A few weeks ago I read an amazing piece about a woman who only shops in charity shops. She hasn’t spent more than £3 on clothes in years, she wears a piece a couple of times and donates it back.
How do I get this mentality?
I used to love to buy vintage stuff but let’s face it, it’s still second-hand clothing but with a higher price tag. At least now I can grab a bargain and support a charity a little more.
Whilst writing this I looked back to find the original article but found this instead.
There are some inspiring people in this world. They may not be famous and they might not be ‘true heroes’ but they’re still inspiring, at least to me.
Somehow, it seemed almost shameful when I was little. I remember a girl once saying she’d bought her really cute t-shirt from a charity shop, the comments of “Why? Can’t you afford normal clothes?” and “Charity shops only sell clothes that people have died in!” inevitably spilled out of small uneducated mouths.
I come from a little town that is made up of coffee shops, charity shops and pubs. We only ever had one main high street clothes store. This fact, coupled with my mums hatred of shopping and big towns meant I spent most of my time looking through items in either Oxfam, Help the Aged, Mind or Scope.
I wouldn’t say that was a bad thing, it meant that I could get far more clothes than my friends and my mum spent a fraction of the price. As long as I didn’t mention where I had bought the clothes from I would feel great. And when it came to shopping for holiday clothes we would go to a big out-of-town store – getting brand new stuff was a huge treat.
During my teen years I went through the predictable goth stage, though not as extreme as some. I went through a girly phase, a tom-boy phase and a refusal to wear any branded clothes phase. Charity shops catered for all my moods. Even when I started to go out to events and discos I would buy dresses on a regular basis so I wouldn’t have to wear the same dress twice.
I was scarred by the Lizzie McGuire Movie at a young age… “You Lizzie McGuire are an outfit repeater!”… Did people actually say this? Did people document your outfits? I refused to chance it.
At University we constantly shopped in charity shops, our fancy dress outfits were always on point and it didn’t matter when they were drenched in beer in the Student Union Bar on a Wednesday night.
I still wander around a good charity shop. Still with my mum. Although over the past few years I’ve steered away from buying clothes, I now enjoy finding the most hideous thing in the shop and telling my mum I would buy it for her.
I regularly buy books or household stuff but it’s rare I would get anything else. After leaving the charity shop I usually cross the road to the high street clothes store and fall in love with at least ten different things and walk out feeling sad that I can’t afford any of them.
My new plan
My current style “lazy-but trying” is about to change. I want “country, quirky and cute”.
For the first time in 7 weeks I have a whole Saturday free. I will endeavor to stroll around my little town and visit at least 3 charity shops. It’s my new goal to find something – anything.
I have to admit I tried this months ago. I was going for a day out and desperately needed something to match my carefully planned outfit. I searched high and low for a denim jacket that is under £30 – no luck. I did find a denim shirt, it was a size 18 and I’m a 12 but it was £2.75, tied perfectly at my waist and I felt quite fashionable… Very Rare!
So now I’m taking advice from any fashion-forward-cheap-only shopper I can find. Things like “do not look at sizes, just try them on” are bound to make me feel better, but I still don’t think I can resist a sale.
If it’s under £10 then it’s ok.