Thrifted Gold: Thrifted with love


Photo by Bethany Morris

The pressures of gift-giving and making Valentine’s Day so special for our loved ones can be overwhelming. Since gift-giving is my love language and one of my favorite activities, I want to guide you through simple but meaningful ways to thrift with love. There is no need to spend big bucks to show your love; you can easily DIY crafts or thrift the perfect gift that fits that special someone. 

A little tip I’ll share is to begin thinking of unique things that make up that person. For example, what is their music style or favorite color? Do you know their favorite candy? You should really dig into why they’re so special to you. 

 For example, is your loved one is a huge Mamas and Papas fan who happens to love Hershey chocolate with almonds and their favorite color is blue? First, browse your local record store or antique shop, and I’m sure you’ll find some Mama and Papas vinyl. Pick up a Hersey with almonds and some blue ribbon from Walgreens on your way to class. Tie the almond chocolate bar to the vinyl record, and you have the perfect gift! Sounds sweet right?

Maybe I’m old-fashioned but adding a handwritten card to any Valentine’s gift would really seal the deal. Maybe your loved one is an avid traveler, loves flowers and their favorite drink is Coca-Cola. Embark to your favorite antique store and search for old maps. Bonus points if you find a map of a place they’ve been or is on their bucket list! Afterward, visit a florist or local nurse for some simple flowers. Pick up a glass bottle of Coke to top off the gift, because we all know that glass Coke tastes better than canned. 

I highly encourage you to not only browse your local thrift and antique stores for gifts this Valentine’s Day, but also look to local artists and artisans in your community. Maybe there’s a pottery studio near you, and your loved one loves coffee every morning before their hectic day. A handcrafted coffee mug would be a perfect gift to bring peace to their morning. If your loved one is an art enthusiast, find local talent with unique watercolor prints that are sure to catch the eye of your favorite person. 

Gift-giving is so versatile and unique depending on both the giver and receiver. My suggestions are just a small glimpse at the many processes behind giving a gift! Personally, I’m inclined to give more heartfelt gifts than generic boxed chocolate or the gigantic plush animals from Walmart. The fact that you’re really noticing and highlighting what makes the recipient of your gift unique—that speaks volumes more than making a last-minute stop by the drugstore to pick a gift. 

  By mixing thrifted, DIY and local artists’ gifts, your love will shine beyond a simple box of chocolates. Before you rush to your local Walmart and buy that last-minute gift on your way to class, take a second to think of how unique your recipient is to you. Everyone deserves some love this Valentine’s Day, and by supporting local thrift stores and artisans, you’re giving back and spreading love to your community and small-town America.