Sunday, September 30, 2012

Buying Thrift Shoes...

During a recent conversation with my sister Marie, I was telling her about my latest shoe find and how little they cost. She too loves shoes and loved the price but she was concerned that shoes could cause problems that clothing doesn't. With clothes you bring them home and either wash them or dry clean them and anything that might be on them, dirt or otherwise, is washed away. Laundering shoes is okay for sneakers and slippers but no one is going to put their leather pumps in the washer.

Here are some of my tips on buying shoes from the thrift store.

  • first off, I only buy shoes from clean, dry, well organized stores I buy from a variety of stores some are cleaner and drier than others (I do live on the Wet Coast after all)
  • next look at the inside for wear, if the name is worn off the inner sole these are well loved well worn shoes. As I peruse the shelf I only pick up the ones with little wear inside
  • sometimes the previous owner used insoles protecting the inner sole from wear, so next flip the shoes over and check the treads for wear. I only buy shoes that have no wear on the bottom soles
  • when you get them home wipe them down with a damp cloth with just a touch of antibacterial dish soap (not too much soap or too damp as it could damage the material or leather)
  • last use anti fungal spray or powder inside the shoes and let them sit for a day or two before wearing them
  • finally if you spot a pair, like I did on the Naturalizers (below on the right), that still have the store tag on them you can be pretty sure they haven't been worn previously

725 Camo for $5 and Naturalizers for $12
Note the treads on both are still intact and the Naturalizers have the store tag (Note the dirt on the Camo shoes is from me, forgot to take a picture while they were still clean)

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