• September 21, 2023
  • Lauren Critzer
  • 0

The Vintage Voyager: The Local’s Guide to Thrift Shopping in Austin

A delightful blend of retro allure and the thrill of treasure hunting, thrifting is no less than a grand adventure. Austin, a city rich in history and culture, is the epicenter for thrift shoppers, offering a wonderful array of thrift stores to explore. As a vintage voyager, you’re invited to indulge in our comprehensive guide to thrift shopping in Austin. So, grab your shopping bag, and let’s unveil the hidden gems of Austin’s thrift scene together!

Relishing the Thrift Treasures of South Austin

Among the quirky food trucks and vibrant murals of South Austin, the thrift scene is steadfastly thriving. Here are some prime places you will want to schedule in your thrift shopping journey.

Thrift Town

Located on Manchaca Road, Thrift Town is a thrift shopping paradise sprawling across 24,000 square feet. This locally-owned store has been serving Austinites for 45 years with an extensive inventory that changes daily.

  • Affordable yet quality vintage apparel, including denim, leather jackets, and flannel shirts.
  • A massive book section where bookworms can dig up bestsellers at the price of a latte.
  • Home decor items, neatly labeled into various categories like kitchenware, bedding, lighting and more.
  • Don’t miss the ‘Colour of the Week’ discounts, rotating every Monday.

Remember, early birds get the best picks. So, brace yourself for enticing deals!

Top Drawer Thrift

Top Drawer Thrift, located on Burnet Road, is especially known for its curiosity-inducing collections. It has been routinely treating customers to unique and unconventional finds for over 20 years.

  • Standout mid-century furniture pieces that would give your home a timeless aesthetic.
  • A trendy assortment of vintage clothing pieces that redefine fashion norms.
  • An exceptional jewelry collection ranging from Native American silver pieces to vintage brooches.

A significant portion of their profits supports Project Transitions, dedicated to serving people with HIV and AIDS.

Embarking on a Vintage Voyage in North Austin

North Austin is not just a tech hub; it’s blooming with thrift stores that blend nostalgia with modernity beautifully.

Austin Pets Alive Thrift

Austin Pets Alive Thrift, with locations on Burnet Road and Oltorf Street, is a pet lover’s dream come true. A quirky array of goods awaits you here, and you’ll be thrilled to know every purchase helps save a pet’s life.

  • A specifically curated collection of vintage clothes and accessories that can add a retro spin to your wardrobe.
  • Unique furniture and home decor that reflect different eras and styles.
  • A surprising variety of old school toys, board games, and puzzles for the young (and young at heart).

Your purchase directly supports Austin Pets Alive!, a pioneer in the no-kill movement.

Uptown Cheapskate

Uptown Cheapskate, nestled near the University of Texas, is your gateway to high fashion without the exorbitant price tags.

  • Find an impressive range of designer items, including brands like Michael Kors, Gucci, and Marc Jacobs.
  • Expect contemporary brands, both high-street and luxury, catering to all style sensibilities.
  • They also help style seekers with outfit inspirations, aiding them to dress within the current fashion trends.

Friendly staff and a neat layout only enhance your thrifting expedition here.

Unearthing Hidden Gems in East Austin

The hip, edgy side of Austin—East Austin—holds some of the best-kept secrets of the city’s thrift world.

Blue Velvet

Established in 1994, Blue Velvet, located on North Loop Blvd, is Austin’s original vintage store. Its carefully curated collection invites both vintage devotees and casual thrifters alike.

  • They host an impressive variety of ‘true vintage’ dresses evoking the glamor of the 1920s through to the colorful vibrance of the 1970s.
  • Quirky accessories, from glittering brooches to delicate lace gloves, perfect for crafting a unique style statement.
  • An equally captivating men’s vintage collection, a rarity in most thrift stores.

Also noteworthy are the friendly, knowledgeable staff, happy to assist you in your vintage quest.

Friends of Austin Animal Center Thrift Store

Nestled in a convenient East Austin location, this community-driven thrift shop offers an impeccable shopping experience with the bonus of contributing to a noble cause.

  • Discover an upscale selection of clothes and accessories from well-known local and international brands.
  • An extensive range of books, media, and even musical instruments for entertainment enthusiasts.
  • Pet-related items and supplies, including leashes, bowls, pet clothing, and toys.

Sales revenue directly benefits the town’s four-legged friends residing at the Austin Animal Center.

The Artful Thrifting of Central Austin

Central Austin is a cornucopia of artful thrifting spots. Here’s where you would want to swing by.

Monkies Vintage & Thrift

Based in the heart of the University District on Guadalupe Street, Monkies Vintage & Thrift is a haven for fashion-forward vintage lovers.

  • Their high-quality vintage apparel includes stylish pieces from the 60s mod to the 90s grunge.
  • Explore a unique shoe collection that ranges from disco-era boots to Victorian-style heels.
  • The shop has racks dedicated to specific decades, making it your time-travel gateway to past fashion trends.

Treasure City Thrift

A zero-waste endeavor at East 7th Street, Treasure City Thrift is an amicable community thrift store promoting affordable shopping and environmental consciousness together.

  • They offer everything from clothes to electronics, from handy kitchen utensils to furniture pieces.
  • An impressive selection of books, art supplies, and craft materials awaits art and literature aficionados.
  • They also host monthly theme sales—covering categories as diverse as gardening, cooking, and DIY projects.

They generously donate their profits to local grassroots organizations, making your shopping spree nearly guilt-free.

Get ready to revel in the delight of Austin’s dynamic thrift scene. Whether you seek a vintage couture gown, a timeless piece of furniture, or want to shop sustainably while supporting the community, Austin offers all this and much more. With this comprehensive local’s guide to thrift shopping in Austin, you’re all set for a vintage expedition. So, what are you waiting for? Dive in, and let the treasure hunt begin!

Lauren Critzer

I was born in Charlottesville, Virginia and after college, I moved to San Francisco to explore new opportunities and broaden my horizons. I fell in love with the city's vibrant culture and unique atmosphere, but eventually, I moved again, this time to Austin, Texas.

As much as I loved living in different parts of the country, having a baby boy brought me back to my hometown in Charlottesville, where I now live with my husband, our little one, and two furry friends. I enjoy going to wineries, taking my pups everywhere, and spending quality time with my family.

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