How Creating a Thrift Wish List Can Save You Time and Money

Posted On Thursday, January 21st, 2016
Filed Under: Thrift Stores, Thrifty Threads 365

How Creating a Thrift Wish List Can Save You Time & Money

Strategy. That’s what it’s all about when it comes to thrift shopping. Yes, you want to go to a great store and sure, you need to develop a good eye for spotting deals, but it all comes back to strategy. That’s where the thrift wish list comes in.

If you always find yourself striking out at the thrift store or need a bit more direction, keep reading to see how creating a thrift wish list can help you. It can make a huge difference!

So first, what is a thrift wish list? It’s exactly what it sounds like: a list of items you want to find at the thrift shop! But the “why” is even better. Why do you need one? It’s a great way to give you much needed direction so you’re not aimlessly roaming around the store and throwing random stuff in your cart. Also, if you find yourself overspending, a list can really help you reel it in.

Remember when I donated a fourth of my wardrobe? The reason I had so many clothes is because I would just buy anything. And everything! I mean, I just started hoarding stuff just because it was cute and/or cheap. And that’s also because I didn’t really have a solid thrift wish list.

Thrift shopping is all about strategy & a thrift wish list really helps! Click To Tweet

Shopping with a purpose {at thrift or department stores} is always a good idea. During my last thrift shopping haul I mentioned I was on the hunt for denim and luckily I found some, including these $3 vintage high waisted jeans!


There’s no guarantee you’ll find everything on your list right when you want it, but the point is to at least have a list. It never hurts to have a few classic pieces {trench, camel coat, patent pumps, structured blazers} on your list, as well as a few fun items.

And for even more on creating a smart thrift wish list, I dish on all things thrift strategy in my book, Looking Fly on a Dime: How to Find Fabulous Fashion at Any Thrift Shop & Make the Cheap Look Chic. Again, it’s all about strategy and in the book I share the tips I’ve used for 10+ years to find the best thrift store scores!

What’s on your thrift wish list? Do you shop whenever the mood hits or with a focus to find something specific? 

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6 thoughts on “How Creating a Thrift Wish List Can Save You Time and Money

  1. This is such a great idea! I have done the same thing and bought things just because they were cute or a good price and then find myself donating them a few months down the road. I am really excited to work on a list to take with me on my next thrift shop outing!

    • Same here! It’s so easy to just get into the habit of buying because it’s cute or super affordable.

      Good luck with the thrift list, it will make a huge difference!

  2. Thrift lists are a must but I have to confess I have definitely done a ton of thrift shopping when the mood hits. This year I want to focus my thrift shopping trips so I am not wasting money when I go. Love your style and seeing all of your finds!

    • Thanks Abigail!

      I do the same,. Some of my best finds have come from a random thrift trip, but I’m also learning to reel it in a bit. Like you, I want my thrift shopping trips to have more focus.

  3. This is a really great idea. Never thought of it before, so I usually just wander around the flea market trying to find something to buy. I end up with a bunch of stuff, which when I get home don’t look so great anymore or I can’t figure out how to wear them. So sometimes I never wear them at all and end up donating them.

    • That’s such a common experience: buy something, get it home and then what? I’ve done this so many times. Way too many times I want to admit!

      The thrift wish list should definitely help to cut down on the buyer’s remorse.

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