You’ve already seen Larisa’s creative side here. But I wanted to dig in deep and find out what inspires this creative momma of two so I asked her. She’s sharing the things that inspire her and her savvy thrift shopping tips here.
Q: What tips can you give us wannabe thrifters on the art of shopping at a thrift store?
A: 1. Go without kids. If you’ve ever gone shopping with your kids, you know what an ordeal it can turn into. If you can carve out adult time, you can have more focus for finding those thrift goodies. Sometimes thrifting takes concentration to find just the right vintage chair, old book, etc. Having your hands free and your mind at ease, definitely helps!
2. Set a budget. I usually bring $20 and get what I can with that. The whole point is NOT to break the bank. If there’s something I have my heart set on that is over budget, I take a day to think it over. Then I go back—if it’s still there, I consider that it was meant to be!
3. Go often. I usually go once a week. New items appear from donations ALL the time. You don’t want to miss out on that hidden gem!
4. Visit thrift shops outside of your neighborhood. You will find unique items in an area that isn’t “just like home.”
5. Take a friend…or two. Often times the folks who know us best, can spot something we didn’t even know we were looking for. Also, they can provide a sounding board—do I really need this hundredth picture frame? A shopping companion can prevent junk overload!
6. Every trip is not a winner. Be prepared for that.Thrifting is hit or miss, like any retail therapy. Sometimes you feel like you’ve hit the jackpot and other times it seems as though there’s nothing fun to buy.
7. Thrifting is deeply personal. For me, the things that pop out to me and give me that retail high, are 9 times out of ten, something nostalgic. A dish that reminds me of meals at Grandmas. A shirt with a logo from a long ago product/tv show. Furniture that they just don’t make anymore. That’s when it really gets interesting.
Q: These are great! I’m curious to know what inspires you. How do you get a vision for seeing something someone else might just pass by?
My tastes are always changing and evolving. This means my style, interests, and yep, my creative projects tend to revolve around whatever has my attention at the moment. I have a few core interests that never change, such as books and music. And I have always enjoyed duality. I think this is where my “creative” process is born. I also think creativity stems from whatever I might stumble upon when shopping. Finding creative projects to work on these days usually revolves around dual or hidden purpose items. Who says a shoe is just a shoe? It can be decoration, a planter, a paintbrush holder. I like to look at ordinary things and think about ways of extending the life of them. For example, using an old album as wall art after it has played its last song. Like thrifting, every project isn’t a winner, but there’s still adventure in the process.