Thrifting? Yay or Nay?

Are you a thrift store junkie? Do you roam the aisles looking for that gem that no one else saw? Today is National Secondhand Clothes Day, so I pose the question to you…do you thrift?

I love thrift stores and secondhand clothes shops. You never know what you are going to find. It’s almost like being in a bookstore to me, I can spend hours looking at all the things. I hit every area, from clothes to books to housewares. I don’t like a lot of kitsch in my home, but if I find the perfect thing for me, I will buy it.

Secondhand stores appeal to me as a writer. I get a glimpse into people’s lives by what they have bought and discarded. I don’t know the actual person who got rid of a certain item, but my head fills up with stories about why they bought an item to begin with and then why they got rid of it. (I live in the land of make believe, Mr. Rogers would be proud, lol)

When I enter a thrift store, I make a beeline to the handbag section. I am convinced that one of these days I will find, in the midst of all the junk, a designer bag that is worth a lot of money. I am not a label watcher by nature, but if a Chanel or a Prada ended up in the mix of things in the store, I am buying it. I have a knockoff black backpack with a Prada label on it that I bought at the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet that I love and still carry, but I would be extremely happy to discover the real thing on a thrifting outing.

I have a friend that goes secondhand shopping on a weekly basis and posts his finds on Facebook. He is really into aloha shirts, albums…well, just about anything that catches his eye. He makes a day of it and has found some really cool things. I will have to go with him one of these days.

When I first moved to Hawaii, I was walking around exploring my neighborhood and came across Bailey’s Antiques and Aloha Shirts. It is a well-known store that I had read about in a guidebook before I moved here. I walked in and was in heaven. 1000’s of Aloha shirts plus a lot of Hawaiian memorabilia. In the back of the store, in a basket on the floor, I saw an almost brand-new Roxy backpack. It was black and the pattern on the front was perfect. I picked it up for $20. I used that thing for years. It finally faded to a greyish color and started to fall apart. I was sad to see it go.

I will always go rooting through bins and shelves whenever a thrift store comes into view. It is the thrill of the hunt that I enjoy, the finding is just the cherry on top. I might have to change my plans today and go check out a store today to celebrate the holiday.

***Question for the comments…Do you like thrift stores and secondhand stores? If you do, what is the best thing you have bought from one? If you don’t, tell me why.

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