Be Prepared

The men in my family are pretty avid campers. Because of this, a large amount of our garage/closets/house in general are devoted to camping related paraphernalia… Picture the inventory of a small REI and you’ll get the idea. My Dad always says that you could go out camping without a tent and with a flimsy sleeping bag and try and play “Survivorman” (they’ve done this a few times too), but it’s a lot more enjoyable if you bring the right tools. Boy Scouts at heart, they always ascribe to the “Be Prepared” motto. But this motto isn’t just for campers- bringing a few things along on your next treasure hunt will improve your experience more than you’d think. Without further ado, here’s my list of 4 things that I always bring thrifting:


  • Dolla Billz

You’d be surprised how many places really don’t like your Visa. They might take it, but they’ll charge a fee, even for debit. Some smaller shops won’t even accept cards, or you might be uneasy handing over your credit card info at a place that has an awesome distressed denim jacket, but a sketchy card reader. Err on the side of caution and hit the ATM before you head out, and save yourself the trouble of digging around in the bottom of your purse for that spare change.


  •  Hand sanitizer or wet wipes

If you’re into vintage, you obviously aren’t quite as “icked-out” as some people by the prospect of digging through items of un-verifiable cleanliness. I’ll admit, I still get a little grossed out occasionally. Plus, lets just say this again: you’re digging through items of un-verifiable cleanliness. Clean hands are happy hands!


(You bet I broke out the hand sanni after this)


  • Headphones and a sweet playlist

For whatever reason, most of the second-hand stores you’ll go into will have some truly terrible music playing. And this isn’t coming from someone who listens to strictly top-40. Unless you enjoy listening to fuzzy radio static, bad 70’s disco, or (not even kidding) yodeling, bring along a soundtrack for your shopping. The charm/humor/atmosphere of the music will wear off at some point-be prepared.


  • Fully charged “device”

This is more of a personal thing, but I like to know a little about what I’m buying and about how much similar items sell for. If you’re like me, I’d recommend bringing along a smartphone/tablet/anything that you can access the Internet with. That way, you can make a quick Google search and see history of the brand, time period the piece is from, and prices of similar items. It’s fun to know that the item you’re buying is a smoking deal compared to what they sell for on Etsy, and if you know a little history on the brand.


What do you never leave the house without? Am I missing something in my arsenal?  Let me know what you think!

2 comments on “Be Prepared

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