Last week we talked about our issues with the KonMari Method, but, this week we’re excited to talk about a fun little side benefit of others’ obsession with Marie Kondo. Apparently so many people are decluttering and getting rid of those things that don’t spark joy that charities are bursting with donations.
“As the phrase goes, one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. And thanks to a new Netflix show, it seems a lot of treasure is showing up at thrift stores at the moment,” said Bustle. “As reported by BuzzFeed, Marie Kondo is responsible for an increase in thrift store donations made in light of her Netflix series Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.”
Ravenswood Used Books in Chicago said on Facebook that they “took in a month’s worth of books in 2 days” because Marie Kondo’s show and “Leah Giampietro, a manager of a Beacon’s Closet consignment store location, told CNN that January is usually a slow time for people coming in to sell clothes, but that they’ve gotten a ton of items this month,” they said. “Philly AIDS Thrift in Philadelphia had three people in one day come in with donations and specifically cite the show as the reason, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.”
You know what this means: It’s time to go thrifting! Before you leave, review our curated list of the best things to buy at thrift stores.
“If I don’t find anything at the thrift store, I almost always find a book or two. Children’s books are usually my favorite,” said Making Home Base. “You can find the sweetest vintage children’s books that are gently used and in great condition. Additionally, I look for books that have uniquely colored covers to use in decorating.”
MoneyCrashers adds that, while individual books are typically not worth a lot of money, “Book lots traditionally sell very well at online auction sites. Take for example a set of ‘Harry Potter’ books: Used box sets in good condition (both paperback and hardcover) sell for around $30 to $50 on eBay, and you can find them considerably cheaper if you happen to snag a set in the thrift store. Other popular box sets include ‘Anne of Green Gables,’ ‘The Lord of the Rings,’ ‘The Hunger Games,’ and ‘Little House on the Prairie.’ Even if you find just one or two books from these box sets, they can bring in more than a typical paperback, since collectors could be looking to add to their current library.”
“Looking to upgrade your particle board living room set? Thrift stores are a great place to score solid wood furnishings at bargain prices if you’re watching your wallet,” said Mental Floss. “Even if you don’t end up finding your vintage dream piece, items that are more grandma than retro-glam can still be transformed with paint, varnish, and brand-new fixtures.”
“Have you always wanted a bread maker but aren’t sure how often you’ll use it? Buy it at a thrift store. You’ll save a lot of money and it gives you a chance to try an appliance before investing in a more expensive model,” said Sparkles of Sunshine. “Some small appliances I’ve tried from thrift stores include a cupcake maker, pancake maker, waffle iron, popcorn popper and dessert machine. I’m so glad I only spent $10 to find out I wouldn’t use $60 worth of appliances! All it took was one trip back to the thrift store to clear the clutter and give someone else a chance to eat popcorn and dessert!”
“Especially vintage dishes,” said Duct Tape and Denim. “Do some research”—some brands can be really valuable.
“Buying mirrors at thrift stores is another money saver,” said Making Home Base. “Framed mirrors make your space feel bigger so they are the ultimately accessory for your walls. That said, framed mirrors are expensive! $50 is about the going rate. You can save big bucks by finding one at a thrift store.”
Candle holders, vases, and things like baskets and trays can cost almost nothing and add considerably to your décor. “I’ve had to ground myself from buying anymore baskets, buckets, and trays because I find so many cute ones all the time,” said Bless’er House. “Use baskets for extra small storage around the house, buckets for planters, and trays for coffee table decor.”
“Glassware is long-lasting, so you can probably find a ton of it at your local thrift store,” said MoneyCrashers. “However, the difference between just another set of glasses and those that can generate real buyer interest is in their status as collectibles. Glassware lovers enjoy vintage Pyrex cookware, as well as glass in different shapes and colors, so keep an eye out for anything out of the ordinary. If you can’t find cool blue glass or decorated cookware, look for full glass sets. A set of tumblers is usually more of a local seller than mismatched glasses listed one-by-one online.”