A month of sales!

If you’re a long-time customer of the ALI thrift shop, you’ll remember that we take inventory every year at the end of May.  That’s right – we count every single item in the shop, BY HAND.  And what does that mean for you? It means – your favorite month is here! May! THE MONTH OF SALES!

All month long, we’re going to have sale after sale, because we DON’T LIKE COUNTING.  We want everything in the shop to find a home with some happy customer, LIKE YOU.  Because if it’s sold, we don’t have to count it!

The sales will change week to week, but they’ll be GREAT! You’ll want to stop in every week, maybe even two or three times. And YOU’LL be counting up the dollars you saved!

YOU’VE EARNED THIS REWARD

It’s been a long, cold, rainy winter here in southern California.  We’re not ungrateful.  We know it’s nothing to complain about, when we see the weather reports for the rest of the country.  But shouldn’t we get SOME kind of a reward for living through the coldest February in Los Angeles in 60 years?

Yes, we DO deserve a reward – and that’s why the ALI thrift shop is filled from wall to wall with incredible spring merchandise.  Gold stars and blue ribbons just won’t be enough.  You need to head over to the thrift shop for something bright, light, and spring-like to add to your wardrobe.   You can find something for work, play, the garden, or the beach, with shoes, purses, and jewelry to match.  We have plenty of men’s and kids’ clothes, too!

 

And, best of all, a new spring outfit from the thrift shop is WAY less expensive than most of the other rewards we can think of (a new car, a week at a spa, a trip to Bali . . .).  Which means that you can reward yourself more than once!

Pick Your Valentines Category!

Valentines Day is around the corner and you may be in the category of people who want to find something extra-special for that significant other for Valentine’s Day. 

OR, you might be in that category of people who just got an email announcing that their (family, office department, gym class, bunco group) is going to have a Valentine’s Day potluck and gift exchange.

OR, you might be in that category of people who already found a gift for their significant other, but decided they really want to keep that gift for themselves, so they need a replacement gift IMMEDIATELY.

You know where we’re going with this:  the ALI thrift shop can help you find the perfect Valentine’s Day gift, no matter WHICH category you’re in.  And when you shop with us, you’ll be in the best category of all:  people who give back to their community while shopping!

PUMPKINS, PUMPKINS, PUMPKINS

It’s October – and that means pumpkin patches and corn mazes.  (And baseball playoffs!) In spite of Irvine’s agricultural heritage, there aren’t many actual fields of pumpkins or corn left any more.  Our suburban substitutes, pumpkin patches and corn mazes, don’t have quite the same sense of working the farm to harvest the crops.   (On the other hand, they sell food and have lots of parking.)  Both pumpkins and corn originally came from Mexico, and were known as early as 10,000 – 7,000 BC.  No wonder we feel nostalgic when pumpkins start to show up at the grocery store!

Pumpkins have become favorite fall decorations in recent years.  We’ve got LOTS of pumpkin-themed items at the ALI thrift shop – ceramic pumpkins, Halloween pumpkins, pumpkin candlesticks, pumpkin tabletop decor, you name it.  Come in and check out our fall merchandise, because it won’t last.  And once you’ve filled your home with pumpkins, corn stalks, and red-and-gold fall leaves, enjoy the playoffs!

      

DO YOU NEED DECORATIONS? WE’VE GOT ‘EM!

It’s the end of September, and we all know what that means.  We’ve come to that point in the year that we all dread.  NO,  not back-to-school.  Everyone is HAPPY about back-to-school. The little kids are no longer underfoot all day, and the big kids are no longer sitting around eating all your food.  No – we’re talking about an activity that strikes fear into all our hearts.  It’s – TIME TO LOOK FOR THE HOLIDAY DECORATIONS! Yes – all those holidays.  Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s.  Plus plain old Fall and Winter.

I’m convinced that someone could develop an entire reality TV show competition about searching for the decorations.  Are they in the garage? In the rafters of the garage? In the attic? In that bedroom where you’re keeping all the boxes you never unpacked when you moved in five years ago? You can remember writing down the place where you put them on a piece of paper, but now you can’t find the piece of paper.  You can remember putting a note in your phone, but you just got a new phone and the “notes” section didn’t transfer over.  About the only thing you can be sure of, because very, very few of us have basements, is that they’re not in the basement.

Many of us, after looking for a couple of days, simply give up and decide to buy NEW decorations, year after year.  It’s not a defeat! It’s an opportunity! Over the next three months, the ALI thrift shop will have an ABSOLUTELY AMAZING SELECTION OF HOLIDAY DECORATIONS! You can find anything you want, for any holiday you want, at a fantastically low price.  And the money you spend with us goes right back to our community.

If you find your decorations, more power to you! But if you don’t, you know where to go for new ones!

‘Jump to it’ – Goodbye Queen of Soul!

Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, passed away last week. We all mourn the loss of this incredible woman and her once-in-a-generation voice. Watching the news clips and reading the tributes to her, I was struck by how Aretha and her music continued to be relevant for so many years. She was truly one of the greats.

All those films of Aretha’s concerts took me back in time. It was like a flashback of the last 50 years – the clothes, the hairstyles, the politics, and of course, the music. It was a trip down memory lane, regretfully inspired by a sad occasion.

Visiting the ALI thrift shop can be a trip back in time, too. Our stock varies according to what’s been donated to us, but we usually have antique china (from teacups to entire sets of dishes) and silver. Our housewares section is full of kitchen things you’ll remember (and wish you hadn’t thrown away), like avocado green skillets and tupperware in all different sizes. Our music CDs, DVDs, and books will yield classics for your entertainment library.

Come in our shop if you’re feeling nostalgic (or even if you’re not). You never know what you might discover – you might even find an Aretha Franklin CD!

 

STAY COOL AND HELP A GOOD CAUSE!

We’re going to let you in on a secret. The ALI thrift store has something you desperately need. Something that, for much of your life, you have felt that you couldn’t live without. Something that will rejuvenate your body, make your thinking clearer, and calm your spirit. We have . . . Air conditioning!

Yes, when you visit the thrift shop you’ll be able to shop in comfort. AND right now you’ll be supporting our Operation School Bell program, which gears up in August every year. OSB provides school clothing and school supplies to low-income students in the Irvine Unified School District. Last year we helped almost 800 kids at a cost of approximately $130,000. We expect the numbers to be similar this coming school year. This money comes directly from the sales at our thrift shop!

So when you step into our shop, three things happen:

  • You cool off
  • You find great bargains
  • You help your Irvine neighbors in need

It’s not too hot to shop – head over to the thrift shop now!

OUR SIZZLING SUMMER SPECTACULAR IS COMING!

Sunny summer weather is on the way and it’s all because of ALI! Join us on Tuesday, June 5 for our SIZZLING SUMMER SPECTACULAR. You read that correctly, it’s TUESDAY JUNE 5 – a special shopping day to kick off summer. Our shop will be COMPLETELY RE-STOCKED AFTER INVENTORY with summer clothes and merchandise.

We’re open on Tuesday June 5 from 10 am to 3 pm, and you’ll want to get there early. Our sizzling summer selections will drive all memories of “May gray” from your mind and your closet. (And it’s not too early to start thinking about what to wear to the 4th of July BBQ.)

Don’t miss out on this fantastic event – see you on June 5!

3 Thrift Shop Gift Ideas for Valentines Day!

I know there’s a book called “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff,” but there are times when it’s ALL ABOUT the small stuff. Like Valentine’s Day!

Now I assume that since you’re reading a blog about a thrift store, you’re probably not a person who plans to give their true love a Porsche for Valentine’s Day. (Even if you are, read on.). So what are the three most common gifts on Valentine’s Day? Flowers, candy, and jewelry. And here’s where the SMALL STUFF comes in. Those little details that (with the help of the ALI thrift shop) will be the finishing touch to your gift.

FLOWERS: You’ll need something to put the flowers IN. We always have a fantastic selection of vases and containers, ranging from ornate crystal to simple and modern.

CANDY: Include a little dish or plate for the candy. We have lots of VALENTINE-THEMED dishes right now, but hurry in because these sell out quickly.

JEWELRY: We have all kinds of beautiful costume jewelry – necklaces, rings, earrings – that would make a romantic Valentine’s gift in a SMALL box.

And not only will we help you find the small stuff that will make your Valentine’s gift unique -you’ll only pay a SMALL price for whatever you buy at the thrift shop! Come in and shop with us soon!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year and we know why!

The weather was so hot last week in Irvine, I think we’re going to have to change the old saying, “Never wear white after Labor Day” to “Never wear white after Thanksgiving.” Of course, there’s summer white (what you wear while you’re lounging around the pool) and winter white (what you wear while you’re lounging around the fireplace at the ski cabin). And winter white means snowflakes – sleigh bells – Christmas trees – Hanukkah presents – and the ALI thrift shop’s eagerly-awaited annual holiday spectacular!

Yes, it’s “the most wonderful time of the year,” as the song goes, starting at the thrift shop on WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 8. Our 2017 holiday merchandise will be out in the shop that morning, and you won’t believe what absolutely beautiful things we have. Our donors went overboard this past year giving us gorgeous Christmas and Hanukkah items, along with fabulous winter clothes and ski jackets.

Whether you want to completely redo your home and your wardrobe for the holidays, or just add something new, you’ll find what you’re looking for at the thrift shop. Our doors open at 10 am on Wednesday 11/8, so be there early for the best selection! And we’ll be putting out new items every day, so stop by often!