A guide to thrift store shopping

 

A variety of holiday-themed merchandise sits available for purchase inside of the Palmer Home Thrift Store in Columbus.

A variety of holiday-themed merchandise sits available for purchase inside of the Palmer Home Thrift Store in Columbus.

 

The Palmer Home Thrift Store in Columbus offers a variety of merchandise available for purchase.

The Palmer Home Thrift Store in Columbus offers a variety of merchandise available for purchase.

 

A variety of merchandise sits available for purchase inside of the Palmer Home Thrift Store in Columbus.

A variety of merchandise sits available for purchase inside of the Palmer Home Thrift Store in Columbus.

 

 

Garrick Hodge

 

 

In the holiday shopping season, consumers tend to flock to popular retail stores like Wal-Mart, Belk and also use online ordering from services like Amazon.

 

There are also other local options in the Golden Triangle: thrift stores. Several area stores offer secondhand clothes and other household goods, while most help raise funds for a charitable institution.

 

"I think they're more convenient than big retail stores," said Jessica Koger, the retail manager at the Palmer Home Thrift Store in Columbus. "People can come in here and find a name-brand shirt a lot cheaper than they would elsewhere."

 

 

Many items can be purchased at thrift stores, including antiques, bicycles, toys, books, framed pictures and more. Koger said the most popular items sold at her store in Columbus are home decor items, such as candlesticks, furniture and other items. To help ease concerns in an era of pandemic shopping, Koger said the store makes sure all items are sanitized before put up for sale.

 

'We try to set everything up where everybody can find everything." Koger said. "We try to keep it pretty organized."

 

According to Amanda Henry, the office manager of Starkville Habitat for Humanity Thrift Store, customers will find the best items if they time their shopping experience closest to the biggest donation deliveries.

 

"I would say to find out when they get restocked and go visit them as close to that time as possible," Henry said. "For example, we pick up donations on Wednesday morning, so Thursday is a good day to come because that's when we have all our new stuff. Being aware of that in different places is the best way to get the best selection."

 

Henry also advocated to "measure and double measure" furniture at the thrift store and the location in your house for best results, along with calling multiple thrift stores asking if there's any flash sales at the moment. Flash sales vary by store on both timeframe and items sold.

 

The biggest value of shopping at a thrift store is definitely for the savings, Koger said, as items sold at these locations will likely be cheaper than if bought brand new at retail stores. While a perception may exist of only buying hand me downs from thrift stores, Koger said a good chunk of the items donated are actually quite worthy of owning.

 

"Honestly, I think sometimes people don't really realize what they're donating," Koger said. "Sometimes people will donate (some high value items) and I'm not sure people always pay attention to what they have. Which makes that item cheaper, and really more affordable than it would be if it was sold at a place like Wal-Mart."

 

The Palmer Home Thrift stores in Columbus and Starkville are unsure if there will be any holiday specials this year at their locations, but there could be a Black Friday sale.

 

Thrift stores can also be about giving in addition to purchasing. Most thrift stores in the Golden Triangle accept item donations on site from anyone who has excessive household belongings they'd like to give away.

 

Other thrift stores available to Golden Triangle residents include the Salvation Army Thrift Store in Columbus, Habitat for Humanity Thrift Store in Columbus, Carnice's Thrift Shop in Starkville and We Got All That & Grand Stylz in West Point.

 

 

 

 

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