AARDVARK'S ODD ARK
Los Angeles. "Besides its cool name, it offers a variety of clothing from vintage to trendy fashions, all at very reasonable prices. I bought several bowling shirts at Aardvark's before bowling shirts became popular again," explains Dave Taube of Eugene, Ore. "I don't think that I could afford to buy new ones today." (323) 655-6769.
AUBERGINE VINTAGE EMPORIUM & CAFE
Sebastaol, Calif. "The store is huge, with a Euro-vintage feel to it. I've spent a good 30 minutes in the scarf baskets alone," says Karyn Lobley of Santa Rosa, Calif. "I haven't seen such wonderful things since the 60's." (707) 827-3460, sef.sebastopolschools.org/aubergine .
BEST FRIENDS CONSIGNMENT
Murphys, Calif. "I always discover something I need here—or maybe I don't need but have to have," says Mardona Maury of Garden Grove, Calif. "Toni Klass, the owner, really has an eye, and her prices are great." (209) 728-0116, visitmurphys.com/shopping.html .
Berkeley, Calif. "I'm always able to find new treasures to add to my wardrobe," says Angelique Collier of Dublin, Calif. "The clothing is as stylish and hip as any you'll find. Not only do they have a great assortment of current fashions to buy, but they also allow customers to trade in their clothing in exchange for cash or merchandise in the store." (510) 644-9202.
COMMUNITY PROJECTS THRIFT SHOP
Napa, Calif. "Those who lack a knack for interior decorating could learn a thing or two from the organizers here. Beautiful displays of clothing, furniture, and other items, are changed often to meet the next season or holiday. The bright, inviting interior makes you want to keep searching for that perfect find," says Faith Maul of Vacaville, Calif. (707) 226-7585.
Dayton, Nev. "A new Burberry dog coat for $10 (retail $150), two De Grazia framed canvas prints $35, four silk shirts for $2.50 each: Those were my ‘steals' during my last foray at this hole-in-the-wall thrift shop," says Cynthia Kennedy of Virginia City, Nev. "They even have 50% off days. Indulgence at its best." (775) 246-2466.
FRIENDS IN SERVICE HELPING
Dayton, Nev. "Just off Highway 80, ‘F.I.S.H.' has a friendly staff always ready to assist. In addition to unusually low prices (even by bargain standards), they frequently feature ‘dot sales', where certain color dot takes yet more off the price," says Harold Roy Miller of Stagecoach, Nev. (775) 738-3038.
GOLD MINE THRIFT SHOP
Ketchum, Idaho. "One fab store," declares Patty Montmorency of Oakland. "Fishing rods, fur coats, ski suits, designer lamps, pillow, pants, tea sets, designer labels–this place is a shopper's mecca. Well heeled landowners (Demi Moore, Ashton Kutcher, Bruce Willis) and a myriad visitors deposit layer upon layer of amazing goods." (208) 726-3465, thecommunitylibrary.org/goldmine .
GOODWILL FLAGSHIP STORE
San Francisco. "Bring an open mind," says Teresa Riccobuono of Concord, Calif. "You never know what treasures you'll dig up. Go on Sunday morning when the parking is easy and the store uncrowded. Even then I rarely get out in less than two hours." (415) 575-2240, sfgoodwill.org .
Phoenix, Ore. "Not far from Ashland, this large and clean thrift shop, one of many Goodwills in the region, offers terrific deals and friendly southern Oregon–style service," writes Kiersta Gostnell of Williams, Ore. (541) 772-4753, sogoodwill.org .
HAPPY DRAGON THRIFT SHOP
Los Gatos, Calif. "Find captivating collectibles as well as vintage and high-end clothing," says Cynthia Rostankowski of San Jose. "A friend found a tuxedo for her son to wear in his community orchestra." (408) 354-4072. emqff.org .
Groveland, Calif. "Sometimes referred to as ‘Macy's on the Hill,' here you'll find everything from footwear to kitchen items to artwork," explain Tony and Carolyn Botell of Groveland. "We once bought an oil painting here for $2.50 that remains one of our very favorites." (209) 962-6830.
HOPE CHEST TOO
Rockaway Beach, Ore. "This place is well worth looking for," says Nancy Wilcox of Seaside, Ore. "The stock is primarily home decor items, but they also carry clothing, books, and CDs." (503) 355-3333, rockawaybeach.net/shopping.htm .
KERR THRIFT SHOP
Portland. "Housed in a historic orphanage founded by the canning jar magnate Alexander Kerr, this is a delightful place to spend a few hours," says Patti Perrin of Portland. "Eat lunch in Albertina's, the charming dining room, then visit the other shops in the complex for unusual gifts and antiques." (503) 233-0939, kerrshops.org .
THE ATTIC VINTAGE CLOTHING STORE
Las Vegas. "I remember going to this magical downtown shop as a little girl," writes Laura Graves of Las Vegas. "As you step into two stories of fashion, culture, and design, you feel as if you're in a time warp—one that spans decades." (702) 388-4088, atticvintage.com .
THE KIDZ SHOPPE
San Jose. "Full of items for kids of all ages, make time to peruse the large selection of books and toys, all in pristine condition," says Cristin Boyd of San Jose. "It also has a great play area for younger kids to pass the time while mom and dad shop." (408) 879-0989, thekidzshoppe.net .
LEX'S COOL STUFF
Netarts, Ore. "Just outside of Tillamook, it's become a must-see for visitors on the Three Capes Scenic Drive, offering travelers and locals alike with unique gifts, antiques, and collectables, says Rich Jenks of Netarts. "To sweeten the deal, you'll walk out with a home-baked Brownie, compliments of Lex." (503) 842-1744.
MARK TWAIN ST. JOSEPH'S HOSPITAL THRIFT SHOP
Angels Camp, Calif. "It's one stop we never miss," writes Nancy Brown of Soquel, Calif. "This shop never fails to offer a special treasure we can't do without, from tools to art." (209) 736-0864.
NEW TO YOU
McMinnville, Ore. "The clothing and accessories here are all ‘lightly used,' in style, and in season," writes Jane Baker of McMinnville. "There's always a sale going on, and the clothes are arranged by color as well as size." (503) 472-3013, shopnewtoyou.com .
PASS IT ON THRIFT
Tahoe City, Calif. "Always well stocked with everything from housewares to ski gear," says Sara Suffriti of Tahoe City. "The employees are cool, the music is great, and there's something new every day." (530) 581-3117.
RUTHIE B'S ANTIQUES and TEA ROOM
Springfield, Ore. "Although this town's hopes of being crowned the home of Homer Simpson have been dashed, it can still lay claim to the most charming and fun secondhand shop ever," writes Gail Radzevich of Springfield. "It's easy to spend hours amid Ruth Ballenger's large and eclectic collection." (541) 988-4791, springfield-chamber.org/members/antiques/ .
SALVATION ARMY REGIONAL CENTER
Healdsburg, Calif. "Acres of thrifting paradise set among the oaks and rolling hills of Northern California," says Michele Swanson of Myrtle Point, Ore. "There's a store with furniture, one with antiques, and one with clothing. Outside, you can dig through bins of unsorted items." (707) 433-5177.
SISTERS HABITAT FOR HUMANITY THRIFT STORE
Sisters, Ore. "Reasonably priced, clean, neat, well-organized clothing, housewares, books, and linens," says Diana Raske of Sisters. "A partner shop a block away offers furniture, electronics, and building supplies." (541) 549-1193, sistershabitat.org .
SPCA BENEFIT SHOP
Carmel, Calif. "Because of its proximity to Pebble Beach, the shop receives amazing merchandise including brand-new, out of season designer clothing from local boutiques, as well as incredible furniture from those who are redecorating," says Susan Koza of Salinas. "I've found amazing bargains in jewelry, clothing, and home accessories." (831) 624-4211, spcamc.org/benefit.htm .
Reno. "This shop has it all," says Susan Cothren of Verdi, Calif. "I've discovered some amazing items here, including Japanese dishware, Brandenburg lace tablecloths, and cashmere sweaters from Scotland." (775) 322-9824, ccsnn.org/thriftshop.asp .
Chico, Calif. "There's always an abundance of high-quality merchandise, themed for particular seasons. For example, in honor of Valentine's Day, pink serving plates, sweaters, and purses adorn shop windows and display cases in February," explains Jan Hasak of Paradise, Calif. "I enjoy heaps of compliments when I wear clothing from this fine store." (530) 343-6178.
Portland. "I love going to this funky little shop full of clothes, household goods, and furniture," writes Susie Johnson of Portland. "Once, within earshot of quite a few women at a local club, I told a friend I'd been shopping there, and every one of the eavesdroppers went aah. The prices and selection are that good." (503) 234-6343.
WILLIAM TEMPLE THRIFT STORE
Portland. "They have a wonderful, meticulously-categorized book selection, some of which may be autographed. This is in addition to the plentful furniture, clothing, paintings, and other household items for very reasonable prices, with special sales lowering these prices by as much as 75%," says Barbara Kochevar of Gladstone, Ore. (503) 222-3328, williamtemple.org/store.html .
YELLOW BRICK ROAD
Carmel, Calif. "This shop specializes in designer clothing, especially women's clothing," says Barbara Wells of Carmel. "Fine bags, shoes, and linens are available here for prices unheard of anywhere else, and on the last day of the month all cloths are half price." (831) 626-8480.
Fresno. "Located in a large warehouse, Yoshi NOW! has tons of vintage clothes, furniture, knick-knacks," offers Laura Splotch of Fresno. "They also cater to the local hipsters by carrying a wide variety of local music, band shirts and hosting live music and art shows." (559) 485-8142, myspace.com/yoshinow .
Photography by Sabin Orr
This article was first published in July 2009. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.