Extreme Thrifting: UDELCO Edition

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Imagine: A giant room dedicated to clothes. Mountains of wool sweaters, cascades of leather boots, piles on piles of denim. Sound like a dream? A thrifter’s paradise perhaps? Enter Udelco Warehouse turned thrift super-store, Udelco serves shoppers the epitome of  thrifting  treasure hunt promising not necessarily the simplest of shopping experiences but the most interesting and amusing one for sure. Located in Hawthorne NJ, UDELCO just might be North Jersey’s best kept secret. At first glance, you may mistake the entrance to Udelco for an unauthorized factory entrance or office backdoor but don’t let their discrete location fool you into missing the ultimate “going through grandma’s attic” experience.

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NOTE: Upon entering, you may be overwhelmed by the stacks on stacks of labeled boxes of clothing. Don’t fret. This is the fun part. Read on for some tips on how to make your uldeco experience a memorable one.

Tip: Come prepared with ample time and a free schedule.

Since UDELCO is a free-for-all style thrift store, I’m not kidding when I say that there are countless amounts of cardboard boxes filled to the brim. You can’t look through everything in just a few minutes. Good things take time. Trust me on this one.

Tip: KEEP DIGGING!

Other than each box being labeled, there is no organization of the box of clothing itself. “Old T-shirts” may SEEM like it is just a box filled with a million wrinkled, freebie-junk shirts but I promise you if you keep digging you will find that 1999 Britney Spears concert Tour tee you have only seen in your dreams, it is there. Don’t give up your search just yet. Some of the best things I have found here have been at the very bottom of their boxes.

Tip: Buy your Flannels here

  The most frequently purchased product that I have bought from Udelco is without a doubt the flannel shirt. I probably have a million by now. Old ratty, oversized flannels paired leggings and t-shirts are a great way to make a lazy-day outfit look put-together and stylish. Why spend $40 on a flannel shirt from a store when I’ve never spent more than $6 at Udelco.  The same goes for high-waisted shorts, try on a few pairs, it’s definitely worth it.

Tip: Have fun, don’t take it things too seriously

 The best part of Udelco is the fact that they have absurdly labeled boxes and bins that make you question how they even acquired enough “Animal print Biker shorts” to make a whole bin dedicated to them. Go through them. You will laugh your head off searching through piles of 80s wedding dresses, sequin towels and leather jumpsuits and maybe you will surprise yourself when you find that “something” that you just have to have.

Recent Notable Purchases:

-        $2 wool plain scarf (I saw one that looked the exact same at Macy’s for $68 the next day I swear)

-        $15 Friend’s Doc Martens Sneakers

-        $4 Fairport Baseball Tee (has some random boy’s last name on the back, who cares?)

-        $15 Friend’s Camouflage Arm authentic army jacket

-        $5 Oversized Flannel

Things to remember:

-        UDELCO is cash only so stop at the ATM beforehand! You wouldn’t want to have to walk away from that ridiculous sequin nylon blazer just because you only brought your card!

-        Nothing is labeled with price-tags, prices are decided by the clerk once brought over to the table. Keep in mind, Bargaining CAN be an effective shopping method here.

-        Seasonal products such as tacky Christmas sweaters sell out quick! Get there early in the season to guarantee your possession of popular products.

-      Udelco is unfortunately closed on Sundays so don’t show up to disappointment, plan your trip accordingly.

Have you ever visited Udelco? Do you have another favorite thrift store?

Blissful Hunting,

Victoria Tripsas