Thrifting for home decor allows you to create a space that is not only beautiful but also one-of-a-kind, all while staying within your budget. Let this ultimate guide to thrifting home decor inspire you to start collecting and transforming your home into the warm and inviting space you’ve always dreamed of.

The thrill of searching for and discovering a unique piece is unmatched. You never know what you’ll find, and you’d be surprised at how many beautiful, high-quality items are just a few dollars!

Sideboard with shelves filled with thrifted vintage pieces including a copper vase, plate, vintage glassware, ceramic candle holder, brass candle snuffler and gold frame.

Plus, the things you’ll find are often more unique and interesting than mass-produced items in big-box stores.

There are many ways to buy second-hand items, such as from thrift stores, garage sales, or online marketplaces like Etsy, Facebook Marketplace, or eBay.

I have enjoyed thrift shopping since I was a teenager. I would thrift shop with my nana when I spent the weekend at her house. We loved wandering around the shops, looking at what was on offer.

Our home now has about 70% thrifted items and 30% new. From picture frames to cabinets to candle holders, our home becomes more unique with every thrifting trip. Not to mention that it’s so much fun!

As a homemaker, I love being frugal and finding amazing treasures for an affordable price that works for my fiancé and me. This way, we can continue to go on vacation and have fun!

Let’s jump into my tips and tricks so you can make the most out of thrifting.

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Why is Thrift Shopping a Good Idea?

  • You can create a warm, inviting home filled with items that are unique to you.
  • It’s affordable for all budgets.
  • Reduce, Reuse & Recycle!
  • Vintage pieces are usually of higher quality.
  • You never know what you may find!
  • Many thrift stores are supporting charities.
Sideboard with shelves filled with thrifted vintage pieces including a copper vase, plate, vintage glassware, ceramic candle holder, brass candle snuffler and gold frame.

How to Thrift Home Decor Like a Pro

Hopefully, I have convinced you to start thrift shopping for your home by now. Let me share my tips so you can get the most out of your time.

  • Create a budget.
  • Write down a list of items you are looking for or need.
  • Create a Pinterest mood board to help with inspiration and styling.
  • Create a map of your local thrift stores to stay efficient.
  • Wear comfy clothing and shoes.
  • Empty your car before you go – you never know what you’ll find.
  • Remember to ask yourself if you need an item and how you plan to use it in your home before purchasing. It can be easy to want something you don’t need because it’s a great deal.

11 Things to Buy for Your Home at the Thrift Store

1. Vintage Frames

Look for ornate vintage frames in various sizes. You can use these frames to display public-domain artwork around your home. My favourite thing is finding pretty picture frames that can be spray-painted brass or gold. They always look amazing!

Upcycled photo frame with Monet print on a bedroom wall

2. Vintage Glassware

Search for vintage glassware, such as coloured glass goblets, depression glass serving bowls, or delicate crystal vases. These pieces can serve drinks, display flowers, or simply decorate your home.

3. Copper and Brass

Look for vintage brass or copper items like candlesticks, trays, or planters. These metallic accents can add warmth and elegance to your home decor, especially when paired with natural elements like flowers or greenery.

Shelves filled with thrifted home decor

4. Beautiful Books

Browse the book section for vintage books with decorative covers or interesting titles. Stack them on coffee tables or shelves for a vintage-inspired display. Many have beautiful fabric covers with gold-etched writing. These stacked on a dresser in a guest bedroom is a lovely touch.

5. Crockey

Scour thrift stores for mismatched china plates, teacups, and saucers. Mix and match different patterns and colours to create an eclectic and whimsical table setting for dinner parties or everyday meals.

I love collecting floral patterned plates for eating on and displaying on the walls.

Thrifted floral plates hanging on a cottage kitchen wall

6. Wicker Baskets

Look for vintage rattan or wicker baskets. These natural materials can add a touch of charm to your home. You can use them to store food, stationery, books, bags, scarves, toys, keys, sewing supplies, tools, or even toilet paper rolls.

Thrifted wicker basket filled with vintage sewing patterns

7. Vintage Linens

Look for vintage linens like tablecloths, doilies, napkins, and tea towels with delicate lace or embroidered details. These can add a charming touch to your home, whether displayed on tables or used in the kitchen. I love to find pure linen and cotton vintage linens because the quality is unmatched by anything you find today.

Wash vintage linens on a normal cycle with 2/3 cup vinegar and washing powder to clean them and make them lovely and soft. Here are more distilled vinegar tips and tricks.

Vintage linen cloths

8. Antique Furniture

While larger items like furniture can be harder to find at thrift stores, look for unique antique pieces such as sideboards, cabinets, dressers, or side tables. These can add character and charm to any room in your home.

9. Vintage Kitchenware

Search for vintage kitchen items like enamelware pots and pans, milk glass mixing bowls, or retro canisters. These items can add a lovely pop of colour and vintage charm to your kitchen decor.

If you have open shelves or a sideboard, use them to showcase practical yet beautiful items as part of your home decor.

Vintage baking tins one for bread and one for cake

10. Quilts and Patchwork Blankets

Look for handmade quilts or patchwork blankets. These cosy textiles can add warmth and colour to your home, whether draped over a couch or displayed on a bed.

11. Old-Fashioned Lamps

Search for vintage lamps with ornate bases or stained glass shades. These lamps can add a warm and cosy ambience to your living space, whether on side tables or in the corner of your kitchen.

If you find an old lampshade, try upcycling it with this no-sew pleated fabric lampshade tutorial.

Upcycled thrifted lamp that has been spray painted gold with a pleated fabric lampshade

To Sum Up

These are my top 11 favourite things to look for at the thrift store for my home. I hope this has inspired and encouraged you to find charming pieces for your home that won’t break the bank. Over time, it’s exciting to collect pieces that will bring warmth, charm and cosiness to your home.

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