Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Know Your Thrift, Volume I: Assistance League Thrift Shop

Assistance League of Tucson Thrift Shop
1307 N. Alvernon Way
(520) 326-1585

Winter Hours (Spet. 6- May 27)
10-4 Tuesday-Friday
10-2 Saturday
Summer Hours (June 21-Sept. 1)
10-2 Tuesdays and Thursdays

So I want to kick this off with what is, hands down, my favorite thrift store in town.  This place is a gem.  One of the volunteers who rang me out on my last visit aptly called the place the “Neiman Marcus” of thrift stores.  And so It is.  It's a wonderful place to find art, furniture, clothing, kitchenware, and lots of lovely odds and ends.

Assistance League is a charitable organization which organizes “goods and services to improve the lives of disadvantaged men, women, and children in the greater Tucson area.”  They provide brand new clothing and supplies to school children in need through Operation School Bell (This year alone they dressed 3,674 children!) supplies and necessities to families in crisis, and toiletry kits for use in hospitals and trauma centers for victims of assault and rape.  These are just a few of the good causes you support when you spend your money at Assistance League Thrift Shop.  If you need more convincing, you can find out more about the services AL provides here.

I honestly don’t even know where to begin with this place.  I have found so many treasures here.  It’s one of those places you really just have to wander around and let something magical find you.  While I have scored some amazing and versatile accessories and clothes here in the past, I’ve had especially good luck with furniture, art, and other random treasures.  The prices are extremely reasonable, and often get reduced if things hang around for a little while, especially in the case of furniture.  I’ll show you around.

The enterance and view from the front door. Today is rodeo themed!

There are two clothing departments. The Boutique is higher end clothing and tends to be a bit more expensive but it regularly goes on sale.  Speaking of sales...

 Happy Valentines day

 I spy a Jackalope!

 Books, Books, Books.

 Children's dolls and toys.

Here is a little visual diary of things I’ve acquired over the years from AL.  They also happen to be some of my favorite and most used possessions.

Original floral painting.  It currently lives in my studio.  Makes my heart happy and full of sunshine. $25.00.
Sailing ship print. $10.00.

Hand embroidered wall hanging with hardwood frame. It’s perfect in my newly re-decorated room.  A ganga at $20.00.  Even ties in to the cute little felted mushrooms Jesse got me from the UN Center for my birthday.

Small Couroc owl plate. $2.00.  Sturdy wooden studio chair, I have two of these. $6.00 each.

This is the best place in my house to sit.  That’s an understatement.  This is the most comfortable chair in existence.  It is now piled high with colorful and lovable friends.  Snagged this baby for 20 bucks during a half off furniture sale! Score.

Mushroom cup.  Enough Said. $0.50?

Kelly green vintage handbag. Tiny and perfect for a night out, just the essentials fit in here.  I think this was about three or four dollars.

Retro leather fanny pack. $3.00.

Bass oxford style leather shoes. $2.00

 Pendant necklaces.  I wear these constantly.  I can't remember how much I paid but I think it was around $4.00.

Some knit tops and a skirt I altered.  $3-5.00 each.

Framed bird  embroidery, $6 each
 Boots, $6

 Rad little mug set, $1 each

 Original Painting, $26

Brooks Brothers Blazer, $20

But alas! I am on a budget and I could only buy one! So what did I choose?

 That's right, I decided my new room needed more love then my wardrobe today.  And with the 30% discount on framed art this week they came out to just $12.50 for the set.  The blazer was pretty beautiful though.  I already miss it.

On a final note I want to plug an AL Fundraiser even called Whatz it Worth? on February 12, 2012.  The funds raised go to benefit Operation School Bell and AL's other philanthropic programs. One $60 ticket gets you two admissions to appraise the value of your "family heirlooms, thrift shop treasures and yard sale bargains."  For tickets click here or call 520-443-0675.

If you've made it this far, thanks for reading! I hope you had fun shopping with me.  If you have a favorite shop, treasure or thrifting story leave it in the comments below!


  1. Love it! Too bad i am in San Diego and can't thrift there!

  2. I want the rad little mug set! Well put. That original painting looks cool, too. I think I need to pay this place a visit.

  3. Wow, you have scored some amazing finds at this place! I will have to check it out sometime :)