There are incredible treasures and mind-blowingly weird objects hidden all around us—and all it takes is a trip to your local thrift shop, garage sale, or flea market to spot them. Not only is secondhand shopping good for your wallet and the environment, but it might even inspire you to join an incredibly popular online community that will have you giggling till the end of the year.
Welcome (back) to the Weird Secondhand Finds That Just Need To Be Shared Facebook group! With nearly 2 million members, this community posts some of the most bizarre and coolest thrift store finds on the net. Scroll down to check out their newest finds, upvote your fave ones, and let us know if you’ve had any success shopping secondhand, dear Pandas.
Also, read on for Bored Panda’s interview with the Weird Secondhand Finds team about how buying things secondhand has changed recently, about the rise of digital thrift stores, and how to stay safe in physical stores during the pandemic. Oh, and once you’re done enjoying this colorful list, you can find our latest articles about the Weird Secondhand Finds group right here, here, and here.
“It’s HUGE and heavy as heck! It’s missing one leg but I think I’ll prop it up with hardcover books”
“The number of people buying secondhand has probably stayed about the same, but the way they are doing it has changed slightly,” a representative of the Weird Secondhand Finds team told us about the changing face of secondhand shopping.
Though there are still plenty of eager shoppers looking for interesting and wacky items, the pandemic has affected things more than we previously realized.
“We’ve noticed that more people seem to be using online venues for their thrifting rather than going to physical locations, which given the current circumstances, we think is great. Thrift stores also seem to be embracing the option of going online just a bit more than they did previously. We encourage people to stay safe and use precautions if they do decide to go out, and we do not allow posts that show people not honoring precautions, such as not wearing a mask or with their mask pulled down while out in public,” they said.
“By the time I reached out to the seller it was sold. I was so bummed until Christmas morning and found out it was my dad who purchased it. I had no idea he even knew about it. He had no idea I also tried to buy it.
It is made entirely out of wood. The craftsman ship is remarkable. The previous owner said their grandmother won it at a church auction and it had been in their family for a long time and they know nothing about it or who made it. Not signed or marked anywhere. It is now our family’s treasure and will be passed down.”
“As far as physical stores go, it seems they are experiencing the same changes as regular retail stores, such as occupancy limits, requiring masks in order to enter, keeping the fitting rooms closed, as well as plexiglass protectors at the register and some locations requiring the customer to bag their own purchase.”
They continued: “Perhaps the biggest change is in the ‘bin’ type stores where they have had to significantly decrease the number of bins in order to allow for social distancing, as well as create a path for customers to follow rather than being able to choose their own path like they could previously. It’s a lot less chaotic than it used to be at the bins.”
“Y’all, I’ve been hunting for a peacock/manila/phillipines chair for ages. I spent countless hours of my childhood watching reruns of the classic 60s Addams Family show and reading the comics and I wanted so badly to live in their house. I often think that’s where my quirky design style as an adult comes from. Usually I see the newer models for sale, which are nice, but when I came across this beauty on fb marketplace, I practically squealed with joy when I realized it was the same style from the show. The woman I purchased it from looked at me a bit strangely when I tried to explain my excitement over it, but I knew you weirdlings would understand lol
Now I just need to learn to knit 6 arm sweaters for Pugsley’s pet, Aristotle”
One of the founders of the Weird Secondhand Finds group previously told Bored Panda all about how the community was created, how they got popular, and how they’re inspiring people to think differently about buying things secondhand.
“My family and friends have always had a love and passion for interesting and unusual things, and we had been texting each other photos of items that we saw (and often purchased) in thrift stores and at yard sales for years. My best friend and I were chatting on Christmas Eve one year and it occurred to us that it might be more fun to share our photos in a Facebook group, rather than via text so that it would be easier to go back and see what each of us had found, and to have a record of what we had seen through the years,” they said.
“The cushion is soaking wet so its propped up against the wall not pictured”
On one hand, I really wasn’t in love with the piece but on the other hand she sat in my mom’s curio cabinet for years and was a part of my childhood that made me feel connected to mom. After about 10 years, and embracing the journey of minimalism, I made the difficult decision to sell her. filled with doubt, I posted her on the Marketplace. If I let her go and regretted it, would I be able to forgive myself? Would mom? I nearly forgot that I had her listed and after months, I had an offer. I carefully packed her up and sent her onto her new home. I didn’t have time for doubt as The kind woman who bought her sent me this pic the day she arrived! The Balloon Lady is finally reunited with her Balloon Man.
“It really all started as a gathering place intended for our friends and family but we left it as an open group purely because it never occurred to us that anyone outside of our circle would share this odd interest we have.” People then started flooding in, the co-founder started panicking, but then thought it’d be intriguing to see what others had to share.
“Who knew that what we all thought was a niche hobby actually has a huge passionate community behind it that just needed a clubhouse to gather in? Witnessing how people connect in this group is what keeps us passionate about running it. I personally put between thirty and forty hours a week into moderating the group but every time I see how much joy it brings people, I’m reminded why it’s worth doing all the work it takes,” they said.
He goes to the store and texted me saying “sorry I couldn’t get it. Someone came 30 mins ago and bought it”
Y’all I cried. For some reason it reminded me so much of my Princess Alaina. My husband then said . “I did get a night stand. Could you please pick up when you get a chance ?? “
I go today. I tell the lady.
Me- “Ma’am, I am here to pick up for my husband Javier”
Lady – “What are you driving? It’s big”
I said “truck. It’s a nightstand thou”
Lady, “no ma’am he bought a sofa”
Me, “no he didn’t! Is it a red one?”
Lady, “yes ma’am, you didn’t know did you”
Y’all I cried!
The cupboard in Fyffe, Alabama.
The members of the online community are incredibly supportive of one another, embrace their quirks, and send each other gifts.
“Another wonderful side effect of this community is that it has renewed, and in some cases even sparked, an interest in secondhand shopping for a lot of people. They’re starting to see secondhand stores in a different light. We hear all the time from members who haven’t been thrifting in a long time or have never really been interested in it, and now can’t wait to go out treasure hunting.”
“She searched my mom’s name and then found me on FB and asked me if I wanted it. How cool is that ?!! My mom was from Ohio and lived there her whole life which makes this an extra special find.”
Due to the pandemic, we had to cancel our big wedding planned for early May. Later that month we said the heck with it and got married at our backyard dome instead. Best find thus far.
“When my grandma died one of her sons entered her apt to collect anything of value. Diamonds, China, a fur…..anything he thought was of value he took. The items he left behind were divided among the grandchildren. I lived several states away so nothing was given to me. I loved my grandma so I didn’t need her worldly possessions.
6 months after my grandmother died I was at my parent’s house and found her jacket. My grandma had pinned a note to this jacket, asking to be buried in it upon her death. She had worn this jacket for several of her grandchildren’s weddings and it was important to her. Because her clothing was of little value it was looked over as was the note. My grandma was buried in an outfit picked out by her daughter in law with no input from the rest of the family.
This jacket is mine. I have the jacket because no one else wanted it. It is the most beautiful jacket and it hangs in my closet. The jacket should be 6 feet under on grandma but instead I have it. Knowing she wanted to be buried in it makes it even more special. On the days I miss her the most I wear the jacket and dance around the house to Neil Diamond. It’s been 10 years since she died but the jacket smells like her each time I put it on. I plan on wearing this jacket to my grandchildren’s weddings.”
“My favorite mug was thrifted from the Goodwill in Monroe, WA. Someone did a really nice job on it and especially with the irredescent glaze. Would love see a thread of everyone’s favorite and unique coffee mugs.”
” I didn’t know if it was uranium glass and of course I forgot my blacklight when I went to pick them up but at that price it was worth a shot.
As soon as I got home I checked them out and boy did they glow!
Needless to say it made my day”
“Banana for scale in case the picture leaning against a full sized truck isn’t enough to show its massive proportions. He plans to hang it up in his cubicle at work if it will fit. It looks like a photo print on canvas that someone painted over. It has a small tear in the upper left area that I will try to patch & then dab some black paint over.”
“For years I admired it adorning countless soap bottles by her sink. When she passed, I asked my Grandpa about it and he indicated that it would come my way one day. Well yesterday was the day. The apron came home with me and will always be there by my sink just as it was in my Grandparent’s home for so many years. Seems silly to be so sentimental over a soap bottle apron but man does it feel good to have a piece of my Grandmother with me”
You can use a dry erase marker & it even still had the answer sheet. Then the covid shutdown hit and none of us could visit her at her retirement home. So my husband asked all the siblings, nieces, nephews, grandkids, & great grandkids to make cards in crossword form for her to figure out. And we filled the jar with them. She had many days of fun working on them all while staying isolated.
“They had an awful smell (OLD plastic smell) so we bathed them in newspapers for a bit and it helped, there’s still a smell but they are wearable!”
“So… about a year ago I was at a car boot sale and I saw plush backpack, shaped like Rocky from Chicken Run, but I thought it was such a ridiculous purchase so I said to my partner (as I always do) “if it’s still there on our way back, it’s fate and I’ll buy it”. So obviously, it was still there and when the guy told me it was £3 I snatched it up quicker than you could say “I don’t want to be a pie!”. Not long after, I decided to google it and see if it’s a common find, I find out there is a Babs version, and I freak out!! I bought her in a set of Rocky and Babs and sold the spare Rocky to my friend. Fast forward to a few weeks ago, I was scrolling through plush backpacks on ebay as usual and who do I see??? Ginger!!!! When I was researching I didn’t see her anywhere!! So i was elated, and that’s how I came into the possession of 3 Chicken Run backpacks that look absolutely terrified.
Obviously Babs is the most practical choice, look at that gut storage!!!”