Archive for August, 2011

Thrifting in Cambridge, Massachusetts

The Garment District is part thrift store, part costume shop

After hearing my MIT friends in college talk about paying for clothes by the pound, I was intrigued on a recent trip to Boston to try and track down the store they spoke of years ago. The Garment District, in Cambridge, is too new to have been their stomping grounds, but there was a “By the Pound” section on the first floor. Literally, on the first floor. Most shoppers sat on the floor in the middle of the pile of clothes and pawed through the fabric. I could see how this could be fun on a weekend, as a morning activity, but I was pressed for time.

So I walked on, up to the second floor, where I roamed the shoe racks. There are some seriously nice shoes here, like Cole Haan, Ferragamo, Coach, at reasonable prices. Most designer shoes were $20 and in great shape. The only negative was that shoes were in no particular order, at all. But we all love to hunt anyway, right?

In the women’s clothes I found a fleece pink LL Bean vest, for $8, a brand new Chico’s quilted vest, for $8, and a children’s Rugged Bear winter snow suit, for $5, which I’m hoping to resell. There were only two racks of children’s clothes, and most were for the toddler set, but prices were generally under $5, which I thought was good.

Downstairs is also a costume shop that looks like a great spot to find a Halloween costume or outfit for a crazy party.

I would definitely go back to The Garment District the next time I’m in town and encourage folks in Boston/Cambridge to stop by, too.



Stegmann Clogs Redux

My second pair of Stegmann clogs


If you’ve read my bio here, you know that what I consider to be my first serious thrift store score was a pair of navy Stegmann clogs costing a mere $5.99 at the Goodwill store in Portland, Maine. They were in pristine shape and seemed already molded to my feet the moment I put them on. Despite loving them, and wearing them into the ground, I haven’t been able to bring myself to cough up the $90 required for a new pair. Maybe someday I’ll find another one in a thrift shop, I’ve told myself.

Well, yesterday was apparently that day. And the deal was even better than the first time. Yesterday, I paid $.99 for a pair of nearly new navy Stegmann clogs in my size at a local Volunteers of America store. My feet are in heaven, and so is my wallet. This is why I thrift.

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.