I can never go into a thrift-store without buying a bunch of stuff. So I am equally thrilled as terrified by the fact that here in Sweden thrift-stores (called “loppis”, short for “loppmarknad” = flee-market) are all over the place. I kid you not: even when you’re driving on the loneliest road through the woods you’ll find signs (some hand-made, some “real”, like the official signs for a town or something) saying “loppis”.
I have, however, found a solution for my problem. Not going in. Yes, unfortunately that is the best thing I have come up with so far. The positive thing with my addiction is: it is relatively cheap. I regularly find myself with a basket full of stuff in the line for the cash-register, preparing myself for the supposedly inevitable heart attack I am going to have when I hear the total. Kind of like at IKEA, you know, where you end up picking up a bunch of small items on the way, which you never planned on buying but now that you’re here, and they’re so cheap, and then at the cash register you find out that you misread the price (or rather: the tagging on the shelves was misleading), and everything is much more expensive than you thought but you don’t feel like bothering with returning the stuff now that they’ve already scanned everything – you know what I mean?
Only, that at a Swedish loppis that’s not how it turns out. I am surprised every time by how a ton of stuff can cost so little. Everything is really expensive here (well, I guess that’s relative, I suppose the Norwegians would disagree but compared to Germany it is – and I do still compare, even after two years, sigh) – except for thrift-stores. Those are really cheap, and the only chance of me dying of a heart attack there is from the anxiety I build up myself while waiting in line.
So, yes, there are a lot of things that are great with thrift-stores: it’s obviously better from a environmental/consumption point of view if we re-use stuff that already exists, instead of throwing away old stuff and producing new stuff all the time. It’s cheap, so I can afford buying a ton of stuff even when I don’t have much money (which is most of the time). And it’s fun. The less central/known the location of a thrift-store, the higher your chances of finding real treasures. Even better when the people working there have no idea what stuff is worth (well, better for me, that is, I guess).
But regardless of all the pros – stuff is still stuff, and accumulating it, no matter where you get it from, still clutters your home. Consumption is consumption is consumption … If I didn’t restrict my visits to these places, and my “feng shui bible”, I might as well be one of those hoarders that you see on tv.
This week, I broke my self-imposed prohibition. I have been to three thrift-stores, it cost me 316 SEK (ca. 50$ | 38€), and here is some of my booty:
Because I am obsessed with (making) these three tier servers:
… because I thought I could use them when I try this recipe for making your own bath bombs.
Oh yeah, and the tea cups I got because I want to make …
This retro beauty is for my sister, if I can find a way to mail it to her safely (she lives in Jena and used to live in Mainz – how freaky is this?):
I also broke my biggest no-no: I am not allowed to buy any new fabric until I have made something from the tons that I already have hoarded. But I just couldn’t walk past this:
Or professional help re-doing an old arm chair!
Also, I bought …
Why? Apart from that I think it’s adorable, I want to exchange all the plastic dishes with enamel (both for health and aesthetic reasons) in this lovely picnic basket:
Now you know the severity of my condition. If you know of any cures or remedies – please don’t tell me! I can’t imagine my life without loppis treasure hunts.