I like a nice charity shop mooch. I’ll bring anything home; jigsaws, pottery (a favourite), clothes – I even snaffled a wooden fireguard once and a very nice tray and coasters. Anyway, my most recent charity shop snaffle was a very nice cardigan, I like cardigans, and a chunky bead necklace. Both were from Shelter in Didsbury and a Per Una cardigan for £3.99 and a Next necklace still on the card with the RRP of £15 for a snip at £3.50 had to be purchased.
The cardigan always comes in. A delicate purple/pink shade with the requisite softness has already been earmarked to compliment some of my vintage style dresses. The chunky necklace has a massive 60s vibe and makes me feel like Twiggy (feel not look….).
So what are my top tips for a charity shop mooch. Well go in all the time. You will be amazed what people will throw out in this disposable society. Obviously Nana’s china is always going to be in there and what a bargain you can get. I once bought a medium sized old style roaster with the dimpled lid for a few pounds. Still going strong it’s my “go to” item when doing a slow roast and similar ones in high end shops are out of my budget. I’ve had crockery from there, whole tea sets before the whole vintage thing took off; I was ahead of the curve on that one and never paid more than £5 for a 6 setting service and lots and lots of assorted vases. Vintage is getting quite tricky to source now but flea markets are always about and never be ashamed to have a rummage in the box on the floor.
Books are always a go-er. Cheap as chips me and Mr GWG have a standing present every Christmas. We go to our local Oxfam book shop and set ourselves a limit, it used to be £5 but now it’s £10 due to inflation, and buy each other the “yard of books” present. Read the books, take them back to a charity shop. It’s a win/win!
Clothes. Now I know a lot of people turn their nose up at this. Why? Some people buy an item, wear it a few times, can’t be bothered to put it on ebay and so just take it to their nearest charity shop. Why not take advantage? I’ve had some crackers. Pure wool jumpers for a fraction of their original cost, Next shoes and handbags the shoes with barely wear on the soles and the handbags still with their packing in! Mr GWG even bagged himself a hand made in London tweed suit for the unbelievable price of £14. Fits him like it was made for him. I know you can go to Primark or any other cheap fashion outlet and buy from there. I’m not saying you shouldn’t, I love a good mooch around Primarni and will cover that in another post but why not try a charity shop?
My top rules are:
Bobbling – easily remedied with a defuzzer
Loose buttons and dropping hems – you’re kidding me right? Get your sewing kit out
Small holes can easily be darned or, if you’re feeling adventurous, patches on elbows and a few well placed buttons/bows/flowers can cover a multitude of sins and give you a unique look for a fraction of the hand crafted price.
SO what are you waiting for? You’re saving items from landfill, you’re giving them another lease of life, you can customise to your heart’s content, you’re saving your own money and most of all you’re giving a charity a few pennies. Charity shops have been doing vintage for years!