Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Discount Shopping Adventures

I've seen a solid number of blog and vlog posts showing off successful shopping hauls, so when I realized that there were two second hand shops and two discount shops very close in a neighbourhood where I volunteer (at an animal shelter), I decided to give those places a try.  Was the trip successful?  Not in terms of things that I brought home, but in terms of setting my own expectations, I think it was.

I visited two thrift/secondhand stores: Sand Dollar and Goodwill and
two discount chain stores: Big Lots and Tuesday Morning.

I started the trip with a visit to the thrift chain Goodwill - I took zero photos in there because their toy section was virtually non-existant.  I found no action figures, two dolls, and a whole pile a ratty looking plush toys.

Thrift store number two was Sand Dollar, which had a larger toy section, but one that was dominated by preschooler building sets. Fun if that's what you're looking for, but it wasn't for me.  They did have a handful of dolls though, all topless, and all with the price written on their backs.

Semi-clad dolls at Sand Dollar.
Since those were the only two second hand places on my list, it was time to visit the discount shops.

First up was Tuesday Morning - I've heard stories of people finding Ai dolls, Pullips, and big Transformer sets at other locations of this chain, but I wasn't quite so lucky. They did have a few interesting things though.
Style girls dolls for $19.99 and outfits for $6.99
(all prices in USD)


Disney Cinderella for $14.99
Madame Alexander Travel Friends for $7.99

My one purchase of the day: DC Super Heroes Plug & Play
figures for $2.99
And finally I moved on to Big Lots - even though I've always heard it described as one of the cheapest discount chains, I found the prices (for toys at least) to be similar to most chain stores.

Superman and Batman mugs for $4.00

Airborne Trooper figure for $20 


Barbie and Monster High for $10-$12, which is the same (if not higher)
than their regular retail price.
And that's it! So while I didn't get any of the great bargains that some people have managed (although the Plug & Play mini figures are solid and will be getting their own post later this week), I did get to visit some places I hadn't gone into before - and it definitely inspired me to read some reviews and see if there are better locations around so that I can try my luck again.

21 comments:

  1. That Airborne trooper is pretty cool.It's fun jumping around from store to store.Not knowing what youre gonna come across gets the adrenaline pumping ;)

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    Replies
    1. That's true!

      The trooper has a crazy number of accessories - I was tempted to pick him up just for the number of stuff that he came with.

      Delete
  2. The author of a fashion blog I follow likes to say, "Leave no retail stone unturned," so from time to time I pop into thrift stores and antique stores hoping for one of those amazing finds that we all read about. I haven't found anything particularly wonderful yet, but I have found a few good discounted NRFB dolls in antique shops. Most of what I find in thrift stores is so dirty and worn that it's not worth the hassle of cleaning. I'm glad to see your adventures yielded at least one good purchase.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Heh, I'm going to hang onto that saying! ;)

      I haven't tried any of the local antique shops yet, but I'll have to give some of those a go as well one of these days...

      Delete
  3. I haven't had as much luck as other people I've seen either, although I've seen a few Ai dolls at my local Tuesday Morning. The thrill of the hunt is part of the fun, though.

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    Replies
    1. That's true, half the fun is just seeing what's there - and of course not finding anything is a lot cheaper than being successful, so there's something to be said for that! ;)

      Delete
  4. Hi JS, it's fun poking around in discount, thrift stores and antique barns, I love it. I know you don't always find something, but on the rare occasion it's a real thrill to discover something special. Not necessarily a doll, but something that you can use as a prop with your dolls.

    Just keep looking and you will find something sooner or later that will really float your boat. And you did find some figures, so not a total loss this time. :)
    Hugs,
    X

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    Replies
    1. True enough!

      And now that my expectations are a little more realistic I'll probably be extra excited when/if I do come across something brilliant. :)

      Delete
  5. BigLots' prices have changed drastically over the years. Their toy section use to yield great toys at even better prices. Now their stuff is more than Walmart and the stock is abysmal.

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    Replies
    1. That's too bad that they've upped their prices and lowered their selection - although it does explain why what I saw was at odds with the rave reviews I heard from a friend who went on a Big Lots shopping spree in Buffalo a few years ago.

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  6. Of all of these stores in my area, I have found Tuesday Morning to have the best deals. I once got 2 J Dolls for under $10 each and Doris Day and Rock Hudson Barbies for about $10 each as well. I never find any good dolls in the Thrift Stores around here. I agree with you on Big Lots that their doll prices are really no bargain!

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    Replies
    1. Oh wow, those are some great finds are your Tuesday Morning! I'll have to keep going back to that one to see what comes in next! :)

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  7. I've read of people picking up some bargain buys in places like Goodwill, particularly second-hand MH dolls which they have then remade into some stellar looking dolls.

    I kind of wish we had more places like that here. I think we mostly just have charity stores here and they rarely have anything worth buying. The discount stores ... I found some of their prices aren't that cheap but again, not a lot in their toy section either.

    Like you, I have heard rave reviews about Tuesday Morning. Maybe you'll get lucky another day?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe! :)

      It's too bad you don't have more selection - although if the charity shops are mostly disappointing, at least it must be that much more of a pleasant surprise if/when you do find something, right? ;)

      Delete
  8. I too have heard about people who've found real bargains at Tuesday Morning stores, but have never been into one myself....or any of those other stores you mention actually LOL, but glad that you did find some things to buy and bring home :)
    xx

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    Replies
    1. Heh, I can't complain, right? :)

      Delete
  9. Sounds like a great day of "window browsing"! I don't make it to the thrift shop very often these days, but it's always exciting to see what they might have. I will have check out a Tuesday Morning one of these days as I know there is one somewhat close-by.
    Fun post! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks!

      If you do check out your local Tuesday Morning I'll be excited to hear what their stock is like - I always wonder how stores like that vary between regions. :)

      Delete
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