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Thrifted Gifts: fun or faux pas?

December 9, 2010

Now that the holiday shopping season is fully under way, many of us are spending time and money seeking and purchasing the perfect gifts for everyone on our list.

However, this can really add up, and the holidays are not supposed to be a time for obsessive shopping and stretching budgets to death. (In case you’re wondering, they’re for spending time with friends and family. Oh, and baking.)

If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know how much we all love shopping at thrift stores. But have you ever given someone else a gift from a thrift or vintage store? If so, did you tell them?

Personally, I see nothing wrong with it – especially if the person the gift is for has an appreciation for thrift/vintage shopping. You can get more for your dollar, plus you can often find better quality items than you’d otherwise purchase at a discount/department store.

Should you tell them? I’ll leave that up to you. The way I see it, you wouldn’t necessarily tell someone which store their new gifts came from, so no need to tell them it’s thrifted unless you want to.

A few things to remember if you’re considering giving a thrifted gift:

  • It’s common courtesy to closely examine the item first. Make sure there are no defects and the item is new or like new.
  • Thrifted gifts most likely cannot be returned.
  • If the gift is clothing, it’s probably a good idea to wash before wrapping.

Gifts are great, but no one wants you to run up a credit card bill buying them shiny new presents. Or at least they shouldn’t. And as they say, it’s the thought that counts.

Please share: What’s your opinion on thrifted gifts?

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Beth Farrar McMillan permalink
    December 9, 2010 10:20 am

    I don’t believe in faux pas. 😉

  2. thrifter permalink
    December 9, 2010 11:05 am

    I have given thrifted items as gifts, usually hand made items. if they don’t ask they assume I made it. if they do ask I always say it was rescued. and cute and appropriate is better than stupid and off base no matter the price!

  3. December 9, 2010 11:09 am

    I’ve never really thought about this, but you make some good points. I don’t think it’s a faux pas, especially if the recipient has an appreciation for vintage. However, I do the majority of my gift-buying online (so I can have things shipped straight to my parents’ house), so I haven’t run into this situation yet.

    One thing to keep in mind, though, is the store’s return policy. I’m really picky about the clothes I receive as gifts and would usually just prefer a gift card. Of course if it’s a scarf or something like that, that issue would probably be moot.

  4. Abby permalink
    December 9, 2010 11:41 am

    I’ve given thrifted/vintage items as gifts. I gave some really cool thrifted items to some close friends of mine who thrift all the time anyway and they loved them. I’ve given thrifted vintage items as gifts before…when I go that avenue I make an effort to find something extra special. I’ve had excellent luck with jewelry and kitchenware. I’d much rather do that (and receive those kinds of gifts) than buy something less interesting at a department store just so I can buy something new. Besides, it takes more effort to buy thrifted/vintage, and the gift is probably way more unique!

  5. December 9, 2010 10:49 pm

    I really would love to give the people in my life more thrift store gifts, because a) that’s where I do a lot of my shopping, and so it’s a reflection of what thought I put into the gift and b) there really are some amazing gems out there. Alas, the ladies in my life are the ones who like brand new things and receipts just case. But I’m working on them…

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