Debt Free Decorating Part 2:: Thrifting

This is the second post in a series about Debt Free Decorating:: Ideas Credit Cards Wish You Didn’t Know, read the first post here.

Thrifting is currently my favorite way to add beauty to my home for pennies on the dollar.  I like it because thrift stores have lots of hours as opposed to a few hours on a Saturday morning, and the merchandise is different every time you visit a store.  Walking into a thrift store is always and adventure.

One of my favorite finds is that sofa table up there that we use at the end of our bed.  It was $20 and I planned on painting it but, it hasn’t annoyed me enough yet to put forth the effort.  Also, scroll up again~the huge lantern hanging over our bed?  Habitat ReStore I think it was $30.

I still love my chair that I found at the Salvation Army for $35. Remember, I just painted the wood white?

Half the stuff on top of my table was thrifted.

Some of my other favorite finds are my $8 glass lamp bases and my $20 green chair and $10 shutters over the fireplace.

I forgot to tell you that the stitching started coming out of the green chair.  My husband loves that chair so, I took it to a local upholsterer and for $45 got it all fixed.  I’ve never had a piece of furniture that I felt was worth repairing like this but it’s a sturdy little Hickory Chair piece and is super comfy.

Doesn’t it look like our dog has a weird, fat tounge?  It’s really just my little fella’s blurry hand.

Of course who can forget my white slipcovered chair?  I’m a slipcover evangelist here to testify to the life changing effects of white slips.  The original chair is hideous but was only $12. Oh, and right here’s my $15 thrifted coffee table too.

One of my most recent finds~The Copper Twins. They looked like barf upholstered onto darker barf when I bought them.  It took about $2 and 45 minutes to transform them into their current state of glory.  And half the stuff on that table is thrifted too.  Plus that black frame hanging on my shutter on the fireplace: thrifted.

Thrift Stores are a fantastic way to furnish your home.  The two main ingredients needed are patience and persistance.  Thrifting is a state of mind, you have to be open to see things as they could be~and if you are willing to take a risk, the payoff might be fantastic.


This is going to be epic, beast and other trendy words my boys use.  It’s an I heart thrifting everywhere party hosted by our fearless leader and Nate Show thrifting genius guru favorite, Rashon Carraway, Mr. Goodwill Hunting.

Lots and lots of people will be getting together in lots of cities to meet up at a thrift shop and find great deals together. Check out Mr. Goodwill Hunting, Rashon’s blog today to see some of the locations, more are being added and anyone can volunteer to host a meet up.  I’m going to be at a local Habitat ReStore here in Charlotte along with Caroline and Angela and Rashon is going to be there as well .  We will be at 1133 North Wendover Road Habitat for Humanity ReStore. This is a big store with lots of furniture and housewares, I think they even have a little coffee and book shop.  I’ll be there at 10am. We would LOVE for YOU to join us!

If you would like to host an I heart thrifting Day in your area, just contact Rashon.

Plus you will want to get yourself a cute I {internet symbol for} heart thrifting t shirt…

I promised Rashon I would take a photo of myself in my cute shirt and then this morning 6 minutes after I woke up I remembered I hadn’t taken a photo and my camera battery was dead and I shattered the glass on my phone yesterday but instagram came through anyway.  It really does say i heart thrifting.  Not i less than 3 rifting.  I don’t even know what rifting is.

Here’s Rashon in his shirt.  Something tells me he was much more prepared for his closeup.  He looks put together all. the. time.  Hence the bowtie on the shirt, he is nothing if not dapper and style is an art form for him and he doesn’t disappoint.  Plus he’s really talented and a connoisseur of thrift.  If you haven’t met him yet you are in for some fun.

If you are local, leave a comment and let me know if you think you can join us at the Charlotte area location 1133 North Wendover Road Habitat for Humanity ReStore July 9th, 10am.

You can get your cute t shirt here.

Related Thrifting Posts You Might Enjoy:

The Secret to Thrifting

How to Cure Thrift Store Shopping, I Hate to Pass Up a Great Deal-itis Disease Syndrome

The Most Amazing Comments Ever In The World:: YOUR Thoughts on Thrifting~itus

Final Thoughts on Thrifting :: Answering Tough Questions Like Is it wrong to enjoy a pretty house?

How to Paint Furniture

How to Make Your Own Slipcovers



  1. i feel that i really really need a pink pouf. no seriously.

  2. Just yesterday I had my faith restored in thrifting… it was one of those magical days when the stars were in alignment and the deals and finds were falling out of the sky.
    My scores:
    a 99 cent little pottery dish (that I think would be a great place to drop change or jewelry) (oh…. it had a yellow tag so I actually got it for 50 cents)
    2 skirts @ 2.99 each
    2 chunky beaded necklaces @ 1.99 each
    a little wooden side table for…… 2.99!!!! (it isn’t in terrific shape but that’s ok b/c I’m going to paint it)
    total was about $12.50 w tax

  3. it’s really annoying you live so far away.

    • I have been thinking of moving to her town so I can hang out with her and learn. It’s hot where I live anyway.

  4. How do the shirts run? I really want one, but I’m always scared to buy shirts without trying them on?

    • Rashon sent me a small, oh how I adore him even more, and I felt like it was a tad larger than what a small t shirt would be at Old Navy. Normally I might buy a medium there b/c it would shrink. The small fits me perfectly and isn’t tight. Hope that helps!

      • plus, it has some breathing room in the gut, that’s the part I don’t like to be tight on me. because of my pouch. muffin top. are you 3 months pregnant tummy.

  5. Oh my word…SO SO SO tempting to either drive to you, or host one myself, but that’s in like 2 weeks….so no hosting.

    Drive to you AND Angela? Hmmmmm……that would be one great reason to buy another piece of furniture to sit in my attic until it’s painted!!? :)

  6. OH I LOVE everything you’ve done! I am just like you — when I enter the thrift store, my heart is beating thinking of the possibilities and my eyes dart around sifting through everything for those perfect pieces! You really have found some great pieces and done amazing things with them! A ReStore just opened a month ago near me and my friend and I scored some great finds which I’ll be posting someday soon. Love those shutters — well, like I said, love it all!

  7. I will be there…..but are we hitting any other spots or just ReStore??

  8. Paola Rarick says

    I love you blog! It inspires me to have a nice house without being perfect. Since I could never be perfect, I pretty much gave up on trying to have a nice house. But your blog has changed that. Even my husband has noticed how I have moved things around and try to use what I have to spruce things up. So thank you, this is liberating and fun! I too have found some great thirfts. One question, when you paint your furniture, ie, the legs of your rust colored chair, do you use what paint you have laying around and then do you put a coat of something over it? I am having trouble figuring out what to put as a top coat.

    • nope, unless it’s the top of a table/surface I don’t protect it, it’s very unfinished and that’s fine with me, but, for our kitchen table top, I followed Mandie’s instructions from the altar’d ebook and it’s been over a year with LOTS of meals and projects and has held up great!

    • Wax will help protect and is easy to apply.

      • Paola Pacheco says

        thx nester and tina! I’m going to jump right in an do it. I already did one piece without protecting and I like the way it looks, but I am going to try wax on the top because it has gotten dirty through the years and doesn’t really come clean.

  9. Everything looks great… I love thrift stores too. That sofa table is beautiful and I love that you put it at the foot of your bed–what an unexpected but beautiful set up! I like the dark wood color. Although I tend to paint everything, I am beginning to like bits of wood here and there… breaks up the color a bit in a room and in yours it’s a nice contrast against your light bed & walls. Stop by and link up if you have time.

  10. I’m in Charlotte too and hope to make it to meet you at the Habitat Store. Love that place. We bought all our appliances from the Restore (the one on Wilkensen) last year for our kitchen re-model.

  11. Please come to Texas! And bring sweet Angela with you!!!!

  12. There are many reasons I loved this post, the first being all the awesome finds you listed…and no one would ever know your stuff was thrifted. I think blogging has really helped thrifting come a long way. Before I started reading blogs, I used to be embarrassed about liking yard sales and finding cute stuff at Salvation Army. Now, I could rock one of those t-shirts like no one’s business. ;) I LOVE the idea of doing a thrift store day…I wonder if he has a list posted online somewhere of areas that are participating??

    PS. I love that you mentioned the pouch. I didn’t know what a pouch was. Until after my first C-section. Yay.

  13. …just ordered my <3 'rifting" shirt! Yeah!!!

  14. Wow, a special thrifting day on my BIRTHDAY! Thinking of hosting one here in Greenville SC. If it wasn’t my bday I would drive over to Clt to see you guys! Maybe another time?!

  15. Oh, I am so there! Can’t wait!

  16. I just have to say that I thought my kids were the only ones who use the words beast and epic!

  17. I need to get into thrifting more! It’ll save me tons of money :)

  18. Sounds like so much fun! July 9th is my cousin’s wedding day, so no thrifting for me. :( Have fun & take lots of pics.

  19. I like thrifting but we do not have good thrift stores around here. I hit ebay and etsy and find some good prices. Also the antique shops. We do have a new thrift shop that just opened somewhat near me and from the window vignettes, it looks promising!! I don’t thrift many accessories, etc. as I like these things to have meaning or things we absolutely love. Certain accessories you can find thrifting though – pictures frames are always easy to find, candle holders, vintage plates, etc.


  20. Colleen P. says

    OOOOOH this sounds like so much fun, but alas it’s a bit far! LOL!

    I did score a great deal at the Goodwill Outlet a few weeks ago-a big honkin’ weighs-as-much-as-a-’64-Buick office desk for my sons room. He’s been wanting one for ages, and it needed to be BIG for Lego construction. It had been marked down numerous times (it has a scratch on the laminate top) and the final price?

    FOUR entire dollars. Plus a bottle of Motrin because I think I pulled something as all 3 of us were struggling to get it over the 4″ front step on our house.

    Did I mention it’s really heavy?

  21. I have never loved thrift stores but your house is so cute that every time I read your blog, I’m inspired to go to a thrift store to see what I can find. What I love most is that your house is absolutely beautiful, and you show that thrifted pieces can be stunning. A thrifted house doesn’t have to look like a hodge-podge garage sale – beauty on a budget. That’s inspiring.

  22. Thank you for the heads up on the trifting event…
    PS…Nester you look like Amy Grant in that t-shirt photo.

  23. My hubby and I go thrifting on date nights :) He used to hate going but then he found his first awesome deal and now he’s hooked like me! Ha!
    Also, I loooove your pics of your home. But do you seriously have no clutter ANYwhere? It’s something I need to work on…clearing my clutter :)
    Can’t wait to see you at the Becoming Conference in Aug!!

  24. Hey!
    You look so great. I was honestly not ready…lol. I had already booked him so I had to go for broke!
    Cant wait to see you again!!!!


  25. Can you slipcover leather sofas? Don’t want to get rid of mine until kids are older but absolutely hate the look & color!
    Love your ideas!

    • months ago I wrote a post and said I thought that would be hard, but lots of people commented and said they had done it, google “slipcover leather sofa” or “couch” and see what pops up

  26. Love the segments on thrifting – and super jealous of your awesome bedroom, especially the light fixture and chair! I’m stalking my thrift store for a similar chair.

    On another note – I have a question about your dresser/TV stand in the living room. What do you do with your components? I’m trying to get the Mister to agree to the same setup with a dresser I thrifted recently, but he’s concerned about where we’ll put the cable box, DVD player and how we’ll access them when watching TV.


    • we only have a blue ray player and it’s tucked up on the left side of the tv, I’ll try to write about it soon~no cable which makes for much less wires!

  27. I love the photo you took that has the blue coffee table up front. I liked it because I could now see how all the different colors you use fit together. thanks.

  28. I would love to go thrifting with you… but alas I will just have to go it alone here. ;P Happy hunting!

  29. I wouldn’t miss it for the world!!!!!! Can’t wait!!!

  30. Several people have asked, but I didn’t see an answer, hope you will tell; where oh where did you get your pink pouf?

  31. I super duper into thrifty decorating…it’s all about the thrill of the hunt…I just found a gorgeous basket trunk on the side of the road…even better :)

  32. My latest thrift find was actually free and not at a thrift store. A neighbor moved and left an end table by the dumpster. It was in great shape and I immediately imagined it white. My dad is going to be a sweetie and paint it for me for the Little House next door to him that we are fixing up for a second home. Can you call it a second home if your first home is actually an apartment? :) I so need to start a blog about my little house and all the changes that we have made. That is a goal. Love your thrifty ways.

  33. I have just found you…just so happen to live in near Charlotte and will try to make it on the 9th. I am new to your site and a new thrifter…though it has been in my blood for sometime now. I did just find a pair of old loveseats for $75. With new slipcovers form them, I’ll have the begininnings of a room makeover!! Thanks for inspiring!!

  34. Jennifer says

    Love this post! Can you please give a little info about your camel/white curtain panels? Did you make them or purchase as is? Thanks.

  35. Your house is absolutely gorgeous. I WANT those shutters- very very cool

  36. Nester! Nester! Nester! Are you lending out your copper twinsies for photo sessions?! Check out the 5th photo down…

    Talk about a fabulous thrifty find (/diy)!

  37. My favorite thing about your home is still you, Nester! And your family. And that dog. xo michele

  38. Great post! I’m a huge fan of thrifting. Posted today about my $2.99 pedestal table I found at a Goodwill that I redid with Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint! Too much fun!

  39. Nester,
    Habitat Restore in Charlotte is wonderful… and, the coffee @ Julia’s is fabulous! It’s a cozy little place! You will be head over heels for it… might be a new haven for you. Just wait!!! Thanks for always sharing your heart & your gifts! Be blessed.

  40. oh man, i literally live 5 minutes from that Re-Store! my friend and i have gotten some good deals there :) i’m going to try to make it out there for sure!

    btw, that coffee shop there has won awards for its awesomeness :)

  41. Virginia Mom says

    Wish I could jump in the car and drive down to Charlotte, not to buy more stuff, but just to say a big “thank you” to you in person for your words of inspiration and sound financial advice. Stuff, after all, is just stuff. For all the shopping I’ve done over the — yikes — 26 years I’ve owned my home, my favorite deco items in my house are: branches pruned from little unidentified saplings in my backyard, my small collection of beach rocks from Ireland, my badly slip-covered, silver-leaf-footed roadside ottoman and the old wooden windows from my parents’ house.

    Catch ya at the next one…

  42. I’ll Be there!! They do have a coffee/bookstore called Julia’s…it’s super cute!

  43. This looks amazing! lovin’ it.

  44. you’re thrifting finds are amazing!!!! I need to thrift more often!

  45. I’ve been meaning to check that ReStore out for ages- looking forward to it!!

  46. Checking out Rashon’s blog as I’m hoping my calendar is free that day and would like to hit up the Habitat store near us on that date (or maybe he’s already got something hooked up there). Such a fun idea! And yes, thrifting is always an adventure which is why I love.

  47. Stephanie says

    We have a re-store here in Augusta but it doesn’t have too much in the way of furniture. I’m actually going to be in Charlotte on July 9th so I will try and come:-)

  48. Oh my gosh I LOVE thrifting! Just refinished a $17.50 coffee table with a custom glass top and it looks amazing! Makes me wish we lived in a bigger city so we’d have more to choose from!


  49. LOVE your thrift finds! I wish I had your eye!

  50. I’m going to try my best to make it to the Wendover store on the 9th! I need a new light fixture and they have a great selection. I also have some louvred doors that have been sitting in my storage room for 6 months that I think I’ll donate. That’s what I call killin’ two birds with one stone. Now that I say that, it sounds really barbaric.

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