My local thrift store is always crowded. The other day I waited in line to make my purchase behind FIFTEEN people! And prices for certain things are only slightly cheaper than they are at H & M or Target. Of course, I am glad that there are lots of people buying used clothing and other items instead of buying new. I just read a couple articles that back up my impression that the thrift stores are getting busier.
"Hard times have brought in hordes of new "thrifters" — one in six adults now shops at the stores," according to the article, "Save and Schmooze: Today's thrift stores offer more than bargains." In areas where there are lots of retirees, thrift stores are like community centers.
As far doing a booming business, it's the same in the U.K. -- "Sweet charity: why second-hand clothes shops are thriving" was on The Guardian website today.
That being said, it's still possible to find a bargain and to find things you can't get elsewhere. I'm always on the lookout for vintage patterns and haven't found any at my local place. Until last week.
I got this for $1.99. I've no idea yet if there is a single complete pattern amid the pattern pieces, instructions and envelopes.
And for $4.99 I found a vintage skirt of paisley-patterned cotton velvet which I will cut up to make a bag.
I just hope that none of the hordes at the thrift store want the same stuff that I want.