I am not a hoarder. I am not a hoarder.
I repeat this to myself as I crouch down to pick up just oneeeee more piece for my living room. The piece I just *know* will be my favorite DIY project ever after I adorn it with metallic gold or powder pink spray paint or re-staining the overloved wood portions of a piece.
I’ve said it before and my entire blog is based around being fancy on a budget so it shouldn’t be a surprise that I avoid spending full price for ANYTHING. And that includes furniture! There are several new pieces in my new place after moving a few months ago and tossing some items (as much as I love to procure special pieces to customize, I understand that there may be a time where it has to be tossed) but I’m still building upon my apartment!
My friends visit or see my social media posts chronicling my thrift store or curb street finds and wonder where in the world I get all of those pieces from! I like to think I have a good eye for pieces I love. I understand that I don’t NEED any of the items, am not ever tempted to pay more than $10 if I can, and I understand that just because it’s cheap/free doesn’t mean you need it!
When I go into the thrift store, I go in knowing how much space I have in my home and what kind of items I’m looking for, whether it’s chairs, a table, a bookcase, etc. When I hit up my local Goodwill, I head straight for the furniture section. These are days that I’m happy to toss on some old jeans, a tee and tie my locs back into a ponytail because it can get… dusty. When I begin to look at furniture, I inspect them as if I work for the state! I check the fabric, if there are scuffs, if a leg is missing, if anything is wobbly, if there’s a scent – all angles, all aspects. Because what you have to remember is, you’re bringing this into your home. This piece becomes a part of your everyday life, so choose the items wisely!
Last Weekend’s Thrift Store Buys!
[White Wicker Fur Chair w/Dipped Legs – $10] – I’m going to repaint this white or black and reupholster the seat to bring some life back to the fur
[Medium sized black framed mirrors – $6 for the pair] – To be repainted and hung above my *currently non-existent* bedroom nightstands
[Random black mannequin hand – $2] – …I don’t even know ya’ll. LOL my apartment has lots of spots that are perfect for this piece actually, hopefully I’ll find a permanent spot soon.
I’m very serious about not paying more than $10 for an item at the Thrift Store. Once the price hits $11, I begin to think deep LOL The only item I can remember spending more than $10 for is my round dining room table that I bought for $14.99, buffed, spray painted and my mom decorated. I went into Goodwill knowing that my apartment had no dining room table and what did I find in the next two weeks? A dining room table. 🙂
Here are a few of my tips for Thrifting & Dumpster/Curb Diving!
1. Nothing in the trash or inside the divider
2. Nothing that smells, has bugs near it or any moisture
3. Nothing with broken pieces/woodwork
4. Nothing that will cost more to update than it would be worth to buy brand new
5. Nothing seemingly… cheap I know good craftsmanship and woodwork nowadays, even when it’s free!
6. DON’T PICK UP ANYTHING THAT YOU DON’T NEED! I know this is broad, but I make sure to avoid that hoarders fine line. Even with 1000sq ft for one, I’ve come to learn that there’s such a thing as TOO much furniture. Picking up a FREE bookcase and then leaving it in your closet for months? That’s hoarding.
How to clean your new (FREE/CHEAP) awesome furniture
- Spray your pieces with a bug/roach spray to ensure crevices are covered as well as noticeable surfaces. When you inherit that beautiful piece of work, don’t bring the bugs with you!
- Disinfect with wipes or water + vinegar to rid of any germs!
- Get rid of stains with an odor neutralizer or baking soda (let sit in fabric and then vacuum up)
- Remove stains with commercial stain remover or DIY solutions like: Rubbing alcohol for leather and ink or lemon juice + ammonia + dish soap + salt for rust stains