Being thrifty can pay off: Thrift store shopping can yield amazing results

Commentary by CJ Click
Times-News correspondent  

Shoppers check out televisions and electronics during the grand opening of the Hospice Flea Market & Donation Center in Haw River in January 2011. / Times-News file photo

   With the release of “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, new attention is being paid to the idea of thrift shopping. Thrift shopping can be viewed by some of the younger generation as for those of an older time. Teens want Abercrombie and Fitch or Aeropostale.
But what these teens don’t realize is that they can find those brands in stores like Goodwill or the Hospice Clothing Store in Burlington for much less than at the retail stores, and in great condition. For a kid on a budget, thrift stores are great.
But there’s more to it than simply clothes. You can even make a business out of it. Some individuals go thrift shopping to find deals on items that they think can be resold on websites such as eBay or Etsy. These “pickers” as they are called can come across some items that will bring in the cash. In Time magazine last year, there was a story about a Concord woman who found a painting that sold for more than $34,000. Turns out it was from a famous Russian artist, Ilya Bolotowsky, who died in the early 1980s. The woman paid $10 for it.
Now, a find like that doesn’t normally happen, but you get the picture. You can still find great items that you can either keep for yourself at a greatly discounted price or resell for retail price on an online shop. While it isn’t exactly common to run across a painting by a famous artist that will sell for thousands of dollars, it isn’t uncommon to run across autographed books, antiques, or rare collectibles.
In the event that you need something, try a thrift store before you shell out cash at retail outlet. There are several thrift stores in the area to choose from. You might just find what you need — and maybe pick up a famous Russian artist’s work while you’re at it.

CJ Click is a sophomore at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Teens & Twenties writer.


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