FACES AND PLACES - Plan your own thrift store hunt



Colorful spring fashions greet shoppers at Hidden Treasures.

The thrill of the hunt. The search for treasure. Seeking the elusive designer label -- for less than 10 bucks. Walla Walla shoppers have many opportunities for great bargain shopping. There are no less than five thrift and consignment stores within walking distance of each other downtown.

The best tip: Never go looking for something specific -- rarely will you find exactly what you're looking for. Instead, keep an open mind. When you find yourself drawn to an item, imagine where you would use it, or which pair of pants it would look great with.

The next best tip: Visit your favorite shop on a regular basis. Find out which days new items are put out on the sales floor. Make friends with the employees so if 'exactly what you're looking for' does happen to come in, they might just give you a call.

Goodwill on Alder has some of everything. Housewares, appliances, books, seasonal decorations, furniture and clothes, clothes, clothes. They get so many donations on a daily basis, it's nearly impossible for the staff to keep up. And mixed in with the beat-up baskets and shrunken pillowcases, there are treasures to be found. Like a Coach leather backpack for $7.50 (a personal victory, thank you very much!). Coming soon: an expansion into space next door.

St. Vincent de Paul on West Main is another source for some of everything. Glassware is sorted by color and size in a small alcove up front. Housewares and small appliances are downstairs with the books and magazines; furniture is in the back. This is the place most likely to have a lid for your French White Corning casserole dish - you know, the one you broke two Thanksgivings ago?

Hidden Treasures, downtown on Main Street, is a clothing consignment shop. Bring in your gently used women's and children's clothing and it will go out on the sales floor. When an item sells, you get a portion of the proceeds, to be used as store credit or received via check. BooLou, inside the Die Br?ºcke Building, is the 'younger sister' store run by the same family. BooLou purchases clothes outright - no waiting - and focuses on junior sizes and styles.

Both stores also carry some new clothing lines and home d?©cor.

Downtown's newest addition to the consignment game is Little Mud Pies Clothing Co. on Alder Street. They directly purchase 'pre-loved' baby, children and maternity clothing, plus toys, furniture and vbaby gear. They also carry a variety of new clothing and gear. Their focus is on like-new items no more than three years old.

The adage, "One man's trash is another man's treasure" totally applies to secondhand shopping in Walla Walla. Let your quest begin!


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