Monday, 21 September 2015

Charity Shop Scores: West Hampstead, Hastings, Lewes and Darlington. PLUS: A Decision


The haul I have to share with you today isn't as enormous as my last instalment of Charity Shop Scores. That's mainly because my last instalment wasn't that long ago, but also because I've been doing some thinking, which I'll get to in a minute. First...

Weird Sock-Shoes, £2.99
Dinosaur Wellies, £2 



Let's just take a closer look at these crazy sock-shoes! Call me sheltered, but I've never seen anything like them. They were brand new still in their packaging, so I could see that they were made in France but bought in Germany (the original price tag is on the back). Are they made for outside use?! I have no idea. Although they do proclaim to be machine washable, which you'd hope they would be considering they are mainly fabric. 



Jazzy Clarks trainers, £1

When shoes are barely worn and this cheap, I can't help but snaffle them up, even if I've already got a few pairs in the same size already in the bank. You never know which are going to be 'hits' and which will be 'misses', especially now Dolores is developing an opinion about what she wears, and helpfully becomes increasingly vocal about what feels comfy and what doesn't.  



Colour block cardigan, £3
Spotty bolero cardigan, £2.99

My mum is a fabulous knitter and makes Dolores wonderful, cosy cardigans. But the finer knit variety like these are often useful for layering, particularly in warmer months.


So on to my decision. It was a tough one to make, but I need to stop charity shopping. Not for ever, but for the foreseeable future. It's one of my favourite activities, but I can't escape two truths: 1) charity shopping is still a form of shopping, and 2) we've got enough stuff. What I mean by the first one is that, even though the money I'm handing over often goes to support awesome causes, it's money I need to channel elsewhere at the moment. Pat and I want to make some changes to our lives, and those changes are going to cost money, so I need to limit/stop unnecessary spending where I can.

And as for the other point, thanks to previous charity shopping successes, as well as some lovely hand-me-downs and my own sewing skillz, Dolores has enough suitably sized clothing and footwear in storage to see her through the next year or two. Plus, something I derive great pleasure from is sewing clothing for her, but there's no point in doing that with so much stuff already in our possession. I've finally figured out that I need to leave stuff in the charity shops for other people's kids, so I can make things for my daughter that will actually see a decent amount of use. And you don't even want to see how many secondhand toys are already knocking around our house.... I've actually removed about a third of her toys from sight with the intension of rotating them, but it hardly looks like anything happened and she certainly hasn't noticed.

9 comments:

Sewionista said...

Great finds! I might be able to give some German insight for the weird sock shoes ;) they are house shoes, it might be a German thing that we even wear (special) shoes inside the house, I don't know? I can totally understand your decision to shop less even in charity shops. It can be kind of tempting when everything is so cheap and in the end it's for a good cause. But I also noticed that some of my charity shops finds ended up unworn in my closet and thus think about it more thoroughly whether I need it even when it comes from charity shops.

Elisabeth said...

About the sock shoes - they are for indoor use. The kids wear them on top of their regular socks, as a pair of slippers. (In many countries, eg Norway, is customary to take your shoes off as you enter a house).
The sock shoes are often worn at day care. They serve several purposes: they are non-slippery for when they run around inside; they keep their feet warm; and they keep their socks dry if they have to go outside in case the fire alarm rings.
Hopefully that will solve the puzzle for you.

Almost a Hippy said...

I found that when I was only buying clothes from charity shops, I actually ended up spending more money as I got caught up in the idea that finding an item of clothing was a one off opportunity rather than being thoughtful about what I actually needed.

Knitlass said...

Oh yes!

My trick re: charity shops is to be very very picky. I try to only acquire things that we are short of, that fill a specific gap (a list is helpful here). For example, my 8yo has plenty of t-shirts but hardly any long sleeve tops, so that's what I'm on the lookout for. My 2yo on the other hand really doesn't need anything much...

The other thing I'm fairly ruthless about is moving stuff on. Too small clothes go at regular intervals - either donated to friends or charity shops, or if they are really worn/stained and can't be revived by dyeing then I put them into the upcycling box. If nothing else they'll make dusters...

brooke said...

I've been grappling with the whole charity shopping thing lately too. I've been on a minimalist kick - not used/worn etc - it's out. But of course I go have a look inside when I drop the donations off... So I'm trying to balance my love for charity shopping and my love for living without stuff (which is growing everyday!).

Veronica Darling said...

Hi Zoe! Those sock shoes are popular here in China, with lots of children wearing them indoors instead of shoes... as most people don't wear outside shoes inside... they wear slippers or house shoes... I wear padded platform thongs for a joke!

Because there are no op shops/charity shops in Shanghai (that I can find yet) I sew where we have gaps in the wardrobe, or buy new and good quality when I can't sew. There's a good second hand / Buy Swap and Sell group between the foreigners on Facebook though, so I'll pass clothing on there and to charities who need clothes to wear. It's always great to rotate toys, having a few boxes out and then a few tucked away... we have a lot of drawers in our new house here in Shanghai so we hide things away quite easily and bring them out when it's time to play with a 'new' toy... works well!

Louise Perry said...

My two boys both have a pair of slipper socks with leather soles. Good for us as we have wooden floors and otherwise they'd either have cold feet or slip over. I reached that point with charity shopping at the beginning of the year. My mission now is to take more of our stuff to the charity shop and not look whilst handing it in. We are drowning in toys and a lot of them need to go!

Christals Creations said...

I am an on off charity shopper. I don't go into town that often and sometimes when I have small children in tow it's more an in get what you need out mission, especially now the small madam is out of a pushchair and on her feet the whole time. But I do like the occasional find, my almost if not new M and S denim skirt for £4 is worn a lot, and I need some layers for winter so I may have to pop in but we too are channelling our money into our latest project. A new house with a fair bit of work.

Kristina said...

I love those shoe/socks thingys for bringing with to places like the library, Church or children's centres, especially in inclement weather (here in Canada) we leave the boots at the door and wear the indoor shoes with grip around on the slick floors. Nice finds!

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