Secondhand style: Shop for housewares and more at thrift stores

 Commentary by Kendall Wiggins
Times-News correspondent

Teens & Twenties writer Kendall Wiggins searches secondhand shops for bargains on fashion, books and more. / Kendall Wiggins, Times-News correspondent

Thrifting, junking — whatever you call it, you are sure to find bargains and unique pieces from dresses to shelving when you go. Though largely unknown, there are many consignment shops and thrift stores in the Alamance County area that offer lightly used goods at bargain prices. Don’t be scared or put off by the fact that items are used; most items look brand new (and those that don’t will look new after a wash or a layer of paint).

Consignment shops are especially useful when you are looking for something that needs to fit certain dimensions or another set of unusual criteria. When my family visited my brother’s college dorm room, they noticed a shelf attached to the wall that ran across the whole room. Since my brother was going to loft his bed, he wanted a shelf that would sit on top of the wall-mounted shelf. That way, he could have a place to put his cell phone and glasses that was easily accessible from the bed. Sounds great, right?

Finding a shelf that actually fit the unusual 11½-inch width of the wall-mounted shelf was an undertaking. After searching many department stores for brand new shelves to no avail, success was found at the Hospice Flea Market, 1003 West Main St., Haw River. We found a shelf that was the perfect width and height for my brother’s dorm room at a much better price than department stores. While there, I even got a bag full of books for just a few dollars.


A major concern for those interested in fashion is wearing the same outfit as someone else. It seems like many people buy the same items at the same stores and unfortunately, show up in the same clothes as someone else.

Never fear, consignments shops to the rescue. A personal favorite of mine is Mad Stylz, 512 West Haggard Avenue, Elon. All of the clothes there are in very good shape, and by buying secondhand, you can avoid the awkwardness of matching with someone else unintentionally.

If you are still unsure about how you feel about buying secondhand, think of it this way: you are being thrifty and ecofriendly. Why buy a new item when you can buy something used that is in good shape? It takes much more energy and resources to create something new than to refurbish something that is in fairly good shape.

Whatever you are searching for, consignment shops and flea markets will not disappoint.

Remember, one man’s (lightly used) trash is another man’s treasure. What are you waiting for?

Go thrifting!

  Kendall Wiggins is a sophomore at Western Alamance High School and a Teens & Twenties writer.


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