5 Items You Can Find at Any Thrift Shop and How to Update Them

Posted On Thursday, August 13th, 2015
Filed Under: DIY, Thrift Stores


Thrift store inventory is always unpredictable, but you can usually bank on finding a few key items when it comes to fashion and home decor. These are the classics that most thrift shops have in stock.

And instead of just using them as is, it’s easy to create a little DIY magic. These don’t require a ton of steps or tools and will give you a unique piece that’s affordable. Oh, and Monday, August 17 is National Thrift Shop Day, so many stores will have amazing deals!

Check out five items you can find at any thrift shop and how to upgrade them.


From skinnies to wide leg {a huge trend for fall!} to boyfriend style, jeans are everywhere at a thrift shop. Yes, finding the perfect pair of jeans can be tricky at any shop. However, try a relaxed fit that you can distress and have fun with them. Cuff the hem, add some rips for a homemade distressed style and get all artsy and create a cherry blossom printed jean.


If your thrift shop sells home items, you’ll inevitably find a few lamps. A quick DIY project that I really love is adding marble contact paper, like this one from Homey Oh My. While marble is expensive, adding contact paper is affordable and ridiculously easy. Also, it may be hard to find a matching set of lamps, but don’t worry about that. I like to mix and match sizes, but when they have the same design, it creates a cohesive look.


Button Downs
A white button down is a must in every closet. Whether you find one in the women’s or men’s section, they’re pretty much everywhere at the thrift shop. Since the design is pretty basic, have fun by jazzing the collar up with your favorite jewels. Below you see how I used my grandma’s vintage jewelry on a thrifted shirt. You can do the same with cuffs or even replacing boring buttons with really ornate ones. This is the quickest way to take a classic, but basic wardrobe staple and add a bit of flare.


Dainty bags and clutches are a dime a dozen, but sometimes they could use a little personalization. Use a full chain necklace or pieces from broken jewelry and decorate the front of the purse. All you need is imagination and some crazy glue.


Picture Frames
Finally, another home item you can find is picture frames. Sometimes a photo will be included {feel free to discard that if you don’t like it!} or it will just be a bare frame. Whatever you choose, just look for something that’s sturdy and you love the design. Don’t worry about the color, as you can always change that will spray paint or even with fabric. Use the picture frame for the obvious purpose or even turn it into a chalkboard, shadow box, accessories hanger or a serving tray. See a ton of ideas here.

The ways you can upcycle or DIY your thrift store finds is absolutely endless. It’s all about being creative and having fun with your affordable finds!

Have you ever done a DIY project on your thrifted pieces? What do you plan to buy during National Thrift Shop Day?

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