair tastefully recovered in period fabric), I learned it was an Adrian Pearsall. Pearsall was an icon of midcentury American furniture design and his vintage couches, chairs, and tables command premium prices. In 2010, that little $7 treasure sold for $1100 (if only I'd had two to sell!).</p> <h2>5. Dog Portrait</h2> <p>Finding something truly unique is one of the many <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too">reasons I love thrift shopping</a>. Earlier this year, I was leisurely thrifting my way through central Iowa and discovered a vintage hand-painted portrait of a dog &mdash; a big, noble, lovable mutt of a dog. I didn't think it was worth much (and I was right). Still, for $3.99, I had to have it. The painting occupies a prime spot on my wall and every time I walk by it I wonder about that dog, its master, and their ball-chasing, picture-painting story. It reminds me of an important concluding point: Don't hesitate to buy a treasure that's priceless only to you. Chances are you'll never see another one like it.</p> <p><em>Are you a diehard thrift-shopper? What are some of your hall-of-fame finds? </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-best-thrift-store-finds-of-all-time">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe">Thrifting the Perfect Designer Wardrobe</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-collectibles-that-almost-always-become-more-valuable">10 Collectibles That Almost Always Become More Valuable</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too">31 Reasons Why I&#039;m in Love With Thrift Shopping (and You Should Be Too)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-ethically-sourced-products-you-can-afford">How to Find Ethically Sourced Products You Can Afford</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-buy-at-the-dollar-store-and-10-you-should">10 Things You Should Never Buy at the Dollar Store (and 10 You Should)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping antiques bargains good finds resale value secondhand thrift stores vintage Mon, 04 Apr 2016 09:00:07 +0000 Kentin Waits 1677898 at http://www.wisebread.com Thrifting the Perfect Designer Wardrobe http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_thrift_store_000079170807.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to thrift the perfect designer wardrobe" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Recently, I purged my closet of clothes I don't wear and pared down my wardrobe to just 30ish pieces. As I delved deeper into the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/can-a-capsule-wardrobe-actually-save-you-money">capsule wardrobe phenomenon</a>, I discovered that many people were building their carefully-considered wardrobes using second hand or thrifted pieces.</p> <p>On my first trip to my local thrift store, I scored an Anthropologie blouse, a J. Crew shirt, and a Madewell skirt, all for $12. I was hooked. On my second visit, I left with a pair of Joe's Jeans and an Adrienne Vittadini cardigan. A few thrifting trips later, I had beefed up my capsule wardrobe to the point that I had to stop myself from buying more, otherwise my wardrobe really wouldn't be a &quot;capsule&quot; anymore.</p> <p>To be honest, I have gotten more compliments on my thrifted clothing than I ever did on my full-price clothing. I can now dress the way I've always wanted to, but could never afford before. In addition, my higher-end thrifted clothes are often made with better materials (like linen, pima cotton, silk) and will last longer. All in all, building a secondhand designer wardrobe is a great economical choice that will save you money and contribute to less waste going to the landfills.</p> <h2>Thrifting High-End Items</h2> <p>Whether you're shopping in brick-and-mortar secondhand shops or online, a few tips hold true for building a killer designer wardrobe.</p> <h3>Know Your Brands</h3> <p>Familiarize yourself with brands that you like and their signature designs (as well as, if possible, your size in that brand). That way, you'll be more likely to recognize them in a store, and it'll be easy to search for them online.</p> <h3>Focus on Quality</h3> <p>Often you can tell a designer piece from the quality of the fabric. Disregard clothes that are pilling or worn out. And don't fall into the trap of buying something just because of the brand when it's too worn out, stained, or just won't work for you.</p> <h3>Know What You Want</h3> <p>Have an idea of what specific pieces you are looking for. For example, I knew I wanted a light gray cardigan, and therefore searched specifically in the light gray sweater area at my local thrift store. I found several pieces that would work before I settled on my favorite. When I go into a thrift store with specific pieces on my mind, I have a much higher success rate than when I go in without a goal (which makes it much easier to get overwhelmed).</p> <h3>Go Outside Your Comfort Zone</h3> <p>The great thing about thrifting is that you're paying so much less than retail! So if you've always had the urge to wear hot pink pants, but have never had the guts, go for it! This is your opportunity to expand your style.</p> <h3>Check the Cleaning Label</h3> <p>I try to buy clothes that don't have to be dry cleaned (unless it's special occasion wear), as I'll end up paying more in drycleaning than I spent on the dress.</p> <h3>Don't Buy Stuff You Don't Need</h3> <p>It can be tempting to buy several pairs of 7 for All Mankind jeans when they're $9.99 a pop, but do you need more than one or two? Money spent thrifting is still money wasted if you never end up using the item.</p> <h2>Where to Buy Secondhand Clothing</h2> <p>Now that you know what &mdash; and how &mdash; to look for used pieces, here's where to shop.</p> <h3>Thrift Stores</h3> <p>I've found that the key with thrift stores is finding one with high volume and high turnover, to maximize your chances of finding something new and on-trend. Thrift stores are crammed full of both high and low-end clothing, so you'll have to sift through a lot of poor quality pieces to find the treasures. Usually though, you get a good price on it. Going to a thrift store in a fancier part of town might increase your chances of finding designer items.</p> <h3>Resale and Consignment Stores</h3> <p>Resale and consignment stores differ from thrift stores in that they buy or consign their inventory (instead of getting it through donations) and thus filter out a lot of the lesser-quality stuff. You will usually pay more, but you won't have to search as hard. Consignment stores are great if you don't have a lot of time to dig through racks of clothing, but still want to get a decent price on secondhand goods. Often, a consignment store might cater to a specific style &mdash; so don't go to the hipster consignment store if you're really preppy at heart!</p> <h3>Online Resellers</h3> <p>Online is where the resale and consignment trend is booming. Websites like <a href="http://thredup.com">thredUP</a> buy new or almost-new brand-name clothing and sell them for very reasonable prices. I've bought from thredUP before and have been very satisfied with the quality of the items I bought (they also offer free returns for store credit, a rarity in the resale market). thredUP's main strengths are the sheer number of great items they have, and the excellent search functions that allow you to filter your search by size, color, brand, etc.</p> <p>Other resellers include <a href="http://snobswap.com">SnobSwap</a> and <a href="http://www.therealreal.com">TheRealReal</a>, but I continue to patronize thredUP for its ease of use and low prices.</p> <p>You can also buy direct from sellers through sites like <a href="http://poshmark.com">Poshmark</a>, which has a social media aspect to it (you can follow favorite sellers, participate in virtual &quot;parties,&quot; etc.). If there is a problem with the item received, the selling website protects you and can offer you a refund. And of course, you can always search on eBay (be sure to check the &quot;pre-owned&quot; search filter to narrow down your choices).</p> <p><em>Have you punched up your wardrobe with great thrift or secondhand finds? What'd you get?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camilla-cheung">Camilla Cheung</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-best-thrift-store-finds-of-all-time">My 5 Best Thrift Store Finds of All Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-ways-to-save-money-on-clothes">101 Ways to Save Money on Clothes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too">31 Reasons Why I&#039;m in Love With Thrift Shopping (and You Should Be Too)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/things-you-might-not-know-about-your-local-thrift-store">Things You Might Not Know About Your Local Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-having-good-taste-saves-you-money">5 Ways Having Good Taste Saves You Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping bargains clothes designer saving money secondhand thrift stores wardrobe Wed, 23 Mar 2016 10:00:10 +0000 Camilla Cheung 1675388 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Smart Ways to Save on a Wedding Dress http://www.wisebread.com/7-smart-ways-to-save-on-a-wedding-dress <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-smart-ways-to-save-on-a-wedding-dress" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_wedding_dress_000051558236.jpg" alt="Woman finding smart ways to save on a wedding dress" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Planning a wedding is a tiny part of your new life with your beloved, but it's one that can cause a lot of stress. Between booking a venue and getting all the details in place, it's easy for an engagement to bring on anxiety rather than joy.</p> <p>What if you fall in love with a dress you can't afford? I managed to get a great deal on a dress that I loved, and I think you can, too. Here are some things I tried, and a few other ideas that have worked for people I know. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/budget-bride-131-savvy-ways-to-cut-wedding-costs">Budget Bride: 131 Savvy Ways to Cut Wedding Costs</a>)</p> <h2>1. Wear a Loved One's Dress</h2> <p>Most married women still have their wedding dress. If there is a special woman in your life and it's logistically possible for you to wear her dress, ask her about it. Many people are happy to see their dress worn again, especially by someone they care about.</p> <p>Remember to consider any woman you love when you're thinking about this. You could wear a dress from your mother, sister, cousin, aunt, or even your grandmother. If you are close to your fiancee's family, maybe you could find a dress from someone on that side. Or maybe you have a close married friend or a mentor whose dress you'd love to borrow.</p> <h2>2. Thrift a Dress... or Fabric</h2> <p>Many people recoil at the idea of getting their wedding dress from a thrift store, but the truth is that you can often score a great deal if you're willing to put in the legwork. If you find a dress whose style you already like, that's awesome. But don't discount a dress you hate. If it's made from great fabric, like raw silk, the material alone is usually worth more than the thrift store price. And, for less than the price of a new dress, you can have a seamstress remake or change that dress into something you love.</p> <h2>3. Get a Designer Discount</h2> <p>Even if you have your heart set on a designer dress, you don't have to pay full price. Check out Nearly Newlywed or PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com to find designer gowns that people are reselling. Often, these are a fraction of the price the dress would cost new.</p> <p>Try on dresses in a store before you buy anything online, so you know what size you're looking for. Remember &mdash; good seamstresses can almost always make a dress smaller (though it's harder if it has a lot of embellishments), so if your size isn't available and you don't want to wait, try buying a dress that's a little too big. Even after you pay your seamstress, it will likely be cheaper than buying new.</p> <h2>4. Check Out a Mass Retailer</h2> <p>Specifically, BCBG, J. Crew, Ann Taylor, and Anthropologie all have bridal lines, and most of the dresses they offer cost less than you would pay at a bridal boutique.</p> <p>Some of these dresses are simple, so you might want to think about adding some details of your own. But when the dress itself costs less, it's easier to afford the alterations that will make it specifically yours. If you happen to find a dress you adore as-is, you'll end up with the gown of your dreams for even less.</p> <h2>5. Try Sample Sale Sites</h2> <p>Once or twice a year, the top sample sale sites (think Gilt, Ideeli, and Rue La La) offer bridal collections at a huge discount. Designer dresses can go for 50%-75% off the normal retail price, so you can get a gorgeous dress for a steal.</p> <p>You will have to act fast when these sales go live, because they often sell out quickly. Know what you want and when the sale starts, and be ready to buy as fast as you can. If you miss the sale, it may not come around again before your wedding.</p> <h2>6. Choose Fabric Wisely</h2> <p>Some fabrics are more expensive than others (think raw silk, for the most costly). Fortunately, there are many cheaper fabrics that look spectacular and cost a lot less. In fact, technology has come far enough that no one but an expert will be able to tell the difference between an expensive fabric and a cheaper one unless they are up close and personal with your dress.</p> <p>Synthetic or blended fabric will usually cost the least, but even taffeta and chiffon will be cheaper than silk or real lace. If you find a dress that costs too much, you may be able to purchase a cheaper but similarly textured fabric and have a seamstress make the dress for less. Be sure to consult a seamstress before you buy any fabric to make sure it will work with your plan.</p> <h2>7. Shop in the Winter (Or the Summer!)</h2> <p>Winter and summer are when designers get ready to distribute their new lines. Retailers often have to make room for these new clothes, and they do that by selling their old stock and store samples at drastically reduced prices (sometimes up to 80% off!). You will usually need to visit these stores directly and prepare yourself for some craziness while you're there, but it will be worth it if you have your heart set on a particular dress and you can get an amazing deal.</p> <p><em>How did you save money on your wedding dress? Would you recommend others do the same?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-smart-ways-to-save-on-a-wedding-dress">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-ethically-sourced-products-you-can-afford">How to Find Ethically Sourced Products You Can Afford</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-buy-at-the-dollar-store-and-10-you-should">10 Things You Should Never Buy at the Dollar Store (and 10 You Should)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-cash-back-sites-to-earn-you-thousands-per-year">30+ Cash Back Sites to Earn You Thousands Per Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-you-should-buy-at-costco">15 Things You Should Buy at Costco</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-to-look-for-every-time-you-visit-a-thrift-store">10 Things to Look for Every Time You Visit a Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping deals thrift stores wedding dresses wedding planning Fri, 22 Jan 2016 16:00:03 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1642633 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Things You Should Never Buy Used http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-buy-used <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-things-you-should-never-buy-used" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/baby_in_crib_000052779812.jpg" alt="Learning the 10 things you should never buy used" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The trick to getting your money's worth at a garage sale is knowing what to buy &mdash; and what not to buy. The next time you visit a thrift store or garage sale, you really need to skip these 10 things. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-deals-in-every-thrift-store?ref=seealso">The 5 Best Deals in Every Thrift Store</a>)</p> <h2>1. Helmets</h2> <p>By purchasing a bicycle or motorcycle helmet at a thrift store, you could be unintentionally putting your safety at risk. You have no idea who owned it before you, how old it is, or why they got rid of it. According to the Bike Helmet Safety Institute (BHSI), your <a href="http://www.bhsi.org/replace.htm">helmet should be replaced</a> after hitting your head in any crash. They recommend never buying a used helmet because it may have been involved in an accident. Instead, purchase a new helmet and feel confident that your head is protected.</p> <h2>2. Mattresses</h2> <p>In most cases, you should steer clear of old mattresses and box springs at the thrift store. Mattresses naturally gather things like allergens and dust mites from the previous owner, and you'll never know what caused a stain. The bed bug risk is also always a worry. Apart from being gross, mattresses also conform to the first owner's body and sleeping position. This will leave the bed lumpy and uncomfortable for you.</p> <h2>3. Cribs</h2> <p>Cribs and car seats are constantly being updated with new safety features, and recalled when other features fail. If you purchase a used one at a garage sale, you risk purchasing one of the millions of cribs that have been recalled for safety reasons. The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) found that a crib <a href="http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Safety-Education/Safety-Education-Centers/cribs/">more than 10 years old</a> will also have design flaws that put infants in danger. This is also true for many other used baby items, such as...</p> <h2>4. Child Car Seats</h2> <p>Car seats are only expected to last between <a href="http://www.parenting.com/article/car-seat-guidelines">five to nine years</a> (check your expiration date). If you buy one at a garage sale, you won't know if it was involved in a crash. Car seats are only meant to go through one accident, even if the child was <a href="http://thecarseatlady.com/aftercrash/">not in the seat</a> at the time. Go the smarter, safer route, and buy new.</p> <h2>5. Underwear and Bathing Suits</h2> <p>If they've touched someone's nether regions, you should take a pass. Bathing suits also wear out faster than regular clothing, so they may already be near the end. Instead of saving a few dollars on used underwear or bathing suits, just wait to purchase these essentials when they are on sale (such as during the winter, in the clearance bins, or during a semi-annual sale).</p> <h2>6. Cosmetics</h2> <p>If you don't know who's used it, you shouldn't be applying any cosmetic product to your face. In fact, in a study by LA Times, it was discovered that <a href="http://articles.latimes.com/2010/apr/18/image/la-ig-testers-20100418">100% of makeup testers</a> at a popular department store cosmetic counter were contaminated with E. coli, strep, staph, and other bacteria. If these issues run rampant in a department store, they are sure to be found in your local thrift store's makeup selection as well.</p> <h2>7. Bath and Beauty Products</h2> <p>You should stay away from bath and beauty products, including creams, lotions, and perfumes, because there is no guarantee that you will actually get what the bottle states. The seller could have replaced the contents with anything. Cosmetics don't last forever, so you may be buying something that's already expired and risk <a href="http://www.paulaschoice.com/expert-advice/skin-care-basics/_/When-to-Toss-Out-Beauty-Products">exposure to harmful bacteria</a>.</p> <h2>8. Running Shoes</h2> <p>If you buy used running shoes, the tread and cushioning are probably already worn out and you will end up injuring your feet, knees, legs, and/or back by running in them. Used shoes have already been molded to someone else's feet and it will be difficult to get them to re-mold to yours. As is the case with any used footwear, you are also at risk of <a href="http://health.clevelandclinic.org/2014/09/how-you-can-stop-foot-and-toe-fungus-in-its-tracks/">catching a foot fungus</a> or other bacterial infection from wearing someone else's shoes.</p> <h2>9. Electronics</h2> <p>You can already find a good deal on old or used items at most electronics stores &mdash; and these generally come with some sort of warranty. See what kind of deals you can get online or at your local electronics or home goods store before considering shopping at a thrift shop. You may also want to consider refurbished electronics, which have been professionally repaired by the manufacturer or an authorized dealer.</p> <h2>10. Puzzles and Games</h2> <p>Certain games (particularly vintage ones) can be a unique thrift store find at an affordable cost. On the other hand, puzzles and games with lots of pieces are never a good idea. If there's even one piece missing, you won't be able to play. Where's the fun in that?</p> <p><em>What are some of your favorite things to buy at a thrift store or garage sale? What </em><em>do you tend to avoid? Please share your thoughts in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-buy-used">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-furnish-your-home-for-less-than-the-cost-of-a-moving-truck">How to Furnish Your Home for Less Than the Cost of a Moving Truck</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-to-look-for-every-time-you-visit-a-thrift-store">10 Things to Look for Every Time You Visit a Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-the-secret-to-buying-electronics-for-cheap">This Is the Secret to Buying Electronics for Cheap</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tips-for-shopping-at-estate-sales">Tips for Shopping at Estate Sales</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-should-always-buy-used">8 Things You Should Always Buy Used</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping garage sales safety thrift stores used yard sales Thu, 05 Nov 2015 15:15:24 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1605800 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways to Save Big on National Thrift Shop Day http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-save-big-on-national-thrift-shop-day <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-to-save-big-on-national-thrift-shop-day" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_clothes_shopping_000049971578.jpg" alt="Woman having fun and saving money on national thrift shop day" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Mark it on your calendars &mdash; August 17 is National Thrift Shop Day and stores across the nation will be celebrating by offering special discounts to customers. If you're an avid thrift shopper like me, this is nothing short of a high holiday. And if you've never wandered into a second-hand store before, now's the time to see what all the fuss is about (trust me, you'll never look at retail prices the same way again).</p> <p>Make the most of this banner day with a few helpful strategies.</p> <h2>1. Embrace the Chaos</h2> <p>Though there are many <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beyond-goodwill-the-different-types-of-thrift-stores">different types of thrift stores</a>, it's safe to say they're all more chaotic than your local Target. Inventory is constantly churning, aisles can be cramped and disorganized, diehard thrifters can be competitive, and browsing often feels like a contact sport. Caffeinate and embrace the chaos. Think of thrift-shopping as less of a task and more of an entertaining adventure.</p> <h2>2. Avoid Getting Junk Drunk</h2> <p>If you love retro items, DIY projects, or antiques, it's easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer volume of delights a well-stocked thrift store offers. Keep your head and avoid getting &quot;junk drunk.&quot; Focus on what you need, look for the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-deals-in-every-thrift-store">best thrift store deals</a>, and don't let low prices cloud your judgment. Your basement, attic, and garage will thank you.</p> <h2>3. Anticipate Your Needs</h2> <p>Thrift stores have an eclectic assortment of inventory that changes almost daily. And while the randomness can be refreshing, it makes finding a specific item you need right away nearly impossible. The key to success is anticipating what you'll need six months or a year down the road and buying it when you find it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-back-to-school-items-you-should-always-shop-for-at-the-thrift-store?ref=seealso">6 Back-to-School Items You Should Always Shop for at the Thrift Store</a>)</p> <h2>4. Size it Up</h2> <p>Need curtains for the guest room? New jeans for your grand-daughter? A vintage frame for a craft project? You'll probably find it all at some point while you're thrift-shopping &mdash; but only if you're prepared with the right sizes and dimensions. Store important measurements on your smartphone and avoid the guessing gamble.</p> <h2>5. Button, Snap, and Zip</h2> <p>New clothes are alarmingly expensive. That's why it's so tempting to overlook the flaws of a great second-hand bargain. But be diligent. If you're not handy with a needle and thread, make sure every button is still attached, every snap still snaps, and every zipper still zips.</p> <h2>6. Shop With Friends</h2> <p>Thrifting is a livelier sort of shopping. You'll come across items that remind you of your childhood, crazy kitsch, wondrous what's-its, hidden gems, and amazing bargains that you simply can't grab fast enough. Make the whole experience interactive by bringing along a friend or two and sharing in the fun. Heck, make a day of it; hit all the shops in your area and then relax over dinner together.</p> <h2>7. Donate!</h2> <p>What could be more efficient than shopping for what you need while donating what you don't? Keep your local thrift shop thriving, support a worthy cause, and get a tax deduction at the same time. In my book, that's called a win-win-win.</p> <p>If you're like me, you don't need more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too">reasons to love thrift shopping</a>. Still, National Thrift Shop Day is a perfect opportunity to woo your friends away from retail and revive your inner treasure hunter. Build the buzz by posting your thrift shopping stories or best finds via social media using #NationalThriftShopDay. Happy hunting!</p> <p><em>Are you a faithful thrift shopper? What's your all-time best thrift store score?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-save-big-on-national-thrift-shop-day">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-stores-with-the-best-price-matching">10 Stores With the Best Price Matching</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beyond-goodwill-the-different-types-of-thrift-stores">Beyond Goodwill: The Different Types of Thrift Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-online-retailers-who-let-you-stack-coupons">9 Online Retailers Who Let You Stack Coupons</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping consignment discounts retail second hand stores thrift stores Fri, 14 Aug 2015 15:00:17 +0000 Kentin Waits 1519359 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Fun Money Boosts That Grow Your Savings http://www.wisebread.com/5-fun-money-boosts-that-grow-your-savings <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-fun-money-boosts-that-grow-your-savings" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shopping_scarf_000022078327.jpg" alt="Woman shopping and getting money boost to grow her savings" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Earning extra money is my go-to method for boosting any savings goal. Saving dough is one way to boost your nest egg, but earning extra cash can really put it into overdrive.</p> <p>My husband and I are <a href="http://www.carefulcents.com/achieve-your-goals/">planning to move across the country</a> during the summer, so we need extra money to put into our relocation fund. We're both self-employed, so this allows us to have a flexible work schedule and take on extra part-time work. Below are some unusual and fun ideas I'm personally using to build up extra funds. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cool-convenient-cash-11-easy-ways-to-make-money-online?ref=seealso">11 Easy Ways to Make Money Online</a>)</p> <h2>1. Get Paid for Your Skills</h2> <p>Depending on your skills, you can offer editing, designing, or writing work in exchange for pay. And the best part is, you can do it from the comfort of your own home and on your own time. You get to work with clients virtually and bring in money<em> right now</em>.</p> <p>Freelance writing sites such as <a href="https://www.upwork.com/">Upwork</a>&nbsp;and micro-jobs sites such as <a href="http://tracking.fiverr.com/aff_c?offer_id=1441&amp;aff_id=4437">Fiverr</a> enable you to turn your talents into a viable second income stream. Who knows? In time, you might even be able to make your passion into your full-time gig. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-freelance-gigs-anyone-can-do-to-make-extra-money?ref=seealso">8 Freelance Gigs Anyone Can Do</a>)</p> <h2>2. Work as a Brand Ambassador</h2> <p>If you enjoy local events and interacting with people, then becoming a brand ambassador a few times a month could be right up your alley. What is a brand ambassador?</p> <p>You know the people that give out free samples at the grocery store or local festivals? They are getting paid to represent a specific brand and give out coupons and freebies &mdash; and it can be a fun job for extroverts.</p> <p>If you have experience in a certain field, you can reach out to specific companies directly. My husband did this, and since he's a chef, he's worked as a brand ambassador for Organic Valley promoting several of their dairy products. Recently he spent four days giving out free samples and coupons, and was compensated well for his time.</p> <h2>3. Flip Thrift Store and Yard Sale Finds</h2> <p>This method probably won't make you as much money as it used to, but it's still a viable way to make extra cash. In the past I've made an average of $1,000 per month flipping thrift store finds for a profit on sites like eBay or Craigslist.</p> <p>You'll have to spend some time digging through the &quot;trash&quot; to find the treasure, but if you look for specific items (like brand-name clothing or electronics), and do your research, you can still make good money on the weekends.</p> <p>Plus, it's a fun activity to do with your spouse, or a frugal friend. With a creative eye, you can spot good-as-new pieces or shine up some dusty items and sell them for extra money.</p> <h2>4. Rent Out Your Assets for Cash</h2> <p>One of the smartest ways to bring in extra cash, without doing any additional work, is to leverage what you already have. Can you rent out a spare bedroom, or an extra couch in your house, on a site like <a href="https://www.airbnb.com/">Airbnb</a>? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-rent-your-place-on-airbnb-and-succeed?ref=seealso">This Is How You Rent Your Place on Airbnb</a>)</p> <p>Do you have a coveted parking space in the city? You can use this to make extra money by renting out your parking spot while you're at work during the day. You can even rent out your car if it's not being used often. There are lots of new apps and startups that allow you to use the assets you have to bring in extra cash.</p> <h2>5. Make It a Competition</h2> <p>It's always fun to have a healthy dose of competition among your spouse and kids. This principle also applies when you're saving towards any type of financial goal. If you get the whole family involved, not only is it more fun, but it teaches everyone that <em>hard work equals results.</em></p> <p>When my husband and I create a new goal and begin working towards it, we each choose one type of money-making idea to focus on for 30 days. Our focused attitude makes it less overwhelming, and turns the whole idea into a friendly competition.</p> <p>Whoever brings in the most money at the end of the month gets a bonus from the other (like a shoulder massage, cleaning the house, or cooking dinner).</p> <p><em>What's another fun way you can boost your savings goal by earning extra cash?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-smith">Carrie Smith</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-fun-money-boosts-that-grow-your-savings">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-11"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-fast-ways-to-restock-an-emergency-fund-after-an-emergency">6 Fast Ways to Restock an Emergency Fund After an Emergency</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-lucrative-side-hustles-for-city-dwellers">15 Lucrative Side Hustles for City Dwellers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-make-money-outside-your-day-job">15 Ways to Make Money Outside Your Day Job</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/clear-out-that-clutter-15-places-to-sell-your-stuff">Clear Out That Clutter: 15 Places to Sell Your Stuff</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-surprising-ways-to-earn-money-online">7 Surprising Ways to Earn Money Online</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income brand ambassadors freelancing renting saving money thrift stores yard sales Wed, 15 Apr 2015 09:00:25 +0000 Carrie Smith 1382369 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Smart Ways to Save on Back-to-School Clothing http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-ways-to-save-on-back-to-school-clothing <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-smart-ways-to-save-on-back-to-school-clothing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother-baby-shopping-small-178769891-small.jpg" alt="mother baby shopping" title="mother baby shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I say it every year, but the summer raced by at lightning speed. It's already mid-August, and many of us are diving deep into back-to-school mode. One of the most important parts of getting ready? Dressing the part. But refreshing your fall wardrobe &mdash; whether you're heading into the classroom or not &mdash; doesn't need to cost a fortune. In fact, it doesn't need to cost anything at all! (Related: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-ways-to-save-money-on-clothing?ref=related">50 Ways to Update Your Wardrobe On the Cheap</a>)</p> <p>Here are some tips that will get you looking smart without spending foolishly.</p> <h2>1. Take Stock</h2> <p>Before trekking to the store, it's important you gain a solid understanding of the clothes that already live in your dresser drawers. Take a couple hours to dump all your clothing items onto your bed and to go through them. Try each piece on to see what fits both your body and lifestyle. Divide into three piles: keep, toss/donate, and on-the-fence. Place the keep and on-the-fence clothes back into your closet and proceed with the next tips. (You can always repeat again with those clothes you're not sure about.)</p> <h2>2. Sell the Old</h2> <p>And before throwing away or donating discarded clothing, try hitting up your local consignment shops. You can even sell your stuff (for free!) online with sites like <a href="http://www.thredup.com/r/IRDEL0">thredUP</a>. Keep in mind that most stores prefer name brand clothes in good condition (no stains, rips, pilling, etc.) that are within a few fashion seasons of the current date. Then pocket the money you earn to put toward new duds. Many stores will give you more credit versus cash if you choose to shop with your earnings there.</p> <h2>3. Think Thrifty</h2> <p>That's right! While you're at the consignment store, take a look around. Chances are you might discover a few pieces you love that are like-new and won't end up costing you a dime. Thrift stores like GoodWill and Salvation Army are other good places to browse, you'll just want to inspect these pieces more carefully for signs of wear. Historically, I've found great deals in these types of places, especially on children's clothing, since kids outgrow shirts and pants so quickly, they hardly get a chance to lose that gently worn look. (Related: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-back-to-school-items-you-should-always-shop-for-at-the-thrift-store?ref=related">6 Back-to-School Items You Should Always Buy at the Thrift Store</a>)</p> <h2>4. Add Accessories</h2> <p>Before racing to the retail stores, consider if more clothes are really what you need. Sometimes <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-a-downsized-wardrobe-you-love">having fewer options</a> means that dressing takes less time and energy in the mornings, meaning you go about your day with less hassle. You may also get better overall use out of a smaller wardrobe because you won't forget about anything in the depths of your closet. If you think this idea applies to you, shop around for a few key accessories &mdash; belts, scarves, hats, jewelry &mdash; that can transform otherwise plain outfits into sheer style. (Related: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/affordable-accessories-to-kickstart-your-style?ref=related">Affordable Accessories to Kickstart Your Style</a>)</p> <h2>5. Shop Sales</h2> <p>Don't pile into the car without a plan if you want good deals on a new wardrobe. Take some time to check your local paper, TV advertisements, and store websites for any promotions or coupons. And don't forget to check those social media accounts, as some major shops post coupon codes only for their loyal fans to enjoy. Chances are, there's a sale upcoming, and you'll be kicking yourself if you pay full price only to find whatever you bought is 40% off days later. Once you purchase, be sure to protect your investment by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/youre-washing-your-clothes-too-often-what-to-do-instead">washing your clothing less often</a>.</p> <p><em>What are your best methods for saving big on back-to-school clothing? Please share in comments</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-ways-to-save-on-back-to-school-clothing">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-12"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-clothing-steamers">The 5 Best Clothing Steamers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-in-home-dry-cleaning-kits">The 5 Best In-Home Dry Cleaning Kits</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-back-to-school-items-you-should-always-shop-for-at-the-thrift-store">6 Back-to-School Items You Should Always Shop for at the Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-ways-to-save-money-on-clothes">101 Ways to Save Money on Clothes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-reasons-plus-size-shopping-sucks">15 Reasons Plus-Size Shopping Sucks</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping back-to-school clothes clothing fashion thrift stores Mon, 18 Aug 2014 21:00:04 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1185371 at http://www.wisebread.com 31 Reasons Why I'm in Love With Thrift Shopping (and You Should Be Too) http://www.wisebread.com/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/shopping-5269089-small.jpg" alt="shopping" title="shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I realize I'm a strange animal. My palms tingle a little bit when I approach a thrift store. All my senses sharpen. The rest of the world fades into watercolor tones and muffled sounds. I can park, grab my wallet, hop out, and lock my car in a single fluid Matrix-inspired movement. Once inside, I can size up a thrift store in seconds: Who's the serious competition and who's just browsing? Is the store too organized or wonderfully chaotic? What's newly-stocked, and what's stale? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-deals-in-every-thrift-store?ref=seealso">The 5 Best Deals in Every Thrift Store</a>)</p> <p>I've been a die-hard thrifter since I was 13 years old, and now, as I approach the midpoint of my 40's, my love affair with thrifting has only deepened. If you're a serious second-hand shopper, you may recognize many of your own motivations in the list that follows. And if you've never tried thrifting, consider all these reasons to fall madly in love with it.</p> <p>1. Where else can the average person go on a <a href="http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/nation/2007-03-23-rare-document_N.htm">real-life treasure hunt</a>? (I'll save you the click: Man finds copy of an 1823 print of the Declaration of Independence, worth almost $500k, in a thrift store!)</p> <p>2. Saving 75% on retail is just like getting a 75% return on your money.</p> <p>3. Used items are tried and true and (usually) come without surprises.</p> <p>4. Those second-hand jeans are already broken-in.</p> <p>5. Shop for good! Your purchases often help fund charitable causes.</p> <p>6. Thrifting is recycling at its most basic and beneficial level.</p> <p>7. There are all different <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beyond-goodwill-the-different-types-of-thrift-stores">kinds of thrift stores</a>, and they tend to have the widest, wildest, most unpredictable inventory in the business.</p> <p>8. Because retail prices hurt!</p> <p>9. If older means made better, thrift stores have all the good stuff!</p> <p>10. Thrift stores are the perfect places to find an expensive weekend project.</p> <p>11. You can furnish a dorm room or college apartment on a shoestring.</p> <p>12. Thrift stores are windows into our culture &mdash; mix shopping with sociology.</p> <p>13. Thrifting keeps your kids out of the mall (and that's always a good thing).</p> <p>14. You can never have too many copies of &quot;<a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0060724277/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0060724277&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=VDNXEFPAVT543SRT">I'm OK, You're OK</a>.&quot;</p> <p>15. Sometimes, thrifting <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/23/north-carolina-woman-find_n_1690850.html">pays off big</a>. (Again, saving you a click: North Carolina woman buys abstract painting worth $20k for $9.99.)</p> <p>16. Missing an obscure piece of your grandmother's china? Be patient; you'll eventually find it at a thrift store.</p> <p>17. Retail emporiums are homogenous. Thrifting lets you find something that no one else has.</p> <p>18. When you're thrifting, you're not directly increasing the industrial demand for more.</p> <p>19. You can brag about how much you saved.</p> <p>20. Because new books cost at least $14.99.</p> <p>21. Thrift stores are a picker's paradise. Vintage clothes and other items can be flipped for profit.</p> <p>22. Shopping second hand sets a great example for your kids. The value of thrift, creative reuse, and community support are noble lessons!</p> <p>23. Everything is prewashed and preshrunk. When a piece of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/to-buy-or-not-to-buy-criteria-for-thrift-store-clothes-shopping">thrift store clothing</a> fits you in the dressing room, you know it'll fit when you get it home.</p> <p>24. Thrifting can be just a little competitive (in a good way). The friendly rivalry between serious thrifters produces more admiration than envy.</p> <p>25. Every day is new. Inventory turns over so quickly in some markets that you seldom see the same stuff twice.</p> <p>26. Thrift stores are time capsules into pop culture history. Teach your kids about <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002DB5N6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B0002DB5N6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=R352XG4BCCHR6Q2O">ALF</a>, Rubik's Cube, Etch A Sketch, lava lamps, and Milli Vanilli.</p> <p>27. You can find items that have long since gone out of production. From out-of-print books to jeans with the perfect cut, thrift stores let us rediscover some of our favorite things.</p> <p>28. Because thrifting isn't just about finding old stuff; there are new items too!</p> <p>29. Because your depression-era parents or grandparents would be proud.</p> <p>30. Thrifting is arguably the most local and sustainable form of commerce.</p> <p>31. Thrift stores are the perfect places to find <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-back-to-school-items-you-should-always-shop-for-at-the-thrift-store">back-to-school bargains</a>.</p> <p>There you have it, my belated valentine to thrift-shopping. Of course there are many more reasons to love this half-sport half-science. What are some of yours?</p> <p><em>Are you an avid thrift shopper? Why do you love it? What's been your best find to date? Please share a comment below (even a recycled one)!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-13"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe">Thrifting the Perfect Designer Wardrobe</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/who-cares-if-theres-a-recession-i-just-started-a-business">Who Cares if there&#039;s a Recession? I just started a business</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/gift-giving-hacks-that-will-save-your-money-and-your-sanity">Gift Giving Hacks That Will Save Your Money and Your Sanity</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-best-thrift-store-finds-of-all-time">My 5 Best Thrift Store Finds of All Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-thrifty-meaningful-gifts-for-mom">9 Thrifty, Meaningful Gifts for Mom</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Lifestyle Shopping bargains thrift stores thrifting Tue, 03 Jun 2014 18:01:08 +0000 Kentin Waits 1141160 at http://www.wisebread.com This Is How You Dress Like Don Draper on the Cheap http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-dress-like-don-draper-on-the-cheap <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/this-is-how-you-dress-like-don-draper-on-the-cheap" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/clothing-159281926.jpg" alt="vintage suit" title="vintage suit" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Looking for that 1960s look for when you head down to the office? It's a lot easier than you think.</p> <p>Few television shows have had such an impact on popular culture as &quot;Mad Men.&quot; No one, so far as we know, is looking to dress like Jesse Pinkman from &quot;Breaking Bad.&quot; Lots of guys, however, are looking for the perfect Don Draper-esque suit or hat. Fortunately, the run of &quot;Mad Men&quot; happens to coincide with a sort of golden age of discount made-to-measure suits. Here's how to get the Draper look without the Draper budget.</p> <h2>1. Go Vintage</h2> <p>The cheapest way to get vintage clothes is to actually <em>buy vintage</em>. You'd be surprised at just how little an old suit from the early 1960s is going to cost you. You can get full suits for a couple hundred bucks, easily. What's more, you don't need to worry about getting the precise fit. Any tailor worth his salt can take something you picked up at a flea market look like <a href="http://www.amctv.com/shows/mad-men/cast/roger-sterling">Roger Sterling</a> ordered made-to-measure. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/to-buy-or-not-to-buy-criteria-for-thrift-store-clothes-shopping?ref=seealso">Criteria for Thrift Shop Clothes Buying</a>)</p> <p>It's the little things that can really make or break this kind of look. So especially when you're shopping around for ties, cufflinks, and other bits and bobs, you definitely want something from the era. Spend a few bucks here and you'll notice the difference every time you suit up.</p> <p><strong>Where to Look</strong>: Vintage shops, preferably ones that specialize in men. Flea markets. Etsy. eBay.</p> <h2>2. Know the Key Words</h2> <p>You walk into a vintage store, you ask where the men's suits are. Finding them online can be more of a challenge. You need the right keywords and rest assured, searching for &quot;Mad Men suit&quot; is almost certainly going to result in a higher price tag. Instead, search for terms like &quot;60s,&quot; &quot;mod,&quot; &quot;mid-century modern&quot; and &quot;slim cut&quot; to help you narrow it down. Start by searching for &quot;Mad Men,&quot; and see what other keywords online retailers are stuffing into the title and tags.</p> <h2>3. Dig Deep</h2> <p>Let's say you find the right suit, but it's a 36 chest and you're a 42. Or maybe you found a suit with the perfect cut, but it's in a purple more befitting of the Joker than a hungry go-getter such as yourself. That's great. It means that you might be only two or three clicks away from the perfect suit &mdash; or at least close enough to keep looking. A lot of vintage shopping is about digging through piles until you find the right thing. Do that, but online, by seeing what else the company has on offer. Once you find a store that has one suit that you like, there's a good chance you're going to find more from them.</p> <h2>4. Buy New</h2> <p>Nothing fits like something made specifically for you and your body. Ten years ago, you would have paid through the nose for a classic-style American suit. The good news is that there are multiple companies selling full- and half-canvas made-to-measure suits. My personal favorites are <a href="http://www.indochino.com/">Indochino</a> and <a href="http://www.thickasthievesla.com/">Thick As Thieves Los Angeles</a> (who offer full canvas), but there's also <a href="http://www.dragoninside.com/?change-language=1">Dragon Inside</a> and <a href="http://www.knotstandard.com/">Knot Standard</a>. You can wait for Indochino's traveling tailor to come to you, or you and a buddy can measure yourself at home.</p> <p>(Full canvas and half canvas, by the way, refer to jacket construction; <a href="http://www.artofmanliness.com/2010/02/12/the-art-of-manliness-suit-school-part-i-fused-vs-canvassed-suits/">quality suits include a layer of horsehair</a> [or other material] canvas stitched to the wool to provide support and shape. Budget suits use a glued or &quot;fused&quot; liner instead.)</p> <p>The important thing is that you're going to get a slim, but not too slim, suit that takes its cues from the more timeless aspects of the 1960s. It's going to be something that you can wear to work. What's more, most of these companies, including Indochino, offer some kind of rebate on any alterations that you need made after the fact, which brings us to our last step.</p> <h2>5. Get a New Tailor</h2> <p>Even suits you get made-to-measure require some tailoring. And, as stated above, having a good tailor means that just about any suit you find can be made to fit you, provided that there's enough material there to cover you. Look on Yelp for a good tailor, but make sure you find one who knows the look that you're going for and how to craft it. If you live in a small city, don't be afraid to bring in pictures of your favorite looks from the show to clue him into exactly what you're looking for.</p> <p><em>Where do you go to pick up a quality, mid-century men's suit. Please share your finds in comments! </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nicholas-pell">Nicholas Pell</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-dress-like-don-draper-on-the-cheap">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-14"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-favorite-funny-christmas-gifts">My 5 Favorite Funny Christmas Gifts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/breaking-the-bread-code-how-to-get-the-freshest-loaf">Breaking the Bread Code: How to Get the Freshest Loaf</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-to-look-for-every-time-you-visit-a-thrift-store">10 Things to Look for Every Time You Visit a Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chinese-money-habits-how-my-culture-influences-my-attitudes-toward-money">Chinese Money Habits - How My Culture Influences My Attitudes Toward Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/debit-or-credit-which-one-should-you-choose-at-the-checkout">Debit Or Credit? Which One Should You Choose At The Checkout?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Shopping men's clothes men's suits thrift stores vintage clothing Tue, 06 May 2014 09:00:18 +0000 Nicholas Pell 1137926 at http://www.wisebread.com