Thrift shop for one-of-a-kind finds

I love a great department store sale, but for the past 10 years or so I’ve been inspired to visit the local or out-of-town thrift shop from time to time. This may be frowned upon by a

D'Nieka Hartsfield

D’Nieka Hartsfield

few, but much appreciated by the frugal minded and creative individuals.

When you think on it, what person wouldn’t want to pay less on potentially one-of-a-kind apparel? The intriguing part is that you can’t find these things in department stores, which makes it fun and fashionably challenging. That’s all right with me.

In fashion, creativity is a must and with age you find that clothing recycles in and out of time. For instance, how can I make Grandma’s fancy church hat and vintage jewelry a factor in today’s ensemble? I so happen to be a big fan of vintage everything.

I think this side of me comes from my dad. Just the other day while dropping in on him at his office, I noticed we were wearing similar boots — my boots, not even a year old and his were probably older than me. He had his lightly repaired and no you won’t be able to find another pair anywhere. They are quality boots. He appreciated them and so he kept them, which is amazing.

I was first introduced to thrift shopping back in college by an eccentric cousin of mine who would frequent these second-hand stores. When I would go to visit her when she lived in Austin, she would take me to these neat spots that had some of the cutest finds.

Although we had different ideas of fashion, It was an artistic excursion for me. I realized I was merely taking something old and used and flipping it into something shiny and fabulous. I was immediately hooked.

As soon as I returned home, I would start going to the local thrift shops and consignment stores and I introduced my new craze to my best friends.

The big difference between shopping thrift and consignment stores, I think, is that you don’t expect to find anything in consignment like you would in department stores where you know exactly what you’re looking for. In this case, the purpose for shopping thrift and consignment is the element of surprise.

I have purchased one-of-a-kind handbags, jewelry, scarves, coats and dresses this way. They are my best creations.


D’Nieka Hartsfield also loves vintage household items, including her collection of wine glasses. Contact her at or find her on Facebook.

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