Thrifting Tips to Score Designer Treasures
You guys know I love a good thrifting adventure from tracking down a local thrift shop while vacationing or hunting down goods from online luxury resale sites. The choice to buy secondhand is a win/win/win:
- You’re able to find unique items for much less than their retail price.
- Choosing to “upcycle” apparel, furniture and accessories supports sustainable practices and benefits the environment (Did you see the stat in my the above caption?!).
- Your purchase could help support local businesses as well as fund programs or jobs for people in your community.
My love for buying secondhand has no bounds, but in today’s post I’ll focus on where you can shop to find those investment designer pieces for your wardrobe. I’ll be honest here. I’m by no means a label snob (I love a good Target run like anyone else!), but I have a small designer collection that I’ve slowly curated over the years. Most of these items I found vintage or pre-owned and consider them so timeless, classic and chic that they’re worth every penny spent. I recently shared the top five places I hunt down designer goods for less (“5 Ways to Buy Designer on Discount“) and I’m going to spill more about ONE of those ways…
But before we get into that, can we just make a collective “ohhhhh ahhhhh” for this lovely vintage Chanel coat?! This was my unicorn find..the one item that’s been on my list for years. I’ve searched high and low (including scouring resale shops in Paris) for a Chanel coat that was within a price point I could rationalize, but it wasn’t until a couple weeks ago that the thrifting Gods opened the skies and chose me as the highest bidder on this exquisite jacket. For reference, I paid $261 for this vintage coat (which is in perfect condition) compared to other luxury resellers where it is listed for more than double that price. Finding this coat inspired me to share, what I truly believe, is the best kept thrifting secret for shopping designer.
Ok, so let’s get to it! Here’s to revealing my thrifting treasure trove with you, my loyal readers, because sharing is caring (as I tell my three year old)…
Goodwill! Yes, your friendly neighborhood Goodwill store just got a hundred times bigger because their online auction site, ShopGoodwill.com, pulls inventory from hundreds of stores across the country. Don’t have time to thrift shop during the day? (That’s me! Shopping with three kids is more like punishment than pleasure. Let’s be real!) Not sure about the thrift store smells? Don’t have to time to sift through the racks?
Whether you’re a thrifting guru or novice, ShopGoodwill.com is a breeze to use with these three tips:
- Shop often! Inventory is added daily from hundreds of stores across the country so that means your dream item – whether that’s a Chanel coat or a Gucci belt – could be added at any time. For reference, over the last year, I typically check the site in the evening a few days a week for a few minutes. This brings me to my next tip…
- Make a wish list. Have a game plan so you’re not overwhelmed by the thousands of auctions. Don’t let the 80s Cabbage Patch dolls or lots of buttons distract you from your bullseye (Dior, Fendi, Prada…). Use the search bar in the top right corner to search for the items on your wish list, and when they appear (yay!), use the “watch item” function to monitor the auction until the end. Which brings me to my third tip!
- Give your best and final offer in the remaining seconds. This is the strategy I used for all the auctions I’ve won (including this Chanel coat). Depending on the number of bidders, I’d even suggest placing your very best bid with less than 10 seconds remaining to make it nearly impossible for someone else to outbid you.
Here are a couple bonus tips to really set you up for success:
- Do your homework. I always cross-check the item I’m bidding on to check the original retail price and the price it’s going for from luxury resale sites. This will help set your expectations as you watch the auction over the week and give you a frame of reference for your best and final bid.
- Take note. Read the listing descriptions carefully. Review all the photos. If you have questions, use the “message sender” option to get them answered. You want to know, to the best of your ability, the quality of the item and any issues (e.g., missing button, worn corners, stained interior pocket) that could impact your decision and the value of the item.
With that, you are well on your way to finding incredible vintage and pre-loved designer items from ShopGoodwill.com. As a parting bonus, please use my current list of designer search terms below to help get you started!
Have you heard of ShopGoodwill.com before? Will you use it to add designer pieces to your closet? Please let me know!