I had the great privilege of going to Vancouver last weekend to attend the once-every-three-years conference and retreat for BSF Leaders from Northwest Canada, and video-linking to our American counterparts in Portland.  The weekend was one of the best of my life – even despite the few inches of SNOW which seemed to throw the whole city in a kerfuffle – but not this Alberta girl!  Not in the slightest!  I had a few spare hours before and after the conference to take me and my weatherproof Aquatalia boots out a-walking to the nearby secondhand shops!

My view as I headed out to the first thrift store! 
Mine & Yours

Mine & Yours is a luxury resale and it was fun to flip through the racks and see all the pretty things!

All the pretty shoes.

However, I was less than impressed overall.  The staff were snotty – I *thought* we were past the Pretty Woman phenomenon.  I saw many designer brands…. that I have found thrifted for a fraction of the cost.

The Mackage leather jacket I just got was $30.

It’s much less satisfactory to have a store full of designer brands at the ready than to stumble upon them hidden in the thrift racks.  And then, I discovered the pants went only to size 29 with a few size 30 or 32 stragglers.  So I waltzed me and my “fat” butt out of there and headed to the next shop!

My Sister’s Closet

This is more my size speed!  Everyday pieces for men and women with plenty of designer gems to be discovered, and all proceeds going to support a valuable local charity.

$35 for this Badgley Mischka top!
Tried on a pair of too-small JBrands (well *almost* tried them on) and pined over a pair of JBrand Houlihans in size “Mine & Yours” and then tried on this wool swacket. I liked it but ended up deciding it would compete too much with my other purpley finishing blazers.
Great selection including accessories and some new but discounted shoes.

In thankful contrast to the previous store, the staff of My Sister’s Closet were friendly and knowledgeable and shared right away about their mission to support the Battered Women’s Support Services.  The prices were comparable to what I see in big thrift stores and there was a full range of sizes, even if they didn’t happen to have JBrands in my size!  If I lived in Vancouver, this would be a regular thrifting destination and I will plan to come again when visiting in future.

Next I walked a few more blocks to…

Wildlife Thrift Store

Now this is a BIG thrift store – but independently family owned and operated.  It had a huge selection of men’s and women’s clothing – maybe even children’s clothing (I wasn’t paying attention!!  What can I say, I had a weekend without kids!) – and furniture and housewares.  There were designer brands, vintage pieces and everyday brands.

I loved the store’s organization.  All the women’s large pieces were on one end of the racks so I could turn the corner and find my size in the next type of garment without having to go all the way to the other end of the rack.  Brilliant!

And one huge wall was completely mirrored! THANK YOU!! So much easier to take a quick peak!

I ended up trying on a bunch of pants of all things and decided to take two pairs home with me!

Guess what Adina?
These shall herein be called my Adina Pants (for $15).
And BR olive joggers for $12 because this is exactly what my life of glamour requires.
Nice to see that proceeds support local charities!

Wildlife Thrift Store had a bit of a hipster vibe but that didn’t deter me and shouldn’t deter dedicated thrifters.  The prices were reasonable, the selection was awesome and when I’m in Vancouver again, I’ll do exactly what I did that day and walk on over to browse after visiting My Sister’s Closet!

I didn’t go out again until the conference ended on Sunday afternoon.  My BSF ladies and I had a lovely lunch out…

Shizenya was delish.

Then took a stroll down Robson.  They joined me in my search for a vintage shop…

Walked past another luxury resale store…
Er, those shoes were the cheapies in the window!!  Too rich for my blood. Didn’t even go in.

After walking right by it once, we doubled back and found my last secondhand stop…

The Used House of Vintage!  I should have warned my friends that sooner or later they’ll all end up on the blog! xoxoxoxo  

This store truly was a vintage emporium!  There were interesting things to look at in every corner!!

For vintage lovers, this store should not be missed!  I saw several interesting pieces…

Vintage tees and sweaters a-plenty.

Vintage dresses often require a crinoline – so nice that you don’t have to go find one somewhere else!
Tempted by this for an upcoming Rhinstone Cowboy party!
“Put down the coat Nicole. You don’t have room in your carry on for another thing. You have enough coats. Take a picture and remember it with fondness.” Sniff sniff.

For what it’s worth, this vintage store was MILES ahead of what I recently saw in Toronto.  It was clean and well-organized with reasonable prices and a fantastic selection.  However, in addition to all the vintage clothing and decor, there were racks and racks of… vintage Playboy magazines!  Not exactly something I expected when taking my Bible study leader friends out secondhand shopping!  (I can just imagine it… “Remember that time when Nicole took us to that Playboy shop?”)

I also found it had a hipster vibe that was a bit off-putting (or maybe that was the pornography).

So, if you plan to visit Used House of Vintage, BE WARNED.  I wouldn’t take my kids in with me so that’s a detraction when I’m considering thrift shops.  I would go if I was looking for something specifically vintage but otherwise I am content to find vintage pieces, right alongside those designer luxury gems, in a regular thrift shop at a much better cost.

Thanks Vancouver for some fun thrift shopping and an amazing weekend!

The next time I come, I expect there to be NO snow!

6 Comments

  1. Wow, who knew there were resale and thrift shops in downtown vcr! Thanks for the heads up. And please feel free to take thecsnow back with you.

    • haha! We have plenty of our own! We arrived home to -40 degree weather!! I should have stayed in YVR!

  2. Salvation Army 4th and Cypress. It’s a bit boutique, but there’s good high end brands there (because that neighbourhood is full of wealthy people). It’s a must see in Vancouver.

    • Good to know!! I had to stick to walking distances but hopefully I can do a proper thrift tour next trip! Thanks for the heads up! And thanks for reading!

  3. Lovely positives for My Sisters Closet! Thanks so much! Great blog with lots of details about stores in our area. We look forward to see you again. Let us know and we will write you up. Colleen Tsoukalas, Clotheslinefinds.com

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