Saturday 31 August 2019

Bookish Bargains: Second Hand September

If you happen to follow me on Twitter, then you might already know how much of an absolute sucker I am for charity shops. There’s nothing I love more than digging around for hidden treasures and brilliant bargains. My relationship with charity shops (or thrift stores, depending on where you are!) is an enemies-to-lovers slow burn with a happy ending. They started out as an embarrassing place my parents would drag me to as a child, where I’d pray no-one from school would see me because who wanted to be the kid whose clothes were second hand, right? If only I could go back and tell 14yo me that charity shops were some of the only affordable places for my parents to shop and to stop thinking so much about what other people thought.

It wasn’t until I was at university that I truly came to appreciate them myself. Now I was the one with no money, and I had a brand new baby blog. So, I started searching the bookshelves in charity shops to feed my book hungry self, and I never really stopped. As much as I’d love to be able to support all of my local bookshops by purchasing every book I want to read, I’m a broke twenty-something who simply can’t. Libraries and charity shops are my saviours, and almost half of the books on my shelves are second hand.

even my bookcases are from charity shops! they're mismatched, slightly battered, and i had to paint one of them white myself, but i love them very much.

After I graduated and my anxiety got super bad, I ended up volunteering at my local Oxfam store to get some experience and build my confidence. Naturally, I chose this specific store because of the huge selection of books they had on offer, but I ended up falling in love with the clothes just as much. Our store is an Oxfam Original, which means we’re lucky enough to receive a delivery of vintage clothes each week that I get to work with. I can’t even tell you how many glittering vintage gowns I’ve fallen in love with over the years!

my beloved vintage dress rail at Oxfam

Being someone who is consistently broke (yay, life!), I could never afford any of the new clothes that I wanted, so I turned to second hand. I could buy a whole outfit for the price of one brand new, high street item. Pretty soon, I realised how much better second hand was for not only my finances, but the environment too. I quit buying fast, high street fashion for myself a long time ago.

one of my favourite charity shop finds, my vintage Minne Mouse jacket!

Throughout next month, Oxfam is running a campaign called Second Hand September, encouraging people to quit buying new clothes for 30 days. Since I already buy my clothes from charity shops, I thought I’d do something a little different for the campaign, something that links my two favourite things together: clothes and BOOKS.

just a few of my fave charity shop book finds over the years. the copy of 'the art of being normal' was donated to oxfam only a couple of weeks after it was released!

With the pre-loved clothes I’ve bought over the years, I’m going to attempt to create looks inspired by some of my favourite book characters! I’m doing this purely because I love nothing more than an excuse to put outfits together, but if it encourages even one person to go check out their local second hand shops, then I’ll be extra happy. I’ll also be including some of the books I’ve bought from my fave charity shops in my posts, because who doesn’t love looking at books?

Please be sure to keep an eye here and on my Twitter account over the coming weeks to see some of my creations. Also, feel free to suggest some characters for me to try out in the comments!


1 comment:

  1. I love thrifting as well. I just went two weeks ago and picked up three books. I wish I can find good clothes on my jaunts. I really don't want to buy new clothes anymore.


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