Friday, October 23, 2009


Target has added this word to their advertising lexicon - Frugalistas - women who want fashion, but at a bargain price. I think that's me!

I occasionally buy clothes at Target, mostly t-shirts and shoes, but accessories are where they shine. I have bought several totes and purses that look much more expensive than they are. But Target is not where Frugalistas go. Oh, no. We, who are true bargain hunters, stalk a different prey in a much cheaper forest...

I have a friend on the west coast who taught me how to thrift store shop. Now, if you haven't gone to the chain thrift stores on the west coast, you haven't shopped. The reason they are so good? Everyone on the west coast recycles, providing some major finds. But brand name merchandise at rock bottom prices comes from the manufacturer or department stores liquidating their inventory. I kid you not, and it was the real deal, a Kate Spade bag for $8 in mint condition. I gave it as a Christmas gift and the recipient was blown away. My friend has a closet full of designer labels all bought for $10 or less. Some of her finds still have the original store tags on them. Yes, that is the definition of a Fashionista.

Well, I don't live on the west coast, so what other options are there? I have trolled in Goodwill, Salvation Army, etc. But those are really hit and miss. Veteran's of America stores rock. They have a mixture of give aways and liquidations. I've done well at these places, especially for men's dress wear.

But I have to say that when you find a good consignment store, your world opens up. I have a favorite place and I rarely share it because it is that good. I got 2 designer label, high end, high quality mens suits for $20 each. No joke. The trick with consignment is time on the shelf. And when they have end of season sales to move the merchandise, there are drastic markdowns. Score!

I like outlet malls (though not all are created equal) as well, but for the thrill of the hunt, there is nothing that beats west coast thrift store chains. As my friend shared with me the other night, she hit the jackpot on Monday - 99cent day! Target, sharget. Go pro!