Winning at Assistance League of Irvine!

Everybody likes to win, and if you can figure out a system that improves your odds, so much the better! Usually such systems involve PhD-worthy math calculations, spending lots of money (if you never buy a raffle ticket, you’ll never win, right?), or many visits to a psychic.  We’re going to share with you a system to SAVE EVEN MORE MONEY AT THE ALI THRIFT SHOP. 

If you shop with us regularly, you know that our sales tags and dots are color-coded.  They also show the date the item went out on the sales floor.  Each month, we switch to a new color.  Items with a particular colored tag will be out on the floor for about a month at full price.  AND THEN:

One week at 25% off!

One week at 50% off!

One week at 75% off!

Then they’re gone (we pass whatever’s left on to the Salvation Army)!

You can see that if you can hold out until the 75% off week you’ll save even more money over our original low price.  BUT you have to weigh the odds that the thing you want will STILL BE THERE. 

To be honest – most of our merchandise is already priced so low that it’s not worth the stress of waiting for the 75% off sale!

Come in this week and you’ll see what we mean.  And your chances of finding a really great bargain are WAY MORE than your chances of winning the lottery!

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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!

If you see it, snatch it

It’s happened to all of us. We go to the ALI thrift shop. We try on a blouse. We find a necklace that might look really great with that sweater at home. We see a coffee maker that we KNOW is a great price, but we’re just not sure we should buy it.

We go home. We think about the blouse, the necklace, and the coffee maker all week. We go back to the thrift shop. They’re GONE! SOLD! TO SOMEONE ELSE!

When you come to the thrift shop, your motto needs to be, “IF YOU SEE IT, SNATCH IT.” We aren’t a chain store with a warehouse full of duplicate items. Everything you see in our shop has been donated to us, and is one-of-a-kind. If you really want an item (even if you only sort-of-really want an item), don’t wait. Snatch it up before it’s too late, because you may never get another chance!

ALERT! ALERT! ALERT!

It seems like practically every night there’s a weather alert on the evening news for the midwest. Or the east coast. Or the central plains. Do the TV stations in all those states have weather alerts right now for California? “WEATHER ALERT IN IRVINE! TEMPERATURES IN THE HIGH 80S! ALARMING VIDEO SHOWS SHOPPERS FIGHTING OVER SHORTAGES OF SUNSCREEN!”

We’ll probably have plenty of weather alerts of our own as the year goes on. But what we do have is a CUTE CLOTHES ALERT! The ALI thrift shop is brimming with the cutest tops, pants, and jackets imaginable. Spring colors, spring fashions, spring textures – and because we’re in southern California (not those OTHER places), you can actually WEAR all these cute spring clothes RIGHT NOW!

There are NO weather alerts to stop you, so head over to the thrift shop and check out all the cute clothes that are waiting for you. (And if you’re THAT kind of person, take a picture of yourself sitting next to the flowers on your patio in your new outfit, and send it to all your relatives who are still dealing with winter weather.)

Brighten up Day Light Savings!

by Marta Mahoney, Volunteer at Assistance League of Irvine

We’ve been on Daylight Savings Time for about a week now, and I STILL can’t adjust. Waking up in the dark isn’t that bad. It’s that extra hour of daylight in the evening. Instead of watching the news on TV at 6 pm with a blanket wrapped around me, I’m looking around the house thinking, “What are all these things? I never noticed that (chair, book, plant)!” Obviously, seeing things in the daylight is a lot different.

This is just how you’ll feel if you come to the ALI thrift shop on Wednesday mornings! You’ll be saying to yourself, “I’ve never seen that before! I KNOW that wasn’t here last week!” And you’d be right! But in the case of the thrift shop, it’s not Daylight Savings Time – it’s our weekly Wednesday morning opening. We spend Monday and Tuesday re-stocking the shop with new merchandise. So when we open on Wednesday, you’ll be saying, “I didn’t see that before! That’s so cute!”

We have many loyal repeat customers, who show up every Wednesday at 10 am, to be first in line to look at our latest bargains. Even if you can’t make it on Wednesdays, join us on our other open days (Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday 10 am to 3 pm, Friday 10 am to 5:30 pm) to discover what’s new. And now that it’s Daylight Savings Time, you’ll have extra hours of daylight to enjoy your finds!

ALI honored to receive $2,000 donation!

Assistance League of Irvine is honored to be the recipient of a Honda Corporation “Helpful After the Holidays” donation of $2,000 to help clothe Irvine’s children in need. The funds were used to purchase school clothing and supplies through AL Irvine’s Operation School Bell® program, which will serve nearly 800 income-qualified students this academic year.

Four Helpful Honda representatives joined AL Irvine volunteers Feb. 3 at Target North in Irvine for an Operation School Bell shopping event. Students, accompanied by their parents, selected school-appropriate clothing, shoes and a jacket. Students also received a backpack and a hygiene kit prepared by AL Irvine’s teen auxiliary, Assisteens.

“We were absolutely thrilled to receive the donation,” said Jill Housky, AL Irvine president. “Purchasing school clothing, including shoes and a jacket, averages $100 per child. The Honda donation will allow us to clothe even more students from low- and extremely-low income families living in Irvine.”

To learn more about our programs, please visit www.assistanceleague.org/irvine

DIY ALERT – VASES!

Let’s talk about – vases. Now there’s the crystal vase you buy for a wedding present for your 2nd cousin’s daughter, who has everything she needs and is planning a destination wedding in Tuscany. Then there’s the plain clear glass vase you buy in real life, which, of course, is where the THRIFT SHOP comes in.

There are so many creative things you can do with these vases, and the thrift ship ALWAYS has a great selection at LOW PRICES. Here are just a few ideas!

  • Make a terrarium with your kids (this is a great summer vacation project). Find a vase that’s wide but not too tall. You’ll need pebbles, terrarium soil, and some tiny succulent plants. Look for detailed instructions on the internet.
  • Air plants in glass containers are very trendy now. You can grow these indoors or outdoors, and they require virtually no water!
  • Fill your vase with alternate layers of different colored pebbles and sand. This requires NO artistic talent and makes a beautiful sculpture-like piece to display on your mantel or coffee table.
  • Your vase could also hold a collection of things with sentimental value – wine corks, shells, rocks and minerals, foreign coins. It’s a great way to display these small treasures that bring back memories.
  • On a purely practical note, a vase can hold those kitchen utensils that won’t fit in the drawer, or all kinds of miscellaneous bathroom items (think Q-tips or cotton balls). And clear glass works with any style of decor.

– It’s SUMMER. Keep that vase filled with flowers from your garden!