We've all been there. You see a gorgeous image of your dream room in a magazine or on your social media feed, but you're not quite sure how to make that effortlessly-designed-yet-intentionally-perfect look come together.
Yes, it does require a bit of patience when you're on the hunt for a specific item (I feel like 70% of my thrift store visits have me leaving empty-handed!), but the savings and joy you get from finding the perfect piece for the most perfect price are worth it!
For the stylist who loves the thrill of the hunt and are going for that southern coastal charm that I'm curating in my own space, here are 5 of my favorite items to keep a watch out for in thrift stores.
If there was one item that I cannot pass up at a thrift store, it is a quality basket. Not only are they great for storing notecards, books, vinyls, you- name-it, but if they are flat, they make the perfect statement piece for a gallery wall. I search for baskets that are different than what you'd find at a Target or Walmart in color, texture, size, etc. If you are feeling super creative, you can also paint them so they blend in with your color scheme.
This could a tougher one, because you might have to carry a measuring tape with you in your purse or vehicle to make sure you buy the appropriately-sized frame for a specific print you have in mind! But let's be real. Frames and mats can be so expensive and if you are looking for truly unique, vintage frames, thrift or antique stores can have absolute gems. Be prepared to do a little rehab on the finds if needed, and keep in mind you can find replacement glass or mats at Hobby Lobby!
3. Vases and China
If you are a collector of fine china, then you are for sure scouring the shelves at every thrift store for these beauties! Keep a watch out for unique plates with a cohesive aesthetic to add to a gallery wall, an oyster plate to hang or display as a showstopper, or a beautiful vase to contain your latest flower shop finds or Trader Joes picks!
Tip #1: Collect a few different vases to save back for when you want to gift a bouquet of flowers to a friend or a new mother.
Tip #2: If you're looking to save a few pennies, you can also source fresh botanicals from your yard or garden (I typically trim a few palm branches for filler in my bouquets).
4. Wood or Ratan Furniture
This is where the biggest savings come in. Our dining room currently hosts a $5,000+ Tommy Bahama table that we scored at a local consignment house for $400! You should have seen me practically run to it and sit down at it, frantically calling my husband to come get me and the table!! Was not leaving that for nothing. Keep an eye out for Ratan shelves, side tables (like the new one found recently, below!), chairs, etc at thrift stores. I tend to avoid thrifted rugs, couches, pillows, and bedding, and buy those items new.
5. Misc. Decor and Knick-knacks
You know I'm a sucker for wooden birds and basket ducks, but keep a watch for unique figurines, statues, and decor that are great conversation starters! I recently found a wooden stingray (pictured below) and a hanging Ratan parrot that I instantly fell in love with! Last month, many of you saw the wooden seagull that I thrifted for $8, and now it is the perfect mixture of texture and shape for my gallery wall (seen further above)!
If you're still reading, I'll let you in on a little secret. Here are some of my favorite local thrift or consignment stores for home decor that I've found many gems at! If you have a local favorite, drop a comment below!
- Habitat ReStore Clearwater: 13355 49th St N Ste B, Clearwater, FL 33762
- The Consignment House: 3201 28th St N, St. Petersburg, FL 33713
- The Salvation Army Family Store: 5321 4th St N, St. Petersburg, FL 33703
- Roost: 2301B S MacDill Ave, Tampa, FL 33629
- Oh, Whatever: 3612 S Manhattan Ave, Tampa, FL 33629
- The Exchange: 539 S Orange Ave, Sarasota, FL 34236
- Box of Delights & Antiques: 4822 Gall Blvd, Zephyrhills, FL 33542
What are your favorite items to keep a watch out for in thrift stores? I'd love to hear from you, or if you have any favorite finds from the past year!