Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Gone Thrifting

[Photo courtesy of Dreams on 34th St.]
A photo from the Ruffles and Rust show last month. I would have loved to have gone. But, as some of you may have been reading around blogland, there's a place you can shop all year 'round now! The new Ruffles and Rust Square in Snohomish, Washington! Booths full of fabulous finds and gorgeous old junk - like Melanie's from My Sweet Savannah.

Spring must be right around the corner. This morning I did a circuit of the local thrift shops and came home with lots of amazing finds! It's seemed like a slow winter full of dull auctions and unexciting estate sales, but today was different. It was exciting!

I can credit my avid love of thrifting to my mom and aunt. When we were little, my mom and her sister (both stay at home moms with 4 kids each; my mom 4 girls, my aunt 4 boys), would wait in line on Wednesday mornings at the nearest Salvation Army warehouse. They called it The Sally-Anne Shop, or Sally's Boutique. There was a line because this was the day that they put out all of the "new" merchandise.

Now this may seem funny, but it was actually serious business. Have you ever seen elderly ladies argue over odd balls of yarn? Well I have, and it wasn't pretty. We were assigned into sections, each in charge out scouting out a specific department. Anything that seemed like a good find, was gathered and would be edited later. We were crammed into a change room with my mother guarding the door, each of us girls fumbling around, trying on our finds, being handed item after item.

It was in this old warehouse that I developed my "thrill of the hunt" instinct. It was here that I discovered that just because something was thrown away, didn't mean it wasn't still useful.

Luckily, I married a man who understands this side of me. He likes to tell me that "He's been thrifting since before I was born". It's probably true. His mom is the same way. Their most embarrassing childhood story involves my mother-in-law, along with my husband and his sister, out garage saling one Saturday morning. Coming across a yard full of furniture, they began sorting through everything, quiet excitedly actually, as they seemed to be the only ones who had found the sale so far. While inspecting an old dresser, my mother-in-law was surprised to find socks and underwear still inside! When she asked the owner, who was now making his way outside, he informed her that this was, in fact, not a garage sale. He was moving in. Embarrassed, they quickly got back into the car, and continued on.

It's quite a lot of fun thrifting. It can be dirty, and a lot of digging, but those are the days that reap the most rewards, and bring the most excitement. One of the reasons I'm looking so forward to spring is the spring cleaning - that means decluttering. And where does all the unwanted "junk" go? - to the thrift store, just waiting to be scooped up!


  1. I love thrifting!;) Do you live in WA too? I plan on heading up to Snohomish soon~I live in Kent~ Hugs, Rachel

    French Farmhouse 425

  2. Love that photo! I live for thrifting:) I popped into my favourite Salvation Army store this morning before going to work - made my day!

  3. What a great photo! I adore hunting down treasures that are cast-offs and giving them the importance they are due!! Pure JOY!

    In Florida it can be challenging sometimes, but I find enough to tip my thrill-ometer!!

    Fun story about the people moving in! That's a classic!!

    Have a wonderful day!

  4. LOL at the 'moving in' story! haha

    Every year I grow more and more fond of buying things from thrift stores, it feels good to purchase staple wardrobe pieces that would have cost me maybe hundreds of dollars in the big name stores- and here I am walking out with an arm full of clothes for under 30$. pLus the cute things you find for the home always seem more special- like you've said before they always have a little story and background to them!

    Great post Maria! Yay for spring!

  5. Thrifting is my favorite thing to do! Love the photo!

  6. I have been noticing that the thrift and antique shops have more to offer, too. It must be spring fever!


  7. What a hilarious story about the man moving in! That sounds like something a dingy like me might do. lol.
    I have often said it is a vicious cycle. We should all get together and just trade stuff. :) We de-clutter and take to the thift only to buy something else and bring it home while there to unload! :)

  8. PS I want EVERYTHING that is in that photo! lol We don't have sales around here like that. :)

  9. Beautiful picture darling...lovely day...spring is in the love love

  10. Hey you....sounds like fun,I can't wait to get out and start treasure hunting..I added you to my Inspiration list,hope thats o.k!!! x0

  11. I've just started locating some thrift stores in my area! Can't wait to hit them! I enjoyed my visit today!

  12. Thrifting is one of my most favorite things to do...I love things that have a past life and I almost refuse to buy anything new anymore. I love to tell the special stories of how the things in my home came to me.
    Hopefully you'll show us all the great things you found have such a beautiful way of putting things together ~
    sarah xo

  13. Oh what a funny story! I can see that happening to me, and my children disowning me for embarassing them! Happy Thrifting!!


Thanks for leaving your comments! I always love reading them. - Maria