Fight against the urge to support fast fashion. I know it's hard - everywhere you look there seems to be a promotion for it - but just a couple little steps can lead you on your way to a more sustainable life. For example, buying a few solid, good quality pieces that will last and fit with a range of trends will reduce your need to buy excess fast fashion pieces. Another great step is buying second hand, whether that's Ebay, Depop or the classic charity shop. Plus, it's second hand September! So here's some tips to get you finding those charity shop treasures... But first things first, stay safe and be considerate! Wear a mask and take hand sanitiser with you in these crazy times.
The first tip is the most important. You're not going to find a gem every time you walk into a charity shop, but charity shops are different because they constantly have a new stream of stock coming in. Plus, with there only being one of each item, those amazing pieces are likely to fly out as soon as they get there. Just keep in mind that you won't find that perfect piece every time you walk through the door!
Where the charity shop is will make a difference. You can find gems anywhere, but areas with more money are more likely to have people donating higher end clothing. For example, my boyfriend's Nain (nan in welsh) found a Burberry scarf in a charity shop in a pretty fancy area. You're more likely to pay a higher price in areas like this though. I watched a Youtube video of someone charity shopping in Chelsea once and found that there is a big difference in price depending on your area.
You might not like that skirt how it is right now, but what about a different hem length? What if that jacket had different buttons? What if that top was cropped or short sleeved? Even if you're not the most sewing savvy, some small, easy changes can make a huge difference. If you're a bit better with the sewing side of things, if you love an item but it doesn't fit, could you find a way to alter it?
This might not work every time, and sometimes you just fancy a browse, but going in with a particular item in mind can help. Sometimes I'll see an item online that I really want but I'll think "that's the type of thing to find in a charity shop". For example cardigans have really come back into style. This is the exact type of thing to be in charity shops near me as they're often filled with older people's clothing. I got an M&S one and cropped it. I might also change the buttons to some old pearls to give it a higher end look.
I love watching thrift hauls on Youtube! They're great for clothing and outfit inspiration, as well as letting you see the difference an item has on a hanger compared to in an outfit. While there isn't as much content out there surrounding British charity shops (oh to live in America and go to thrift stores!) they're still good to get some ideas in your head. A great source of British, second hand clothing inspo is @theniftythrifter_ on instagram!
So yeah, there's my top tips. You know, if you're going to the charity shop anyway, it wouldn't hurt to donate your old clothes while you're there as well... Soak in all that good, charity shop clothing karma!
Are you going to try styling with charity shop finds?
Bethan ROR XX