A thrift queen who made over a thousand dollars reselling toys in Canada shares her tips for the frugal curious.
Ashlee Abella thrifts and creates social media content for TikTok and YouTube full-time in Winnipeg. “I’ve always been a fan of garage and yard sales and have been going to them since the ’90s,” Abella told Daily Hive.
“My mother bought me toys and clothes, so shopping for used items has always been something I was used to.”
In 2008 she started thrifting on her own and going every week. “Facebook was new and I saw people selling their used items online and that’s when I had the idea to buy at the thrift store and sell what I find online.”
She’s a huge lover of handbags and has a lot of knowledge in that arena, so that’s where she started browsing. “Handbags have always been an easy sell for me because they are a one size fits all unlike clothes or shoes,” she said.
Recently, Abella turned a $112 investment in Polly Pocket toys into $1100 by reselling them.
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♬ Part of my hardstyle remix – Raskal
“As a reseller, I watch a lot of YouTube videos and follow a lot of content creators on TikTok and Instagram,” she said.
“I knew vintage toys were valuable from the content I was looking at, whether it was ’90s Pokemon cards or ’80s He-Man toy figurines. When I came across the Polly Pockets, I knew what the 80s and 90s looked like and did a quick Google search,” she said.
Her other videos showcase everything from vintage finds and designer flips to calling out Salvation Army and Value Village for their prices.
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♬ original sound – ojcccc
How to save better
“My tip for people looking to find treasures at the thrift store is to be patient,” Abella said.
“You most likely won’t find anything on your first visit (or you might be lucky), but the more consistently you go, the more likely you are to find something.”
Abella says there are more thrifts and resellers today than even just a few years ago.
“The competition is tough and murderous, but don’t let that deter you. Just go with no expectations, and just for the fun and experience, you’ll be supporting charities and keeping recycled items out of our landfill,” she said.
“A lot of people have the idea that thrift stores are only for needy people and resellers charge a price for shipping there,” she said.
“It may have been the case five years ago, but frugality has become a lifestyle for everyone. Most thrift stores are rebranded and now cater to all walks of life on every budget whether you’re middle class, low income or a person in need, and there will always be enough room for everyone there,” said she said.
Are you inspired to turn treasure hunting and toys into cash? You can follow Abella on TikTok @misfili for more tips.