Thrift Store Finds

by Paula Mitchell

However unfair it may seem, when you’re a woman in broadcast news, visuals count. You learn that early in your career. Fans send messages about your lipstick, hairstyle, jewelry, and clothing. You can’t be caught on camera in that same black blazer you wore last week.

You get frustrated because you want the content you deliver to matter, but you quickly learn that without the proper visuals, the content gets lost. So, your wardrobe matters. Women news anchors need to be thrifty and stylish at the same time.

When I was an anchor at Time Warner Cable 6 News in Middletown, N.Y., my husband and I were raising a family, so judicious spending was important. Most of my jackets and blouses were purchased at Salvation Army family stores in Kingston and Middletown. 

I found fabulous bargains. Many of the blazers were gently used designer labels that I quickly added to my cart. I would visit these stores several times a year and walk out with great treasures.

The bonus was that I had a different outfit almost every night during our live broadcast at 5:30 p.m. Even more importantly, I knew that my money was going to a great cause. Through my husband’s job at The Salvation Army, I learned how these thrift stores operate and what they support. What could be better than purchasing a wardrobe and knowing that my money would go toward helping people who struggle with addictions find hope and healing? It’s rewarding to know that I am supporting those who need a second chance.

I left the television industry about a decade ago, but I still shop at The Salvation Army and have passed that habit down to my children.

Go to to locate a Salvation Army Family thrift store near you. 


Saving money at a Salvation Army thrift store is great, but your purchases also help change lives. Proceeds fund local Adult Rehabilitation Centers (ARCs) where people who struggle with drugs and alcohol find help and hope. Visit to learn more.

Read more from the latest issue of SAconnects.