Anybody who knows me knows that I have two serious problems: The first, I love shopping. The second, I am terrible at budgeting my money. And as you can imagine, these two vices are a terrible, terrible mix. Throughout my almost three years at Tulane, I have found ways to satiate my shopping addiction without breaking the bank—one of them being thrifting! Thrift stores sell secondhand clothing, home goods, furniture, etc. and typically go towards a charitable cause. For those of you who are like me, I have compiled a list of some of my favorite New Orleans thrift stores, markets, and events to shop that won’t make your wallet sad.
YEP Thrift Works
Located at 1604 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd., this thrift shop, while on the smaller side, has some great finds. One of my favorite elements of this store is their $1 rack, where I have been able to find great thermal tees, comfortable graphic tees, and even trendy mom jeans. The beauty of thrift shopping is that new items are constantly coming in and out, so if there isn’t much your first go-around, come next week there will be plenty of new treasures in stock. YEP stands for Youth Empowerment Program, which founded YEP Thrift Works to provide work for at-risk New Orleans youth. Head over to give back and return with new clothes!
You are guaranteed to find something in this massive thrift store—new clothes, shoes, furniture, they have it all. This is a great place to shop for couches, coffee tables, lamps, nightstands for those who are planning on redecorating or moving off campus. My housemates and I were able to find a great couch for less than $100. Additionally, their home goods are sorted by color which is great for decorating your dorm or house if you have a particular color scheme. Donations from Salvation Army go towards many causes, such as natural disaster relief, serving veterans and the LGBTQ community, domestic abuse services, and providing shelter. This location in particular is located at 100 Jefferson Hwy.
This store is absolutely massive, and full of clothing as far as you can see! Great for DIY projects, you can find old clothing to refurbish and give new life to. One of my favorite DIY clothing projects is finding an old pair of mom jeans and cutting them into shorts, and distressing them using tweezers, sandpaper, and scissors. Beyond the clothing racks, there are aisles of home goods organized by types of items (glassware, frames, appliances, etc.). On my last trip to Goodwill, I was able to find a large, light-up marquee sign reading “Bar,” 5 gold frames, and a flower vase—all for a total of $10. If you are in need of a rainy-day activity or new items for your bookshelf, Goodwill is a great place to start! Location: 3400 Tulane Ave.
Located in the French Quarter, this late-night, open air market typically offers over 30 vendors selling art, jewelry, clothing, and more. While most of the vendors sell at your typical retail prices, occasionally the market attracts local thrift stores who pull the best, trendiest items they have in stock to sell at the market. Even if you don’t find what you are looking for, this market is a great way to spend your Saturday from 1-5 or any week night from 7-midnight.
While some of their items are overpriced, there are many inexpensive hidden gems in this store. Located at 3200 Dauphine St., this store has everything from smaller knick-knacks, to larger furniture pieces. If you are on the prowl for some art, furniture, or kitchenware, this is worth a stop in!
Freret St. Market
On the first Saturday of each month, the intersection of Freret and Napoleon Ave. transforms into a marketplace with music, food, and vendors. Within walking distance, this market allows you to shop, eat, and enjoy the weekend without spending too much money.
Check out all of these great thrift stores and give your wallet a break!
COVER PHOTO: Credit