I hit one of the Thrifty Fashionista‘s stellar Vintage Pop-Up Sales last week, which will henceforth be announced here as they happen. The Thrifty Fashionista and I obvs bonded over our collective love of thrift and our similar notions of what constitutes cheap; I was impressed by both her sifting abilities and the way in which her merch was priced. Girl’s got a fab eye, fo sho. I bought two uber versatile wrap tops and spent under twenty bucks, but that’s another post for another day.
Today’s subject matter deals with the most epic thrifting tip I’ve ever received. Thrifty Fashionista gave me permission to share it with you, but it comes with a catch: It’s for thrifting pros ONLY.
I’m not saying this to exclude you newbies out there – I’m saying it to protect you. For to embark on a quest of this magnitude unarmed with extensive thrifting experience is to throw yourself to the secondhand shopping wolves. Unless you’ve clocked at least 50 or so hours of down-and-dirty digging, don’t even think about it. You will traumatize yourself, and possibly never thrift again. It’s an overwhelming test designed to break you – the LSAT of thrift stores, if you will.
It’s the Goodwill Outlet Center in Queens.
Thrifty Fashionista sums it up as “like the Housing Works All-You-Can-Stuff Bag Sale, but calm” – agreed. The lack of people-related insanity’s a plus, but the act of sifting through the astronomical amount of material castoffs will drive you crazy regardless. It’s just a matter of when.
So. Why put yourself through the hell of hauling ass to Queens and digging through bin after bin after bin of crappy castoffs? This is the place where donated clothing goes to die. What could possibly make the experience of shopping the most unwanted of the castoffs worth your time and energy?
Pop Quiz time:
Eight pounds, exactly. Do I know this because I personally weighed it and/or have a knack for guestimating numbers? Nope. I know this because the Goodwill Outlet Center prices ALL of their merch BY THE POUND.
I didn’t just find an almost-new American Apparel top, a J.Crew seersucker blazer and a seventies-era Bloomingdales fitted polo tee; I found mind-bending wares from decades back, the kind of things that masquerade as “vintage” and get marked up 900% by greedy Manhattan vendors.
All told, I got eight pounds worth of kickass, original stuff for less than the price of one Forever 21 top. Marinate on THAT for a hot sec.
Stay tuned for an extensive list of Goodwill Outlet Center survival tactics; also, a photographic barrage of all the fab stuff I found. One woman’s trash…
(Okay fine, I won’t subject you to another cliche. But it’s true! Eeek!)