I’ve been a thrifty Frugalista long before it was fashionable. Age four when my babysitter brought me to my first church bazaar; Mom armed me with a dollar in my pocket. Uncertain how the parish school would get a “white elephant” in the basement, I entered with extreme caution. Until I spied a table loaded with plates and glassware typically reserved for holiday dinners in my home. I spent most of the day and my dollar at this knick-knack table, buying what I thought was precious crystal for my mother, at 5 and 10 cents a piece! Later, I was heartbroken to discovered my treasure, every piece, smashed to bits; it had not survived the rough and tumble walk home with a blustery group of grade schoolers. A lesson learned.
Thankfully, and through much trial and error, I have gotten better at spotting a deal, a steal or as they say “another man’s trash” turned my treasure. I love the hunt! Recently, I found a brand new charcoal-grey Calvin Klein tunic-sweater at a shop that sells for a dollar a pound. The item was still on the rack in Nordstrom’s for almost $200.00. Another day I spied a slinky little Ralph Lauren black dress for $6.00, and at the end of the season I found pristine a camel-hair coat for $2.00! My favorite recent find is yet another Ralph Lauren black camel-hair wrap coat for $19.99.
I am never one to hide my thrifting, and my friends often exclaim when they see me in a new kicky outfit, “It’s beautiful – Let me guess, 5 bucks!” I get a huge thrill in getting ready for date night in $800+ outfit and declaring “Boots, dress, necklace, scarf and coat, 75 bucks – Chah-ching!” My husband never begrudges my shopping sprees. (In a later post I will share with you what I found him one day at a local haunt!)
Stay tuned and I will chronicle my adventures in thrifting at various haunts on the North Shore. Today I will give you a small taste of what I recently spotted at LifeBridge Thrift Store, my favorite addiction. The store serves the homeless in the community – and Ann Queenan Richardson runs the shop like a boutique – greeting everyone by name who walks through the door, with a warm hello, whether they carry a donation or a chit from the shelter.
The Lifebridge Shop not only provides more than $250,000 in funding per year to the LifeBridge Mission, but also ensures a supply of clothing and essentials for their clients. The shop is located at 47 Canal Street in Salem MA. Bargain hunters will find everything from high-end vintage treasures to gently used household items to last season’s name brand clothes–all at amazing prices. Hours are Monday-Saturday 10AM to 5PM, 10AM to 7PM on Thursday’s. Donors may call (978) 745-2459 for information. (Make sure to scroll thrugh for fun pics.)