The Best Thrifting Tips – Part II – from Our Great Room

Imagine walking into this room for the first time…

Now, imagine me telling you that just about everything you see was purchased at thrift store prices…

You can have great stuff without paying retail prices!

It could be the years of experience or perhaps it is in my blood.  Either way, I am happy to have mastered the art of thrifting – I have found it much more useful than yodeling.

Tips 1 through 5 are in Part I of this series – in case you missed it, here is a link:

The Best Thrifting Tips – Part I – From our Kitchen

I can hear what you are thinking…  “But, when I have gone thrifting all I find are exploding couch cushions and furniture that looks like it’s been run through a crusher…”

Been there – seen it.

But I am telling you the good stuff is out there!

Like the Armoire that a couple purchased new just before a big job promotion…

their promotion meant a transfer across the country…

that transfer translates to “Let’s sell all our furniture at an Estate Sale!”

We will get to more tips in a minute.  First I am showing you the fabulous AND affordable stuff I have found.

This is our Wow-whee room.

I promise you – of all the people who have entered this room – not a single one would guess that almost everything was purchased “pre-owned”.

Let’s get started…

#1 – This rug came from a local thrift store…  It was on the store floor with furniture sitting on it “not for sale”, until I asked.  (tip from Part I – don’t be afraid to ask!)

#2 – The coffee table came from a local Facebook Group – Swap & Shop. Learn more about your local Swap & Swaps in Part I.  I swear to you I was hyperventilating when I saw it!

#3 & #4 – Both of these chairs flanking the fireplace came from an estate sale in absolutely perfect condition.  I have such good luck with estate sales for furniture items that I check each week for sales in our area.

#5 – The urn on the fireplace hearth was a garage sale find.

#6 – The three pottery pieces are all handcrafted from Silver Dollar City, Missouri.  I know this because the thrift store I purchased them from left the stickers on the bases.

#7 – This is one of my favorites – Uncle Buck – he was originally from Montana where he hung out at a Pawn Shop.  Now he keeps the Great Room “Great” here at the Lodge.

These items are worth mentioning…

The floating shelves holding the 3 pieces of pottery are homemade from a tree on our property.

The long box holding the flowers on the mantle is homemade from pallet wood.

So – the only things purchased new are the Bison art and the centerpiece on the coffee table – both from Hobby Lobby using that fabulous 40% off coupon.

Now, for the opposite side of that Wow-Whee Room…


This is fun right? – I hope you are enjoying this as much as I am.

#8 – #9 & #10 the couch, pillow, and alpaca fur on the back of the couch was purchased at a liquidation center.  A scratch and dent type place – however, we cannot find a scratch or dent on any of it.

#11 & #12 – These matching Elk lamps were found on Craigslist.  I met the seller at our local McDonalds parking lot.  I celebrated the transaction with an ice cream cone!

Sometimes you have to find perfection in the imperfection at a bargain price!

Like the broken rack on this elk lamp.  I am pretty sure this type of thing occurs naturally in the wild.

#13 – we found this end table at an Estate Sale.

#14 & #15 – the Picture frame and metal urn were both garage sale finds.

#16 – The armoire came from an estate sale. It sets the perfect balance for the stone fireplace on the opposite side of the room.

Now that you can see it can be done, here are tips 6 through 10…

Remember if you missed 1 through 5 go back to Part I on the previous post from last week.

Tip 6

  • Craigslist – Learn the offered features, like searching, locations, mileage radius for your search, and learn to set notifications.  I stress, being the first to know is critical to finding the best deals.

Tip 7

  • Estate and Tag Sales – Google Estate Sales + your state. Go to the ones near you and get on their mailing list to get notifications of upcoming sales. Like and follow their Facebook page.

Tip 8

  • eBay – this is not going to be your thriftiest option, but if you are a collector or searching for a particular item, it is your best chance of finding it at less than retail pricing.

Tip 9

  • Auctions – these are fun – but beware, if you have a competitive spirit they can be dangerous!!  Again, google auctions in your state and get signed up for notifications of auctions near you.

Tip 10 – the best for last…

  • Grab it Now – Cull it later…  This is huge…  When shopping – if it strikes your fancy – grab it – there is only one like it at the whole sale and there are dozens of other shoppers who would love to take it home. There is no time to think about it.  Just grab it – sit on it – wear it – do NOT lay it down.  When you have shopped the whole sale – now you can cull through your stuff.


You now have 10 great tips – the weekend is almost here.  Good luck to you!  Let me know what you find!

Once you score a great piece – you will be hooked!

Next week we will explore the final tips on thrifting and more finds from the Lodge.

Ooops…  Can’t leave out the entryway urn – another garage sale treasure.

My house would look better if I could afford to have Cabela’s do my decorating.  But, everything I have was a bargain at twice the price!!!


Thank you so much for reading.

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      Lynda – You are so right! It takes time and looking in the hidden nooks and crannies of the store will unveil the greatest treasures! Thank you for the tip!!

  1. Susan Price

    Love reading about your Lost Mule Lodge. Looks like you guys have put in a lot of hard work to make it a warm and cozy home. Glad to connect with you again after several years.


    Hey Susan!!! Great to hear from you. This has kept us busy for sure. And we still are not finished. How are you guys? Send me a private message and we can reconnect!! Thanks for the sweet comment.

  3. Mary Kay

    More great tips!! And you are so correct…you would never know that you’ve decorated with such amazing “steals”… Love, love, love your beautiful home!!

    It’s one thing to find a great bargain, but you also have the talent of making it all work together so perfectly!



    Hey there Joni – I am going to guess that you have found some great finds…? It is the thrill of the hunt!!! Thank you for taking the time to read and leave a comment.


    My Sweet Friend Katie!!! Sometimes we have to just give up the pride and stop paying retail. It becomes a hobby, like a hunt for the perfect item.
    Thank you again for always supporting my little blog and taking time to read. And tell Andy – You were right, just about all of it is pre-owned!!

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