Has there ever been a better time to go thrift shopping? With shoppers keen to get more bang for their buck and experience the thrill of finding a one-off piece, it seems more popular than ever to buy second-hand. Luckily, we have a wealth of vintage and charity stores on Glasgow’s streets!
As well as snapping up a bargain, buying from charity shops also helps the environment – avoiding perfectly wearable items from going to landfill and giving them the chance to be worn and loved again.
Having learned a bit more about this recently on Fashion Revolution Day, and taking part in the Love Your Clothes Fashion Workshop, I was delighted to hear from Greener Scotland and chat about their 52 Ways to go Greener campaign. We agreed that second-hand shopping does NOT need to mean second-rate style! As part of the 52 Ways campaign, each week there is a different ‘green goal’ to aim for, so that everyone involved is making a simple change that will help the environment. From 16th June (that’s TODAY!), the goal is to embrace buying second-hand.
I’ve been visiting thrift shops since I started buying my own clothes in my early teens. So, when I was faced with the challenge of putting together an outfit from Glasgow’s second-hand shopping scene as part of this week’s green goal, I was only too happy to take part!
I know that so many of you enjoy a good rummage in a second-hand shop as much as I do, so I took to Twitter to find out all about your vintage and charity shopping successes. Here are a few of my favourites…
“a 1930s glass drinks cabinet with original shelves and a key for a fiver…”
“Gina shoes for 25p from a jumble sale!”
“black doc martens shoes for £4!”
Amazing finds! I felt more inspired than ever to go out and find something fabulous. So, on a sunny Saturday morning, I knew just the place to start my search. Regular readers will remember me posting previously about Glad Rags Thrift based in Glasgow’s Southside, and having browsed their Aladdin’s cave of second-hand fashion before, I couldn’t wait to see what the not-for-profit boutique could offer.
It’s no secret that I’m a sucker for a nice frock! I love that all of Glad Rags Thrift’s donations are creatively arranged and placed in order of size (proving that second-hand shopping does not mean compromising on the shopping experience!) which meant that I could dive straight into the dress options in my size and see what I could pick up.
I spied an adorable green floral tea dress that I couldn’t wait to try on, along with a multi-coloured checked shirt-dress (think Little House on the Prairie meets Rainbow Brite!). I also picked up a pair of nearly-new black Topshop wedges that had a subtle shimmer when the light bounced off of them. Cute, and only £6.50! So far, so good then. In the changing room, the rainbow frock was the wrong fit – but hey, there’s always that risk when buying second-hand – so I put it to one side. The green tea dress on the other hand, slipped on perfectly and was just the right side of floaty and flirty! I couldn’t hide my excitement and even Glad Rags Thrift’s Laura cooed as I twirled around in it. Plus it was green – I do love to dress in theme and I couldn’t have planned that better if I’d tried! And for £6.50? Ding ding, we have a winner!
Paired with the shoes, my outfit was starting to come together – but what about jewellery? I spotted a very Tatty Devine-esque black heart-shaped bangle (a snip at £1.20), that matched the shoes and black pocket detail on the dress. At the back of the store, there was a cabinet containing smaller pieces – I couldn’t resist having a look inside. Amongst some delicate metal jewellery, I found a unique black acrylic ring – on closer inspection it was actually an Inca Starzinsky piece from their Hand Shadow collection – and it even had the original box! At just £3.50 it made a very special finishing touch.
For a very reasonable £17.50, I put together an outfit that I totally adore. Comprised of quality pieces and, most importantly, beneficial to the environment. The green goal of buying second-hand may be running for this week, but remember there are things you can do all year round to help make fashion sustainable and contribute to a greener and cleaner country!
Here are a few of my favourite tips:
- Customising is inexpensive and helps make clothes unique and remain a wardrobe favourite for longer
- Think outside the box – some items, such as scarves have multiple uses (tying one in my hair is one of my ultimate ways to disguise a bad hair day!)
- Clothes swap events are not only fun, but they will also ensure those pieces you no longer love will find a new home (instead of the bin!)
Be sure to stop by again on Wednesday when I will be showing off my outfit from Glad Rags Thrift in full!
Will you be aiming to buy second-hand this week? What are your thoughts on charity and thrift shopping?
Because green is the new black…
Miss West End Girl x