Every once in a while, the Crumb Saver household shares a snapshot of a recent crumb-saving (or wasting!) incident on A Random Crumb. This column is proof that, hey, we’re people just like you! Prepare for a little randomness, a little embarrassment, but hopefully mostly encouragement.  You’ll get a sneak peek at what we actually do to save (or NOT save) in real life, which is motivation to us to stay crumby (in the good way) and (hopefully) inspiration for you join in the crumb-saving action too!

Shopping for clothes isn’t one of my favorite activities. I’m just not into fashion or haberdashery generally. This is not to say that I don’t like looking sharp and dapper, but I just don’t relish the thought of spending lots of money on new clothes that pretty much goes to $0 in resale value once the tag comes off. It’s about the quickest depreciating asset I can imagine buying. Nevertheless, clothing is a necessity (unless you’re like my 95 year-old grandfather who spends his days gardening in nothing more than a pair of shorts back in balmy Southeast Asia), so we Crumb Savers view this as an essential element of our lifestyle to keep trim.

Recently I’ve needed some new khaki pants. This is due to a combination of them wearing out and because I’ve “outgrown” them…and I’ve not grown any taller…<ahem>. So since Deb and I have been visiting my parents in California this past week, we decided to make a family trip to the local Salvation Army thrift store. My family used to turn our noses up at thrift stores with the dismissive thought of “What good thing can come from junk that people wanted to give away?” Apparently a whole lot!

It was “10 for $10” day at the Salvation Army, which meant each piece of clothing was $1…only jackets were excluded. I sifted through the men’s rack and tried on every pair of pants my size; eventually finding 3 pairs of excellent condition, like-new khakis. But that’s not all! My dad also found a nice Banana Republic shirt to match my newfound khakis. So my new outfit of 3 pairs of pants and a shirt ended up costing $4. I don’t mind clothes shopping so much it it’s like this!

So even though I’m by no means a fashionista and have a disdain toward taking selfies, here’s a photo of the spoils:

Dockers khaki, Banana Republic shirt

Dockers khakis. Banana Republic shirt. $2. Boom.

And this doesn’t even include the pair of black leather boots that Deb found for $2.62, or the CFL light bulbs my dad got for $1 that usually retail for over $10 each, or any of the other stuff we got for other family members.

Shopping at thrift stores is like going searching for treasure. You need to be patient and to be willing to dig. If you haven’t tried it, take it from a guy who used to smirk at the sound of Goodwill or Salvation Army, there’s treasure to be found in them piles of discarded junk! Happy treasure hunting!

I’m sure some of you out there are seasoned thrifters. What are some of your biggest finds? Share with us in the comments below!