Thrifting in #SJTownsByTheBay

April 12, 2024

When my friend and thrifting soulmate, Charlotte (@clothingreincarnated), proposed taking a thrifting road trip together I said YES before she told me where we’d be going- but when she said the destination was SAINT JOHN, I was ALL IN! You see, I was born in the Port City, so the opportunity to head back to my hometown for a sourcing trip was too good to pass up. This would be a trip down memory lane in more ways than one!

Before leaving on our journey we mapped out our ideal shopping route and were VERY pleasantly surprised by the number of thrift shops available in the area. We were initially drawn to the Out’fits stores (which we both followed on Instagram) and built our route around checking out their 2 locations. We discovered in the week before coming to town that they were actually opening a 3rd location in the Kennebecasis Valley during our visit- what perfect timing!

We arrived late Friday to our Air BNB which was located near Union House by Trailway and grabbed some food there which was SO delicious. There were a few local beers from Union House by Trailway in the fridge to welcome us which was a lovely touch of the Saint John hospitality I know and love! We got up bright and early Saturday to meet one of my aunts at Britt’s Pub for a delicious breakfast before exploring the Saint John City Market where I posed with a photo of my beautiful grandmother that was part of a local fundraiser years back:


Brigid and Grammy at the City Market


Fuelled up with delicious local coffee, it was time to hit the road on a day filled with treasure hunting!


Guy’s Frenchy’s - 109 Ludlow Street

This was my first ever Frenchy’s when I was younger because it was close to my grandmother’s house. I found a few great pieces during this visit!


The Hospice Shoppe - 77 Catherwood Street

My grandmother first showed me this spot years ago and it is SO GOOD! There’s a real range from mid-to-high end clothing, housewares and jewelry and is beautifully curated. The staff were all SO friendly and I love supporting this charity!


The Salvation Army Thrift Store - 87 Lansdowne Avenue

There were tons of deals to be found at this shop and it was fully loaded with clothes! If I lived here, this would probably be my go-to for basics for the family. Lots of good brands too!


Out’Fits Outlet - 505 Rothesay Ave

This site operates as an outlet for clothing coming from the other 2 locations. All items are 50% off their original Out’fits price tag so you’re sure to snag some great deals!


Value Village - 212 McAllister Drive

We ran out of time before hitting this one but I had to put it on the map!


Out’Fits Saint John - 15 Fulton Lane

The original Out’fits shop was big and had some fantastic pieces - I picked up a really cute vintage dress here!


Out’Fits KV - 26 Pettingill Road

We were here during the grand opening of the store and let me tell you- it was SO good! The variety was fantastic, prices were great and I ended up with some really great purchases including a vintage Confederation Bridge t-shirt and oversized Esprit wool cardigan!

We were pretty worn out by the time we got back but we still couldn’t wait to head uptown for dinner! We landed at Gahan House Port City and enjoyed a wonderful meal before retiring for the night. If we’d had a little more steam in our engines, we planned to hit up one of the cute cocktail bars in the area, which came highly recommended by our server, so they're on the list for next time!

As we hit the highway for home Sunday morning after visiting another Aunt for coffee, we spotted a neon estate sale sign and OF COURSE, took the first exit to circle back to check it out. If you know, you know you can’t skip these opportunities! We followed the signs to a large indoor estate sale run by A1 Auctioneers with rooms fully loaded with items from a few estates. When the owner noticed my signet ring I told him it had belonged to my grandfather who owned a law firm in SJ- and wouldn’t you know it- he knew him AND grandparents on my dad’s side. What an absolute delight to make this connection at the end of our trip! At least an hour (and another pile of vintage goodies including a gorgeous quilt, brass elephant and some beautiful jewelry) later, we got back in the car to start our journey home.


I promise to plan a longer visit soon so I can spend more time with family (including those who are going to find out I was there from this blog!) I can’t wait to tour them around my favourite thrifts and see what treasures are waiting to be found down the road. Until next time!


Brigid Milway runs The Curio Collective, Halifax’s top vintage and antiques show since 2019 as well as her own vintage business What, These Old Things? where she hosts online auctions. Brigid is also a host of Eastlink TV’s The Past and the Curious which just filmed its 7th season in Simcoe, Ontario. In her downtime, you can find Brigid on the hunt for vintage and antique treasures across the globe!

Land acknowledgement

The Saint John Region is situated on the traditional and unceded territory of the Wolastoqiyik, Mi’Kmaq, and Peskotomuhkati Nations. This territory is covered by Peace and Friendship Treaties signed with the British Crown in the 1700s. The treaties did not surrender the territory and resources, but recognized Wolastoqiyik, Mi’Kmaq, and Peskotomuhkati title, and established the rules for what was to be an ongoing relationship between nations.

Envision Saint John: The Regional Growth Agency pays respect to the elders, past and present, and descendants of this land, and is committed to moving forward in the spirit of truth, collaboration, and reconciliation.