When I open my wardrobe it’s bursting with clothes but when I consider how many of those pieces I actually wear, it would probably be less than 5% of my closet.
That’s where National Op Shop Week 2015 comes in, a charity event run from 23-30 August that encourages everyday Aussies like you to donate clothes that you no longer wear to op shops like Vinnies, Salvos and Lifeline in your area.
Of course, when donating some of your used threads, why not take advantage of the great bargains to be found by updating your wardrobe?
Whether you’re a fashionista after designer apparel or a hipster wanting some new vintage gear, here’s our top tips for grabbing a bargain this National Op Shop Week 2015:
1. Declutter your existing closet
While you may love those skinny jeans you no longer fit or that funky jacket from uni days, be honest with yourself and if you haven’t worn those garments in over a year, it’s time to put them in the donation pile. A good rule of thumb is to only donate clothes that you would give to a friend.
Once you’ve chosen the clothes you will donate to your local op shop, it’s time for the fun part – thinking about what you’ll put on your op-shopping list (e.g work skirt, blazer, plain t-shirts, jeans that fit). By creating a list, you won’t be tempted to purchase pieces you don’t actually need.
2. Bring cash with you
You’ve found the perfect recycled fashion piece, only to realise you have no cash on you – an opaholics nightmare! So before you head to your local op shop, make sure you withdraw a set amount of cash to bring with you. This will also help you decide on a budget for the day, so you won’t splash out and spend more than in attended.
3. Search for gems
Op shops are full of hidden treasures, so it pays to check the labels for designer brands. You might be surprised to find that everything from international brands like Versace and Louis Vuitton, through to local favourites such as Bec and Bridge can be found at your local second hand store. Be patient though, as you may have to wade through a mountain of used clothes until you find that second hand gem.
4. Look for quality
When looking through the racks, check the fabrics and keep your eyes peeled for apparel made out of silk, 100% cotton, cashmere or wool etc. That way you will not only be picking up a bargain but one that will last.
5. Buy off-season stock
As we are coming out of winter, chances are op shops will be brimming with great winter wear. So if you need a classic trench coat or worm wool knit, now’s the time to buy it while winter stock in op shops is marked at a low price.
Want more tips for finding ethical fashion at a standout price? Then read our 4 thrifty ways to shop for good article.