A GUIDE TO CHARITY SHOPPING!

I really think charity shopping should be classed as an art form. And for a charity shop lover like me living in Kenilworth is ideal, every other shop is a charity shop which means i often dedicate an afternoon to looking up and down the high street.

Over the past 5 ish years I’ve become an avid charity shopper. I am addicted to the idea of finding something special or something one of a kind. Ive put  together a list of 4 key things to follow if your looking to become a charity shopper or already are one and just haven’t been very successful till now. Ill also include some of my best charity shop finds to give you a look at whats out there. Also to you people who are grossed out by charity shops there is such thing as a washing machine!

1)Feel for quality:
Don’t spend hours looking through every single item on a rail, its just a waste of time. learn what good quality looks and feels like and eventually you will be able to look at a rail and the quality/branded items will just jump out at you. Your looking for thick luxurious fabrics. A trick if your shopping for men or items to sell on is to search through the shirts section. Make this easier for yourself by learning logos of brands and then its as simple as flicking fast through the shirts looking for that one stand out label.

2)Hit specific areas. You don’t need to worry about hitting every single corner of the shops. There a only a few worth while areas to hit and they are: Mens shirts,womens jeans/skirts, mens t shirts and accessories.

3) see it how it could be:I tend to look at an item with imaginary scissor lines, For example: A skirt can be shorneded or taken in , a t shirt can be cropped. A pair of jeans could be frayed. Use your imagination and think of how you could customise the item to suit you or current trends.

4) Understand your not always going to find treasure. Charity Shopping is a hit or miss situation, one trip you could find 5 items and another trip you will find nothing of substance but understand that they are constantly getting new donations and often when you find one item you will find more than one in one go as people tend to make donations of bulk and will have other items of your taste and size.

Now to some of my best Charity Shop finds.

VINTAGE TEDDY-BEAR SILK LINED COAT!

I found this coat a good 4 years ago in a charity shop in kenilworth for £10! it was such a good find as the quality is amazing and I found it right at the beginning of the faux fur/ fluffy coat trend so had been worn year in and year out every Winter since! It has been washed multiple times and always comes out fresh and fluffy and adds interest to any boring outfit. Teddy bear coats have been everywhere on the high street this winter and have cost a good £60 upwards! HERES AND EXAMPLE OF A URBAN OUTFITTERS EQUIVALENT

REAL LEATHER MINI-SKIRT

I found this Leather miniskirt on a recent charity shop trip where I found around 5 items. This fits me like a glove and sits high waisted just how I like skirts to be. The Leather is in amazing condition and i haven’t taken this off every since. It looks amazing with jumpers/turtle necks and ankle boots for the  ultimate 60’s vibe which is my astetic. This cost me £4 and has also been all over the highstreet for much more and often only pleather. HERES AN EXAMPLE OF A FAUL LEATHER TOPSHOP EQUIVALENT

METALIC RUFFLE T-SHIRT 

I found this top a few weeks ago and although its nothing AMAZING i picked it up for a few reasons. 1) it being a trend piece, ruffles and metallic were both trending this past whole year and this will continue throughout 2018. 2) The quality. The t-shirt is from M&S which tells me it will wash well and not bobble. Its just a plain tee with a facelift, its as easy to style but adds interest and trend substance to your a look.

LEVIS JEANS

This is one of two pairs of genuine Levis Jeans I found in the same charity shop as the leather skirt recently. I always make Levis a priority on my list to look for every time i go into a charity shop because they are so well made, expensive to buy new and also hot right now for the 80’s/90’s revival. I particularaly search for Levis because the vintage shape fits my body shape better than jeans you can buy on the high street due to the snug waists and rounded loose fitting hips and leg. With the Two pairs I found on this trip i have frayed the hems to give a more relaxed and modern touch to them. A tip for finding Levis is to know the colours and feel. Levis jeans are distinctly better quality than other jeans and are much higher percentage pure denim than newer style jeans. You can flick through the jeans section very fast when looking for Levis as all you need to do is have all the jeans with their backs to you and flick through looking for that iconic leather label. One pair cost me £3 and one cost me £4. Much cheaper than the exact same thing “vintage” shops are selling for £25 upwards.

VINTAGE VELVET COCKTAIL DRESS

This is a beautiful Vintage cocktail dress I found a month or so ago. Its amazingly well made with darts and seams that make it fit like a glove. This was something I went out looking for but it caught my eye due to the quality of the fabric standing out at me. Its very 80’s party style which I love and this is my version of a body con dress which isn’t something I usual would wear. I think this dress is also trend based for this coming year as it has the velvet slip dress kind of feel too it which can be seen all over the high street at the moment. I haven’t yet worn this because i am going to shorten it to give it a modern twist and then I’m looking forward to having somewhere to wear it to.

KANGOL BERET 

This is my favourite recent find. I have been wanting a beret for a few months but didn’t want to pay the high street prices for something i knew i would be able to find in a charity shop if I looked hard enough. I was particularly hoping to find a Kangol one because it is the ultimate hat brand and the best quality. I was rummaging through a basket of hats and the logo jumped out at me. This only cost me £3!

 

If you found this guide at all useful please leave a comment! Feel free to follow me Here on my instagram to keep up with more finds and to see how I style these items. Thank you 🙂

A YEAR IN MOMENTS AND OUTFITS

Firstly let me say Happy New Year ( little bit late but still acceptable I think). I hope everybody had an amazing 2017 despite all the rubbish thrown at us all within it. Lets hope 2018 is the year of taking control.

At the start of 2017 i remember thinking it was going to be MY year, I was going to pass my driving test/buy my first car, have my 18th birthday and move to university. All these moments have now been achieved and I feel reminicing is needed. I thought a good way to pin point times throughout 2017 and link to my love of personal style i would pick some of my favourite looks and give a little bit of an insight into what was going on in my life during that time.

February 2017: First time in NYC

This is one of my favourite moments from 2017. I got to visit my dream destination NYC with some of my best friends. I think everyone needs to visit New York at some point in their lives its s culture shock and will leave you with dreams and aspirations bigger than you thought were possible. I want to be wowed again like i was this day during 2018. There are many more places on my hit list to visit. This particular picture is of me and one of my closest friends Ella during a street art in Brooklyn which i suggest everyone visiting NYC does!

Outfit details: Vans old skool high-ups in metallic , H&M black knit & Gold M&S Crushed velvet midi dress (don’t avoid m&s they are changing with the times!).

August 2017:Lake Garda get away.

I had finished College and was relaxing all summer. Lake Garda is a dreamy place and definatly fills you with inspiration to dress like a sassy dancing emoji. This is a firm summer 2016&2017 summer favourite for meI felt so sassy in this look and it will defiantly be coming back out to join  me and my Aperol Spritz this coming summer.

Outfit details:The dress was a H&M special and sold out within a second for obvious reasons! The colour suits the lakes ascetics perfectly and gave a nod to the ruffle s/s trend. The shoes are Next (who i always check for shoes as I’ve found a few amazing pairs in there before.)Faux Snake skin lace up block heels.

September 2017: First week at Nottingham Trent University.

This post is from my first week at university and specifically my first day of lectures. You can see my lovely room in the background…Going to university has been eye opening to me. I have learnt so much in the first term that i already know was invaluable information. I have met people from places i had never even heard of and realised I am actually not too bad of a cook. I love this look because I think it is perfectly me. I feel confident and put together when i wear this but not boring which is something i try to never be. Therefore it was the perfect choice to wear to meet new people.

Outfit details: Top and knitted dress from Zara and shoes are converse.

October 2017: Settling in.

Although this isn’t a particular occasion i have to put this post in because 1 its one of my favourite looks and 2 it falls at the time where i began to settle into my new city. I love this outfit because its one that really suits my personal style. I am heavily influenced by 1960’s silhouettes and Mod trend looks. I think the 60’s silhouette is so flattering and timeless and this mini dress in leather pulls together my love for both those trends. I styled this up differently when it got colder with a polo neck , fish net tights and doc marten boots.

Outfit details: Dress is Zara, socks are Primark and my AMAZING boots that get many compliments from older ladies are Topshop.

December 2017: Theres no place like home.

Back at home again. Moving to a city really makes you appreciate home. Kenilworth is s relaxed and peaceful i am so happy to call it home. This is one of my current favourite looks because it is so relaxed and comfortable but i don’t feel any less sassy when i wear it.  I have Kenilworth’s charity shops to thank for this one. Don’t be scared to go into a charity shop. There are so many gems to be found for a fraction of the price “Vintage” shops sell them for.

Outfit details: Levis jeans and ruffle metallic top from local charity shop, Boots and faux fur bag from Topshop, Belt is vintage.

25th December 2017: Christmas Day.

Christmas came round again and although it was dysfunctional due to my house being a building site we managed to have a relaxed and food/ fun filled day. The older you get the more important who you spend Christmas day with is. This is hands down my best Christmas day outfit ever! And i can’t even take the credit for myself. My Mum knows me well. Although we have the charity shop to thank again for the fabulous Beret. Currently wearing the jumper while writing this.

Outfit Details: Beret is from a local charity shop and jumper and skirt are H&M.

So there it was , a  look into a few key moment and looks of my 2017. I hope you all are having a great start to your 2018. This blog post made me realise how many fab things I’ve found in the charity shops and has inspired me so keep looking out for a potential “Do’s/ Don’ts of charity shopping”.

If you fancy keeping up with my 2018 styling or just a bit nosy you can visit my instagram HERE!!!