Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Take a walk in someone else's shoes...

For those of you that don't know me, you should know that I adore finding pre-loved pieces of clothing.

I wrote an article on the online women's magazine about two years ago explaining how at the time, I had discovered the joys of charity store shopping.

That's not to say that I still don't turn my nose up upon entering one of these stores. This is largely because of a thought that enters the heads of most girls my age - "I realllly don't want to trawl through the masses of mothball-smelling clothes." 

I also try to avoid my childhood soft-toys that we've donated and continue to gaze at me with sadness each time I walk past them (I have to avoid the temptation of re-purchasing them).

Regardless, I think we all just need to get over our stereotypes of charity stores. Sure, not all the items in there are to everyone's tastes, but with a bit of luck, creativity and bargain-hunting skills, you'll be sure to find something that suits (and even catches the eye of your vintage-loving friends).

You may all be wondering if this is in fact leading onto something. I am pleased to say it is.

Yesterday, after conquering a hill on a routine walk with my mum, we decided to enter Vinnies (St Vincent de Paul charity store for those of you not in the know). Clad in lycra leggings, a clingy t-shirt and topped off with a sweaty, unwashed hair-bun (oversharing, I know), I was skeptical about finding anything in there. 

However, a cobalt blue, pleated floral chiffon dress caught my eye. Yes, it may have once suited the fashions of decades gone by, but incase you didn't know, vintage is in!

With the idea of this season's pleated maxi skirts and light chiffon jackets in mind, I snatched this $12 bargain up straight away, only to find that for this month, it was discounted to a mere $6. Victory! With a bit of unpicking and sewing, I now potentially had an already-lined Summer skirt and jacket for three bucks each.

Close-Up of dress

Full shot of dress

Dodgy close up (but you get the idea!)
But it doesn't end there. With my new purchase, we stood outside looking at the window displays, and what did we see? Well, how about a shiny, strappy, tall pair of creamy heels (a la Tony Bianco style), which upon asking the lady at the counter to see, I found that they were a) brand new with the tags still attached, b) my size exactly, and c) $20. I knew I was in love because I brushed away the lady's suggestion to try them on, and paid for them before carrying them home, snuggled under my arm.

Side view

Front crossed-over

Front (enough to make Sea of Shoes jealous I think)

The moral of course, is don't shoo away the potentials hidden within charity stores. You may be surprised at what you might find.

Stay tuned to find out if my envisioned skirt/jacket combo comes to light :)

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