store review: st. vincent de paul thrift store

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Right off of one of south Minneapolis’ busiest east-west thoroughfares (Lake Street), sits the St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store. Truth be told, for the longest time, it was never one of my favorite spots to visit. After one bad experience, I never really wanted to go back, even though it’s practically in my neighborhood. In recent months, with icy roads keeping me closer to home, I gave this store a second chance, and it has since become one of my go-to spots for a quick pop-in.

WHAT’S GOOD

 Furniture: Upon recent visits, the back room has housed some reasonably priced pieces of furniture, including old highboys, dressers, vanities, headboards, etc., with most of them in very clean, serviceable condition. The concrete floor and overall garage-like vibe of the back room makes me a bit hesitant to buy anything upholstered, but I’d certainly have no qualms about bringing home a table, bookcase or anything in that vein from this store.

 Paper goods: I’m a big fan of vintage stationery and cards, and I’m always impressed by Vinnie’s assortment of cards, packaged stationery sets and the like.

 One-off dishes, glass ware and vases: While I never see too many complete (or even close to complete) sets, I have found several cute plates and glasses. If you’re hunting for vases for a wedding or project, Vinnie’s has you covered there too.

 Picture frames: If you use old frames for DIY projects, photos or art projects, this is the place to go, with super cheap frames in lots of sizes.

WHAT’S MEH

 Clothes: Slim selection overall and what’s there seems a little sad. (That said, I did happen upon the cutest, navy and white striped cotton Calvin Klein dress last time I was there, so, I guess you never know.)

Table linens: Another category with a surprisingly slim selection.

 Books: Mostly junky paperbacks and old magazines.

Take a peek around!

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Selection/Variety:  ♥ ♥ ♥

Quality: ♥ ♥ 

Pricing: ♥ ♥ ♥ 

Organization: ♥ ♥

Customer service: ♥ ♥ ♥

Where does money raised at this store go? With a motto of “Neighbors Helping Neighbors,” the Society of St. Vincent de Paul works not only to relieve need, but also to redress the situations that cause it. Advocating the concepts of Christian social justice, the Society believes in the rights and dignity of every individual and the need for equality of opportunity in education and employment. In 2010, Twin Cities Vincentians visited more than 1,900 neighbors in homes and hospitals, providing food, clothing, transportation and emotional comfort.

Do they take credit cards? Yes!

Do they accept donations? Yep, and they’ll even come get it from you!

Pro tip: Check out their monthly sale calendar, available here, for advance notice on tag sales, dollar days and senior discounts.

While you’re in the area: Treat yourself to tacos at any of the nearby mercados. La Alborada is great and Mercado Central also has tons of tasty options.

Where it is: 2939 12th Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55423

Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday; closed on Sunday

Contact: 612.722.7882, Facebook

Have you a fan of this St. Vincent de Paul store? If so, I’d love to hear your take!

xo,

Meghan

store review: assistance league thrift shop

high plains thrifter // al thrift shopThey say good things come in pairs, and if you need evidence, just drive down to the 64th block of Penn Avenue where you’ll find two wonderful thrifts—my beloved ARC’s Value Village and the star of this post, the Assistance League (AL) Thrift Shop—separated by just a stone’s throw. Though it’s more modest in size and lighter in  inventory than Value Village, there’s plenty of good reasons to not skip over it!

WHAT’S GOOD

Art work: There’s a reason the volunteers at the AL Thrift Shop put the artwork right up at the front of the store…it’s usually really freakin’ good. Curated (and priced) by a retired art teacher turned volunteer, everything from gorgeous oil landscapes to one-of-a-kind screen prints to vintage posters to beautifully framed photos is priced fairly (which doesn’t always mean cheaply).

Designer labels: I’m not a huge label scout, but as some of you probably are, you may want to consider the array I noticed during my last visit: Burberry, Lilly Pulitzer, St. John, Ungaro, Ann Taylor, Dayton’s (vintage, obvs), J. Jill. Generally speaking, the clothing, in both style and size, skews to a more mature audience, as in, my mom would have a freakin’ hey day shopping here.

WHAT’S MEH

Dishes & drink ware: Slim selection overall and what’s there seems a tad overpriced. (That said, if you’re on the hunt for quality crystal, there always seems to be a pretty set or two there.)

Table linens: Another category with a surprisingly slim selection.

Furniture: It’s just no their wheelhouse. While I’ve noticed a couple cherry pieces there over the years, this wouldn’t be my go-to spot if I was after a dresser, bed, bookshelves, etc.

Take a peek around!

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In a nutshell…

Selection/Variety:  ♥ ♥ ♥

Quality: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 

Pricing: ♥ ♥ ♥

Organization: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Customer service: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Where does money raised at this store go? Staffed entirely by volunteers, proceeds from the store support the Assistance League’s philanthropic programs, which include providing new school uniforms for disadvantaged kids, one-on-one tutoring for second graders who are struggling with reading and providing assault survivor kits to emergency rooms around the metro area. Also, donated merchandise that doesn’t wind up for sale at the shop is given away to people in need via a partner non-profit. You can learn about all nine of AL’s charitable outlets here.

Do they take credit cards? Yes!

Do they accept donations? Yep, and you’ll get a coupon if you do!

Do they have a mailing list? You betcha, and it comes out each week. Don’t miss the 30%-off coupon good on any one item up to $50 that’s in each one. They’ll honor it if you pull it up on your phone! Sign up here or in-store at the laptop next to the checkout.

Pro tip: Clothing at the AL Thrift has a 12-week lifespan, meaning that if you wait long enough, whatever item you’re coveting will inevitably drop in price. Throughout the floor, you’ll find discount racks, but if you head all the way to the back, that’s where the 75%-off section and $1-10 bargain racks are.

While you’re in the area: Head across the street to ARC’s Value Village of course! And on the weekends, keep an eye out for estate sales happening in the ‘hood. I’ve had good luck in that little nook of the city!

Where it is: 6416 Penn Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55423

Hours: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursdays; closed Sundays

Contact: 612.866.2135, Facebook

If you pay the Assistance League Thrift Shop a visit, I’d love to hear what you think.

Happy thrifting!

xo,

Meghan

store review: new to you thriftique

new to you thriftique // high plains thrifterBoy, do I love a good mid-day thrifting break. While most workdays I maintain the bad habit of eating my lunch at my desk, for sanity’s sake, I try to get away at least one day a week to hit one of the nearby thrift stores. It’s so refreshing! And luckily, just three minutes up the highway from where I work, is New To You Thriftique. Since it’s so close by, and so modest in size, it’s become my favorite spot for quick, lunch-hour pop-ins.

WHAT’S GOOD

Furniture: I’m constantly surprised (and delighted) by New to You’s furniture selection. (Like this chair I posted on yesterday, which was snapped up by my pal Dana!) Every time I visit, I spy at least one or two pieces I’d be proud to have in my house…well-constructed designer pieces, many of them vintage. I’ve never once seen a piece there I’d describe as shabby or beat-up, which is quite remarkable for a second-hand shop! The prices are also quite fair, with dining sets running around $60, armchairs around $30-40, dressers $30-40 and desks $20-30.

Dish sets: By now you’re probably familiar with the fact that vintage china is one of my greatest weaknesses, which sometimes makes visits to New to You difficult. Every time I go, there’s another set of pretty china that screams my name. Yesterday I was taken with a gorgeous earthenware set with black rims and pink rose accents (shown in the slideshow below)…there’s always something to tempt me!

WHAT’S MEH

Clothes: While I’ve had luck in the shoe department, scoring some sensible Liz Claiborne pumps and a sweet pair of sandals last summer, I’ve never once been tempted to take home a single item of clothing from this store. The selection is pretty small overall, which is fine with me. More room for furniture!

Take a peek around!

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In a nutshell…

Selection/Variety:  ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ (for furniture) ♥ ♥ ♥ (everything else)

Quality: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 

Pricing: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Organization: ♥ ♥ ♥

Customer service: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Where does money raised at this store go? Staffed by friendly volunteers, all proceeds from the store go to provide scholarships for students and to support Calvin Christian School. Items that do not sell get donated to other charities such as Goodwill, Bridging, Recycled Wardrobe and Community Closet in Eden Prairie.

Do they take credit cards? Yes!

Do they accept donations? Yep, and if you’re in the area and your load is big enough, they’ll even schedule a pick-up.

Pro tip: Get familiar with their daily specials. I like going on Wednesdays, when housewares are half-off.

Where it is: 8030 Hwy 55; Golden Valley, MN 55427

Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursdays

Contact: 763.546.9820 (store); 612.296.5481 (donation hotline)

If you pay the New to You Thriftique a visit, I’d love to hear what you think.

Happy thrifting!

Meghan

store review: treasures from the heart

baldwinthriftJust over the Minnesota-Wisonson border in the sleepy town of Baldwin, Wisconsin, lies one gem of a thrift. Divided into two separate storefronts across the street from each other, one for clothing and accessories and the other for furniture, home decor and the like, “Treasures From the Heart,” is definitely worth the drive.

WHAT’S GOOD

Linens: Holy smokes…where to start? Well for one, this place has vintage doilies coming out of its ears. And the prices on all the soft goods are great. Like $1 doilies, $2-5 for mint vintage tablecloths, $4 for sets of linen napkin/place mats, $5 for aprons, great.

Vintage patterns: For the readers who’ve emailed me regarding what thrifts are best for sourcing vintage clothing patterns, I feel obligated to tell you this thrift has a slew. This is the pack that first caught my eye, but once I started digging, I found a ton more, including circle skirts, wedding dresses, etc., etc.

Romance novels: No seriously! If retro rom-drams float your boat, this store has racks and racks and racks of paperbacks.

photo(65)WHAT’S MEH

Vintage clothes: While the clothing store does have a dedicated vintage section, it’s pretty slim pickin’s.

In a nutshell…

Selection/Variety:  ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Quality: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Pricing: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Organization: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Customer service: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Where does money raised at this store go? To support ADORAY Home Health and Hospice, an organization devoted to providing comfort at home to the acutely, chronically or terminally ill.

Do they take credit cards? Yes!

Are they on Facebook? Oh yeah.

Do they accept donations? Yep, and if you’re in the area, they’ll even schedule a pick-up.

Pro tip: Start a punch card! For every $100 you spend, you’ll get $10 back in in-store credit.

Where it is: 868 Main Street & 815 Main Street; Baldwin, Wisconsin

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday

Contact: 715.684.2542 or 715.684.2545; adoray.org/treasures.htm

Tune in tomorrow to see what I found on my recent visit to this thrift!

xoxo,

Meghan