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Chinoiserie Chic • Mid Century Modern • Palm Beach Regency Vintage Sales & Rentals


The Great Debate: Thrifting vs. Crack

LeAnn Stephenson

Let me just preface the following post by stating the fact that owning a vintage business is just slightly less expensive than being addicted to crack, and you can get the same physical appearance without all the drug use.

Saturday at 6 AM my eyes popped open, I turned to look at the Hubbs on the next pillow. He's all spooned up next to me in a tangle of sheets and comforter, sleeping peacefully. Saturday is the only day he gets the option of sleeping in if wants to. So, naturally I wake him and ask if he would like to go garage and estate sale-ing. I've found over the years if I wake him from a dead sleep he usually says "yes" to anything I ask him. With this tactic, I've gotten access to his wallet, his wardrobe, and his affirmative vote for painting our living room pink.

We took great pains getting ourselves ready for our thrifty outing. The Hubbs wore a pair of Khaki shorts that had a bleach spill down the front and a Rorschach ink splotch at the left pocket, partnered with a t-shirt, that we later realized was on inside out, and a ball cap to cover his bed-head. I chose a pair of Nike running shorts with one of my husband's "seen-better-days" t-shirts and a tragic looking pair of black flip flops. Our attire said, "When we're not in prison, we enjoy a day of looking homeless." Simply breathtaking and oh so impressive! I even managed to arrange my hair with a food processor so that it resembled a "mullet-with-dorsal-fin" type hairstyle. The only thing missing were 5 or 6 flies swirling around our heads and possibly the theme to the movie Deliverance playing in the background.

After a fast food breakfast containing 3 of my favorite ingredients: sugar, fat and caffeine - we were off to our first sale pumped up on empty carbohydrates and ready to bargain. At the first sale we scored an amazing spring-loaded whisk, one of those hand-cranked mixers, the cutest flour sifter, and a quart of unopened white paint for the grand total of $1.25. Next we made our way to one of Lou Warren's sales in Tarrytown and found a great piece of hotel silver and 6 satin-covered lingerie hangers for $2. After that, we decided to go to our favorite Goodwill "last stop" outlet and dig through the elevated troughs of things that aspire to be landfill. Important to note here is that The Hanger gives me the will to live, I fully expect to find the Holy Grail there some day or at the very least, meet author Dan Brown while he's there collecting all the copies of his book The Da Vinci Code. There I found a vintage eyelet sundress, 4 vintage linen European pillow shams - you know, the ones with the linen covered buttons, a cotton Matelasse French blue and taupe coverlet, 6 curtain panels made of a great brown, white and yellow floral fabric circa 1970 - think The Brady Bunch or The Partridge Family, and a couple of sheer white cotton tab top window panels, all for only $10.

After digging through bin after bin at The Hanger, it was around 3 in the afternoon and our stomachs were telling us that it was time for some groceries. We stopped at this great new place called the Black Sheep Lodge for a late lunch. The Hubbs had read the Texas Monthly article that had ranked it 27th out of the 50 best burgers in Texas, and they were right, it was most tasty! As we waited for our burgers we played shuffle board, darts and remembered what we used to do before we had kids. After scarfing down our huge burgers and onion rings, we headed home to survey our thrifty haul, gloat, and disinfect ourselves and our finds. Now THAT, is a Saturday well spent! Don't cha think?