Monday, August 29, 2011

Welcome Abbie from Five days 5 ways!

I’m so excited to be guest-blogging for Rachelle and want to say a huge thanks to her for having me here at FOTF!
Before I tell you a little about myself, I thought you might want to know that I’m hosting a Pleated Poppy giveaway, and you can find out all of the details here.
See? I told you you'd want to know!
And now that you’re back…Hi there! My name is Abbie, and I’m a thriftaholic.
But that's not all I am. I’m also a follower of Jesus, a wife, a mama to three kiddos under six, an exercise instructor, a writer, and a DIY fanatic.
Oh yeah. And I run not one but two blogs (I think that makes me a blogamist):
1. Five days…5 ways, my everyday blog where I like creating thrifty projects like these:
2. Secondhand or Bare Bottom—my smart-mouthed style blog where everything I wear or carry (accessories, bags, shoes, everything) is 100% thrifted.
Obsessed much? Why, yes, I am.
So obsessed, in fact, that I wrote up a little post for you to answer some of the FAQ's I get on Goodwill Hunting in hopes that you too will join the Super-Thrifty Chicks club (I'm considering making capes! :)).

1) When do I go?—Early in the week and early in the day. I like to go on Mondays or Tuesdays in the morning since they’ve had time to get themselves organized from the weekend rush. DON’T go on a Saturday at 11 or you’ll get nothing but picked-over racks and a headache.
2) Where do I even begin?—Ignore the racks that are always there at first, and, if your store has them, start with the racks that they roll out on the floor every 45 minutes or so. Some stores will even make announcements when they roll out new racks so you can do your best Usain Bolt impression beating all the other bargain-obsessed chicks to that mint condition Anthropologie skirt huddled behind those pleated maroon polyester pants from 1984.
3) What do I pay?—Most Goodwill items are reasonably priced to begin with, but all of them are priced by separate people in the back who sometimes get bitten by the random bug and pop a $7 price tag on a pair of cute-but-hardly-worth-it flip-flops. If you find something you think is overpriced, don’t be afraid to ask management to lower it. Especially if you have a comparable item that is already marked lower that you can show them.
4) How do I decide?—Goodwill’s return policy only applies to clothing and that can only be exchanged within seven days of its purchase. So, even though you may only be spending $4 on a skirt, it wouldn’t hurt to ask yourself, “Will I REALLY wear this, or am I only buying it because it’s cheap?” Keeping an open open mind is crucial to finding amazing clothes, but try not so open that you get home what you were thinking buying this junk!
5) How often do I go?—It depends. If want to overhaul your closet, once-a-week trips are best since frequency yields the best awesome-finds scores. If you just want a good deal every now and then, wander in on your lunch-break during the week sometime, and see where it goes from there.
6) What if it’s not perfect?—If something I love is flawed, I ask myself two questions: 1) Can I fix it/how long will it take me? and 2) How much can I get them to lower the price because of the flaw? If the answers are 1) Yes/not too long, and 2) Enough that it’s dirt-cheap…I buy it and turn it into a project.
7) How much time should I expect to spend per visit?—I hardly ever get in and out of Goodwill with much to show for it in less than 2 hours. But I almost always have all three of my children with me, which means multiple bathrooms trips, toy aisle browsing, and usually at least one nursing session with the baby. If you’re on your own, an hour of happy browsing could produce some pretty incredible results.
8) Don't shoes gross you out?—Shoes can be tricky for the germ/other people’s feet averse. I’m not really one of those, but I only buy the ones in great condition and have a big, fat can of Lysol waiting for them when I get home! : )
Here's a portion of my GW shoe collection. This is just a glimpse of my master closet makeover if you want to see more.
9) Where do I go?— Wherever's closest. Don’t assume that, because you live in a small town, your GW isn’t worth checking out. I find almost all of my best treasures in two small-town stores.
10) Can I actually expect to find anything decent?—Yes! It’s amazing what you can stumble upon right in the midst of the kitsch and the appliqued jean jumpers. And if the shoes didn't convince you, let me treat you to a few more of my favorite 100% (including shoes, bag, and jewelry) Goodwill outfits:
Have I talked you into give thrifting a shot, yet? It’s quite the thrill when you score that mint condition Marc Jacobs skirt (it’s right there in the bottom left corner of the collage) for $4.
You'll be hooked in no time!
Just please don’t send me your therapy bills or leave me nasty comments on my blog if you end up as addicted as I am! : )
Speaking of comments, I’d be tickled practically any other color but pink if you’d stop by and say, “Howdy!” at Five days…5 ways and/or Secondhand or Bare Bottom!


Christy said...

Great tips! I love goodwill. Ive started shopping for fall now, and have already found some great pieces. :)

Victoria said...

Loving this post! Wish we had Goodwill here in England. said...

Love your post and am your new email subscriber! I recently found out what it means at out local GW when a bell rings.
Quite an addictive experience!
Keep up the good work! Love, Me

Tanya Anurag said...

I never thought of buying personal stuff from Goodwill. Great finds you have.

Kristin @ Chi-Chi Studio said...

I love this post! I nominated your blog for the Versey, if you're interested. :)

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