recently thrifted

Late Friday afternoon, I scooped my Mama up from the airport and made a beeline for her favorite thrift-store in the Twin Cities—ARC’s Value Village in Richfield. For nearly eight years, my brother lived a scant mile from this store, and let me tell you, it didn’t take long for a trip to “that nice thrift store down the road” to become an essential part of my Mom’s itinerary whenever she came to town. Now that he’s moved a little further north, I knew she’d appreciate a quick pop-in to her beloved old haunt. We spent less than an hour making the rounds of the bustling store, but I still managed to do quite a bit of damage. Here are a few of my favorite finds!

high plains thrifter // jello molds

high plains thrifter // mold

I blame this Southern Living piece for my new obsession with Jello molds. Mom also pointed out that the shiny silver one would serve wonderfully as an ice mold in a bowl of punch. Great point, Momma!

high plains thrifter / tin bowls I picked up these aluminum bowls to serve as props for work, but that didn’t stop me from serving afternoon snacks out of them today.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset high plains thrifter // sandals My love for granny sandals knows no bounds. Both of these pairs are the epitome of comfortable with ultra-cushy soles and sensible strap situations.

high plains thrifter // cocktail napkinshigh plains thrifter / cocktail napkins How could I pass up this bundle of cocktail napkins? I’m easily smitten with cheery ditzy prints and bright colors.

high plains thrifter // purse This Italian-made leather satchel is the bag I’ve been looking for. The style reminded me instantly of this J.W. Hulme Legacy bag I’ve coveted for eons, but could never justify buying. I also picked up this striped tank during our trip to Value Village, and I can already tell it’s going to be a staple this summer. I love the lace straps and stretchy material.

high plains thrifter // cowyboy boots Last but not least, can we talk about these boots? I spotted them from afar, and when I got closer, could not believe my eyes when I saw they were in the eight-and-a-half section. I picked them up, partly skeptical, partly overjoyed, and was like, “no way these are going to fit,” considering how cowboy boots can often look deceptively small. Lo and behold, they fit like a glove, making me the world’s happiest cowgirl.

Also found, but not pictured, a cream deadstock silk blouse from Carson Piere Scott. It has the most delicate pearl beading and details—so perfect for work. I also brought home a tan, long-sleeved Levi’s button-down to layer over dresses and tanks. (My Mom, no surprise, was content to look and not buy, given her jam-packed suitcase situation. She also remarked how much the prices had gone up since her last visit, an opinion I can’t disagree with.)

If you’ve been out thrifting lately, I hope you’ve had just as much luck AND fun as I had Friday.



heads up: christmas clearance sale at Arc’s Value Village

tumblr_meoo1bcdRQ1qlirlwo1_500Starting today, all blue-tagged holiday items at Arc’s Value Village stores are 50% off. This special sale runs all the way through December 22, and includes ornaments, cookie tins, serving ware, linens, candles, trees, wreaths, lights, clothing (anyone have an ugly sweater party coming up?) and more. You can read my original review of the Merry Thriftmas boutiques at Value Village here and find the store nearest you here.



Photo source: Vintage Penny Lane

first impression: “merry thriftmas” at ARC’s Value Village

I’m not gonna lie to you guys: I started shopping for Christmas stuff this weekend. I would feel weird about my overabundance of yuletide spirit, but I don’t. Because this weekend I discovered a group of people that are equally (if not MORE) excited about Christmas than me. I happened upon this jolly group at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, aka the opening day of the “Merry Thriftmas” shop at ARC’s Value Village store in Richfield. The entire middle section of the store that had been sectioned off and stocked full of Christmas merchandise, and when I stepped in the door, literally every single aisle was jam-packed with shoppers, many of them pushing overflowing carts! (My kind of people!) Sadly, I wasn’t much in the mood to power through such thick crowds, but I did manage to scope out the set-up so I could report back to y’all here. My findings can be summarized pretty easily though: the “Merry Thriftmas” shop has everything Christmas you could ever wish for.

Snow globes. Check!

Wrapping materials. Check!

Lawn ornaments. Check!

Sweet old ladies checking out the fake evergreen situation. Check!

Overwhelmed by the hustle and bustle, I quit taking pictures soon after arriving, but here’s a quick overview of what they have: Cookie tins. Christmas cards and party invitations. Holiday records. Festive serving ware. Ornaments for the tree. Twinkle lights. Cookie cutters, molds and presses. Holiday sheet music. Wreath boxes. Glitzy earrings. Bedazzled sweaters. Welcome signs. Table linens. Accent pillows. Tom and Jerry sets. Wreaths. Garlands. Trees. Christmas craft books. Christmas cookbooks. Candles. Pine cone potpourri. Wall hangings. Ribbons. Bows. Wrapping paper. Knick-knacks. Angels. Snowflakes. Reindeers. And Santas. Lots and lots and lots and lots of Santas. If it’s Christmas-related in any way, they probably have it (and it’s likely to be really affordable too).

The “Merry Thriftmas” shops are part of every Value Village location now through December 23rd, and I’m told, will be restocked with new merchandise continually. So go already (if you love Christmas) and get your shop on. ‘Tis (almost) the season, right?



recently thrifted

Just popping in to share some small finds from the past few weeks…

How precious are these delicate little bow earrings? I can’t recall where I thrifted these, but clearly, I didn’t spend more than 50 cents on them.

I got this deadstock bag at the Burnsville Salvation Army during a yellow tag day, so it cost only $1. (It was from a collection of clothes and accessories Target did with Hamilton Wood Type.) I put it to good use the week after I thrifted it when I was running late and needed to wrap up a belated birthday gift.

On that same trip to the Burnsville Sal Val, I found a vintage sheet set from Stevens Utica, still in its original packaging. (On Etsy, just one used sheet in this pattern sells for around $17!) These I believe will wind up at the store…they’d be great material for a sewing project!

These (blonde) matryoshka dolls are from the Value Village over in Saint Paul. It’s likely that they will wind up in one of Mighty Swell’s grab bags.

Have you been out thrifting lately? Did you find anything wonderful?



recently thrifted, vernon kilns china

Resisting this set of china at Value Village last Monday evening was impossible. 35 pieces of hand-painted china for $15? How could I possibly not snatch it up?

The pattern is called “May Flower” and it was manufactured from the mid-1940s through 1953 by one of California’s big five pottery producers, Vernon Kilns.

Similarly sized sets on eBay run between $199 (25 pieces) to $270 (40)…not that I plan on selling it or anything. The set’s already settled into my china cabinet, mixing and matching ever so nicely with my collection of my hand-me-down Mason’s Ironstone, a gift from mom when I moved to Minneapolis 10 years ago. Anywho, that’s my favorite find of the week. Did you get out thrifting on MLK Day? Find anything wonderful?



holiday volunteering opportunity


Calling all elves!

Value Village Thrift Stores around the metro are in dire need of volunteers to help them ready and stock their stores for the holiday shopping season. Helpers are needed to unpack, sticker and put out holiday items including ornaments, decor and decorations. (The other undeniable bonus? Getting first dibs, of course!) Shifts are available daily: 9 a.m.-noon, 1-4 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. This opp is group-friendly, so if you’re looking for a girls night out with a big-hearted bent, this is a super easy way to do some good without investing a ton of time. I mean, we all have three hours to spare, right?

All proceeds raised at Value Village shops go towards ARC’s programs and services, which support children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, through assistance programs, family and sibling programs, educational workshops, self-advocacy training, policy-changing legislative efforts and so much more.

Email or call 952.915.3652 to sign up!



P.S. Want to hear more from someone who’s volunteered at Value Village? Jill, from Spoils of Wear, volunteered last summer at favorite thrift and did a lovely job of documenting it in this post.