My "Strange" Addiction


I have a strange addiction. Okay, maybe in the blogosphere, it's really not so strange, but really--I have a problem. 

And today, I am going to share that problem with you in hopes of reining in my obsession/habit/addiction/problem (whatever you want to label it) and also to share that there are benefits to it, too.

It's probably not even that surprising, if you've been reading my blog.

It's not even really a secret at all.

So here it is.

I am addicted to shopping at Goodwill.

No, really, I am. I know I've said it before and I'm sure there are many others who are way worse than me, but Goodwill is probably my favorite place to go when I'm home. Ever since they put a new one in closer to my house, I have been so blessed to find incredible deals on almost all of my current clothes and household items.

And to think I am moving three hours away from this amazing store just kills me! I know that my new area has a Goodwill, but if I recall from the time I visited it about three years ago--it's not a good one. 

I realize that many Goodwill stores are NOT stocked with tons of name brand clothes and higher-end merchandise; I never used to find much at the other one nearby. But if you are one of the lucky ones, you've got it made.

I decided to feature ALL of my summer Goodwill purchases since I've graduated college to see where my money is going (so I can maybe cut down if I need to...) AND to show you how far your money can go at this fabulous store.

If you're a Goodwill/thrift store skeptic, I hope that maybe this post will convince you that you can indeed find some great deals.

If you DO go, keep these things in mind:

  • Try to go at prime times. The best time frame is usually at the end of a weekend when everyone has donated their items and they are already on the shelves. Aim for Sunday or Monday. OR if your thrift store has special deals, go on that day, but go EARLY!
  • Shelves are restocked constantly. While you're shopping, you might want to take a quick glance back through certain aisles, like housewares, because you'll usually find things that weren't there before.
  • Be patient. I'm usually only lucky if I take the time to go through the entire rack and try on piles of clothes, only to walk out with a few, but valuable pieces.
  • Don't just buy it because it's cheap. It took me a long time to learn this. I ended up spending a lot on clothes I never wore just because they were a good price. When you buy an item, make sure you can see yourself wearing or using it time and time again.
  • Check items for stains, rips, holes, etc. before you buy. Nothing is more disappointing than coming home and discovering a stain that won't wash out on your new favorite shirt.
  • Ask about your store's discounts. Mine recently began accepting college I.D.s; 10% off for me (even though I've graduated!)

So here goes...

This is a sneak peak at a decorating project I have for my future apartment. I can't wait until I build my collection of plates so I can show you the final product!

I've been on the lookout for cute plates that match my style and these are what I've found so far. Most of the plates were $.25; except for the big green one ($.50) and the tiniest one ($.99). I also received 10% off using my college discount. This brings me to a total of about $2.10 with tax. Not bad, eh?

I am so happy with these purchases! The earrings were $1.99 and the watch set was $9.99. I was so lucky to find this watch with 15 different colored bands in great shape! I had to clean it up and buy a new watch battery, but it was totally worth it so that I could be versatile.

Accessories add up to about $12.00 with tax. (I wasn't able to use my college discount at this time). So far, we're at a total of $14.10.

I LOVE finding cute bags at Goodwill! This is the second purse I've purchased and loved.

  1. This red Relic bag has served me very well in the past month or so! It has two huge zip pouches and a pouch in front that is perfect for my phone. It holds everything I need and only cost me $3.99.
  2. The green bag is actually a craft bag that I was really lucky to find! It is HUGE and has tons of different compartments and pouches for craft items. I was able to store my big scrapbook paper in it and can't wait to fill it up. It will be great for traveling with my craft items. This bag was $4.99.
  3. I'm super excited about this purchase. My mom actually got this for me, but I'll count it anyway. I had been looking at the exact wallet at Target in a different color for $14.99, but found this one for only $2.99! My mom cleaned it up with leather cleaner and it looks brand new. It fits all of my cards so easily.

Bags total= $12.00 with tax

Overall total so far= $26.10

  1. I've been contemplating buying these white shoes at Payless for my sorority whites for years! But at $19.99, I wasn't willing to get them. But at $3.99, I definitely was! And I scored them with my 10% discount. $3.65 with tax.
  2. My mom also got these for me, but I've included them anyway. These are definitely teacher shoes, but they are super comfy and they have a slight heel to them.
Shoes total= $7.30
Overall total so far= $33.40

Ah, here where it gets dangerous...

  1. This is my most recent purchase. I am loving the draped effect of this Willi Smith blouse. It is super light and comfortable. I definitely have plans to dress it up and down. With my 10% discount, it comes to $3.65.
  2. I contemplated whether or not to buy this Ann Taylor cardigan, but I am really glad I did. I love the cobalt blue and the sleeve length. I hope it serves me well in the fall.
  3. I couldn't pass up this classic Worthington pink and black cardigan. I can already picture myself wearing it with a black pencil skirt and some pearls. Totally my style.
  4. I don't know how I convinced myself to buy this cute one-sleeved top because I rarely have an occasion to wear it, but I'm hoping that I'll get SOME use out of it soon. (Am I giving away my lameness yet?) But it was $2.99, so I got it.

Let's round this total to $17.00.

Overall total so far=$50.40.

  1. I am a big fan of Express dress pants so I couldn't pass up these tan pin-striped pants. $3.99.
  2. These are the jeans that I turned into yellow skinny jeans! I paid $2.99 for them and it was totally worth it.

Pants total= $7.00.

Overall total so far= $57.40.

I am excited about these pieces and hope they serve me well in the future. This is a Worthington denim suit that I love both separately and together. $4.99. 

I also purchased two blazers; the black Anne Taylor blazer is cropped and would look great with a pencil skirt and the gray blazer can add a little flair to a more casual outfit. $3.99 each.

Professional Wear total= $13.00

Overall total so far= $70.40. Yikes!

  1. This Anne Taylor dress is flattering and cute. I am thinking of switching out the gold buttons. What color do you think they should be? The dress is brown and white. $4.99.
  2. I just got this Chelsea and Theodore skirt and I really like it. It's very similar to my Calvin Klein skirt from my Interview suit, but it has the added black detail on either side. $2.99 and 10% discount. 
  3. Believe it or not, this is a SKORT. I had no clue until I stepped into it in the dressing room. Normally that would turn me off right away, but it was SO comfortable! The shorts underneath are almost like biker or spandex shorts that look like tights. I found myself not wanting to take it off, so I knew I should get it.
  4. This Express strapless dress fits so well, but I plan on making some alterations. I want to swap the velvet belt for another one--perhaps satin--and the lace bottom is a great touch, but I think I want a "classier" lace (if that makes sense.)

Dress/Skirt total= $15.70

Overall total so far= $86.10.

Believe it or not, I only have one item left and it was a DOLLAR!

My mom spotted this cute fabric (sorry for the blurry picture) that reminds me of a handkerchief, but cuter. I thought it might be fun to make little clutches or pouches with it. It is a big piece and only cost me a dollar!

Goodwill Summer Purchases total= roughly $87.10 over a 2.5 month period!

I know in the scheme of things, this really isn't a big number and I got a TON of great stuff for it--but when I realized that I was spending almost all of my money at this store, I had to reevaluate.

So, if you've made it this far, what do you think? Do I have an addiction? Should I be limiting my purchases or am I doing a good job at being selective already?

What's your strange addiction?