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Tiki Central Forums Collecting Tiki Boo on the Salvation Army!
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Boo on the Salvation Army!
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 20, 2002
Posts: 631
From: orange county CA
Posted: 2003-07-08 4:32 pm   Permalink

Driving by a Salvation Army I'd never been to today, I saw several tall fake tropical plants in the windows. I'm always looking for cheep tall fake palms, bamboo, and cheesy looking fake plants for my living room. I have plenty real palms outside but always seem to kill my indoor plants.

Anyway, I did a U-turn, went in, and headed right for the coolest looking fake palm. My son and I searched for a price tag, but nothing. On to the next, a bamboo, no price tag, next a banana plant, again, no tag. They had at least 12 different plants along the front. Finally I asked an employee how much they are. She said they are only for decoration. They, clearly didn't all come from the same place or era, so I asked, "So, The Salvation Army purchased these for their stores or were these donations?" She said "Oh they were donations" I said "So, the Salvation Army keeps some of it's donations for decorations?" She said "Oh yes, we do!"

I don't know about you guys but I donate a lot of stuff to them. When I do I expect that these things will be resold (hopefully to people who can't afford retail-like me often) and the profits used for the needy. I don't go to thrift stores for the decor! Every donation should have a price tag on it!
God forbid they ever decide to "decorate" their stores in tiki decor-they'd keep anything tiki or Hawaiian! That may be an extreme idea but there were tons of fake plants in this store which were donated for sale and just kept by the company (or this store). I would have at least bought 4 of them. I think it's wrong!

While I'm at it, what's with the boutiques at many Salvation Armys? Most of the Orange County locations now have these gated off areas where everything is super expensive and most, not even a collectible! I've seen Payless shoes in there, priced higher that Payless prices their shoes! I have yet to find something good in a Salvation Army Boutique!

There, I feel better!

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 05, 2002
Posts: 198
From: Bradenton, Florida
Posted: 2003-07-08 5:03 pm   Permalink

I too have felt your pain and not just at Salvation Army but also at many thrift stores and Goodwill. I always seen to come across the cool stuff with the "Not for Purchase" and have questioned it myself. What gets me is when it's a certain holiday and they have decorated the store with those items but do not offer to sell just floors me. Instead the broken pieces of crap are. Go figure, in the mean time they could have made some money from those donations.

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purple jade
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 19, 2003
Posts: 1450
From: New Orleans
Posted: 2003-07-08 5:10 pm   Permalink

Oh, so they're doing it everywhere?
About a year ago, our S.A. decided that it was not just a thrift store, but a purveyor of merchandise in the same league with stores such as Target. Not content with merely a "boutique" area, they were going to close down for a while to revamp their image. There was a huge article in the paper about it. I plotzed at that alone, but then the new store opened a few months ago, with brand new fixtures arranged in a Target-like floor plan, red neon all over the walls and zippy-keen "department" signage hanging from the ceiling. And though they are selling the SOS they always did, the prices have about quadrupled. But the most offensive thing about it? Industrial strength B.O smell assails you the second you walk in there!!!! I could barely stand to do a quick run through the glass and ceramics "department", holding my breath the entire time. Ya know, I don't remember Target merchandise ever smelling like it had been worn to run the bulls in Pamplona. And they now have a swishy little manager nancing about, enforcing their "Do Not Sit On Furniture. Please Ask for Assistance." edicts. Not only will I never shop in there, I'm sure as heck never going to donate anything to them again!

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 24, 2002
Posts: 1799
From: Ocean Beach, San Francisco
Posted: 2003-07-08 5:23 pm   Permalink

Around here Goodwill has been opening boutique-style shops in the more upscale neighborhoods. They sell better-quality and designer clothing, shoes, jewelry and accessories.


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Tiki Diablo
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 24, 2002
Posts: 1916
From: socal
Posted: 2003-07-08 10:01 pm   Permalink

Once drafted to the SA. They let me out due to mental illness! Screw'em Laney.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 07, 2003
Posts: 105
From: Las Vegas, NV
Posted: 2003-07-08 11:25 pm   Permalink

I, also, feel your pain. I haven't had THAT bad of an experience at the SA's here in Las Vegas, but I must admit, all the Thrift Stores seem to be getting a little carried away with their, "Boutique Sections." I do get a GREAT sense of satisfaction when I find something good for a buck or two that, obviously, got "missed" during pricing. How many times do we have to go into these places and look at over-priced fast food toys, beanie babies and high-quality-China-made items that are wrongly labeled, "Collectibles?" Often times, some decent items are priced, "by-the-book", and the worst part of this is someone actually comes in and pays these ridiculous prices for this stuff! Oh The Humanity!!!

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 13, 2003
Posts: 215
From: Santa Cruz, CA
Posted: 2003-07-09 8:05 pm   Permalink

I went to a thrift store the other day and I guess they all smell like BO because this place reeked! There was kind of an odd looking red sofa that I thought might have potential if I steam cleaned it and slipcovered it. Price tag? $500.00 -- I kid you not! I almost fell over! Needless to say, the sofa stayed, along with the stink.

All hail the freaky tiki!

[ This Message was edited by: CruzinTiki on 2003-07-09 20:06 ]

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 26, 2002
Posts: 2639
From: Seattilite Telstar
Posted: 2003-07-09 9:20 pm   Permalink

S'bugged me for years. Junk shop displays of merchandise that's not for sale make no sense as there are not duplicates of the display items actually for sale. And gettin' the place all dolled up with plants is just dumb. However; many thrift shops do sell the plants but most people assume they're not for sale so the plants get overlooked and woofmutt snags them for 75% off the original price. So keep checking the fauxliage for tags.

PS: Speaking of Goodwill and Target...Here in the Puget Sound region the Goodwill gets Target's non sold clearance stuff and then sells it for a lot more than it sold for on clearance at Target.

[ This Message was edited by: woofmutt on 2003-07-09 21:22 ]

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 28, 2002
Posts: 555
Posted: 2003-07-10 01:26 am   Permalink

The Salvation Army has pretty rotten ulterior motives of getting people hooked into a self-deprecating christianity while they're down. A friend of mine used to be a director of the New England Salvation Army until the other year when he finally couldn't take it any more... they do good, but certain institutions in this country, like the Salvation Army and the Red Cross, should be forced to excise their religiosity so long as the Government is pawning off its work on them. How humane is it to kick someone when they're down?

DEUS - the Natural Philosophy Forum

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 07, 2003
Posts: 462
From: Portland
Posted: 2003-07-10 09:54 am   Permalink

This topic hits a nerve w/ me. The SA is the only thrift store in town here(Newport OR). It is run by a couple of wacky old ladies that think that everything old and used is collectible. The prices in this store are ridiculous. Occaisionally I get suckered in to stopping when they put something interesting out on the sidewalk (they are right on Hwy 101) and every single time I check to see if they've come to their senses, I walk out completely disgusted. I don't know about all of them, but this store is a total rip-off joint. I can go down the street to Wal Mart and buy the same item New for less than what these idiots are trying to get for junk. Most people who shop here just assume they are getting a fair price because it's the Salvation Army, and hey, they're Christians, right? Riighhttt..... With no competition in town they're free to screw all the folks who think they can't afford to shop at the expensive boutiques like Wal Mart !!! Shame on the Salvation Army. Shame shame shame.


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 07, 2003
Posts: 407
From: J'ville
Posted: 2003-07-10 10:00 am   Permalink


Sounds like opportunity knocking to me! Show 'em how to do it right by opening your own place. Seriously.


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 06, 2002
Posts: 464
From: Penna
Posted: 2003-07-11 08:04 am   Permalink

I was at a Sal's in NE Penna and they had a great 2 foot tiki but it was not for sale, under the reasoning that it was a display. I begged whined and cried but they would not sell it. I gurantee you none of the customers were impressed with the "display." Most were too busy combing the used underwear rack...
Plus the Sal's prices are getting out of control! I thought their motive was to sell stuff poor people can afford, but evidently not. Now I give my old clothes to a soup kitchen that gives them away for free to the indigent. I feel so much better about this.
Make mine a mai tai!

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 05, 2003
Posts: 579
From: Detroit
Posted: 2003-07-11 11:26 am   Permalink

Oh boy, now you've opened a can of worms. This once great charitable organiztion is now rife with corruption and greed. Most of the good stuff is sent out the back door to "dealers" (I know this as I know many antique dealers and this is common practice in the thrift stores in Detroit), the mediocre stuff is overpriced. Most of the clothing they put on the floor isn't fit for wiping oil off the garage floor. They expect the poor to wear holey rags? I just don't go any more, it's just not worth the pain and dissapointment.


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 29, 2002
Posts: 113
From: Minneapolis, MN
Posted: 2003-07-11 12:09 pm   Permalink

[ This Message was edited by: DaneTiki 2009-08-30 19:21 ]

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 05, 2003
Posts: 579
From: Detroit
Posted: 2003-07-11 2:21 pm   Permalink

...I was in the American Council for the Blind in Detroit and saw a pair of Red Riding Hood S&P Shakers marked at over $250...I'd say that's fairly overpriced for a thrift store...


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