Thrifting can be rather straight forward - you walk into
GoodWill or Salvation Army, see something you like, then purchase
it. But what if we told you that we could help make sure that
used piece of furniture you are about to purchase is going to be a
conversation starter whenever it is seen? With this guide, we
will help you with the inspiration, identification, repair, and
overall view of the product.
1 - Research ideas and establish how much time and money you
would like to set aside for this given project
Before stepping out of your house, take some time to figure out
what article of furniture you are in the market for. Are you
interested in a new kitchen table, or perhaps finally finding that
globe stand you have been looking for? Once
you have figured out which article you are most interested in,
search Pinterest for the latest DIY trends as well as seeing which
designs align most with the layout of your room. If you are looking
for inspiration, we suggest checking out our Pinterest page which lays out some of our
favorite projects and designs. After your initial research
and soul searching has occured, it is important to understand how
much time and money you can realistically set aside to accomplish
your goal. Regardless of your budget and time commitment, know that
there are still fascinating and clever ways to use furniture found
in your local consignment shop or thrift store.
2 - Evaluate where you want to purchase from
After you are inspired, you can start to figure out where you
can start to browse potential furniture pieces. There are multiple
avenues that need to be considered, each having their pros and
For digital: Craigslist, eBay, Close5, OfferUp, and Facebook
Marketplace (in the near future).
For brick-and-mortar stores: Consignment shops, thirift stores,
and furniture specialty stores.
Secret Tip: Think about calling hotels and asking if they have
any used furniture they are looking to sell or get rid of - most
people do not think to do this, but it may work for you!
3 - Look at the damages - are they beyond repair?
After you identify which piece of furniture looks appealing to
you, it is important to do a very close inspection of the material
and condition of the piece. Is it quality wood or cheap
composite material? Once this is established, you can then decide
and see how long and how much it will cost to get this project from
where it is now to where you want it to be. Dents, scratches,
and dings can be taken care of relatively easily with various touch up products. Areas that you should
be alert to would be uneven legs, loose joints, and stained fabrics
An additional step should be taken when you are purchasing beds,
couches, or the like. This is to test for bed bugs, and the first
step is to put the piece of furniture outside. Once a white sheet
or paper is laid under the base of the piece, take an old
credit card and scrape across the surface. Once the debris
falls to the sheet, take a blacklight or normal flash light and
inspect what fell. If it looks anything remotely like bed
bugs, you may want to consider another piece.
4 - Try your hand at bartering the price lower
Thrift stores and consignments shops are just about the last
remaining places where bartering is not met with a, "Are you
kidding me?" face. When bartering, it is important to note
the key flaws and state them as to why the price should be lowered.
Do not offer a price that is so low that they do not want to
participate, but just enough to get them to realize that the flaws
you've pointed out reduce the value of the product.
5 - Begin the makeover process
You've done it! You managed to find a treasure chest in an
old thrift shop. The next step involves putting the vision
you imagined from Step 1 into practice. If you are needing to
fill in some dents, we would suggest using our Hard Fill Sticks and Battery Operated Burn-In Knife. The hard
fill makes permanent repairs to holes, divets, and the like.
If there is a corner of the table missing and you are planing
on recoloring or staining the table, we would suggest using our Epoxy Putty in White. If you are unsure
what the Epoxy Putty is like or how to use it, follow our quick guide here. With regards to small
scratches on the surface, take an Ultra Mark or Pro Mark and gently apply it to the
areas - there is a helpful video here. Whether it is staining it a new
color (Find our Solar Lux here), or polishing the brass,
Mohawk can help you with any issues you experience in the DIY
process. Even if you aren't a customer of us, we would still
love to help or answer any questions that you may have! Our goal is
to help you create that conversation starting piece of furniture -
let's tackle it together.
What has been your favorite thift store or consignment shop
find? Tell us on our Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram! We would love to hear your
story, and possibly feature you on our next blog post (Yes, you
will receive free product).