Successful thrift shopping, antiquing and vintage hunting is a true skill. The ability to survey a consignment shop, identify its treasures and find the perfect place for them in a home or closet without breaking the bank takes a keen eye and a strong sense of personal style. Those who perfect this art reap the benefits of uniquely curated wardrobes and living rooms, but if you haven’t mastered it, there are plenty of places in Buffalo to practice. Plus if you’re looking to do a little gift giving, whatever the occasion may be, consignment and thrift stores offer a more adventurous shopping experience for unexpected, one-of-a-kind gifts.
1. Serendipity Thrift Shoppe
One Symphony Circle, Buffalo, NY 14201
716-248-0232 / Website
Located in the basement of the First Presbyterian Church on Symphony Circle, Serendipity Shoppe is a treasure trove of home goods, decor and trinkets. It’s especially great if you’re in need of dining essentials like glassware, mugs, plates and table settings, but there’s also a large and eclectic selection of furniture, books, jewelry and art. Worth a stop if you’re trying to furnish a new apartment or you’re like me and need to replace a bunch of broken wine glasses after one too many boozy dinner parties.
2. Stella’s Vintage Finds
2995 Alternate Blvd, Grand Island, NY 14072
716-228-4300 / Website
Like many twenty-something’s, my apartment is home to an array of mostly second-hand or IKEA furniture. The one piece I’m particularly proud of, however, is a mid-century dresser from Stella’s Vintage Finds. Jean Doxtater’s Grand Island warehouse is home to a wide array of gorgeous hand-picked antiques and one-of-a-kind pieces. Don’t be surprised if you arrive with the intention of picking up a mirror and leave with a side table you didn’t think you needed.
3. The Painted Lady
3147 Delaware Ave, Kenmore NY 14217
716-887-7300 / Website
Walking into The Painted Lady is like walking into your grandmother’s closet as a kid and discovering rows of dresses, shoes and jewelry boxes stuffed with pretty, sparkly things. It’s a delight to explore—and you’ll want to check every corner to make sure you don’t miss something. The owner, Renee, also makes seasonal handmade decorations, which are great host gifts for the holidays.
4. The Purple Feather
5841 Transit Rd, Clarence NY 14051
716-688-5020 / Website
The Purple Feather is great for finding gently used, high-end furniture and home decor. Though you may find some antique pieces, the inventory consists of mostly contemporary name brands, priced reasonably so you can actually afford to furnish your living room with almost-new furniture.
5. The Story Garage
28 East Ferry St, Buffalo NY 14209
716-343-0905 / Website
Whether you’re looking to furnish a space with larger pieces or simply add a finishing touch, the Story Garage is a good place to start. Even if you’re stopping in for a statement piece, it’s worth taking some time to comb through the shelves and aisles for inspiration. You’ll find a mix of antiques, newer pieces and hidden gems that need only a little DIY treatment to light up a room. Want to know more? Check out our in-depth article, The Story Garage: Thrift Unique Pieces Large & Small On East Ferry.
6. Edna Louise Estate and Household Liquidations
716-812-1018 / Website
Buffalo’s beautiful old homes are some of our city’s greatest assets, and when they go on the market, many of them become hosts to some pretty epic estate sales. Not only do estate sales offer the prospect of discovering something extraordinary, they also pose the opportunity to explore local history through the people, memories and artifacts that used to call these houses home. Keep tabs on upcoming sales with Edna Louise Liquidations and clear your weekend schedule for some serious estate sale hopping.
7. Antique World & Flea Market
11111 Main St, Clarence NY 14031
716-759-8483 / Website
As one of the largest (if not the largest) antique centers in Western New York, Antique World is an institution. While a must-visit destination for serious antiquers and collectors, it’s also a fun stop for the more casual second-hand treasure hunters among us. It’s easy to make a day out of a visit to the flea market, but definitely plan to take your time when you’re here. For more info, check out our article, You’ll Find One-of-a-Kind Gifts at Antique World.
111 Tonawanda St, Buffalo NY 14207
716-432-6216 / Website
Coocoou sets itself apart from the others on this list because of its specialty selection—it’s an oasis of beautiful mid-century modern art and furniture. It’s no secret that mid-century modernism is having a major moment, making this place a haven for those committed to their sleek MCM aesthetic.