Thrift Tips from Nate Berkus

The Nate Berkus Show is my latest new favorite TV show,  in part because on the first episode I watched, he talked about bargain items to shop for in thrift shops. Showing several ways to reuse and repurpose these items, he inspired me to start hunting for:

– Cashmere sweaters – to be cut down and turned into decorative throw pillows. The cableknit variety look simply stunning! Here are the instructions, in case you want to try it yourself:

– Silver pieces – I never really thought about looking for silver bowls and trays, but on my first trip to Volunteers of America, I found a cute Revere bowl for $1.99. Now polished, it looks very elegant.

– Candles and candle holders – I can’t remember if this is one of the items Nate specifically talked about or not, but I’m now hunting for candles and bases on which to place them. So far, no luck, but I know they’re out there.

– Ornate frames – I was already hunting for nice frames occasionally, but after seeing a frame repainted and reused, I’m sold! It doesn’t matter what’s in the frame, as long as you like the frame. You’ll put another picture in there anyway.

– Small benches – he did another show and talked about how to easily recover small pieces of furniture, so now little benches are on my shopping list.

– Vintage illustrated books – not sure if this is a Nate-inspired hunt, but after watching an HGTV show that showed illustrations being removed from a book and framed, I decided I would keep a more careful eye out for an Audobon book or the like.

What kinds of things are on your shopping list?

This is a larger version of the silver bowl I just bought for $1.99.




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Pay pennies for new-to-you clothing and housewares

Imagine being able to buy pricey, but gently used, name brand outfits for your kids from Abercrombie & Fitch, Hollister or North Face for a small fraction of what they cost new. You'll even spot furniture, silver and glassware for your home for less than a meal out. Or find something for yourself from Chico’s, J. Jill or Lilly Pulitzer and pay for it with the change from the bottom of your purse. Those are the kinds of deals to be had at thrift shops.

If you get a thrill from finding fabulous deals at thrift shops, consignment stores, and resale outlets, I hope you’ll visit this site often. You’ll pick up proven tips for saving even more on your thrift shop purchases, find the latest thrift shop news and information, learn about items you might not have thought to search for in thrift stores and get a look at photos of my best thrifty bargains.



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