This Was Supposed to be a Tip, Not a Tale of Rage and Woe

I love thrift stores. Love, love, LOVE thrift. Stores.


Love ’em.


If you want me to have a multiple O, first take me to the library, then to Rubio’s and finally, to the Goodwill.


I would O all over the place. And not the Oprah kind.




So…Given that it’s Wednesday, that wonderful wacky time of the week known as “Tip Day” here at San Diego Momma, I thought I’d share my thrifting tips with you.

Just please don’t shop where I do. I want all the good stuff.


Which leads me to a story…


I have this friend. She’s a right proper friend and a nice lady. As such, I take her thrifting with me and show her the ways of the hunt and peck. We have fun together. We find good things.


Then this one day, I happened upon a pair of VINTAGE FRYE CAMPUS BOOTS. If you are at all cool and normal, you know why I put that in all caps. VINTAGE FRYE. BOOTS.




Well, my friend didn’t know what Frye boots were, which was good, because they were going to be mine, mine, ALL MINE.


Except that they were not in my size. And oh how I tried to make them my size. For about an hour actually. I even considered cutting off a toe or a distal phalanx if i had to. Because? VINTAGE FRYE.




Oh and the coup de grace or whatever that French phrase is for cream on the cake or cherry on top: they were $30.




I die.


So they don’t fit. My heart drops, my stomach tumbles. As I contemplated shaving off a bunion, my friend walks by and says, “What are those?” And I say, “VINTAGE FRYES.” And she says again, “What are those?” And my lady parts – and sense of all that is good and right in the world — shrivel a little as I say: “VINTAGE“.










And she says?


Those are my size!”


And I say?




Or maybe I said:

Good for you.”


And so she bought them. And Googled Frye boots and realized that she just scored a pair of awesomeness that costs upwards of $300 for THIRTY.




And then she sent me pictures of how she was going to wear them.


There were boots with summer dresses.


With jean skirts.


With leggings.


And I just about ripped her Frye-wearing feet off her damn ass body.


But I said?

Good for you.”


Still see…Those were supposed to be MY boots.


And the really shitty thing is?


She got them for an extra 25% off.


Because they were on sale.






Please excuse me. I am much too tired and enraged to write thrifting tips now.


20 Responses to “This Was Supposed to be a Tip, Not a Tale of Rage and Woe”

  1. I had a pair of Frye boots (in my size) (heh) that would now be considered vintage (vintage?) (not really) (yes, really). I have been kicking myself in the ass for years now that I ever let them go. Thankfully, I’m not wearing those Frye boots while I’m kicking myself in the ass.

    What size does your friend wear?

    What is her address?

  2. Kizz says:

    That story right there? Is why I have trouble thrifting. The not fitting and the rage gets in the way. Also the endless searching, I hate endless searching.

  3. San Diego Momma says:

    The Frye boots you have NOW are fab. I will take those.

    Also, I emailed you her address. Now there’s a paper trail. Don’t do anything illegal. But if you wanted to steal the boots (size 7, caramel-colored), I would not turn you in.

    If I go to BlogHer this year, you want to endlessly search the thrift stores with me?

  4. I am a size 7 1/2, but without the big toe (that, yes, is still all effed up) (thanks for asking) (we of the inflicted ilk must stick together), I’m certain the size 7 will be fine. I’ve put the address you sent me into my iPhone GPS app and will be on my way shortly. Me and my iPhone boyfriend are such a powerful team at pulling off covert ops. I’ll keep you posted, possibly from prison. I sure hope I’ll have wireless or a 3G connection there.

  5. Christina says:

    I think I’ve just figured out what I want to do one day next week when I’m off work. My mom used to take me thrift stores as a kid – it was where we bought all our book/games/puzzles and I LOVED it!! How have I not re-discovered them as an adult? Especially since I am on a 2-3 year plan or major scrimping to pay off credit cards. So – which ones are your favorites here in San Diego?

  6. Stefanie says:

    A true friend would have left those boots behind and taken you for a martini lunch to show you how sad she was for you.. Just sayin’.

  7. San Diego Momma says:


    My fave used to be the Goodwill in Pt. Loma, but I heard that they aren’t as good now.

    The AmVets in Escondido was great…and the Poway thrift stores are hit and miss…but I have scored some great stuff.

    ALSO! There’s a consignment boutique in Poway called Girlfriends Boutique that has all kinds of coolios!

    (Did I just give all my secrets away?)

  8. Theresa Rose says:

    Hey, I’m a 6 1/2. Is that close enough? Take me shopping next time!! :-)

  9. I had those boots in high school. Past tense. Sigh.

  10. “inflicted” heh. That was supposed to say “afflicted . . .”

    Read into that what you will . . .

  11. rima says:

    You are a saint. I would have hidden them so at least no one else could partake.

    Once in college my friend took me to a really good thrift store that no one knew about so it wasn’t picked over except he made me wear a blindfold on the trip over so I wouldn’t know where it was. It was kind of a weird friendship.

  12. ROCK says:

    You chicks are crazy and gullible! You pay top dollar for your clothes when they are “in”, then when your clothes go out of style(every 6 mnonths)you get rid of them…. errr donate them. Crafty re-sale owners then store them for ten years and then sell them back to you at inflated prices cause they’re “vintage”. P.S. the owners of those boots died of leprosy.

  13. Ami says:

    I LOVE Goodwill… I go Goodwill hunting about four mornings a week. We buy all our clothes there… except for the things that a person really wants to buy new.

    I buy TONS of stuff for work there, too.

    Although it’s at my expense, it’s really an investment because if I spend an hour’s wages and it keeps 8 boys entertained for half a school year… well, we all win.

    But I don’t buy used shoes. So I’m happy for your friend.


  14. I ache for your loss. ACHE. This is the heartbreak of vintage shopping–only one size available and it does NOT fit all.

  15. MomZombie says:

    I, too, love the resale shop finds. I, too, cry bitter tears of loss every time I pull my too-big feet out of Cinderella’s magical designer deep-discount slippers.

  16. Christina says:

    Leprosy- Bwhahaha!!

    Thanks for the laugh AND the reminder that I do indeed love thrift store shopping and need to go. soon.

  17. Ooooh. I hate to say it, but I had those same Frye boots when they weren’t yet vintage. I think I paid about $60 bucks for them NEW.
    I’m never throwing anything away again.

  18. kate says:

    Kate Wheeler just died.

    For real.

    Died. Dead.

  19. […] probably don’t need to cover this with you all again, but shit howdy on a stick, these places make me […]

  20. OMG. I feel your pain. I love my Frye, but they were full price, and NOT VINTAGE. I would have done exactly as you did. Oh man…

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