Bang for your buck: A guide to thrifting in Dallas

Clarisa Tores went into Buffalo Exchange thrift store kicking and screaming one recent afternoon. Thrifting usually made the SMU senior cringe.

But, today, she left a true believer.

“I thought I was just going to find outdated clothing,” said Tores, who purchased two new items for her wardrobe: a grey knit sweater for $11 and brown lace-up heel booties for $21.

Thrifting can be intimidating or even unappealing to some. But if you’re up for a treasure hunt, thrifting can be a great way to find stylish or vintage clothes, shoes and accessories at bargain prices. If you’re like Tores and haven’t considered thrifting before, check out these three nearby stores for fashionable finds.

“Don’t judge it before you try it,” Tores said.

1. Buffalo Exchange

Buffalo Exchange, located at 3424 Greenville Avenue. Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

Buffalo Exchange offers styles for everyone according to assistant manager Katie Wagner.

“We try and cater to everybody,” Wagner said. “We have everything from the guy in streetwear, to the soccer dad, the Tory Burch brand mom to the Deep Ellum club girl.”

Wagner emphasized that Buffalo Exchange stands out from the rest of the thrift stores in the area.

“We try to stay on trend and look for details in cut and color,” she said. “We also buy really cool, one of a kind vintage pieces.”

Lauren Matlock, a frequent shopper at Buffalo Exchange, prefers shopping at thrift stores over department stores or boutiques.

“It’s more affordable,” Matlock said. “I feel like there is a bigger selection of styles.”

The best way to approach shopping at a thrift store is to come with no expectations, according to Matlock.

“Be open-minded about it,” she said. “I don’t usually come in with a vision in my head, I just kind of see what I find and think about how I can incorporate that into my wardrobe.”

Below are some pieces you can find at Buffalo exchange and tips on how to mix them into your wardrobe.

Two Buffalo Exchange: Gap white dress, $16.00 and Buckle Gimmicks over-piece $8.50. Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

These two pieces can easily be mixed and matched with other pieces in your wardrobe. The white Gap dress is a perfect piece for spring and summer, especially on those hot Texas days. Pair with gladiator ankle strap booties for day or a dark blazer and flats for an “in the office” outfit. The loud patterned Gimmicks over-piece will spice up any solid colored tee or dress.

Mustard colored top, $17.00 Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

This oversized bold colored top is perfect for any occasion. Dress it up with black jeans and ankle booties or dress it down with ripped boyfriend jeans and fringe sandals. Another option is black jeans with high-knee boots and a fedora for fall.

Coconuts Ankle Booties, $17.50 Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

These colorful printed ankle booties can make any outfit pop. Pair with white jeans and a chambray button down top on hot days or black jeans with an oversized ivory sweater in the fall.

2. Plato’s Closet

Plato’s Closet located at 8430 Abrams Road. Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

Plato’s Closet, located in the Town Creek Shopping Center, also carries affordable and on-trend clothing pieces.

“We keep up with trends,” said Cynthia Balderas, sales associate at the store. “You will find a lot of styles that you would find at the mall.”

Cynthia Scarborough was browsing through Plato’s Closet one recent evening and said she has enjoyed thrift shopping for over a decade.

“I have thrifted for over 20 years,” Scarborough said.

Scarborough’s best advice for those who want to give thrifting a try but don’t know how is to just go in with an open mind.

“Some days you just really hit it out of the ball park and some days you don’t find anything at all, Scarborough said. “It’s fun, you do it for fun and enjoy the shopping whether you find something or not.”

Below are some pieces you can find at Plato’s Closet and how to mix them into your wardrobe.

Lush sweater, $12.00 Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

This lightweight sweater is great for chilly days. Pair with bold colored jeans and ankle booties or a denim mini skirt, long socks and oxford shoes.

Conversational tank, $5.00. Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

This conversational tank can be layered under many different cardigans or just over yoga pants. It can even go from day to night if paired with a black leather skirt and heels.

Forever 21 romper, $12.00 Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

A bold one-piece for the hot weather, this romper can also go from day to night. Pair with black heels and a leather jacket or with wedges during the day.

3. The Genesis Women’s Shelter

Genesis Women’s Shelter at 4411 Lemmon Avenue Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

The Genesis Women’s Shelter is another thrifting gem. The Genesis Women’s Shelter provides shelter and counseling to women and children. Hidden behind a shopping center with a Starbucks and nail salon, this store offers both clothing and home goods items.

Estefania Tejada is a frequent shopper of thrift shops all around the Dallas area. She suggests shopping at large thrift stores like The Genesis Women’s Shelter.

“I would recommend thrifting over department stores because it is affordable and you can actually alter items to your taste,” Tejada said.

Below are some pieces you can find at this location and how to mix them into your wardrobe.

BDG sweater, $9.00 at Genesis Women’s Shelter Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

Getting ready for the cold weather is easy with this sweatshirt. Throw over your favorite pair of Lulu’s and sneakers and be on your way to class.

Vince Sweater, $12.00 at Genesis Women’s Shelter Photo Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

Another great addition to add to your sweater collection, this sweater goes well with any knee-high boots, skirts, shorts or jeans.

Cole Haan ankle booties, $20.00 Photo credit: Lisa Salinas

You can pair these booties with just about any ensemble. Jeans and a T-shirt, A-line skirt and graphic tee or leggings with an oversized sweater.

Happy shopping!


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