Before You Go
1. Know what you want – What’s your style? Classic. Hipster. Bohemian. Keep photos of your favorite looks so you know what to search for and aren’t overwhelmed by the sheer volume of clothes when you enter a store. If you know where to start, it’s easier to get to the finish line.
2. Do Your Research – I start with Yelp.com. I do a search for thrift stores in the area and read the recommendations especially when I’m on the road.
3. Have an open mind – I noticed a vest that looked pretty cool inside out, so I’m going to wear it that way. Who cares? Make your own rules. At least this time I won’t have to worry about my neighbor in the next cubicle over wearing the same thing like the department store dress that we both own.
4. Discretion - This is the hardest part. Whatever you pick up, ask yourself where are you going to wear this item and what do you have to go with it. Take the time to look for flaws. When everything seems so inexpensive, it’s easy to forget about the quality of the items. Before you head to checkout, go through what you plan to buy again and determine do you really want it.
After You’ve Gone
5. Don’t give up – if you didn’t find anything at one store. Try another. Try the same store another time. I found excellent things at a store I swore I wouldn’t return to because I didn’t see anything the first time.
6. Celebrate your success, cut your loses – Try your items on in the comfort of your own home. Figure out what will go with this shirt or those pants or your favorite shoes. Don’t force it. If it doesn’t work, think about re-donating it or giving it to someone else.